November 3, 2013

Ender's Game Book vs. Movie

This week I was able to see Ender's Game in the theatres. Overall, I was very impressed with the movie. However, as anyone who's read the books knows, there's quite a few differences:

  • The battle of the belt is in earth's atmosphere
    • The battle of the belt actually happens in the outer solar system
  • John Paul Wiggin has animosity towards Ender
    • JP actually loves Ender; there's no issue here
  • Teresa Wiggin isn't smart
    • In the movie, she is literally just 'Ender's caring mother'. She's just as smart as her children, though
  • Peter isn't compassionate at all
    • Peter actually comes to Ender when he thinks Ender's sleeping and says he loves Ender and that he's sorry for him. In the movie, Peter is cruel for no apparent reason
  • Valentine isn't mild or timid in the beginning
    • You know Valentine? The mild, timid one? Well, in the movie, she's banging on doors and yelling at Peter. Sure, she is the echo that says everything Ender wants to hear, but she's not really afraid of Peter.
  • Ender doesn't break Bernard's arm in the shuttle
    • Ender just gets teased for his name in the shuttle. By Bean. Talk about a double standard.
  • Bean is on Ender's shuttle
    • Bean comes on a much later shuttle
  • Where's Shen?
    • Poof. If you were hoping to see Shen, aka 'Worm' don't look in the movie. The boy Bernard teases and Ender befriends is completely missing from the movie.
  • Ender mouths off to his superiors
    • That's Bean's job. Ender doesn't really get mad at his superiors or hold what they've said against them. In the book, he gets mad at the games they make him play.
  • Bernard bullies Alai
    • In the book, Alai and Bernard are friends
  • Ender directly attacks Bernard through the desks
    • The book makes a point that Ender doesn't use direct confrontation with Bernard. Rather, he sends messages as 'God' or 'Bernard_'
  • There are windows in Battle School
    • There shouldn't be. The kids are supposed to be isolated from Earth. In the rest of the series we are told that there weren't any windows in Battle School. In the movie there are a lot of windows
  • Bonzo is short
    • The book tells us that Ender is much shorter than Bernard
  • Dink is in Salamander
    • Not really. In the book, Dink is Ender's toon leader in Rat Army, which is completely omitted from the movie. Dink is the one who teaches Ender how to move in the battle room
  • Dink and Petra aren't friends
    • In the movie, they're just fellow soldiers. In the book, they're good friends.
  • Anderson is a black woman
    • Anderson is a middle-aged Caucasian man.
  • Less than forty people in an army
    • Armies should have forty soldiers plus the commander
  • The mind game doesn't take Ender to 'The End of the World' or show Peter in the mirror
    • Ender only goes through the Giant's Drink and the castle in the movie. Also in the movie, it is not a bat that leads him to fairyland, but a bugger-bat thing. In the book he finds Peter in the mirror of the castle and ends up discovering that Valentine is the snake.
  • Bernard is in both Dragon army and the final 'jeesh' who fights with Ender
    • First off, everyone in Dragon was chosen by Bean because they were misfits who can do well. He also makes sure no one was ever a part of his launch group and practice sessions. Thirdly, they have to be younger than Ender. This clearly means that Bernard shouldn't be in Dragon, as he is in the movie. The final jeesh is chosen as those who are most inclined to fight under Ender or Bean. Bernard doesn't belong here either.
  • All of the events that occur from Ender being assigned Dragon army to the final battle with the buggers takes 28 days according to Graff's countdown
    • That's impossible
  • Ender isn't a leader in Dragon Army
    • The movie doesn't show how he trains his soldiers, how he organizes the toons, how he singles out Bean, and his commission of Bean's special toon.
  • Graff doesn't seem to care about Ender
    • In the movie, Graff compares Ender to a horse. In the book he really cares about Ender. He loves Ender, but realizes he must be compromised for the greater good.
  • The hallway scene doesn't even happen
    • Petra never tries to stop Ender in the hallway full of Salamanders in the movie. This is a pivotal scene in the book.
  • When Ender's Dragon army fights Griffin and Tiger, Salamander is in the battle room 
    • I can't even imagine why.
  • Petra is a sub in the final battle
    • First, Battle School doesn't do substitutes. Secondly, they wouldn't take the substitute from the army Ender is battling. (Salamander, see above) Ender even asks Petra when she comes if Bonzo is okay with it. So Petra definitely is still in Bonzo's army when she subs. (In the book, she actually commands Phoenix army at this point)
  • Why does Dragon get to use the rope in the final battle?
    • First, the movie doesn't portray the deadline correctly, it's really a thin metallic-looking line, not a rope. Then it doesn't tell us about Bean's toon or explain why Dragon army is allowed to cheat by using the deadline.
  • Ender doesn't fight Bonzo until after the final battle
    • Ender's fight with Bonzo happens right before the battle. (Which means even more that Bonzo shouldn't have been in the battle room for the final battle. he'd be dead at that point.)
  • Ender sprays Bonzo with hot water
    • Really? In the book, Bonzo even tells Ender that he's not afraid of hot water. Ender doesn't spray him with hot water. he uses it for the steam.
  • Ender doesn't kill Bonzo
    • This is arguably Ender's major inner emotional conflict. In the bathroom scene in the book, Bonzo dies. Ender kicks him in the nose, jamming it into his skull. In the book, he kicks him lightly in the chest and Bonzo falls on the edge of something and gets injured.
  • Ender waits by Bonzo's bed watching over him
    • At the lake, in the movie, Ender tells Val he's been waiting by Bonzo's bedside. Bonzo should be dead. Ender still hates Bonzo. Bonzo should be in Cartagena, Spain.  
  • The entire Wiggin family knows that Val goes to see Ender
    • Val is actually pulled out of school by Graff
  • The Locke and Demosthenes subplot is omitted
    • The political subplot from the book is absent from the movie.
  • It takes almost no time to get to Command School
    • It takes months to get to Command School, which is in our solar system
  • Command School is near the Bugger's home planet
    • It's in our solar system in the book, on Eros, an asteroid about 6km in diameter at its narrowest point. (This would take years to get to traveling at relativistic speeds.)
  • Ender isn't isolated
    • In the books, he isn't allowed to see his friends. While watching the movie, when he is taking to Petra's hologram, she says, "We shouldn't be having this conversation at 1AM." Immediately, my mind replied, "You shouldn't be having this conversation at all. You aren't allowed to speak to each other outside of battle."
  • Ender writes letters to Valentine filled with classified information
    • This isn't allowed in the books. Also, wouldn't this be especially dangerous if Val is Demosthenes?
  • Why isn't Mazer dead?
    • The movie doesn't tell us why Mazer is still alive. It makes up how he survived his battle, but never says how he lived to be hundreds of years old.
  • Ender finds the Hive Queen right after his almost-xenocide
    • He is actually leading the first colony for some time before he finds her.
  • Ender goes to find the Hive Queen's new home all by himself
    • Valentine goes with him. This is vital to the rest of the series.

