Book #8: Ready Player One

I’ve heard a lot of talk about this novel for a while, and finally read it. Ready Player One by Ernest Cline is a dystopian novel where the world has significantly deteriorated due to overpopulation and energy shortages. To escape the difficulties of reality, most people spend their time in an immersive virtual reality program called the OASIS. When the creator of OASIS, James Halliday, dies, it triggers a challenge within the program where the winner will receive his fortune and control of the OASIS. The novel follows a teenager named Wade as he tries to figure out the puzzles and trials to find the prize. It is drenched in eighties nostalgia because the game Halliday created centers around his love for his favorite decade. The novel is creative and ambitious, though gritty, slow in parts, and with somewhat flat characters. It takes Cline so long to set up the intricate world he’s created that it took me a while to get into the story. And even then, I had no emotional connection to the characters. The only reason I pushed through was because I found the plot interesting and wanted to see how it ended. The second half of the novel is much more fast-paced and it turned out to be a fun read. If you have a strong love of eighties trivia or video games in general, you would appreciate this book. The story is being made into a movie to be released next year and I imagine it will come across much better on screen.

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