The Book Shell-f: “Ready Player One” by Ernest Cline

“Being human totally sucks most of the time. Video games are the only thing that make life bearable.”- Ernest Cline, “Ready Player One”


Author Ernest Cline used the concept of video games when he wrote the New York Times bestselling novel “Ready Player One.” The book is set in a dystopian future where one video game, The OASIS, has taken over the way of life of the entire population. People use this simulator for their everyday chores. They go to school and work, and the economy of the entire world relies on this video game.

Wade Watts is one of many teenagers used to this type of life, and he enjoys it because that’s the way he and the rest of the world can ignore real-life problems like world hunger, overpopulation and severe weather conditions. He, like many kids his age, is after the grand prize that James Halliday, the creator of OASIS, left in the game before he passed away. After a series of events, Wade begins his quest in which he will develop new friendships, enemies and knowledge in order to reach his goal.

Some readers think that the book has every cliché possible, while others consider it a masterpiece full of ’80s nostalgia. I think “Ready Player One” is an excellent book that has multiple perspectives to it and everyone can enjoy at some level. However, those who are into ‘80s pop and geek culture will enjoy this book even more. It’s full of references, from Star Wars and Atari to John Hughes’ movies and “Monty Python and the Holy Grail.” Every time I read it, I find new references, or“Easter eggs,” regarding a show, movie or video game.

USA Today said, “in its charming odd manner, this is ‘Willy Wonka’ meets ‘The Matrix’,” which is an accurate description. Throughout the story, there are relatable situations that most teenagers have encountered once or twice, and other less relatable  situations that put the lives of our protagonists in danger. The characters are relatable which makes it difficult not to become attached to them, as you see them grow and mature throughout the novel.

“Ready Player One” is currently my favorite book and I don’t think there will be a book that outdoes it. The storyline is interesting and it goes in a well-placed rhythm that will keep people interested and wanting more. On the other hand, the ending fulfills the plot lines but isn’t as satisfying as it could be. It’s a bittersweet ending.

A movie of the same name is set to release next year with a trailer already out. But as always, it seems that they’ll change some parts of the plotline and some of the characters that were crucial, not only for the story, but to discuss social inequalities that people face when they log onto the internet.  

Overall, “Ready Player One” is an amazing book that honors and glorifies ‘80s culture in a way that only Ernest Cline could. Once you finish the book, you’ll want to have an ‘80s marathon of movies, music shows and probably video games. I would totally recommend this book to anyone who wants to read something interesting and unconventional, yet familiar. It’s easy to follow and doesn’t require too much concentration, which makes it perfect for students who want to relax and take a break from their responsibilities.


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