Reading Notes: Ready Player One

— 2 minute read

(Spoilers alert!)

I wish I could like Ready Player One. I really, really wish.

The good part: it's fun. We've got a futuristic dystopia, a teenage hero, best friends who support each other, an enemy that everyone hates, a love interest who recripocates the feeling back. If you're a major 80s geek (which I'm not), you'll have even more fun with this book. I can see why this book is getting rave reviews, and despite having several issues when reading it I was going to give this book a 3/5.

Now, after thinking over it (it's a few days after I finished reading it) I'm not sure. I think I'd give it a 1.5/5.

My issues:

  • At some point I found the main character, Wade, to be too Mary Sue-ish (completing the puzzles or other external challenges with very little trouble? Yeah go on). At first I thought it might make sense--he probably has devoted way too much of his time on the puzzles that it's possible he managed to clear every puzzle with little troubles, but then again I remember that the contest has only lasted for 5 years or so.
  • However, my biggest issue is actually the love interest, art3mis. I had serious, real-time WTFs throughout reading the book. For example, there was this scene where Wade was like, "omg this girl is ordering the same drink as [insert character] here! She's the one!!!". That can't be real, right!? Now at first, I thought this scene was purposefully over-the-top, and Wade (or art3mis) would come to the realization that this is screwed up. But no, that reckoning never came and he got his feelings recripocated and they live. Happily. Ever. After. This further convinces me that the entire book is just a bundle of pages of wish fullfilment. Ugh.
  • Oh and did I tell you that until the end of book, we never really know about art3mis except that she's a very, very cool girl? We never know about her interests, her background...
  • The secondary characters aren't fleshed out really well. They seemed rather one-dimensional for me, like they serve solely to make things easier for the main character.