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Ready Player One

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4.3 of 5 stars 4.30  ·  rating details  ·  127,248 ratings  ·  20,772 reviews
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...more
ebook, 384 pages
Published August 16th 2011 by Crown (first published January 1st 2011)
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Jason Cox I just finished RPO and found it to be awesome!

3 that I would recommend are:

1. Neuromancer by William Gibson
2. Ender's Game by Orson Scott Card
3.…more
I just finished RPO and found it to be awesome!

3 that I would recommend are:

1. Neuromancer by William Gibson
2. Ender's Game by Orson Scott Card
3. SnowCrash by Neil Stephenson

All of those are excellent reads, fast-paced, and leave you wanting more. (less)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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William Cline
For most of the first half of this book, I was unimpressed. The writing was flat, and the story was unremarkable. The book gets hype because of its pervasive use of 1980s popular culture, particularly its references to science fiction, fantasy, and video games. The problem was that most of these references served no purpose. Something would be describing by pointing out its resemblance to something from a film or television show—a particularly annoying form of "telling, rather than showing" give...more
Kemper
Adventures in Time Mowing

After my laptop fused to my lawn mower due to a freak lightning strike, I discovered that I could use it to travel through time.

“Wow, where’d you come from?”

“I’m from 2011. Got a time mower and decided to come to the future. I’ll spare you the full origin story. My name’s Kemper.”

“I’m Wade Watts. Welcome to 2044.”

“Thanks. I gotta say, things are looking kind of grim around here. Are those mobile homes stacked up like hillbilly skyscrapers?”

“Yeah, I live in one of them. W...more
Patrick
I got to read an ARC of this, and it appealed to every geeky part of me.

I'll probably write a blog about it later, but for now, a brief review:

Simply said? This book was fucking awesome.
Flannery
Aug 18, 2011 Flannery rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone who loves the 80s, trivia, video games, RPGs, or is looking for a fun read.
Recommended to Flannery by: Joel
This book is nostalgia porn. If you grew up in the 80s, enjoy video games, or go crazy for popular culture, you will devour this one. I was supposed to be reading this with a friend but I couldn’t stop. I read the beginning and thought, “what’s the big deal with everyone’s obsession?” Then Ernest Cline got his meat hooks into me and I read it while I was making dinner, while I was eating dinner, and then afterward until I’d finished it. I think I am just a few years shy of this books prime audie...more
Stephen
WOOT, WOOT and UBER WOOT all you MMORPGers, this book is the perfect calm down, happy face diversion next time you find yourself offline and frustrated because:

** you’re stuck medding back in a safe zone after nearly being ganked by some douchey griefers who jumped your camp site when the mob you were going to farm spawned so they could kill steal it and abscond with your loot;

or maybe

** some group of questing ubers turned asshat and refused to let your alt join them so you could PL by leechin...more
Melissa Proffitt
So disappointing. The premise of a treasure hunt inside a gigantic immersive online environment is interesting. I like the idea of the people of 2044 being fixated on '80s culture for clues to solving the puzzle. The execution simply doesn't live up to the promise. The writing goes like this:

interestinginterestinginteresting

INFODUMP

interesti-

BIGGER INFODUMP

...and so forth. I honestly don't know who the intended audience is. The author overexplains all the '80s references as if he expects readers...more
Joel
There's this conceit that keeps popping up in sci-fi dystopia novels that it is only a matter of time before we will all be glued to our virtual reality goggles 24 hours a day as elaborate MMPORPGs slowly take over the world.

I think this is stupid. No matter how increasingly ubiquitous computers become, I just don't foresee Second Life replacing the first one (FarmVille may have replaced actual farming, but that conversation involves a lecture on government subsidies that I just don't have time...more
karen
let me get the gripes out of the way first, because despite overall being a fun, escapist book, there are things that rankle.

i have a crush on the 80's (not an obsession, mind you, but a crush. when i was little i managed to simultaneously want to make out with both jon cryer and molly ringwald and to this day depeche mode's album black celebration soothes many sorrows.



so a book that revolves around 80's pop culture sounded like my kind of thing, even if a lot of the references are video game re...more
Dan Schwent
In the dystopian future of 2044, the world is going down the crapper and many people spend most of their free time playing OASIS, an online virtual reality game, sifting through every minute detail of the creator's life, for whomever unravels a series of riddles James Halliday left behind inherits it all. Will teenager Wade Watts be the one?

