Bookish Spotlight (5): Ready Player One by Ernest Cline

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Bookish Spotlight is a new feature for 2014. I wanted a feature that would showcase — in my opinion — the best books, or, the books that I absolutely love and can’t stop sharing with other people. These can be books, entire series — anything goes! My goal is that my readers might find a great new read after reading this feature. 

ready player oneTitle: Ready Player One
Author: Ernest Cline
Released: August 2011

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It’s the year 2044, and the real world is an ugly place.

Like most of humanity, Wade Watts escapes his grim surroundings by spending his waking hours jacked into the OASIS, a sprawling virtual utopia that lets you be anything you want to be, a place where you can live and play and fall in love on any of ten thousand planets.

And like most of humanity, Wade dreams of being the one to discover the ultimate lottery ticket that lies concealed within this virtual world. For somewhere inside this giant networked playground, OASIS creator James Halliday has hidden a series of fiendish puzzles that will yield massive fortune–and remarkable power–to whoever can unlock them.

For years, millions have struggled fruitlessly to attain this prize, knowing only that Halliday’s riddles are based in the pop culture he loved–that of the late twentieth century. And for years, millions have found in this quest another means of escape, retreating into happy, obsessive study of Halliday’s icons. Like many of his contemporaries, Wade is as comfortable debating the finer points of John Hughes’s oeuvre, playing Pac-Man, or reciting Devo lyrics as he is scrounging power to run his OASIS rig.

And then Wade stumbles upon the first puzzle.

Suddenly the whole world is watching, and thousands of competitors join the hunt–among them certain powerful players who are willing to commit very real murder to beat Wade to this prize. Now the only way for Wade to survive and preserve everything he knows is to win. But to do so, he may have to leave behind his oh-so-perfect virtual existence and face up to life–and love–in the real world he’s always been so desperate to escape.

A world at stake.
A quest for the ultimate prize.
Are you ready?

Why it’s a favourite: I actually did not expect to like this one. I’m not a science fiction person, nor am I someone who plays video games or really understands that world (well, aside from what I see on The Big Bang Theory), so a book about video games? I wasn’t sure. THANKFULLY, I did read it — or, more specifically, I listened to the audio. WOW! This was one of those books that I just couldn’t stop listening to. With Will Wheaton as the narrator, it was impossible to put down! The whole book is just fun and one that I recommend to a LOT of people — especially when I see it come through at the library. It’s perfect for the nerd in your life, or even the person who isn’t a nerd. I think a lot of people can appreciate this book!

Have you read this one? 

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10 thoughts on “Bookish Spotlight (5): Ready Player One by Ernest Cline

  1. I both really liked it and had some small issues with it. It kind of disturbed me how much people used the virtual world to ignore everything that was going wrong in the real world, and though this is addressed a bit towards the end, I wouldn’t have minded seeing it addressed more. Although it does also seem accurate given how we approach things now. The actual virtual reality world was a lot of fun, though.

  2. One of my favorite books. I’m planning on rereading it this year. And I agree Wil Wheaton’s narration makes the audiobook fantastic.

  3. I feel like a bad geek admitting this, but this book has been sitting on my shelf for years. And people keep telling me the audio is fantastic, too. I think my guilt and shame might overwhelm me this summer but what to do? Should I listen to the audio, or read the book?

My home is where my books are. - Ellen Thompson

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