YA Book Review

Ready Player One by Ernest Cline

The Book:

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Book Title: Ready Player One

Book Author: Ernest Cline

Page Count: 374

Publishing Date: August 16th, 2011

Publisher: Broadway Books

Date Read: April 7th, 2018

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The Review:

Ready Player One was an exciting ride! It was full of twists and turns and adventure! It had action, passion, and tons of fun 80’s references!

I really, really enjoyed this one! I’ve seen so many mixed reviews, so I didn’t know how I would feel when I got in to it. I was pleasantly surprised with the amount of creativity there was to the story, and I LOVED all the 80’s references! I mean, not many people have even heard of Real Genius, and Cline found a way to bring up one of my favorite movies several times in the book, so that gets an A+ from me!

Yes, there were A LOT of 80’s references, and for most books, pop culture references just don’t work, but they were so fun in this one. The main point of the references was to show Halliday’s love for the decade, and to show how his mind worked with puzzles, riddles, and clues when it came to creating the OASIS and the Easter Egg Hunt. The references also led to the complexity of the world building because the OASIS had so much future tech involved in its creation, and yet most of it revolved around 80’s nostalgia. It was a pleasant mix of past and future that created an intriguing paradox.

The story itself was so well written. It was fast paced, intense, and exhilarating. It had the excitement of Wade jumping in to the world and going on the Easter Egg Hunt. It offered a lot of enjoy-ability for gamers, and those in the fandoms of everything referenced in the book, but it also offered depth and dimension to non-gamers. Cline did a great job of explaining the game mechanics of the OASIS, and the mechanics of most games in general, but he also spoke on a higher level on the stigma of gaming, the stereotyping involved with the gaming world, and some of the reasons behind why people game and seek out enjoyment in virtual worlds.

There was a heavy message on the effects of gaming obsession, and also a great message of not assuming a certain type, or gender, of person is more prone to play, or even be proficient, at video games. There was also a heavy theme of getting to know someone as a person and loving them despite their appearance, and I really fell in love with how Cline tied all of this in to the action packed story.

There were so many amazing details that went in to creating this story! The world building was massive, and so well done. I could see everything so clearly, but the most important aspects of the story were the characters.

I loved Wade and his anti-social self. I loved how self conscious he was but how he was able to still look past appearances when it came to making friends. I loved Aech’s personality and confidence. I loved Art3mis and how badass she was, just blowing away the male gamer stereotype, and I loved how Daito and Shoto brought a little of their culture in to the gaming world.

I admit, the book had its problems. Some things felt too easy for Wade. Some of the game obstacles seemed entirely too unrealistic, there was A LOT going on at times, and there was an awkward scene talking about a doll and “self-love,” but, the story had depth and dimension. It was exciting and creative, and it was highly enjoyable! I’d definitely recommend it and will be reading it again in the future. 4.5 stars!


Thank you to Blogging for Books for providing me with this free copy in exchange for my honest review!

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48 thoughts on “Ready Player One by Ernest Cline

    1. I am afraid to see the movie because I enjoyed the book so much. I have heard a lot of negative things about the movie so far. But, usually I enjoy seeing the movie first and letting time pass before reading the book. What do you usually do in this situation?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Usually I read the book first. If the movie isn’t that good I might not feel compelled to read the book. So if I read the book first, then I’ll know what the original story is supposed to be, regardless of how the movie turns out.

        Liked by 1 person

  1. I had never heard of this book before the movie came out! thank you for a great review and giving more insight into what the book is actually about. Sounds interesting and I think I will be adding this to my TBR however the problem now is whether to see the movie or read the book first?

    Liked by 1 person

      1. In the past I have seen movies that I didn’t realise were based on books and then read the book afterwards which isn’t all bad as books normally have way more details extra bits that couldn’t be included in the movie. however sometimes if I see the movie first I am unable to imagine the characters any other way then looking like the actors which can be annoying. However reading the book first there is always a chance of hating the movie adaption.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Crazy, right? I find that both ways work for me depending on the movie. I watched The Martian and The Mountain Between Us before reading the books and loved both, but I read City of Bones before watching the movie and enjoyed that too.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. *Still has to get on this RPO wagon be it the film or the book*.

    Happy to hear you liked this one, and you were on board with all the nods to pop culture. It seems to be the main thing people up-vote but it’s one thing to appreciate it by knowing about it and another thing entirely to actually have a stake in its inclusion (e.g. childhood etc.) and it sounds like you’re of the latter for the most part!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I hope you give it a shot soon. I am weary about the movie now that I have read the book, but I think the movie may still be great if I can separate the book from my mind. And, I was actually born in 87, so I wish I had been a teen in the 80’s, but I love a lot of the music and movies from the decade and think the fashion was highly intriguing. I grew up connecting with my dad over music and movies from the 80’s, which is where my love for Real Genius came from, and I’ve always been told that I have an old soul because I appreciate a lot from past decades.


  3. Wonderful review! I’ve owned a copy of this book for far too long. I ❤️ the 80’s and this just sounds like a real treat 😃 I’m glad it shines a light on gamers not all being one gender 🙌🏼 I’ll admit the movie trailer reignited my interest in the book & you nailed it with this review! 💜

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That makes me feel better about watching the movie in the future. I try not to pay attention to all the changes from book to movie usually, but I have heard lots of negative issues surrounding the comparison, so I kind of psyched myself out of being excited for the movie.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. This book has been on my wish list for awhile now! I keep hearing such great things about it!! However, I’m stuck between reading the book or watching the movie first.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I like the sound of this book and my co-blogger (and daughter) will definitely want to read it. The 80’s, gaming and challenging gamer stereotypes. I have seen this book around a lot at the moment but you really brought it to life for me.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Nice review!
    I liked this one a lot as well. I read it without seeing any reviews, and i think it was a good thing. Later i saw some reviews complaining about the main character being sexist and whatnot. I don’t know… maybe? But he’s a teenage boy. As teenagers, we all have some strange/naive ideas, and trying to find ourselves, and figure people out in general.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m glad you enjoyed it. I think he was a little sexist sometimes, but, like you said, most teenagers have a lot of naive notions until they grow up. I think it was well done and wasn’t over the top. And, I think it was thrown in to make a point because his character definitely grew and definitely made friends he probably wouldn’t have given a second thought to at the beginning.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. I am so glad you loved it! And, yes, it was so awkward, but thinking about it afterwards, I can definitely see why it was thrown in there. It kind of showed how lonely living in a virtual reality can be, and how lonely Wade was since he never interacted with real humans.


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