Thursday, May 7, 2015

Book Review: Ready Player One by Ernest Cline

            Ready Player One is a science fiction and dystopian novel. It takes place in the year 2044, where in the world is not a good place to live in and the people’s way of coping with the situation is by jacking into a virtual utopia called OASIS and wining a contest that the deceased creator, James Halliday, made. And most of the people are dedicated in winning the contest in order to gain Halliday’s fortune. Wade is the main protagonist and he lives in a crappy situation. He’s poor and living with his aunt who constantly maltreats him. In terms of characterization he is a type of person who is driven by emotion. Meaning, he lets his emotion clouds over his mind when making decision, thus resulting in stupid actions, which resulted with the sixers bombing his home thus killing his aunt and his neighbors. But this characteristic of his does not make him any less for me but it makes him relatable to the reader. Art3mis is the love interest of Wade. She comes off as someone who is independent and who does not to lose. Nolan Sorrento and the rest of the Innovative Online Industries is the antagonist of this film since they destroying the true essence of the game by cheating and their intentions to Halliday’s fortune is for greed, which would be against Halliday’s wish.

            There are two kinds of conflicts that are present in this book. First is man versus man where in parzival is competing with other gunters, and in the end it shifted to the gunters forming an alliance in order to defeat the sixers. We also see a man versus himself, with Wade trying to struggle with his emotions especially when art3mis breaking up with him that led to him losing focus on the competition. Furthermore, the irony of this book is that even though it is set in the future the characters are living in the 80’s. There are constant 80’s reference throughout the book because the James Halliday is grew up in the 80’s and he conceptualized the oasis with 80’s references and also, in order to win the competition one must have extent knowledge about that era. The concept of this is mirrored to the author Ernest Cline because he grew up around the 80’s.

The journey of the hero (Wade) is not an uphill voyage; he had some downs, especially with the search of the second key that almost led him giving up but his desire to defeat the sixers is what pushed him to continue in his quest and thus winning in the end. Also, he would have not win the quest without the other gunters who helped him. Moreover, this book presented how consumerism and how industries take advantage of this and it also presented the bad side of technology, which is that it is addicted and it makes people not be aware of reality. I have to admit that it is nice to get away from reality once in a while and I realized that if I am not aware of reality for a long period of time and I am just locked away in my room reading books I miss out on things that I could have experience or moments that I would’ve cherish forever. Furthermore, in terms of feminism there is an equality of between men and women shown in the book with Wade admiring Art3mis’ knowledge and capabilities. We also see her in the competition joining with the men and even placing first place during the second level. This just shows that there is a shift in terms of gender traits, with Wade showing some traits of femininity and At3mis masculinity, and also with Aech who happens to be gay and living in the OASIS as a guy, so it goes with the queer theory and that gay people are not free and are forced to express who they truly are closeted.

               To assert, I really enjoyed this novel to the fullest. The world building was phenomenon to the point that I was dreaming about being in the OASIS in my sleep, and characters growth was great. I am just in love with this book. There was a perfect balance of action, romance and comedy. I feeling of reading this book is like what I feel when playing a mmorpg game like the world of warcraft

Rating 5 stars of 5

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