As some of you might know, I am a regular listener of a few tech podcasts. One day while coming back from work, I was listening to some episode of “Tech Stuff” from HowStuffWorks. The podcaster mentioned about some novel “Ready Player One“. It is a story based out in future about how some VR game contest led humanity to be obsessed with 80s pop culture just to win a big prize bounty.
I, being a nerd, immediately summoned Google assistant and asked it to take a note “read ready player one” on the Keep. And just like other stuff, it soon got lost in the myriad of other notes. But then one day I was feeling incredibly bored and wanted something new to read on my Kindle. I searched for “books” on my Google drive, where I have a repository of all the books I own. It surprisingly searched my Keep notes and showed me that note from the past. I immediately searched Goodreads to see the summary, rating about the same and I was greeted by this.
In the year 2044, 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.
Well, the summary seemed straight out of the type of movies/book I crave for. I immediately bought the Kindle edition for ₹299, made some coffee, I was set for a plunge into the FUTURE. 🚀
What is this book all about?
The illustration above just sums up the whole book. Man, it’s filled with easter eggs from the ‘80s and nerdy stuff like computers, sci-fi, cartoons, movies, comics and video games of that era. It was such a nostalgic ride reading this book as being a 90s kid, I have had lived through most of the stuff. It’s all beautifully captured by Ernest Cline while keeping in touch with the Sci-Fi aspect of the story too.
This book is nostalgia porn.
This novel portrays a technologically advanced but grim future where almost everyone is hooked up to a VR headset and immersed in OASIS (Future Facebook?), while the real world is suffering through all time high unemployment, famine, poor society infra etc. It shows a plausible reality where we will be so much dependent on the tech for everything that our day-to-day real life/health will take a backseat while we operate our fantasies in the virtual reality.
The actual plot is pretty cool too, the summary above gives pretty much the idea about the same. You will feel like a part of some MMORPG game while reading this. I really liked the character development and how the backstory for each character plays an important part while solving the puzzles.
Is this book for you?
If you grew up in the 80s, enjoy video games, or go crazy for popular culture, you will devour this one. I was supposed to be reading this over a week but I couldn’t stop at all. I read the beginning and thought, “what’s the big deal with everyone’s obsession?” Then Ernest Cline got his meat hooks into me. I have read this book while I was commuting in the metro while flying to Mumbai to my cousin’s marriage, at the actual marriage and so on until I’d finished it.
I can see how it will appeal to most of my
fellow geek friends as we grew up through a lot of stuff referenced in the story.
Well, I don’t like reading, isn’t there some movie?
If you are one of those, who are not much into reading, well, Steven Spielberg (yes), is working on a movie adaption of this book as we speak. It is supposed to release in 2018, you can check it’s IMDb page for cast and more details.
Warner Bros just released a trailer last week at SDCC, you can check that to get all hyped up before you buy the book. Although I am a book purist, so movie adaptions never get it right for me. 🙂
Ready Player One?
Go ahead, read this book, my fellow nerds.
Hit me up below or on twitter and let me know your experience on this fun ride.
Till then, here’s a millennial good bye to you. 😎