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(Warcross #1)

4.15  ·  Rating details ·  104,485 ratings  ·  17,033 reviews
When a game called Warcross takes the world by storm, one girl hacks her way into its dangerous depths. For the millions who log in every day, Warcross isn't just a game—it's a way of life. Struggling to make ends meet, teenage hacker Emika Chen works as a bounty hunter, tracking down players who bet on the game illegally. When Emika hacks into the game illegally, she's co ...more
Paperback, 358 pages
Published October 4th 2018 by Penguin Books Ltd (first published September 12th 2017)
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Rosie K.
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Amy The algorithm is something that sounds like a good idea at first, but has more and more problems the more you think about it.

What, exactly, does the …more
The algorithm is something that sounds like a good idea at first, but has more and more problems the more you think about it.

What, exactly, does the algorithm stop? Is it only overt physical violence? In that case, what about people who act maliciously toward others, but do so without physical violence, like the boy who took the nude photo of Annie without her knowledge or consent, then posted it publicly? What about people who act violently but not maliciously, like a person who is defending themselves? What about people that do not view their actions as being harmful to others, such as someone who is truly delusional or psychotic? There is a relatively common yardstick of criminal culpability known as the M'Naghten Rule; it basically states that people who are so deranged as to not know either (1) the nature or quality of their actions or (2) that what they are doing is wrong are not criminal but mentally ill. The algorithm doesn't care about criminal culpability except to prevent it, but therein lies the point: if a person's perception of the world is so distorted by psychosis that they don't realize, say, plowing their car into oncoming traffic will kill other drivers, how would the algorithm interpret, intervene, and prevent the action based on the psychotic individual's own perceptions?

Self harm is clearly something to stopped at all costs under the algorithm, but I doubt the reason for self harm considered (after all, the algorithm is not conscious). What if the person is someone seeking assistance under the death with dignity/physician assisted suicide laws, and the algorithm has merely prolonged senseless suffering by preventing them from using medication procured for that purpose? Also, because the algorithm is not conscious, I somehow doubt that person is encouraged to seek mental health assistance in the aftermath of a failed attempt to self harm. In these cases, the algorithm preventing self harming behavior has done nothing to actually help the person in the long term unless it prevents what would have been a successful suicide for reasons other than death with dignity.

Those are just the things that I could think of within a minute or two of reading Hideo's justification. I agree with some of the other posters here about liking that Hideo is a sympathetic villain. However, we shouldn't forget that he IS a villain. We shouldn't forget the human psychology and behavior are extremely complicated, and that there are always exceptions to every rule. We shouldn't forget that coding, algorithms, and computers work best in narrow circumstances that have a discrete set of potential outcomes and a single, clearly right answer. We shouldn't forget that human life is nothing like that.(less)

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Natalie Monroe
3.5 stars

Cynical Natalie:

Nice Natalie: For the record, I'm not comfortable being here. Marie Lu is one of our favorite authors! Remember when we met her and acted like complete dorks, but she was still really nice?

Cynical Natalie: How many times do I have to tell you? Separate the person from the art. Marie Lu is a lovely person, but that doesn't mean I'm not going to rip into her brain baby's ass and yank its innards from its throat.

Nice Natalie: Must you be so vulgar?

Cynical Natalie: Yes. Besi
Emily May
Apr 11, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: young-adult, 2017, arc, sci-fi
Imagine wandering through the most realistic virtual Paris ever, or lounging in a full simulation of Hawaii’s beaches. Imagine flying through a fantasy world of dragons and elves. Anything.

Tokyo. Virtual reality. Spies. Do I really need to say anymore?

Oh okay, I guess I'll say some more. Aside from a few kinks that will probably be ironed out by the final publication, Warcross is a thrilling sea of action and exciting sci-fi possibility. It presents a world that, given our current technology
Jesse (JesseTheReader)
I wish I would have read this sooner! I loved how visually stunning the world was and how cinematic the writing was. It was so easy to picture in my head and it was an overall well paced story. I will say that nothing really surprised me while reading it. It was kind of easy to decipher the mystery aspect of the book, but it was still a really enjoyable read.

(I also can't believe I didn't know it took place in Japan! I would've bumped it to the top of my tbr asap had I known!)
Miranda Reads
May 03, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audiobook

Psst. A new video is up - all about the bad books I've read this year!

Now that you know that this one is on it, check out the Worst Books of 2019 video to see what other ones made the cut!
The Actual Review
Before I begin, just letting you know that I got my copy from Uppercase - a lovely monthly book subscription box.
All I could think about the whole time was - OMG Marie Lu touched MY book!!
Everything's science fiction until someone makes it science fact.
Emika Chen
Sabaa Tahir
Apr 25, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I LOVE THIS BOOK SO MUCH. You will love it too. It is beautiful and smart and Emika is a funny, flawed, *awesome* heroine. And Hideo, omg, SO MANY FEELINGS. The setting in this book are exploding with radness--the conversations, the technology, the intricacies of the world. I knew from both the LEGEND series and TYE that Marie Lu was a master worldbuilder, but this clinches it.

