Ready Player One

Okay. First off, you probably didn't notice, Wednesday came and went. And with that, I didn't update the site. Part of that is because I don't know what day of the week it is. That tends to happen over the summer. Since I'm gearing up to return to my day job, I believe the Wednesday updates will come more easily. I had to own that one. Deadline missed. On with the show. 

Ready Player One. Like me, many of you may have heard about this through the upcoming movie grapevine. I will say that when I first heard about a story about a gamer living in a virtual reality RPG I didn't care. I'm not a gamer so this concept didn't really interest me. Like many people, I blew it off and thought I would never see the movie. A few updates later and I decided to follow the progress a little. I was still iffy. Then the coming attraction hit. 

I didn't know it at the time, but I heard that particular trailer aggravated fans of the book. For me, it had the Iron Giant. It seems silly but any movie with that adorable robot in it gets my attention and money. I was suddenly on board. And not just the movie. The book was fast tracked on my reading list. 

To digress, I don't get to read many novels during the year. They take a commitment, time, and, generally, it's hard to pick up a book and tell if it's going to be good. There's nothing worse than picking up a book, dedicating a ton of time to it, and discovering that it is a horrible piece of literature. This year I picked up Thrawn and, with all my writing, comic reading, day job commitments, and family, it took me a few months to read. That's why I carefully select novels to read. So when Ready Player One got put on top of the list, that says something. 

It was worth my time. 

From the beginning, the book hooks you. Think about being the solitary owner of Apple. Then think about not having an heir and creating a contest for the world to compete in. The winner becomes the sole owner of the company. That's what this book is except the entire contest exists in a virtual, video game world. Yeah, I know, it sounds like The Matrix. That would be a good comparison. But the real trick is making you believe that this fake world is real. 

While reading this book you get lost. You become so invested in the VR that when you enter the real world, it seems fake. That impressed me. There are times in the book where the characters reference their real identity as the avatar they control and you feel it. It's a pretty intense roller coaster at times. 

Don't get me wrong, there are parts that drag on and feel a little out of place, but that's to be expected. This is Ernest Cline's first novel. And did he ever hit a home run. A part of me wants a sequel, but I don't think I'm smart enough to figure out how to pull that off. I was so invested in the world, I want to rejoin these characters. I don't simply want another book littered with 80's pop culture references. That won't do. I need more. 

Ready Player Two, perhaps. 

That's it for this week. Till next time.