Monday, April 10, 2017

Book Review: Ready Player One by Ernest Cline

Author: Ernest Cline
Publisher: Broadway Books
Pages: 372
Format: Paperback
Published: June, 2012
Price: Rp226.000 (Periplus)
Rating: 4½ / 5 stars

Date started: March 21, 2017 - Date finished: April 9, 2017

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 ten thousand 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 twentieth 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?
The year is 2044 and the world has gone to crap, everything in the world is awful so people escape into this virtual reality world called the OASIS. In the OASIS people can be someone they're not, they can run from the dullness that is their life, they can work there, get married there and go to school there. Some people actually prefer to live in OASIS and Wade Watts is one of those people.  His real life sucks and he lives with his aunt that doesn't treat him well.

OASIS was created by two best friend, James Halliday and William Ogden. When Halliday died he created a scavenger hunt for users of OASIS, he'd hidden an egg inside that world and whoever gets the egg will inherit a crapload of money and inherit OASIS, but there's a catch because the road to obtain the egg is not an easy one. They must solve puzzles and riddles laden with '80s pop-culture references in order to collect three keys and then complete a series of tests from three gates to get the egg.

In over five years, no one has ever come close to finding the first key. That is until Wade, a low level avatar actually found the first key and became a worldwide spectacle, firing up people's thirst of the hunt that was once thought to be over. Since this discovery Wade has become a target but what he never imagined is that people are actually willing to kill people to find Halliday's egg first and win the game
“I created the OASIS because I never felt at home in the real world. I didn't know how to connect with the people there. I was afraid, for all of my life, right up until I knew it was ending. That was when I realized, as terrifying and painful as reality can be, it's also the only place where you can find true happiness. Because reality is real.”
This book was really really fun, it's one of the most fun I've ever experienced from reading a book in a long while. I really want to see this book being turned into a movie. Ernest Cline really knows how to insert '80s pop-culture and technical terms in the book without making it boring and making it seem like an "information dump". Cline's writing can suck you into the world of OASIS and make you wish it was real so you can experience it yourself. All of the characters in this book were good. I am not particularly fond of a certain character, but I definitely ship Parzival and Art3mis.
I wish someone had just told me the truth right up front, as soon as I was old enough to understand it. I wish someone had just said: “Here’s the deal, Wade. You’re something called a ‘human being.’ That’s a really smart kind of animal. Like every other animal on this planet, we’re descended from a single-celled organism that lived millions of years ago. This happened by a process called evolution, and you’ll learn more about it But trust me, that’s really how we all got here. There’s proof of it everywhere, buried in the rocks. That story you heard? About how we were all created by a super-powerful dude named God who lives up in the sky? Total bullshit. The whole God thing is actually an ancient fairy tale that people have been telling one another for thousands of years. We made it all up. Like Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny. “Oh, and by the way … there’s no Santa Claus or Easter Bunny. Also bullshit. Sorry, kid Deal with it.”
If any of you are wondering whether or not you will get confused because this book is filled with '80s pop-culture references the answer is no, but you might enjoy it a little less than the people who do. I, myself, as a child of the '90s didn't get all of the references but I do know some and the ones I don't know, after reading this book I really want to find out more about them. In addition to that, if any of you guys are also wondering why it took me so long to finish this book even though beforehand I said that it was really really fun and at times almost unputdownable, life just got in the way and after life is finished with you, Netflix just had to come out with new shows that made you watch all 13 episodes of Iron Fist and Thirteen Reasons Why.
As we continued to talk, going through the motions of getting to know each other, I realized that we already did know each other, as well as any two people could. We’d known each other for years, in the most intimate way possible. We’d connected on a purely mental level. I understood her, trusted her, and loved her as a dear friend. None of that had changed, or could be changed by anything as inconsequential as her gender, or skin color, or sexual orientation.
My only problem with this book was in its pacing, it was like a literal rollercoaster. The first half of the book was great, but then the middle half it became really boring (the part that isn't related to the hunt at all) and then in the last half of the book the pacing and the action got better and finally ends with a bang. I will obviously recommend this book to everyone and hopefully I can get to Cline's other book in the near future.

That's all for now!

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