I read this book FAST, and it totally got me out of a reading slump. The ending was satisfying , but I have no idea how
Hailey (Hailey in Bookland)
Oh my god this was AWESOME! Such a great book. BiblioBabble TK very soon!!!!

*thanks to Penguin Canada for the ARC!*
Emma Giordano
Oct 04, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

Warcross is absolutely one of my favorite books of the year. It's thrilling, it's engaging, and the twists in this novel are still driving me wild. I loved absolutely everything about this novel. Hoping to film a glowing review for my YouTube channel soon!!

I received a free copy of this book from Penguin Teen at Book Expo 2017. I had no obligation to review this book and all opinions are my own.
I have a really important question.

Like, everything I say is really important, and therefore every question I ask is really important, but this is especially so. It is integral to my understanding of the world around me, and also books and also Goodreads.

Is there a single person who gave this book over 3 stars and has read Ready Player One?

Seriously. This book is a C-, young adult, romance-y, boring, poorly-built version of Ready Player One. With better di
Emily (Books with Emily Fox)
DNF at 50% - audiobook

Pretty much from the beginning, I wasn’t too thrilled about this book. The main character is just so bland.

Poor orphan girl who becomes the chosen one for a talent that feels like she got overnight. We're never told how she actually got great at hacking. She basically unfocuses her eyes and things stand out to her... Maybe I'm bitter because I was never able to do that with the Garfield book I had!
But *gaps* she has a record!! For doing a nice thing… Does it mean she's n
Chelsea Humphrey
Think. You can solve this. This will not be your life. You are not destined to stay here forever. You are not your father.

This is easily the most brilliant, exciting, and action packed novel I've read in 2017. If I wasn't a responsible adult, I would have blown through this in a single sitting. I'll admit, I had seen talk of Warcross filling my feed here for well over six months prior to it's release date, but was a bit skeptical. Reading the blurb gave me a feeling of "been there, done that mor
Brittney ~ Reverie and Ink
Oh man. Marie Lu KILLED it. This was phenomenal, and easily one of my favorite books of 2017.

I don't even want to say much about the plot (hah if you know me, I normally like to go into books blind anyway). I'll just say this - Emika is a kick ass heroine struggling to survive in a world where digital reigns. But she does something unexpected, which leads to a domino of events that land her in a crazy cool situation with the maker of Warcross.

Thats it. That's all you get.

Hah okay but seriousl
Drcong O '
its been 6 days since i read this and im still trying to coherently write a review,,,,, but thats not possible so i'll just scream that THIS WAS REALLY FUCKING GOOD AND I TAKE BACK EVERY BAD THING I EVER SAID ABOUT NOT HIDEOUS HIDEO AND EMIKA'S RAINBOW HAIR. i fucking love them and also what the absolute FUCK was this ending. marie lu pulled a painful plot twist and i dont FUCKING WANT IT.

just some other side screaming: i predicted the identity of zero!!!!! it was pretty obvious to me but bitc
Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin

I love Marie Lu, but I had a hard time with this book in the beginning. I felt like I wasn't really going to get into this book. I have to say it took almost until the end to really enjoy it. I'm not sure if it was my mood, that I wasn't really ready for a gaming book or what. Either way, I did enjoy it after I kept going.

What I want to know now, is that ending? What is going to happen in the next book? I mean who do you trust now?

It was pretty obvious to me right up front who the hacker in Wa
Simona B
Mar 04, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
4.5 and all my love.

“... but tonight, I can join in with everyone else, put on my glasses, and watch magic happen.”

Do you remember Antarctica in Champion? How that world worked? Since the moment I read that, I've hoped Marie Lu would take that concept and expand it somehow. And then she did. So I mean it literally when I say that Warcross made my dreams come true.

Warcross might not be the best book you'll ever read. It might not be the most profound, or the most complex, or the most clever. Bu
Virginia Ronan ♥ Herondale ♥
”Everything’s science fiction until someone makes it science fact,” Hideo says.

Well, okay, after taking a closer look at my friend’s reviews I guess it’s time for another unpopular opinion from me. I really wanted to love this and I suppose in some ways I even did, if I’m entirely honest I wasn’t as blown away by the book as everyone else seems to be though. >_<

After reading “The Young Elites” Marie Lu became one of my favourite authors and I really love and appreciate that series but “Warcross”
Nov 04, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a 3-star book for me up until the last 15 pages and just wow.

(view spoiler)

But in other news, for the first time in two months I FINISHED A BOOK!!!!

Also the main character is named Emika Emi and I wanna know who let her have that name? It's mine. She can't have it.

Anyways, Me, Emi, and not the Emi in the book have actually finished a book. I actually remembered how to rea
Jun 17, 2018 rated it really liked it
this was everything i wish ‘ready player one’ could have been. it wasnt convoluted with high-tech coding jargon or bogged down with gaming references - this was a fun story about a girl who unexpectedly finds herself entered in a global gaming competition. and i really enjoyed this, even though i couldnt care less about gaming. marie lu has an effortless style of writing that makes it so easy to inhale her stories and this was no exception. some components were a bit predictable, but overall thi ...more
ELLIAS (elliasreads)

Holy shit that was so, so good. I literally cannot right now because the last 15% of the book deeessttroooooooyyed me, NNNNNNGGGGGGGGGGHHHHHH.

