Valentine Wiggin

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Valentine Wiggin
Ender's Game character
First appearance Ender's Game
Last appearance Ender in Exile
Created by Orson Scott Card
Portrayed by Abigail Breslin
Family John Paul Wiggin (father)
Theresa Wiggin (mother)
Peter Wiggin (brother)
Ender Wiggin (brother)
Spouse(s) Jakt
Children Lars, Syfte, Ren, Ro, Versam

Valentine Wiggin is a fictional character in Orson Scott Card's Ender's Game series of novels. She is the older sister of Andrew "Ender" Wiggin, the series protagonist. Abigail Breslin portrayed her in the film adaptation of Ender's Game.


Valentine is introduced in Ender's Game. The second child in the Wiggin family, she is born when the Fleet requested of the Wiggin parents that a girl be conceived because they decide that her brother, Peter, is too cruel[note 1] to be taken to the Battle School. The Fleet thinks that the Wiggin family genius would be better used by a girl, but Valentine is too empathic and conciliatory for the Battle School program. Because of this, the I.F. requested that a Third (named Andrew, later nicknamed "Ender", his middle name) be conceived as a balance between the two extremes.

During her early years, Valentine serves as a friend and protector for Ender, whom Peter torments because he is jealous of their close relationship. Afraid for her life as well as Ender's, Valentine claims during a confrontation with Peter that she has hidden a public record in the library that will be opened in the event of her death, stating that Peter had most likely murdered her, and that he would soon move against Ender. She taunts him by saying that it would not be enough to convict him of anything, but it would be a damaging enough record to keep him out of politics, a realm he wishes desperately to enter.

While Ender is away in Battle School, Peter implores Valentine to "work with him" to stall a possible breakup of the Warsaw Pact. As young children, they write political commentary under pseudonyms ("Demosthenes" for Valentine, and "Locke" for Peter). The former would be a demagogue who called for war with the country's coalition partners, especially Russia, while the latter would be a mild intellectual who advocated diplomacy; a decision at odds with both writers' actual personalities. Demosthenes becomes extremely popular, whipping the public into a xenophobic frenzy and moving the country closer and closer to war. During this time, Valentine recognizes that Peter is trying to manipulate her for his own purposes, though Valentine realizes that she is manipulating him as well. While his powers of manipulation could create fear to be used to his advantage, she could truly persuade others to her point of view; she knows she can use this power on Peter.

After Ender's victory over the Buggers, Valentine chooses to go on the first colonization ship to leave Earth.[note 2] After her departure, Valentine revives her "Demosthenes" identity, but writes as a historian, chronicling different cultures on different planets. Under the Demosthenes pseudonym, Valentine develops the four-tiered Hierarchy of Exclusion.

Physically, Valentine has been described as a redhead. She was born two years after Peter and two years before Ender. However, the relativistic effects of interstellar travel render moot the question of how old she is in comparison to Ender or Peter.

During the two-year transit (subjective time) to their new home, as well as the colony's first years there, Valentine pens a complete multi-volume history of the wars against the Formics, with the final book centering primarily around the now-legendary Ender Wiggin and including the text of The Hive Queen by the Speaker for the Dead. Hegemon Peter The Great, now in his 70s, contacts his siblings after reading said history; out of these conversations come The Hegemon, which is appended in later editions of Demosthenes' history. Thereafter, Valentine begins to follow her brother Andrew (no longer using "Ender" as his nickname) in his travels. Their first stop is the colony of Ganges, after Hyrum Graff requests them to help quell an uprising.

Valentine and Andrew travel various worlds over the next 3,000 years until she falls in love with Jakt, a fisherman on the colony world of Trondheim. She decides, rather to her surprise, to marry him, while Andrew finally separates from her to voyage to Lusitania. The voyage takes 22 years, so that Andrew is 36 and Valentine 60 when he arrives. However, after Lusitania's revolt, Valentine uproots her family (consisting of herself, Jakt, and her children — different paragraphs in different books describe her as having either six, five or three of them) and joins them there; their voyage takes 30 years as they make several hops in the wrong direction to discourage pursuit, more than equalizing the age difference between them.

Valentine offers what help she can to the colonists of Lusitania, generally doubling Ender's role as a voice of reason. She also revives the original Demosthenes persona, writing inflammatory, passionate diatribes against Starways Congress' current plan of uprooting Lusitania and possibly exterminating the Pequeninos. After arriving in Lusitania, Valentine meets Young Valentine, who was created by Andrew's experimental trip with Jane. She remarks that Young Valentine was more beautiful than she herself was when she was her age. Valentine witnessed Andrew's "death" when he could no longer support the three bodies using his mind.

After Andrew's funeral, she witnesses the weddings of, respectively, Jane and Miro and Peter and Si Wang-mu. As of Children of the Mind,


  1. ^ This was later refuted in Shadow of the Giant by Mazer Rackham in a discussion with Hegemon Peter Wiggin. Battle Schoolers were not denied entry on the basis of excessive aggression. Peter was denied entrance because he lacked the fundamental charisma of a leader - people would follow him out of like-minded goals, but never show him the same devotion and love that Ender could command.
  2. ^ She convinces Ender to accompany her on this trip, explaining to him that he really has no other choice, because while writing as Demosthenes, she had taken measures to make sure he could not return to Earth (because she did not want Peter to bring Ender back and use him to further his political agenda). Peter agreed to this because Valentine threatened to make public the evidence she had amassed over the years of his sociopathic behavior (like skinning squirrels alive) if he didn't allow her and Ender to go free and with the colony.