June 4, 2013

The Moon and More

This year, as my birthday present to myself, I bought The Moon and More by Sarah Dessen. It just came out yesterday, and it was too good not to finish, which is why I'm up so late. So here's my review:

The Moon and More
This book was like seeing an old friend again. It's full of great references from Sarah Dessen's other books. Benji's comment about how he is 'along for the ride', is definitely my favorite. One of the best things about this book, is that it's different from the her other stories, and from most books themselves. Emaline isn't 'any other girl' from a normal family. And, her life isn't the life of 'any other girl'. A mix of family, friends and romance in the familiar town of Colby, and what could possibly make for a better book?

The Moon and More is about possibilities. Some, we grab onto, but others we let go. That's what this cast of characters does throughout the book, and that's the beauty of this story. Emaline, and the people around her, want the moon and more. But when Emaline finds that she may not be able to get the moon and more, she learns to love her landing among the stars.

My favorite line from the book is the very last. You'll have to read it to see, but you'll know what I mean. The last sentence finishes that amazing last paragraph- pure Sarah Dessen. :)

It's pretty rare when you find a book that matches your life in a lot of ways. In each of Sarah Dessen's books, you pick up pieces of yourself, so that once you've read them, you're a little closer to having your whole self.

The Moon and More gets 5 of 5 moons, and more.

May 4, 2013

Snowing Butterflies

I remember, as a small child, looking into the backyard one day and seeing it filled with hundreds of white butterflies. It was an absolutely magical moment. And, I learned something: Sometimes the most spectacular things are right in your own backyard.