I finished this when the trailer for Ready Player One dropped and I'M JUST SO MUCH MORE EXCITED.

Virtual reality world, bounty hunters, badass heroine, game-changing twists....seriously. What more can I want??!

This book was such a delicious and exploding piece of treasure. It was colorful, beautifully written, full of non stop action--it grabs
Jul 07, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2018, buddy-read
i wish i could just copy + paste the emotions i'm feeling right now so i could accurately convey my love for this book


honestly it's been a while since a book has made me feel so ♥‿♥ and i don't know if i'm ready to talk about warcross yet..... but right now i'm not even capable of doing anything but stare at my wall and think about this book anyways so i might as well be semi-productive and write my review while doing that

if you don't care about my unnecessarily lo
may ➹
update: I used up valuable space in my suitcase for other books and brought Warcross to Japan and took pretty photos of it in Tokyo. the pages are slightly heat-warped and it was a completely extra thing to do but do I have any regrets? of course not


so I read this more than half a year ago so there probably is never going to be a full review but someone give me three reasons why I should NOT bring this book on my trip to Tokyo in July just to take pictures of t
destiny ♡ howling libraries
"Do you remember one year when that player - Leeroy something - actually got drafted into the Stormchasers, even though he always just charged in and messed up his entire team's play? My God, he was terrible."

You read that right, my loves: Marie Lu references freaking Leeroy Jenkins in her writing. I mean, how could I give this book anything less than all the stars?

When I first finished this book, I was leaning towards 4.5 stars and couldn't decide if I should round up or down, but once I let th
Mar 09, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: underwhelming
meh. it was all right i guess? wasn't expecting much but is2g the romance and the mention of emika's rainbow hair in nearly every chapter made me physically want to put myself into a chokehold. first person narrative wasn't doing shit for me either.

the extra stars are mainly just kudos for the poc, disability, and minor lgbt rep.

side note: hideo is blander than a sack of flour. which is disappointing because there are barely any asian male love interests in books.


ya'll: are getting arcs for
Sep 17, 2018 marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
This is going to be so good, I can sense it.
Wow! Huge surprise here! I didn't like this book! Bet nobody saw that coming!

The shittiest plot twist of 2018 is this: that this book was not my cup of stewed lukewarm tea. The biggest gripe I have is that this actually genuinely interested me for about 80 pages, before it devolved into Fifty Shades Of Dull Turgid Heteros and boring fight scene after boring fight scene after boring fight scene. I can't even be bothered to write a long involved GIF-filled snarky review for some butthurt stans to
Ashley Nuckles
Jan 04, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It’s 4am and I literally just read this in one sitting. I have SO. MANY. THOUGHTS. MY BRAIN IS OVERWHELMED. BUT IN A REALLY REALLY GOOD WAY.
Helen 2.0
Feb 22, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Warcross is everything I wish Ready Player One had been.

It has a great cast of diverse characters who each have a decisive role in the plot.
A thriller-type mystery plotline to keep things interesting.
Romance with plenty of (natural, non-fabricated) drama, just the way I like it.
A dynamic heroine who is true to herself throughout the book. Extra points for the rainbow hair.

All around, just a great read.
Kaylin (The Re-Read Queen)
3.5 Stars

“Everything's science fiction until someone makes it science fact”

I’m going to go ahead and say it: It’s not very original. The idea of an immersive gaming system where you control an avatar and it has real world complications has been done many times. (Examples: #1, #2, #3, #4,#5, and #6 )

What is new is the fun and diverse cast at the forefront of the story. Our main character is a young Asian female with rainbow-colored hair and a sleeve of tattoos who doesn’t tolerate being unde
♛ may
Full review posted

What is this?? I’m writing a review after 446 years?? Is this real life??

(marie lu, the destroyer of my soul drew this guys, this woman is too talented to be human)

Reasons why Warcross is the Best Book rn
- She’s a hacker, bounty hunter, and all-round-boss
- She has rainbow hair !!!
- The writing is so easy to read I basically read it all in a day
- Marie lu leAVES SO MANY EA
Elle (ellexamines)
Actual Rating: 3 1/2 Stars. This book is just fine until the end. It was entertaining, it was enjoyable, yet it was somewhat forgettable; a far departure from Marie Lu's usual morally grey characters and heartbreak. But the ending was so hardcore that I am now desperate for the sequel. So... a mixed bag?

[The one vague spoiler is tagged and noted.]

The worldbuilding is awesome, but it needs slightly more work. I really like the world created here, but I never felt very attached
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[Note: Many apologies, but I'm woefully bad at checking my Goodreads emails! If you'd like to send a note/msg, please catch me on Twitter: . Thanks!]

I write young adult novels, and have a special love for dystopian books. Ironically, I was born in 1984. Before becoming a full-time writer, I was an Art Director at a video game company. Now I shuffle around at home and ta

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