Marlene's Reviews > Ready Player One

Ready Player One by Ernest Cline
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Jun 16, 14

Read from June 22, 2012 to June 16, 2014

For me, this is one of the best-written science fiction books of our age.

The protagonist is 18-year-old Wade Owen Watts (a name his dead father thought would sound like the alter ego of a superhero) lives in "The Shacks", an area consisting of trailers stacked one upon the other outside of the cities in year 2044. Like many other teenagers (mostly very poor teenagers, that is) he tries to find "Hallyday's Easter Egg", a contest the famous and wealthy programmer Halliday hid in his most famous game, the OASIS, to determine who would be his heir. The contest started five years ago with his death and now every "gunter" (egg-hunter) tries to follow the clues he left behind. Winning will result in inheriting billions of Dollars and the rights to the game OASIS, so not just lone gunters, but also gunter-clans and the infamous IOI, a company who wants to take over the OASIS, are trying to be the first ones to find the egg.
The OASIS is where the humans live most of their lifes now because the earth is not exactly a great place to live. Starvation, violence and poverty rule the population of once powerful countries. The Hunt is one of the few things to keep people going.
Wade is one of the poor and doesn't really think he has chances of winning, even though he knows everything there is to know about Halliday. He knows his favorite movies, books and computer games, everything mostly from the eighties - everything that will be required to win the contest. Still, winning seems to be impossible.
This changes when he deciphers the first clue and his avatar's name, Parzival appears in the first place of the score board Halliday left to show the progress in the hunt.
Soon Wade realizes this doesn't only mean popularity. Now he is not only hunted in the OASIS, but in real life too. IOI-agents and other gunters try to get his help. He can't even trust his friends anymore, not even the girl he fell in love with.
And really, how can you trust people you only met online?

Usually I don't read that much science fiction, but I'm really glad I picked this book up. Within seconds Ernest Cline pulled me inside the new world, a horrible and dangerous world - and the seemingly safe haven, the OASIS.
Even though I didn't know all the films and games mentioned in the book (usually from the Eighties, related to The Hunt), it was easy to follow the protagonist's journey through the computer games.
Every character you meet has its own personality; they feel like real humans, even though you only meet them like Wade does, online. And believe me, in reailty you are in for a real surprise.
The thing which makes this book so haunting is that it is possible. With the climate change and us needing more and more energy, the future Ernest Cline describes seems horribly real. And it is easy to belive that people would flee to an online game - we have this problem today too. There already are people who are considered addicted to the internet and multiplayer role playing games like "Second Life".
But at the same time "Ready Player One" doesn't only show the bad sides of this future world. It exploits online friendships and relationships, making life bearable for the users of the OASIS.

If you are a science fiction lover, are a fan of the Eighties or just want to read an enthralling novel, this is a must-read!
"Ready Player One" definitely earned my five stars!

PS: I just thought I should add that I find myself reading this book about once a month now. That never happened to me before and I can say without having to think about this twice that this is now my absolute favorite book.
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Comments (showing 1-4 of 4) (4 new)

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message 1: by s.penkevich (new)

s.penkevich Great review. I keep hearing how good this is, I should check it out. Sounds fascinating!


Cristy I agree...one of the best books ive read in the last few years :)


message 3: by Marlene (last edited May 29, 2013 05:22PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Marlene A friend just told me it is required reading at some schools now! That they finally a book where you don't fall asleep...


message 4: by s.penkevich (new)

s.penkevich Wow required reading? That is a cool school, why didn't I go there ha.


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