Years later, and staying home to study stoichiometry (that's chemistry) they came again. Yesterday we had a string of nasty storms, losing power and having part of our fence blown down. I don't know what made me go look outside, but when I did it was like being transported all those years ago. It was once again snowing butterflies.

Here's a picture I took of one of the butterflies.

Remember, every single day is magical. Sometimes it comes to us in pristine beauty or fairy dust, but other days we have to find our own magic. We have to spread our wings and look for everything this beautiful world can offer us.

With warm regards,
Erica N

April 24, 2013

Nail Art, Rereading, and Summer on the Way

First of all, here is my latest nail art.
I painted on a blue base coat and then dipped the tip of each nail into some glitter.

Do you have a book you can read over and over again? What makes it such a good read? Over the years, I've found many books I can reread including The Mysterious Benedict Society, any of Sarah Dessen's books, and the Enderverse series.

Summer is on the way! The days are getting longer and warmer and school's almost finished. You might think that summer is a time to laze around, but every summer I try to work on a project. Whether it's dollhouse miniatures or geology videos, a project keeps the summer interesting. Sending warm thoughts your way!

April 11, 2013

Dreams, Wishes, and Time: The Night Circus

A truly magical story, The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern has earned a place on my favorites shelf for books. There is so much symbolism, the vividness and attention to detail absolutely stunning. Another aspect of this novel which is unique is its nonlinear organization. In other words, the events are not told in chronological order. Normally this might be confusing or misleading, but Erin Morgenstern wields this technique with literary expertise that shines through this story. Dynamic characters, an enchanting setting, and a little sprinkle of magic bring this story to life.

As a reveur, I prefer to read this book in the hours after midnight. I also drew this with my inspiration being Celia's wishing tree. Enjoy!

April 6, 2013

Nail Art and the Truth About Trendy

First off, I wanted to share the nail art I did last night.
It's a silver base with glitter on top. The designs were done in black with a toothpick.

I have been called many things, but, yesterday, I was labeled as trendy for the first time. Although it had been meant as a simple compliment, it made me wonder what trendy is. Many people would say that to be trendy is to keep up with the latest styles. But, styles change from place to place, from time to time. Also, what is trendy to one person may not be to another. So, the truth about trendy is that being trendy on the outside is when we let our inside shine. It's what inside that counts and, when people see 'you' reflected in your appearance, you are trendy.

What are your thoughts about trendiness? Feel free to comment below! :)

April 3, 2013

Books, Projects, and More

First of all, my apologies for taking so long to write.

Yesterday, April 2, Kingdom Keepers VI by Ridley Pearson came out! It's a great series that I recommend you take a look at.

My more recent projects include these:
This is just one of the trees I've made. Agate base, wire, gemstones, and glue.

More projects coming soon! :)

March 14, 2013

NASA Day 13- Circles in Space: Happy Pi Day

In accordance with this awesome contest that Beth Revis is doing:, I'll be blogging every day celebrating NASA. Beth Revis writes the Across the Universe Trilogy. You can check out the book review I did of the the books in the archives.

Anyway, onto my space post:

Happy Pi Day!!!!
Space is full of circles, the Earth, sun, moon, galaxy. To find out more about these circle is space visit We couldn't be where we are today without pi. One other thing: pi goes on forever and so does space.
Finally, here's a pi day parody I wrote. Check it out:

March 13, 2013

NASA Day 12- Launches

In accordance with this awesome contest that Beth Revis is doing:, I'll be blogging every day celebrating NASA. Beth Revis writes the Across the Universe Trilogy. You can check out the book review I did of the the books in the archives.

Anyway, onto my space post:

It seems like so long since the shuttle program was canceled. I remember watching the shuttles launch on the TV, then running to the driveway. The bright lights and rumble of the sonic boom entranced me. The night launches were the best. The windows shook from the vibrations and I stood watching until it disappeared from view completely.

Now, even though there are no more shuttle launches, I can still watch rockets. It's not the same, but it's still neat to think that something you are watching is going to be in space in mere seconds.

March 11, 2013

NASA Day 11- Star Systems and PanSTARRS

Sorry I missed a day!