As I've said in the past, every once in a while a reader will unearth a book that feels as if it was written especially for them. For me, Ready Player One is...more
Jeffrey Keeten
"I'm not crazy about reality, but it's still the only place to get a decent meal." Groucho Marx

When I was going to middle school, which used to be the high school when my father attended school, this 1930s WPA project was full of asbestos and toxic mold from decades of water leaks. I probably shouldn't think about it too much or I might croak before I can finish this review. I was a rural kid and had to wait for the bus to come pick me up after school to haul me the five miles south of town to t...more
Veronica Belmont
Ready Player One is one of those books that I'll be recommending to people for a long, long time. If you love geeky media... books, videos, TV shows, music (and especially if it's from the 80s) this book will be a favorite of yours as well.

The characters are engaging, the descriptions of the scenes inside OASIS are vivid, and it's fun (and thrilling) at the same time.

Does the 80s trivia come on a little thick? Yes, but that's kind of the point (and the plot).
Sissyneck
That one star is probably misleading...I thought this was going to be a 4-5 star book for a good portion of the time I spent reading it. The 80s pop-culture references are so pervasive and so relevant to my life that, at times, the book felt like it been written specifically for me. (The love interest is described as being like Jordan, from Real Genius...c'mon!)

But.
All of the Star Wars, Ferris Bueller, and Highlander references in the world can't hide that this story is at best, empty, and at wo...more
Lou

Three hidden keys open three secret gates Wherein the errant will be tested for Worthy traits
And those with the skill to survive these traits
Will reach The End where the prize awaits.

James Halliday a video-game designer created The Oasis. It made him one of the wealthiest people in the world. He had no successors to hand down the corporation he built. When he died he left a message to the world, one that called for the finder of 'The Egg' in a video game to gain ownership of OASIS.
I am thinking...more
Seak (Bryce L.)
Ready Player One is pure nerd candy, geek heaven, or whatever you want to call it, it was an experience I couldn't stop if I wanted to and didn't want to end.

It usually takes me quite a while to get through an audiobook and that's usually because I only listen to it at certain points of my day - when I'm in the car or walking to or from a new destination. Otherwise, I either have other commitments or other reading material.

I listened to Ready Player One in about 3 days. That's unprecedented for...more
Alejandro
WOW !!! (Pun intended, if you what I meant ;) )

Charlie and the Chocolate Factory meets The Big Bang Theory meets TRON (raised to the nth power(TRON, I mean)).

The most clear appealing to read this novel is obviously the insane quantity of geek references, mostly to 80's era (and some of 70's too), so maybe people who aren't geek (don't worry, nobody is perfect) may be feel alienated and/or not interested to read this book.

I can't deny the advantage of being a geek, specially raised in the now c...more
Rainbow
I felt like I was born to get the references in this book. And I was so impressed with the way the references WORK. The way they push the story forward and give it texture. So many scenes in the book FEEL like videogames or role-playing games -- but in a really rich, excellent way.

I read this right after I read "Ender's Game," which is the sort of book that would get mentioned in "Ready Player One" -- and I was struck by how Cline references old-school science fiction and videogames in the servi...more
GHOULIO™
Mar 17, 2014 GHOULIO™ rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: 70's babies, 80's babies, and California computer nerds
Recommended to GHOULIO™ by: the god of 1980's trivia
1980's mass-media nascent-computer-nerd porn disguised as a mystery-caper.

Perfectly enjoyable, but probably only for Americans born between 1968 and 1982.

It really is, start to finish, an entertaining homage to the corny, the magnificent, and the perhaps-unjustifiably-popular culture of a certain slice of America—and even worse, only for a specific span.

So your mileage may vary.

As for me...

...It was like watching Back To The Future and War Games back to back while playing the Legend of Zelda on...more
Nataliya
I was born in a year made famous in literature by the great George Orwell, meaning that I've spent the 1980s either in diapers or too busy learning the secrets of navigating monkey bars and tying my own shoes (Velcro shoes have not yet made their way to the provincial Soviet towns at that time). So yeah, the nostalgia for the 80s does not give me the warm fuzzies all that much.

And so I was a bit wary approaching Ernest Cline's Ready Player One with its over-the-top 80s nostalgic overload, combin...more
Jo
“Somewhere along the way I started to go overboard. I may, in fact, have started to go a little insane.”

Initial Final Page Thoughts.
I’m already recommending this to everyone I know. EVERYONE.

