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
"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)
This is an excellent book! I had already read it a couple years ago but when I saw the audiobook narrated by Wil Wheaton I knew I had to hear it. It did not disappoint! The reading had all the same inflection I expected from my read. Of course it is a cleverly crafted text giving me numerous nostalgic sensations from my own childhood years. Well written, well read!
Thrilling, Compelling, and Imaginative!
There are so many, and I don't want to give away any spoilers... I can say, I've never wanted to watch Ultraman before, and even though I was a computer nerd that grew up during the '80s I didn't know half the trivia this book seems to have in it.
I am not a fan-of nor a hater-of to Wil Wheaton, at least not before this book. I've watched Tabletop, Seen him in Star Trek, Big Bang Theory, The Guild, and possibly other places, so I've known who Wil Wheaton is for a while now, but I've never been a 'fan' - though he seems like a really 'cool' guy.
My friend however, is a very big Wil Wheaton fan, though he probably wouldn't admit it publicly. I actually bought this book, to listen to, so that I could tell my friend I listened to it, just to (temporarily at least, until he gets his own copy and listens to it) tell him I had done so. I imagined myself starting the conversation, "Yeah, so, have you listened to that book, 'Ready Player One' ready by Wil Wheaton?" - I'm sure his reaction is going to be priceless.
That being said, Wil Wheaton did an excellent job reading this book. He has a very pleasant narrator voice, he changes between character voices smoothly, you know who's talking before he says, 'So and so said.' - His inflections, and emotion he puts into it, all very excellent, and while I'm sure I would have enjoyed reading this with my eye balls alone more than I would many books, I get the feeling Wil Wheaton could make listening to him reading the Oxford Dictionary, or Encyclopedia Britannica exciting. There are other readers who might have a wider range of voices, but Wil's the emotions, inflections, and voices he does for this are superb. - I may be becoming a WIl Wheaton fan boy now. - I will defiantly be looking out for more books read by him.
There were several moments, though I don't want to give any spoilers. When we first meet 'H', some of the big speeches given by the character. This book was a roller-coaster of emotions, as any good book is.
The cover art for this book is spot-on, yet, I almost gave this book a pass because of the cover art. ("You can't judge a book by its cover.") - This book and another by the same author has been showing up in my, 'Recommended based on..." section for a while, and as mentioned I kept giving it a pass. Another book by this author did catch my attention however, and when I discovered this book was written by the same author but earlier, I decided to give it a closer look. Seeing it had been ready by Wil Wheaton (see earlier comments on Wil Wheaton) I decided to give it a try, after all: With the ability to return it if I don't like it, what do I have to lose?
I am so glad I did! Listening to this book was awesome!
This YA novel has some great moments and is really on point with its 80s nostalgia references. I was a bit confused with Will Wheaton as the choice for narrator. He lacks the emotional depth and teenage angst of the characters. He does occasionally change inflection, but mostly he straight reads the book. He's not awful. He's lovely, but I think it had the potential to be more given the smart concept. Worth the read, but it stalls occasionally and requires a little patience.
I had to listen to it twice to be sure... This has been a fun read and one that helped me have an open conversation with my 12 year old daughter about escapism in today's society. And it was fun having her ask questions about all of the trivia from my childhood. Nice presentation Mr. Wheaton.
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