In accordance with this awesome contest that Beth Revis is doing:, I'll be blogging every day celebrating NASA. Beth Revis writes the Across the Universe Trilogy. You can check out the book review I did of the the books in the archives.

Anyway, onto my space post:

First of all, don't forget about the comet. I didn't get a chance to look tonight but will try to tomorrow.

It's crazy to think of where the world of science is going. We're looking at other star systems. That's insane. We get to see things that we don't know how to get to yet. It is absolutely amazing what technology and innovation can accomplish.

March 10, 2013

NASA Day 9- Mega-Flood on Mars

In accordance with this awesome contest that Beth Revis is doing:, I'll be blogging every day celebrating NASA. Beth Revis writes the Across the Universe Trilogy. You can check out the book review I did of the the books in the archives.

Anyway, onto my space post:

We are constantly learning new things about our neighbor, Mars. And now, with Curiosity, we are learning even more. Check out this great article about an ancient flood on Mars:

March 9, 2013

NASA Day 8- The Space Speed Limit

In accordance with this awesome contest that Beth Revis is doing:, I'll be blogging every day celebrating NASA. Beth Revis writes the Across the Universe Trilogy. You can check out the book review I did of the the books in the archives.

Anyway, onto my space post:

In our universe the speed of light is the limit. Even the fastest things we make, like rockets, go only a minuscule fraction of the speed of light. A few days ago, scientists were able to find the spin rate of the super massive black hole, NGC 1365. It's spin rate is about 84% the speed of light. Is that fast or what?

This measurement shows a real world application of Einstein's theory of relativity. As you speed up you pass more slowly through time. If you were able to travel at the speed of light you would not age at all. So, if we wanted to 'time travel' to the future, all we would need to do is get a large ship to go around a black hole for a short while. Then, when the ship turns back towards Earth, thousands of years might have passed.

March 8, 2013

NASA Day 7- Coming Comets

In accordance with this awesome contest that Beth Revis is doing:, I'll be blogging every day celebrating NASA. Beth Revis writes the Across the Universe Trilogy. You can check out the book review I did of the the books in the archives.

Anyway, onto my space post:

A rare event in the sky:

Comet PANSTARRS will be visible in the next couple of nights. Check out the link above for details on how to spot this burning ball of ice. Depending on the cooperation of weather, I would like to take some pictures of this comet. If I suceed, you'll see them on this blog in coming days. This is so exciting! :)

March 7, 2013

NASA Day 6- Space

In accordance with this awesome contest that Beth Revis is doing:, I'll be blogging every day celebrating NASA. Beth Revis writes the Across the Universe Trilogy. You can check out the book review I did of the the books in the archives.

Anyway, onto my space post:

Anyone take any pictures on MicroObservatory yet? How are they coming out? ;)

March 5, 2013

NASA Day 5- Big and Small

In accordance with this awesome contest that Beth Revis is doing:, I'll be blogging every day celebrating NASA. Beth Revis writes the Across the Universe Trilogy. You can check out the book review I did of the the books in the archives.

Anyway, onto my space post:!/photo.php?fbid=10151486800471772&set=a.67899501771.69169.54971236771&type=1&theater

This is a link to a picture of the Cassini Spacecraft seen by the rings of Saturn. It's just a tiny speck, millions of miles away from home. It really gives a perspective for how small we are in comparison. This is one of the most fascinating aspects of NASA: we're trying to learn about a world that's so much bigger than us. We are ants digging tunnels through space and time. The tunnels seem huge to us, but in perspective, they're quite tiny.

March 4, 2013

NASA Day 4- Something New

In accordance with this awesome contest that Beth Revis is doing:, I'll be blogging every day celebrating NASA. Beth Revis writes the Across the Universe Trilogy. You can check out the book review I did of the the books in the archives.

Anyway, onto my space post:
The best thing about this new frontier is that we're always learning something new. For example we just discovered a new radiation belt around Earth.]

How cool! I recommend going onto one of NASA's social networking sites to get the latest news. You never know what you'll find. :)

March 2, 2013

NASA Day 3- Magnetars

In accordance with this awesome contest that Beth Revis is doing:, I'll be blogging every day celebrating NASA. Beth Revis writes the Across the Universe Trilogy. You can check out the book review I did of the the books in the archives.

