Ready Player One- Ernest Kline
Synopsis: In the year 2045, reality is an ugly place. The only time teenage Wade Watts really feels alive is when he’s jacked into the virtual utopia known as the OASIS. Wade’s devoted his life to studying the puzzles hidden within this world’s digital confines, puzzles that are based on their creator’s obsession with the pop culture of decades past and that promise massive power and fortune to whoever can unlock them. When Wade stumbles upon the first clue, he finds himself beset by players willing to kill to take this ultimate prize. The race is on, and if Wade’s going to survive, he’ll have to win—and confront the real world he’s always been so desperate to escape.
Sounds really cool, right?
I definitely thought so. I enjoy action movies with fantasy elements, or dystopian with video games. They interest me quite a bit. Lots of action and adventure, interesting twists on the real world or in the virtual realm, and maybe even a subtle romance. This book is one of the most popular ones out there, regarding virtual reality, and is about to be turned into a movie.
In fact, I had picked it up half a year ago (and put it down again), but if not for this interesting adaptation coming in March, I would never have written this review/blog.
Even as I hope the movie adaptation is watchable, I remembered my fellow book-lovers. Those of us needing something to read may want to read the book before its movie comes out. I know I do… usually. I like knowing how the movie should’ve been.
But here are three reasons why I didn’t finish reading Ready Player One;
1. The language
We’re not far into the story when we come face to face with f—, sh– (paired with bull),
d— and so on. It was there multiple times. Used casually. And frequently.
(But I said that already, didn’t I?)
2. The mind
When I began it, I’d skimmed a couple of reviews. Of course, they didn’t say what the language had been, but they commented on the lack of romance.
But I only reached a few pages in when I realised something- Wade may not have done anything, but he mentioned his mother being part of an online brothel and how he had heard her.
Other instances accompanied this, and I won’t go into further detail. But according to different sources, it only gets worse.
As you read the book, you are in the mind of one, dirty-minded boy.
3. The hopelessness
Now, this in and of itself wouldn’t have caused me stop reading. But it’s why Wade’s hopeless and how it’s presented that caused me to put the book down.
Wade believes that God is a fairytale.
I’ve read many books with characters that are atheistic, but none have been as vocal as this book. Wade doesn’t just view the world from an atheistic worldview but he rants about the uselessness of Christianity and the horrible, fantasy of God.
(It’s accompanied by a whole lot of swearing, frustration and hopelessness.)
It’s not even crucial to the story but was rather an off-topic rant session.
I was very sad about it, lowering the book onto my lap slowly as I thought about it. I had hoped to be introduced to my next favourite but only encountered disappointment.
Anyway, I hope this has clarified some things about Ready Player One. I was appalled to see the positive reviews on content-based reviews, as they didn’t mention anything about what I encountered in the first chapter.
I will just go and read K. M. Shea’s The Second Age of Retha series. Hope to see more of you join me.
< 3 klara