Speaker for the Dead
Orson Scott Card
Nebula Award for Best Novel (1986) and Hugo Award for Best Novel (1987).
In his Hugo and Nebula Award winning follow-up to Ender's Game, Orson Scott Card pits humanity directly against "the other," drawing lines as rigid as family, as uncomfortable as religion, and as radically as an alien race with an all-too alien mating cycle. Ender is now Speaker for the Dead, a secular priest who, instead of preaching at a funeral, honors the dead by memorializing their actions in life. While Card was a devout Mormon (more so in recent years), Ender's clash with a Catholic colony, his attempts to understand one alien race and redeem himself for the destruction of another, is balanced and thoughtful, and should be remembered if we ever—possibly, hopefully—find alien life.