A review by eoghann
Ready Player One by Ernest Cline


This book has been getting a lot of positive comment on the net so I thought I would try it out and I can see why.

If you were to design a book to appeal to geeks, you couldn't really combine more key elements than are in play here. 80s culture, MMORPGs, random geek references and anime. It is sometimes annoyingly in its obsession with meta references. The absolute worst of which had to be the call out of Will Wheaton and Cory Doctorow part way through the story.

At its core this is a very simple but enjoyable story with a young hero and his friends on a quest. Along the way the hero matures and finds love. It's fast paced and makes you want to keep reading.

But the writing is clumsy. Perhaps the endless explanations of how to play Dungeons and Dragons or Zork are helpful to those who haven't played them, but for me they were an annoyance getting in the way of moving forward.

And there's a *lot* of that. Explanations of how an MMO works, how a haptic suit works, what the TRS-80 was. And on, and on.

I wasn't really convinced by the riddles either. They were essentially impossible to figure out unless you knew the answer and people just kept randomly getting them. It stretched credulity.

So why did I keep reading. Because the characters were likeable and the heart of the story enjoyable. As was the setting when I wasn't being hit over the head by it.

Good, but once again I have been lead to expect too much by people's praise.