Yearly Book Review – Ready Player One

With the spare time I currently have, I think yearly (or bi-yearly) book reviews are in order.

During the past few weeks I’ve had the pleasure to read a most interesting piece of writing called Ready Player One by Ernest Cline. I could join the many other reviewers in labeling the book with all kinds of positive adjectives, but instead I will tell what I felt while reading.

Throughout the entire story I constantly had the feeling that the book was written for me specifically. Of course that also makes it impossible for me to review the book “objectively” as someone who has lived their entire life in a barrel. But for us good and honest folk who have spent the majority of our best years playing videogames behind closed curtains, this book is a gem that should not go unexplored.

I’m not saying that you should have had no life prior to reading to book to fully enjoy it. I’m saying that if you identify yourself as a current or past nolife, you will enjoy this book. If you don’t identify yourself as such, you still probably will enjoy this book.

The virtual reality future described in the story sounds so likely that one might question the book’s categorizing into science fiction. A future like that has also been proposed as one possible solution to the Fermi Paradox: Why haven’t we ever heard from another civilization spreading throughout the stars? – Possibly because all civilizations eventually figure out that it is much more fun and convenient to just sit back and enjoy life in a virtual reality instead of migrating to other solar systems.

And since this was supposed to be a book review… I got really engulfed in the world of this story – so much that when the bad guys were being bad, I felt bad. Thoughts like “How dare they?” often went through my head. The virtual reality felt like such a nice place that I was really worried when its essence was threatened.

At the end of the Avatar movie I felt sadness for having to return to reality. I got the same feeling at the end of Ready Player One, even though its world was a crappy place. Now I have to consider purchasing HTC Vive.

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