Ready Player One

I'm a writer, well, that's my job when I'm not at my day job. I'm also a reader (and listener) of many many books, and I should be mentioning the ones I've enjoyed--at least when the mood strikes.

The book I'm beginning with is Ready Player One, by Ernest Cline. I enjoyed this book so much that not only did I read it two times, but also listened to it two times.


I held off reading this for so long, and then was so pissed I hadn't tried it earlier.

Why do I enjoy this book? There are a few reasons I wouldn't--it's set in a dystopian near future, and I typically don't like that sort of thing. And then it gets sort of preachy for a few pages, but once I got beyond that section I was hooked. This one kept me turning pages long after I should have gone to sleep, and when I listened to it, I found myself lingering in the car for a few extra minutes.

The renaissance the 1980s enjoys in the book hooked me, and the story resonated with me because of all the references to things I enjoyed when I was a kid and teenager (the 80s took me from the age of 10 to 19). And while I didn't get every single reference, I got most of them. And the stuff I didn't know I looked up and found new TV shows to watch or books to read, or video games and toys to investigate.

The 1980s references are mainly from science fiction and fantasy movies and television shows, books, video games (Atari 2600, Pac Man, Joust, Infocom text adventures), tabletop roleplaying games (Dungeons & Dragons), toys, and music. Nearly the entire book is set in a virtual world (called the Oasis) where most of the population spends its time, and involves an "easter egg" hunt designed by the inventor of the virtual world that will grant the winner a prize reminiscent of Charlie winning the factory in the Willy Wonka story.  Ready Player One provided a sense of wonder I rarely feel in books (or movies) these days.

If you grew up in the late 70s and early to mid 80s you have a pretty good chance of liking this book a lot. If you're younger, but are of geekdom, you'll likely enjoy the book as well.

The Audible version benefits from the Wil Wheaton narration.

Maybe I'm a fool, but I have this book on Audible, e-reader, and paper. It's been a few months since I've read the book, but now I want to go and read it or listen to it again!