- Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo
- Crank by Ellen Hopkins
- A People’s History of the World by Chris Harman
- Au Revoir, Crazy European Chick by Joe Schreiber
- Ender’s Game by Orson Scott Card
First off, “Ready Player One” is about the 1980’s, and is a powerful nostalgia piece. It deals with the Hellish world in 2044, where gas guzzling cars and politics have caused the majority of people to succumb to poverty. The only thing that makes life bearable is the invention of a new type of immersive video game. The best part: it costs only a quarter. For 25 cents you can be a part of the greatest video game ever.
James Halliday, the creator and genius behind the “OASIS”(Ontologically Anthropocentric Sensory Immersive Simulation) announced after his death via videotape, that he had hidden three keys and three gates inside the OASIS. An ‘Easter Egg’, if you will. With this message, Halliday announces that the first person to successfully find each key and complete each task that comes with its respective gate, will inherit his entire life fortune and ownership of the OASIS. In a world where more than half the population is impoverished, that sounds pretty good.
The story follows Wade Watts- an orphaned boy who lives with his abusive grandmother. When Wade, (or Parzival, as he is known in the OASIS), finds the first key that the original message sent the whole world searching for five years earlier, his life suddenly gets a huge kick in the crotch. His name becomes a household one and his world flips upside down. Unfortunately for Wade, fame comes with a price. IOI, the evil corporation who has been searching for the keys as well, wants the prize not for money or fame, but for complete control of the OASIS. Everyone knows that if they win, the OASIS, the greatest thing that happened since the world’s virtual fallout, will require a ridiculously high monthly fee to access it.
Wade is blackmailed into helping the company find the keys and when he denies, his house is blown up. Fortunately, Wade wasn’t inside when it happened, but his family and his sweet, never-hurt-nobody neighbor dies.
The story has such a nostalgia factor because the easter-egg contest requires an extreme amount of 1980’s knowledge and references, ranging from Dig-Dug, Black Tiger, Tempest and other video game references(Pac-Man is huge, too). Movies such as Monty Python and the Holy Grail, Blade Runner etc. and TV shows, including Family Ties, Schoolhouse Rock and many more. Anyone who grew up in the 1980’s will be smothered in nostalgia throughout the entire book.
To say that it is a nostalgia piece is an understatement. In my last blog post, I said that I was 15. I was born in 2001, but I absolutely love older music and movies starting around 1970. The 1980’s are something that I have never and will never truly experience, and I even felt like I was taken back then. For a story about the 1980’s to make a kid born in the 2000’s feel nostalgic for a time he never lived in is impressive enough. To make it good, that’s flat out amazing.
Enough about the plot and more about the content. The story has an easy to follow plot, characters who are easy to connect with emotionally and is extremely well worded. The plot has a basic problem-climax-resolution plot that makes it nearly impossible to put down.
The characters, as I said before, are easy to relate to and are very lovable. They’re the kinds of characters who make you cry at the theaters if they died. Character development is super important to me. If the characters are pretty static throughout the whole story, I think that is a recipe for a bad story. Every main character develops well and thoroughly, particularly Wade and his best friend Aech(pronounced ‘H’).
The resolution of the story, another huge thing to me when it comes to books, is satisfying. Ernest Cline’s second attempt at a nostalgia piece, “Armada”, has a lazy ending and terrible character development. That is a topic for another day, however.
I have personally read this book at least thirty times and then some, and it still entertains me whenever I do. To whoever reads this post, I hope you enjoy(ed) the book. It’s a real page turner.
My name is Max and I am a high school student at Perkiomen Valley High School. I enjoy writing novels and short stories, making short films and skits, and I absolutely love music.
This blog is primarily for English Class and other literature related topics. While I may occasionally post other topics, English and literature will be the most common.
As I post more on this blog, I hope you find that I evolve as a person. For those people who read blogs like this one, please remember that my blog will primarily consist of literature and education related topics.