Publishing Info: August 26, 2011 by Random House Publishing Group
Genres: Dystopian, Science Fiction, Young Adult
Find it on the web: Buy from Amazon // GoodreadsDate Completed: October 6, 2012
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In the year 2044, reality is an ugly place. The only time teenage Wade Watts really feels alive is when he's jacked into the virtual utopia known as the OASIS. Wade's devoted his life to studying the puzzles hidden within this world's digital confines—puzzles that are based on their creator's obsession with the pop culture of decades past and that promise massive power and fortune to whoever can unlock them.
But when Wade stumbles upon the first clue, he finds himself beset by players willing to kill to take this ultimate prize. The race is on, and if Wade's going to survive, he'll have to win—and confront the real world he's always been so desperate to escape.
I absolutely loved READY PLAYER ONE. It was geeky to the core and it was awesome. The endless 80s references were a blast and really even though I’m just a little young to appreciate ALL of them (I was a child of the 90s, after all). It didn’t really matter that some were over my head because the book was so enjoyable all around! It was funny, it had serious action, a romance, suspense, death, battles, intrigue. It was so well written that I can easily see anyone enjoying it, even if you’re wary of the 80s theme being a little out of your norm.
Another thing I hadn’t expected is really enjoying the fact that it’s so integrated into video games and computer culture. Honestly, I’ve never been a video game person. I’m not good at them (I get way too stressed out haha) and I don’t really know much about them, but if you don’t know, all of the older games are explained for you. I was easily sucked into that world and didn’t really feel like all of it was going over my head at all. Ernest Cline does a great job to make sure that anyone who reads the book will be able to not only understand what’s going on, but enjoy it. I also think it was great the way everyone interacts in the Oasis because it allows for a lot more action sequences like battles and quests as well as magic, because that’s a lot more easily explained as a computer game than it is occurring in real life. I got totally sucked in to the world of the Oasis, so much so that at times I forgot that the Oasis wasn’t actually real and the characters were still out there somewhere in the real world even though their “real” world is essentially the Oasis since they spend so much time there.
When I heard how awesome Wil Wheaton was with this narration, I thought that I had to get this book as an audiobook to see. I was totally not disappointed! He was great at narrating, keeping you interested, great character personalities, accents, etc. It was definitely some of his narration in combination with the story that led to a couple of “laugh out loud” moments (for instance, if you ever want to hear how some narrates a smiley face in an email 🙂 That positively cracked me up). I’d definitely recommend the audio to anyone!
Wade Watts/Parzival: Wade was a really likable MC for me. The way he was written just seemed so natural and real. I felt like Wade was a real person and not just a character…. Although since Wil Wheaton was narrating, I kind of pictured him as Wil Wheaton haha.
Aech/H: By the way, totally had no idea that’s how “H” was spelled since I was listening to the audio…. Oops! He was comical, brave, knowledgable, and a great best friend to Wade, even though they only knew each other through the Oasis and hadn’t met in real life. I think it’s kind of cool the point that this brings up in the fact that they’ve known each other for years, but since it’s only through the Oasis, it may seem like they’ve never met; however, I think it was Wade that says really they know each other in the best way possible — on a pure intellectual and mental level. Since they don’t know what each other really looks like, all they know of each other is pure personality and I kind of like that. It’s like the best way to get to know a person.
Art3mis: Although I understand her hesitation about opening up to Wade and letting him get to know her “true self”, I kind of found it annoying at times! But what can you say… After spending all of your time in the Oasis as only an avatar, I’d totally suspect it’d be weird and scary letting someone know who you really are!
Oh my gosh, the audio was just SO GOOD for this book. I really loved the whole book too. Gah, this was just soooo much fun!