Damn it! I have been waiting for a chance to rant!
(sorry if this is too long but strong feelings y'know?)
Ok I know half the people here also said her and listed reasons why, and others said she was a victim and it wasn't really her fault because of her traumatized childhood- which I get,
- i understand I do I even squeezed out a tear for her in speaker of the dead.
have a big problem with her in Speaker of the Dead where many said found her annoying from the start.
I really got it, yes she's not a great mother and she buries herself in her work but she's scarred, she's full of self shame and self hate, she's completely tragic and relatable. I didn't hold her actions in that book against her at all, maybe I didn't identify with her scenario of marrying a handicapped guy full of unrequited love who became abusive through the emotional and physical strain he was under and cheating on him with cheerful alacrity and so on and yeah I do think she could have handled it all a lot better but hey as Card's brilliant writing indirectly points out numerous times, she's human.
And yeah her and Ender getting hitched all of a sudden was kind of left wing for me too and really came out of nowhere despite the several fatherly moments between him and her children. I got the whole 'from the moment he saw the little girl who had been through real tragedy and pain in her life and blamed at least half on herself, just like he had, he loved her-thing' shared pain and all that but none of that really screamed romance to me, more understanding and companionship. Hell, there was more romance between him and belladonna in Ender in Exile!
But after a long moment of confusion and ambiguous feelings- coz I mean really I didn't like it or hate it at the time, it was just strange.
I accepted it, figured it was 'all g' there were more books for me to read where there relationship would probably be touched on but no, not so much.
That I could forgive, but then- in Xenocide her painfully minor role which only really served to place more strain on Ender ... ugh
I mean she made it seem like trying to stop the mass murder of entire species, the people of lusitania and save the universe from the corrupt powers that be was morally unfair to her. Like he was doing something wrong after he'd put her whole family back together, given her love and understanding for years and trying to help. Wow, what a b****! . . .just . . .wow.
But I could forgive that.
I could even forgive her moody blame-gaming neuroticism, because it was in character- I mean she was Always super tempestuous and single minded and self willed.
I got it, that was who she was. -Even when she was blaming Ender for Quim going on his ill fated mission, I figured she'd get over it, see reason- if not as a mother then -as a scientist, or even as a rational minded sentient person. I mean it's not at all like it would've been jarring after her lack of mothering in the first two thirds or so of speaker of the dead ( in realation to the care for Miro, and reconcilliation with ela in the last bits).
But Quim doesn't return, so instead of facing facts and accepting the onslaught of sorrow and torrid emotions like everyone else in her family, she frikking blames it on Ender who's only been trying to keep a frikking insane family of clashing geniuses -that she can't keep together- in order, long enough to save everyone they know and loves' lives from the hiroshima-esque fate a space bomb has been sent to sentence them to, this whole time with his boundless compassion and intelligence.
Damn it novinha!
That annoyed me, yes, it really frikkin did, but EVEN THAT could be forgiven! Because it made a crazy sort of sense in keeping with Novinha's bull headed character, it worked with the writing despite everything else. And I could even get her self-delusional disolutionment with Ender based on him not being completely and utterly bound to her controlling ways after seeing his closeness with Valentine and Jane so many times.
I didn't even bat an eye when she first entered that religious order, because- her character was that of a punisher, she punished herself, punished Libo, punished herself again. . . so it was natural now for her to punish Ender in her own selfish self serving way despite all he'd done for her, because Quim had made a decision about how he'd live his life and she hadn't liked it. So it made sense, it was still consistent when like a petulant child she shut herself away inside the convent while everyone else went about saving the world, even causing delays in that by with holding passwords to the labs for no proper reason.
Accepting all of that, all of that likeable character destruction, all of her excrutiatingly irritating actions and inactions.
There came the one thing I could NOT bring myself to accept.
She becomes a frikking convert.
WHAT THE ACTUAL HELL!?!?!?!??!!!!!
She was a full fledged atheist/ agnostic in speaker of the dead to the second half of xenocide- full of practical self assertion, I'm not dishing on religion or anything but it was sooooo frikking out of the blue for Novinha, totally didn't match up. I kept reading thinking 'what the hell.what the hell.what the hell.what the hell.what the hell.' It completely and utterly RUINED her for me. It was so weird, it made no sense, it was so weird.
And then she goes on and on and oooon in 'children of the mind' like a self possessed martyr while Ender under so much pressure and confusion from all the weird situations he's been thrust into and had to deal with, not knowing how to handle it and not being able to go to Valentine -because one of the weirdest is his fault and hurt her or Jane because she faces her own impending doom of philotic brain damage, and neither of them are now unable to go on without him. Looking for someone to lean on and support him, to justify his existence while it's being split three ways, he goes to Novinha -his undeserving wife who he's always supported and who's never supported him as far as we know- and full of self sacrifice decides that no matter what he's going to be with her.
And instead of snapping out of it upon once again seeing his boundless compassion, instead of becoming sensible and reasonable again, instead of realizing her mistakes and injustices and not forcing him to do this thing for her.
She LET'S him. And she doesn't do it gracefully either -noooooo sireeee- he has to go on hands and knees to her practically begging her to take him back.
Again like HE did something wrong.
And all the way through this she's quipping at and indirectly insulting him in such an 'i don't need you' cold hearted b* sort of way.
That is in not so short why I found her so damn annoying.
She was really mean, disjointed and she even made Ender act *slightly* out of character too. And she acts like such a victim all the way through it too
So. messed. up.
I feel such venom.