Bookish Thoughts: Ready Player One by Ernest Cline (Spoiler Free)

April 11, 2018

“For a bunch of hairless apes, we’ve actually managed to invent some pretty incredible things.” ― Ernest Cline, Ready Player One

I UNDERSTOOD THAT REFERENCE.

I was just going to include the Captain America GIF from Avengers, but it didn’t quite fit the format. ANYWAYS, let’s talk about one of my new favourite novels and why I think everyone should read it. Ready Player One by Ernest Cline is every nerdy kid’s dream, well it should be everyone’s dream. A virtual world in which you can be whoever you want and do whatever you want all while being a badass? I think yes! The concept for the book is brilliant and the way it was constructed with all of the references and epic adventures made for an exciting and captivating novel.

SYNOPSIS (FROM GOODREADS): “In the year 2045, 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. 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.”

This book kicks off right away with action. Cline takes no time at all to get into the heart of the story. Ready Player One is fast paced and never once did I feel as if it was taking to long to get to major plot points or wanted to skip any of the pages. I am a fast reader and I tend to get tired quickly if the book doesn’t seem to be going anywhere, but with this one, it kept me tethered and I was hooked.

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The main character of Wade Watts may be one of my new favourite MCs ever. He is cocky, smart, funny, and he cares. Not just about winning the contest, but about how he affects others around him and even within the crazy world of the OASIS he seems the most real to me. The thing I loved most about Wade was the way his mind worked. He was always trying to think ahead and the way he slowly figured out the riddles was so fun to read. Along with the other characters such as Aech, Art3mis, Daito, Shoto, and Og, they made for an exciting collection of characters that I still want to know more about.

Okay, let’s talk about the 80’s references for a second because WOW. I loved all of them. Cline references everything from Star Wars to Dungeons and Dragons. Everything you love about 80’s pop culture is in this book. I personally loved all the Star Trek and Back to the Future stuff and there is a nod to Spider-man that was greatly appreciated on my part. There are so many Easter Eggs in this book that I can’t even begin to remember them all, but they were all SO GOOD. I haven’t seen the film yet, but I bet they are just as good in the movie as they are in the book.

“I was just another sad, lost, lonely soul, wasting his life on a glorified videogame.”
― Ernest Cline, Ready Player One

Cline has written a book that I think will not only resonate with the people who grew up in the 80’s but anyone who is a pop culture buff. I was born in 97′ so obviously I didn’t live in the era of Arcades or Atari game consoles, but so much of that is being referenced in current projects such as Stranger Things, The Goldbergs etc. I think more and more people should appreciate this decade more and more.

My favourite thing about this novel, besides all the amazing spaceships, is all the puzzle solving. The story is written from Wade’s POV so we have to figure the clues out along with him and most of the time it was very hard. I was proud of myself when I guessed the plot twist (it’s also amazing btw), but most of the time I had no idea where the riddles were going to take him and it was so fun to be able to experience the Easter Egg Hunt along with Wade.

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There is so much I want to talk about, but I really don’t want to spoil it. I am just going to say trust me, because that’s all there is to it. That’s the reason I bought this book in the first place. Somebody told me to just read the damn thing instead of overthinking it. I read it. I loved it. And you should do the same.

This review has pretty much gone nowhere. I have been trying to write this for a few days now and I haven’t been able to, so this is going to be as good as it gets. Overall, I give Ready Player One 5/5 stars because it has great characters, amazing action, fun references, and so much heart and epic spaceships that you will want to read it over and over again. Go see the film too! Okay, I need to stop rambling…

Happy Reading!

– Haley

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