Published by Broadway Books August 2nd, 2016
Genre: Young Adult Science Fiction
It's the year 2044, and the real world is an ugly place. Like most of humanity, Wade Watts escapes his grim surroundings by spending his waking hours jacked into the OASIS, a sprawling virtual utopia that lets you be anything you want to be, a place where you can live and play and fall in love on any of ten thousand planets. And like most of humanity, Wade dreams of being the one to discover the ultimate lottery ticket that lies concealed within this virtual world. For somewhere inside this giant networked playground, OASIS creator James Halliday has hidden a series of fiendish puzzles that will yield massive fortune — and remarkable power — to whoever can unlock them. For years, millions have struggled fruitlessly to attain this prize, knowing only that Halliday's riddles are based in the pop culture he loved — that of the late twentieth century. And for years, millions have found in this quest another means of escape, retreating into happy, obsessive study of Halliday's icons. Like many of his contemporaries, Wade is as comfortable debating the finer points of John Hughes's oeuvre, playing Pac-Man, or reciting Devo lyrics as he is scrounging power to run his OASIS rig. And then Wade stumbles upon the first puzzle. Suddenly the whole world is watching, and thousands of competitors join the hunt — among them certain powerful players who are willing to commit very real murder to beat Wade to this prize. Now the only way for Wade to survive and preserve everything he knows is to win. But to do so, he may have to leave behind his oh-so-perfect virtual existence and face up to life — and love — in the real world he's always been so desperate to escape. A world at stake. A quest for the ultimate prize. Are you ready?
You don't have to be an 80's child to be transported into thousand of captivating worlds within this virtual, action-packed book. I absolutely loved this book. I've heard so many great things about it that I just had to see why it was so popular. It definitely is a throwback to the eighties, supplying the reader with endless references and clues from movies, video games, and facts. I love Ernest Clines imagination. When I first started reading this, I couldn't imagine how difficult it was going to understand what was happening just by reading what Wade saw on a screen. But after the first few pages, it was much better than I had originally thought. Cline takes you into a whole another world known as the OASIS. He teleports the readers to multiple worlds that many of us grew up with. The descriptions were perfect and precise, very rarely did I find myself confuse as I read this. I also enjoyed that Cline left a big of Wade's actions a mystery. Too many times I have read a story where the main character explains the final plan before it actually happens. He allowed me to think ahead and speculation what I thought might happen. I enjoyed how the words easily flowed and created a detailed picture in my mind. The only negative that I have is more about the physical book than the story. I read the paperback version. The font was a little too small that it prevented me from reading it at night. I would often loose my place or reread the same line multiple times. Overall, this was a fantastic read!