For my book club pick for the month of February, I picked Ready Player One by Ernest Cline. But I had my reservations. The group didn’t like my last book (Dark Places by Gillian Flynn) and they definitely did not like the book I chose prior to that (Kicking the sky by Anthony De Sa). I realized I had to cater to them so I picked something that I normally wouldn’t read. Books about gaming. I spent a few days on a Goodreads thread chatting with other bibliophiles and they all supported my RP1 decision. OK.
They did not fail me.
Ready Player One was great. I enjoyed it so much that I am forcing BP to listen to the audbiobook with me just so I could experience it all over again!!!
We start off in the not-so-distant future. The world is pretty messed up. The housing situation has become so bad that people have piled trailers on top of another and that’s considered a home. (I’m not saying trailers are not homes but having them stacked 20+ high just seems like a terribad idea. That’s right. Terribad.) The world is so bad that there’s a 2 year wait period just to get a job at McDonald’s! (Again, not like getting a job is McDonald’s is easy but I don’t think it would take two years now.)
One of the main themes in this novel is escapism. The world is so bad that people have escaped to this virtual reality world called the OASIS where people go to school, spend their leisurely hours, and even work. Our main character Wade Watts is an overweight, pimply, geeky kid who lacked social skills in real life but was doing a little better in the OASIS.
The creator of the OASIS, James D. Halliday, passed away with no heirs and has left his entire fortune and company up for grabs. The catch? He’s hidden his treasure within his game filled with many sectors, and planets. He left one clue for the public and everyone has a chance to decipher it. The egg hunters (gunters) have dedicated their lives to solving the first clue but 5 years have passed and no one has found it until Parzival (Wade’s avatar’s name) deciphered the first clue. His clues all relate to James Halliday’s love of the 80s, when he grew up, (told you it wasn’t that far into the future) and video games so all these kids in the future are rewatching, and replaying all these things from the 70s-90s – mostly 80s.
You can already guess that the rest of the book is about Parzival looking for clues and solving them while avoiding other gunters and obstacles in the process. Does he get the treasure at the end of the quest? You have to read to find out!
It was definitely a fun read and I recommend it to anyone who likes gaming, sci-fi, virtual reality, and riddles!!
And if you’re not quite sure you want to dedicate 9 hours to reading, then pick up the audio book on Audible! It’s narrated by Wil Wheaton. I don’t really know what he’s famous for but my friend’s boyfriend looks like him… Oh. He’s from Star Trek. Lol. And he’s also mentioned in the book so can you imagine reading about yourself out loud? Ha.
4/5 // Cross-posted on my book review blog: She Reads (anndreachan.com)