Rating: 3.5/5 stars
Wade is rather poor and lives in the stacks in the future, year 2044. The OASIS, a completely immersive video game, is the only way he feels he can really live. The creator of the video game died and left an Easter egg for the gamers to find. Years pass and no luck… until one day the first key is found.
I am not usually a big fan of science fiction books but I am a casual gamer so this particular book intrigued me. Also, a friend of mine recommended it so I decided to go for it. And man was I in for a surprise.
The author did such a fantastic job outlining all the details of his made up future and the video game. Sometimes authors can really info dump on you and it gets tiring reading all this descriptive stuff but all the information that Ernest Cline put in was needed and really added to the story. It took a little bit of time but I soon began to feel as if I really knew what was going on and the rest of the book made sense. That way, the author didn’t have to do too much explaining during the important bits of the book.
The more action bits of the book were so well done and as I neared the end I couldn’t read fast enough. The stakes were high and like a good author, inserted enough road blocks to properly irritate me (and to make sure it wasn’t too easy for the main characters to get what they want). I probably would have enjoyed it even more if I understood the 70s and 80s culture references but that didn’t diminish my enjoyment of the book too much.
Wade did some developing in the course of the book and I found the last line of the book to be the most profound and amazing:
“It occurred to me that for the first time in as long as I could remember, I had absolutely no desire to log back into the OASIS.”
As much as this book is a celebration of video games and technology, it also causes us to really appreciate the real world. Tech can never truly replace real relationships and real experiences so we need to do everything we can to make our real world as great as we can.
The cussing in the book was a bit much for me but other than that I really didn’t have an issue with the book. To all the geeks and gamers, this book is for you.