For me, the first book of every school year is one of the best ones I’ll read the entire year. Sixth grade was Alice in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll. Seventh grade was re-reading Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix by J.K Rowling. 8th grade’s Ready Player One is no exception. Written by Ernest Cline, this dystopian future starts out with the protagonist, Wade Watts, setting the scene. James Haliday, the creator of an amazing video game called OASIS has died. Ontologically Anthropocentric Sensory Immersive Simulation or OASIS is an online, free to play, virtual reality. When Haliday died, a virtual obituary was broadcasted across the world on news stations. Inside the video was a message. Since Haliday had no heirs to inherit his fortune of 240 billion dollars and the rights to the game, he entered in a complex Easter egg inside OASIS filled with puzzles, riddles, and more.
Wade’s entire generation has learned that video by heart. Egg hunters or Gunters as the slang goes became a full time career and nearly every Oasis user claimed to be one including Wade, or Parzival, his avatar’s name. Wade uses OASIS to get away from the poor, ruined world he lives in. A corporation called Innovation Online Industries or IOI (eye-oh-eye) wants to ruin that. They want to get the egg to have control of the game to input a monthly fee, higher fees, and more. They have employees nicknamed Sixers (or Suxz-ers if you’re a Gunter) that tries to crack the riddles and get the egg unless Parzival can help it.
Sadly, I can’t say much more without giving away huge chunks of the fantastic story you, once you’ve read it, wonder how you lived without it. Cline’s honest, funny, and overall great story has already gathered loads of attention with Entertainment Weekly describing the reading experience as “As one adventure leads expertly to the next, time simply evaporates.” I sincerely recommend it to all. It truly has something for everyone. Whether you're young and video game obsessed or older and have fond memories of acid washed jeans and Galaga. At first glance, this may seem like another science fiction novel and you’d be selling yourself short by thinking so. Cline has done much more than piece together some book. He has pieced together a masterpiece.