A review by ntedeyan
Ready Player One, by Ernest Cline

3.0

It's 103% plot and -3% character depth. Fast read, albeit a bit vapid.

HOWEVER. I *hated* the reveal of Aech IRL. In one sentence, Wade decides that it doesn't matter that his OASIS BFF, who he thought for years to be a white guy like himself, is actually a "fat black [gay] chick." Still, "We'd connected on a purely mental level... None of that had changed, or could be changed by anything as inconsequential as her gender, or skin color, or sexual orientation."

Except that's not how any of this works. First, it's nice that Wade, a white guy, has decreed that stuff doesn't matter. But it sure mattered to Aech - exactly why she chose to hide these traits. Where is Aech's voice in all of this?

And the person that Wade "understands, trusts, and loves as a dear friend" is necessarily shaped by her gender, skin color, and sexual orientation. It's only the fish in the sea that doesn't realize he's swimming in water - and it's a mark of Wade's privilege as a straight white guy IRL that he can choose not to see, and in fact, actively deny, the impact that race, gender, and sexual orientation has had on his BFF. If you love your BFF for who they are, that should include ALL of them.

Missed opportunity to dig into some interesting questions, rather than repeat the same self-affirming and self-protecting "Well let's just pretend none of that matters" bullhonkey.

But I suppose that may be expecting a bit much for a book that's 103% plot!