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Ready Player One | [Ernest Cline]

Ready Player One

At once wildly original and stuffed with irresistible nostalgia, Ready Player One is a spectacularly genre-busting, ambitious, and charming debut—part quest novel, part love story, and part virtual space opera set in a universe where spell-slinging mages battle giant Japanese robots, entire planets are inspired by Blade Runner, and flying DeLoreans achieve light speed.
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Audible Editor Reviews

Why we think it's Essential - Did you love the ‘80s? Because Ernest Cline’s sci-fi video game epic sure does. Chock full of references to almost every facet of pop culture from that decade, Ready Player One is an excellent example of a hero’s journey that uses a treasure-hunting narrative to frame the concepts of celebrity, privacy, and control, and posits the question, “What is reality?” Narrator Wil Wheaton does a superb job (as always), and his sci-fi background lends his performance a lot of credibility as computer-nerd-turned-superstar Wade Watts (yes, the familiar alliteration is intentional). —Chris

Publisher's Summary

At once wildly original and stuffed with irresistible nostalgia, Ready Player One is a spectacularly genre-busting, ambitious, and charming debut—part quest novel, part love story, and part virtual space opera set in a universe where spell-slinging mages battle giant Japanese robots, entire planets are inspired by Blade Runner, and flying DeLoreans achieve light speed.

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 10,000 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 20th 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?

©2011 Ernest Cline (P)2011 Random House Audio

What the Critics Say

"Ready Player One is the ultimate lottery ticket." (New York Daily News)

“An exuberantly realized, exciting, and sweet-natured cyber-quest. Cline’s imaginative and rollicking coming-of-age geek saga has a smash-hit vibe.” (Booklist)

"This adrenaline shot of uncut geekdom, a quest through a virtual world, is loaded with enough 1980s nostalgia to please even the most devoted John Hughes fans… sweet, self-deprecating Wade, whose universe is an odd mix of the real past and the virtual present, is the perfect lovable/unlikely hero.” (Publishers Weekly)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.7 (25772 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Alex 05-05-15
    Alex 05-05-15 Member Since 2015
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    "The greatest tribute to a decade of all time."

    After listening to Whil Wheton s dulcet tones attack this sci-fi fantasy adventure with more passion than most honey moons I feel... no I know that this is a must have on any self professed nerds book shelf.
    I am a very conservative audio book consumer. I check out classics and easy to digest books to listen to while driving, or at the gym. It can't be anything too stimulating or boring or I can't concentrate on the actual activity at hand. I bought this book thinking it would bring much needed sweet nothings to my ears and occupy any lonely hours between my house and work. For that purpose, this was the wrong book to get.

    I have made excuses, wrong turns and lengthened my time on the eliptical to let the story wash over me. I am now resigned to purchase a hardcopy to read at my leisure so my girlfriend no longer yells at me in the middle of the night for having mr. Wheton speaking in my ear.

    Sure, some of the battle sequences were a bit on the slow side at the end. The descriptions were not quite up to creating the magnificent battle sequences toward the end and I may have drifted off during those bits, but the rest was pure 80 ' s goodness. wi th a satisfying ending to boot. Will read and listen to again.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Laura 05-05-15
    Laura 05-05-15 Member Since 2014
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    6
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    "Amazing!"

    Loved reading the book...but now? I don't think I'll be able to actually READ it again. Wil Wheaton's performance was fantastic...and...not gonna lie...he made me cry at the end...in a REALLY good way...

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Fotinosnm 05-05-15
    Fotinosnm 05-05-15 Member Since 2015
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    "FAN-FREAKING-TASTIC!!!"

    This is now one of my favorite books of all time! Character development was wonderful, the story was full of adventure, suspense, humor, and love. The best part by far was Will Weaton as the narrator. A MUST HAVE !!!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    claire 05-05-15
    claire 05-05-15 Member Since 2009
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    "Great story and reader"

    Very enjoyable story. Even though the listener is told the outcome of the book in the beginning, the author maintains an intense storyline. The book brings back so many aspects of the 80's while keeping the story moving forward. Wil Wheaton did a great job of narration, he embodied the main character.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    antonio johnson 05-05-15 Member Since 2013
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    "A must read (or listen)!"

    Couldn't put it down. And loved revisiting great games, movies, and music from my childhood.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jason 05-05-15
    Jason 05-05-15 Member Since 2013
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    7
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    "By far, my favorite book!"

    Ready Player One is a full on 1980's pops culture nostalgia-fest with a modern sci-fi twist. Ernest Cline is a total classic video game GEEK (which is a good thing), and his passion shows in this sci-fi adventure. The characters are developed just enough to be relatable and likeable, but not so much that you don't get to use your imagination to complete the picture. The real characters in this book are the pop culture references, which, again are not over explained. If you know the references, everything is vivid in your mind, but there is enough description to still know what's going on.

    If you love 80's pop culture and video games, you will love this book!

    Also, Wil Wheaton is the perfect narrator for this book!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    J. Sutton Tulsa, OK 05-05-15
    J. Sutton Tulsa, OK 05-05-15 Member Since 2014

    The Yellow Dart

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    "Outstanding & super creative!!!!!"

    If you're a fan of the 80's, you're gonna dig this book!

    I needed 7 more words..... Um ya!!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    seith 05-05-15
    seith 05-05-15 Member Since 2015
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    "perfect"

    one of a kind, and possibly one of the best pop culture books I have ever read

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer 05-05-15 Member Since 2014

    I'm a guy with a wife and 3 babies. I'm a guy who likes summer rather than winter. I'm a guy who likes art & conspiracy theories. -Kevin H.

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    10
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    "A+++"

    One of the best books I've ever read! Great story! In my 10! Will Wheaton, narrating this story just got him some street cred! Lol

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Tom 05-05-15
    Tom 05-05-15 Member Since 2013
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    "A must read for all us nerds."

    I had a hard time pressing pause while listening to the story. Without giving anything away, this story contains references to all branches of nerd culture, but it's the engrossing story that makes it worth the listen.
    My only negative, would be that the writer goes out of his way to keep the audience happy. While I did actually laugh, and honestly I did cry a bit too, I was not really surprised by any of the twists or turns in the story.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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