Pam's Reviews > Ready Player One

Ready Player One by Ernest Cline
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's review
Nov 03, 2011

really liked it

I am a child of the 90′s and proud of it. I like to think that I missed out on all of the geekishness of the 80′s and went straight for the 90′s more organic, grunge thing.

Ah, but alas, it is not so easy to escape bad hair and Atari. It turns out that I am also a child of no less than three computer programmers and the sister, sister-in-law and wife to “gamers”. Because many of my loved ones went to engineering school, were in bands with neck-tie keyboards and consider a hot date night to be snuggling in with their significant others and playing WOW, I have, by default, acquired some nerd knowledge.

Because of this, I feel like I can rightfully announce that I have a serious crush on Ready Player One.

Now, look, you don’t actually have to be a gamer or even know one to get the book.

It’s more about political science fiction than it is plain old geek fact. Sure, there are a few things that you may need to google but those are more along the lines of 80′s pop culture than anything gamer related. It’s yet another near-apocalyptic dystopian bit but this time, it’s all played out in the hunt for a dead billionaire’s hidden easter egg within a massive multiplayer online game.

Whoever finds the egg wins mega bucks and the ability to control the game which almost everyone, worldwide plugs into for free. The best part is that the bad guys are threatening to commercialize the currently free network if they win the egg. I think it’s cute given the current events playing out around the world, related to such topics.

Oh, but wait! There’s more.

Sure it’s about gaming, the 80′s and sticking it to the man but it’s also about something else.

It’s about human ature and love and friendship and the assumptions we make when we aren’t given physical prejudices when we first interact. There’s also maybe a message about not losing yourself in virtual reality and giving yourself over to the outside forces of natural light.

It’s a pretty cool, deep little story that I think will appeal to people way outside the gamer realm but one that will hopefully measure up to gamer standards. And of course, the song that played in my head during the whole reading was Tom Sawyer by Rush.

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