Anyway, onto my space post:
You've probably never even heard of magnetars. They are dense magnetic super novae remnants. They emit most radiation but are too far away for us to see the visible radiation. If too close to Earth a magnetar could wipe all of our credit cards or anything with magnetic strips. Check out for more info on them. They're so intriguing.

NASA Day 2

In accordance with this awesome contest that Beth Revis is doing:, I'll be blogging every day celebrating NASA. Beth Revis writes the Across the Universe Trilogy. You can check out the book review I did of the the books in the archives.

Anyway, onto my space post:
Has anyone ever checked out the awesome site that lets you take pictures of different objects in space? It's called MicroObservatory:

This is the best part about this new frontier. Space is accesible to everyone. Be sure to comment on how your pictures come out! :)

March 1, 2013

The Amazing NASA

Although I'm only in high school, I'm dead set on a career as an astrophysicist. I practically live on the NASA websites. From Radio Astronomy to Astrobiology they have it all. I even watch the NASA channel on TV. I follow them on all my social networking and follow every launch, especially the ones I can see from my driveway, like the SpaceX launch today. Space is the next frontier, so here's some fun space stuff I've made as well as some awesome NASA sites: So many fun activities! See the space station in the night sky! Pictures of the Day!

Astronomy is absolutely amazing. I've been able to use both optical and radio telescopes and the stars are awesome.

Check out the sites!

I was inspired to tell you all about NASA due to a contest Beth Revis is hosting:

February 24, 2013

Never too Early for Halloween

It's been a few months since Halloween, so it's time to start planning your costumes for next year. Here's my crazy Halloween schedule:

February-March: Find 5-10 costume ideas that are cool
April: Narrow your selections down to 1 or 2 costumes
May-July: Keep your eyes out for costume accessories in thrift shops etc.
August: Pick one costume idea but keep the other for a backup. Begin to acquire major parts of your costume like cardboard, fabric, etc.
September-Early October: Assemble costume
Mid October: Test out, fix, and put finishing touches on your costume
Late October: Have a compiled list of costume contests and other events. Also, map out your trick or treating route; better costumes mean better candy.
Halloween: Showtime! Have your emergency supplies like duct tape with you

Right now I'm in full planning mode here's some of my ideas:

-Book Fairy
-Celia from the Night Circus
-Guess Who? character

In my opinion, you can't just wear a costume because it is cool. Your costume should say something about you. A costume isn't a just a fun dress up game. It's a chance to say "this is me!" Halloween is the one day where it is socially appropriate to do this. Seize the opportunity; great costumes come from the heart.

Erica N

February 19, 2013

Pi Day Challenge

Hello, everyone!

As you know, March 14 is fast approaching. In preparation for pi day, I wanted to share this site with you all:

So far, I am on level 16. My goal is to beat the entire thing by March 14. So check it out!

                                                                                                   Erica N.

February 11, 2013

Julius Caesar, Shakespear, and Betrayal

For my English class, I am reading Shakespeare's tragedy of Julius Caesar. I've just finished the third act. Caesar has just been killed and his funeral is being held. Brutus and Antony both speak. Both fell that they are doing what was right. Many people consider Brutus the antagonist, but didn't he think he was preserving the delicate democracy in Rome? Didn't Antony, offering Caesar the crown, think he was being supportive of a great leader? The public sides with Antony, but is that because of his oration or because he is right?

The duel of speeches at Caesar comes down to a battle between the fears of what might have been and the tragedy of the present. Obviously, the public falls for the tangible tragedy and seeks to avenge Caesar.

What do you think? Should Brutus have allowed Caesar to corrupt the political structure of Rome rather than stand up for what he believed in? Was Antony right to start a riot against the conspirators? It's pretty interesting to think about.

What do you all think? Comment below! :)

January 19, 2013

Shades of Earth Book Review

As promised, here is my review for Shades of Earth by Beth Revis. Shades of Earth is the third book in this trilogy preceded by A Million Suns and Across the Universe. You can read a bit about the first two books in my blog post here:

Another masterful piece of work by Beth Revis. She worked through many challenges including a new setting, new characters, and new conflict. Just like the first two books, Beth Revis finds a plot twist that is entirely unpredictable. Also, I really respect that the ending is the usual "and they lived happily ever after" mentality that I see all too often in other YA novels. Once again, I was dazzled by Beth Revis's work.