High Points.
*Deep Breath* Alternate Reality. Virtual Insanity.Scoreboards. Quests (More books should have quests).Good old fashioned competition. W-O-W. Aech. At3mis. Best friends forever. Corruption. Damn the Man. Eccentric Billionaires. Retro. Duran Duran. Matthew Broderick. Monty Python. Rush. John Hughes...more
Maja (The Nocturnal Library)
4.5 stars

I have to admit I don't know the first thing about videogames. The only game I've ever played was StarCraft, a gazillion years ago, and to be honest, I sucked at it. So when this book started with a story about videogames and their creators, I figured I was in serious trouble. However, Cline really took the time to explain OASIS, and he did it in a way that is accessible to everyone, even someone like me. What's more, his descriptions were detailed, but never boring. I thoroughly enjoye...more
Greg
In a bleak near future, which doesn't seem all that implausible from the way things are going these days, large parts of the population escape the misery of everyday existence by plugging into this thing called OASIS that is part Second Life and part MMO (Massively Multiplayer Online game). OASIS is a full immersion simulated world where people go to recreate themselves, have adventures, goto school, make a living; or to sum it up to virtually live. The creator of this world (which costs only a...more
Killer Rabbit
Will you be needing to borrow the keys to Luke Skywalker's Skimmer?
If you like Sci-Fi and Easter egg hunts, there is a good chance that you will geek out on this read. But you might need to skim...a lot. What you have to ask yourself is, "Do I love the 80's as much as Cline?" Here's a short quiz to help you decide:

1) What 80's concert would you like to attend?
a. Oingo Boingo. (Sure, we bounced around like drunken ping pong balls. But we had fun doing it.)
b. John Lee Hooker. (Look, Carlos Santana...more
Catie
Jul 14, 2011 Catie rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Nerds around the world
Recommended to Catie by: Maja (The Nocturnal Library)
I’ve never made a secret of my tremendous nerdiness. I love science and math. I am socially awkward. I hate competitive sports. I love disappearing into strange worlds with androids, vampire slayers, mages, and warriors. Some of you who know that about me may be thinking to yourselves right now, “That Catie…I bet she’s spent some time in front of a video game console.”

And you would be 100% right about that.

Oh yes. I’ve done my time…rescuing princesses, hacking away at mobs of the reanimated, rac...more
Hugh Howey
I had the feeling while reading this book that it was written expressly for me. This is my childhood captured. And since it was an insular and introverted childhood, it felt unique. It wasn't connected with Facebook. I had no idea that I was legion. And so I imagine many other readers felt the same sensation of having a book speak directly to their most private memories and moments. And what could be more cherished than that? It was like having a videogame written for you. Or being able to be ca...more
Stacia (the 2010 club)
4.5 stars. We have another winner!

By the halfway point I was giddy with all of the gamer fan trivia. How flipping crazy is this that ONE scene had references to D&D, MMO's, and the 80's game Joust? It's as if the heavens opened and decided to rain awesomeness.

We won't even go into all of the classic t.v. sitcoms, cartoons, movies, and technology which have been mentioned. Star Wars, Thundercats, War Games, and Atari, indeed. NERDGASM!

This book is a must read for fans of the 70's and 80's, as...more
Evgeny
In the near dystopian future (according to almost all of the recent literature we are not going to get a different kind of future) people are practically gave up on their real lives and spend most of the time in a giant computer-simulated virtual reality called OASIS. The person responsible for its creation died after he made billions from it. He left an unusual will: all of his money would go to a person who can solve a series of puzzles left in OASIS. Its creator also happened to be a huge fan...more
Giselle
When you read dystopian after dystopian you realize that most of them are more or less the same, so it's extremely refreshing to come upon one who truly stands out from all the rest. Ready Player One is probably one of the coolest dystopian/sci fi stories I've ever read, and it's sure to amaze any pop culture fan, especially those who have lived through the 70s and 80s.

Ready Player One brings us into such a unique world that it's hard to not become fascinated by it all. This world involves bein...more
colleen the contrarian  ± (... never stop fighting) ±
1.5

This was an ok read. Outside of the sci-fi aspect of it being set in a future world where people, to various degrees, spend chunks of their lives in a virtual reality world called OASIS, it's pretty much a standard quest type story - and not a particularly well written one.

The back-story is given in large wiki like chunks of exposition, the characters are kind of one-dimensional - Wade, in particular, borders of Gary-Stu territory or, at the very least, is an obvious author insert, and the v...more
Kevin Hearne
I read anywhere from 5-10 books at a time—a nibble here, and nibble there. Once I started this one, however, I read straight through until the end. Haven't enjoyed a book so much in ages. I'll definitely be reading it again—and soon. Completely full of geeky goodness!
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ERNEST CLINE has worked as a short-order cook, fish gutter, plasma donor, elitist video store clerk, and tech support drone. His primary occupation, however, has always been geeking out, and he eventually threw aside those other promising career paths to express his love of pop culture fulltime as a spoken word artist and screenwriter. His 2009 film Fanboys, much to his surprise, became a cult phe...more
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“People who live in glass houses should shut the fuck up.” 321 likes
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