Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Review of Ready Player One by Ernest Cline

I am so excited to reveal my review for this terrific book. Ready Player One by Ernest Cline has received rave reviews and I knew that I had to read it.

Ready Player OneGoodreads Book Description: It's the year 2044, and the real world is an ugly place.

Like most of humanity, Wade Watts escapes his grim surroundings by spending his waking hours jacked into the OASIS, a sprawling virtual utopia that lets you be anything you want to be, a place where you can live and play and fall in love on any of ten thousand planets.

And like most of humanity, Wade dreams of being the one to discover the ultimate lottery ticket that lies concealed within this virtual world. For somewhere inside this giant networked playground, OASIS creator James Halliday has hidden a series of fiendish puzzles that will yield massive fortune--and remarkable power--to whoever can unlock them.

For years, millions have struggled fruitlessly to attain this prize, knowing only that Halliday's riddles are based in the pop culture he loved--that of the late twentieth century. And for years, millions have found in this quest another means of escape, retreating into happy, obsessive study of Halliday's icons. Like many of his contemporaries, Wade is as comfortable debating the finer points of John Hughes's oeuvre, playing Pac-Man, or reciting Devo lyrics as he is scrounging power to run his OASIS rig.

And then Wade stumbles upon the first puzzle.

Suddenly the whole world is watching, and thousands of competitors join the hunt--among them certain powerful players who are willing to commit very real murder to beat Wade to this prize. Now the only way for Wade to survive and preserve everything he knows is to win. But to do so, he may have to leave behind his oh-so-perfect virtual existence and face up to life--and love--in the real world he's always been so desperate to escape.

A world at stake.
A quest for the ultimate prize.
Are you ready?

My rating: 5 out of 5 Stars

My Amazon Review (click this link and vote!): Ready Player One Review

This book by Ernest Cline focuses on Wade, a geeky adolescent, whose greatest ambition is to win a video game contest sponsored by an eccentric video game designer. There is an Easter egg hidden somewhere in OASIS, the virtual world created by this genius, and Wade, a poor nerd who has been orphaned, seems like the most unlikely candidate.  But to the world's surprise, he finds the first Key out of three, and starts the adventure of his life.

This book is an incredible homage to the eighties pop culture, icons, music, and fads. I almost feel like to truly appreciate how awesome this book is one needs to have grown up during this time period. This book truly is a playground for those adults who love to read young adult books-- here we get that feel but at the same time, it has such a nostalgic feel. And what geekdom! For any adult who grew up as a nerd loving Star Wars, Star Trek, Firefly ( OK so that's a more recent obsession), Lord of the Rings, etc, this book is for you. Because I meet all of his criteria to a tee, it's not a surprise that I loved this book.

But past all of that, it is an exciting adventure all on its own with more than a few delightful twists. The world building is fantastic and I grew jealous of the characters as they get to participate in what has to be the coolest virtual video game ever. Plus, the characters are three dimensional and fun. Sam is a great protagonist, Aech is a hilarious sidekick, and Art3mis is a winning love interest--and quite a kick butt girl!

My one criticism is mild. The villain was pretty two dimensional, but the rest of the book more than made up for it. Insignia, another recent book very similar to this one, is a pale shadow in comparison.

Overall, highly entertaining and imaginative, with terrific references to the eighties and geekdom that are spot on and well researched. A must read for everyone, but in particular those still young and geeky at heart.

What did you think?

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1 comment:

  1. My favorite Italian food is... pasta. :D

    Thanks for the giveaway!