As I mentioned earlier, the setting of this book is different from the first two. After living on Godspeed, we now are faced with this new planet, one that holds both great hope and great fear. With suspenseful trepidation, we join Amy and Elder as they explore this breathtakingly exquisite paradise. We learn about the world from both scientists and simple observations. I was pleased that too much time was not spent on every minute detail of the planet. However, I do wish that more emphasis was put on the sky on Centauri-Earth. In the previous books, the stars held hope, beauty, and peril. We learned the secret of the stars while sailing through them. I feel that some revelations could have been made by Amy and Elder while looking at a new sky of stars that would have not only carried the last two books, but also developed this book even more.

With the frozens awake, Beth Revis had to work with a new cast of characters. I like the differences and conflict apparent between the shipborns and frozens from the beginning. I was really impressed with the small scale character development that took place in this novel. It really shaped the fact that each person is a precious individual and leaves no deaths insignificant. Also, Orion was done wonderfully. However, there are a few characters who I believe could have been portrayed a bit differently. First of all, when Amy reminisces about her parents while on Godspeed, she seems closer to her father. In this book, this is reversed. I wish that Amy's father was more understanding. I understand that Beth Revis wanted to establish his militaristic side, but I felt that this was a bit exaggerated. Secondly, I believe that Harley is referenced only once in Shades of Earth. I wish that Amy and Elder had thought more about him. For example, they might have thought about what he would love to paint if he could see Centauri-Earth. It almost seemed that Amy and Elder had forgotten him.

Pace and Plot:
Like all the other books, there was never a dull moment. The pace and plot were brilliant. From tangible action to heart-wrenching decisions, I couldn't put it down.

Unresolved Issues:
Also, there were a couple issues from the first two books that I had hoped would be resolved in Shades of Earth. Mainly, did any of the other frozens dream through the centuries like Amy did? Also, what happened to Victria?

I hope you all enjoyed this book review and I urge to check out this trilogy. And, not sure if she'll ever read this, I want to give a huge thank you to Beth Revis for writing this amazing trilogy!

January 15, 2013

Shades of Earth is Released Today!

I have been waiting for this day to come forever. Today is the release of Beth Revis's book, Shades of Earth. I have done a previous post about Across the Universe and A Million Suns. If you're looking for something to read, definitely check out this astounding trilogy! :)

January 11, 2013

Guess what I got in the mail yesterday?

I was so excited when I got this!!!! I can't wait to stick the signature inside Shades of Earth when it comes out on the 15th!! Thanks Beth Revis!

Also, check out her blog for links to read the novella through the blog tour.

Secondly, don't forget about YA2U!

January 2, 2013


Have you ever wished that a big YA book tour would make a stop in your hometown? Well, here's your chance for that wish to come true! YA2U is a program that features five award-winning and best-selling authors who are holding a contest to see what city they should visit in an exclusive tour stop!

The authors are collecting votes from January 1 to February 15, and any city in the continental US or any Canadian city that has an international airport can win an exclusive visit from all five authors, including an author panel and book signing! Entering is super easy--and if you help spread the word about the contest, you can also enter win a signed copy of all of their books (TEN signed books in total!)--and the book contest is open internationally!

The authors in the program are:

And they want to have an event in your home town! To participate, just got to the YA2U website and let them know what city you want them to come to. And while you're there, help spread the word about the contest and you can be entered to win all of their books--TEN signed books in total! 

Here's why the YA2U Team should come to MY hometown! 
My favorite author in this group is Beth Revis. I would love to get to meet her, as well as the other authors. To me, it seems that, whenever authors come to Florida, they always go to Miami. Why is that? I know that, you, all of my readers, have your own hometowns, but they also let you list a secondary town. So, why not pick Orlando, FL as your second choice? It's a big city and widely accessible. Even if you don't care and don't plan to vote, put down Orlando,FL as a favor to me. PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE! Thanks!

Why should the YA2U Team come to your hometown? Why not join in the fun today and share with others about this program and your hometown. The more votes your town gets, the closer you are to having your very own personal tour stop! Vote for YOUR town here!</ div>

And if you help spread the word, you can also participate in the book giveaway. Tell them that you learned about YA2U from me and we both get extra entries in the contest! 
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