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Ready Player One by Ernest Cline

Ready Player One (original 2011; edition 2012)

by Ernest Cline

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
6,237631650 (4.2)3 / 616
Title:Ready Player One
Authors:Ernest Cline
Info:Arrow (2012), Paperback, 384 pages
Collections:Your library
Tags:Read in 2013, cyberpunk, dystopia, online, Internet, virtual reality, games, 1980s, geek

Work details

Ready Player One by Ernest Cline (2011)

  1. 232
    Little Brother by Cory Doctorow (2seven, whymaggiemay)
    whymaggiemay: Both about teens fighting back against the greater power using computers.
  2. 170
    Neuromancer by William Gibson (jbgryphon)
    jbgryphon: Gibson's Matrix and Stephenson's Metaverse are as much the basis for OASIS as any of the geek universes that are included in it.
  3. 170
    Snow Crash by Neal Stephenson (jbgryphon)
    jbgryphon: RPO's OASIS owes it's existence as much to Neil Stephenson's Metaverse as to the miriad of geek universes that are included in it.
  4. 100
    Reamde by Neal Stephenson (Anonymous user)
  5. 92
    Scott Pilgrim vs. The World by Bryan Lee O'Malley (quenstalof)
    quenstalof: Both show classic video game inspiration
  6. 60
    Halting State by Charles Stross (ahstrick)
  7. 52
    Kiln People (The Kiln Books) by David Brin (freddlerabbit)
  8. 85
    Charlie and the Chocolate Factory by Roald Dahl (sturlington)
    sturlington: Ready Player One reminded me of a grown-up version of this classic.
  9. 30
    City of Golden Shadow by Tad Williams (infjsarah)
  10. 20
    Geektastic: Stories from the Nerd Herd by Holly Black (quenstalof)
  11. 31
    Daemon by Daniel Suarez (bikeracer4487)
  12. 20
    For the Win by Cory Doctorow (simon_carr)
  13. 20
    Constellation Games by Leonard Richardson (TomWaitsTables)
  14. 10
    Press Start to Play by Daniel H. Wilson (erikrebooted)
    erikrebooted: Similar subject matter -- where video games are more than they seem.
  15. 43
    The Player of Games by Iain M. Banks (GD2020)
  16. 10
    Wyrm by Mark Fabi (slagolas, slagolas)
  17. 00
    You by Austin Grossman (Anonymous user)
  18. 00
    Night Film by Marisha Pessl (lobotomy42)
    lobotomy42: Characters have to solve a mystery left by a deceased (fictional) creative artist; similar reference name-dropping, obsession with details and re-creations
  19. 00
    Erebos by Ursula Poznanski (aliklein)
  20. 00
    Armada by Ernest Cline (kale.dyer)
    kale.dyer: Both books focus on 1980s culture, similar narrative ark for isolated teen to hero.

(see all 32 recommendations)


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English (617)  Spanish (4)  Finnish (3)  French (2)  German (1)  Catalan (1)  Italian (1)  Danish (1)  All languages (630)
Showing 1-5 of 617 (next | show all)
This book is amazing. Great characterization, very suspenseful, excellent world-building, a well-plotted puzzle mystery of a novel. Particularly if you are a geek, nerd, gamer or any kind of outcast, you will absolutely adore this book. For extra added bonus, get yourself the audio version narrated by the sublime Wil Wheaton. ( )
  EmScape | Oct 10, 2016 |
Indulgent, incoherent, immature. ( )
  lobotomy42 | Oct 6, 2016 |
I actually finished this yesterday after a long day of work.

I'm not quite sure how I want to rate this one. I'm tossing it up between 3 stars and 4 stars (will probably do 3.5 on LibraryThing). It is a very good book, definitely no doubt about that. I think it gets a bit of 'extra' love and appeal due to the nostalgia the book entails with its constant '80s pop-culture references. It was an easy read, and a real page turner, I was definitely 'into it' and kept reading faster than normally do. However - there wasn't a whole lot of suspense in it, and nothing ever truly felt 'in jeopardy'. Even after Daito's death, which seemed like the typical 'token death' to add suspense to the novel.

Plot nit-picking, some of the OASIS stuff doesn't quite sync up or make a whole lot of sense pragmatically. Especially the exploration aspects, or the aspects where if your avatar dies you lose absolutely everything. There is also nitpicking in that aspect for how people use avatars outside of the 'gaming' aspect of it, and in just the day-to-day life stuff. Another thing the book doesn't really take into account, as far as the 'finding the easter egg' thing goes - is trolls. Especially in an anonymous online setting like this, there'd be bounty-hunter troll types just looking to kill Parzival or Art3mis or Aech, etc, especially when Aech and Parzival are so low level.

Parts of the book read like someone typing out a YouTube video of someone playing WoW (World of Warcraft) or a similar open-theater/sandbox game. Which isn't overall a negative thing. And he does sumarize/speed through sections of the games that are played in the game (like Joust, Adventure, Tempest, etc.) -- which is both a good thing and a bad thing.

There isn't quite as much sleuthing/detective searching for the egg as much as I was expecting/hoping. I was expecting parts of the book to be reminiscent of things like Dan Brown's Da Vinci Code and his other novels in that vein (Angels and Demons, Inferno, etc.), but sadly that's lacking here. The searching seems so 'easy' once its discovered, and it more becomes a race rather than a detective search. There also isn't nearly as much 'impending doom' or 'the world will end if they don't find this egg' as suggested on the blurb (though this is typical for all novels). It more or less just means OASIS becomes much more corporate and people have to start paying, and the poor get the shaft. And lastly, there is no 'post-climax' wrap-up. Its basically pg. 367-369 or so, he gets the egg, discovers he 'won', and pages 369-372 he finally gets to meet Art3mis in real life and tell he loves her, the end. Which isn't necessarily a bad thing either, but would have been nice to get a wrap-up post end-game and what he/they decide to do with their new found wealth. ( )
  BenKline | Oct 2, 2016 |
This was the most entertaining book I've read in a while.

More? Oh ok, The premise is interesting and i really got invested in the trials and hardships of the main characters. Many people have told me that knowing a lot about gaming (video games and tabletop) are essential to really getting into this book, and I might agree. I have enough background in the sort of pop culture that this book is about that I was sucked in immediately. I can see where it would get confusing if these things aren't your favorite things however. ( )
  Sarah_Buckley | Sep 17, 2016 |
It deals a lot with computers and computer games and I'm a little old for that. But after a short time, that wasn't a distraction as it really pulls you in. Very entertaining. ( )
  Luke_Brown | Sep 10, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 617 (next | show all)
"Cline is an awe-inspiring vault of ‘80s trivia and miscellany, and from the novel’s opening pages to its intense, action-packed finale, he expertly weaves his knowledge into the story in a way that’s somehow both deliriously entertaining and also integral to the plot."
Ready Player One borrows liberally from the same Joseph Campbell plot requirements as all the beloved franchises it references, but in such a loving, deferential way that it becomes endearing. There’s a high learning curve to all of the little details Wade throws out about the world, and for anyone who doesn’t understand or love the same sect of pop culture Halliday enjoyed, Ready Player One is a tough read. But for readers in line with Cline’s obsessions, this is a guaranteed pleasure.
"Cline is an ingenious conjurer talented at translating high concept into compelling storytelling."
added by bookfitz | editUSA Today, Don Oldenburg (Aug 21, 2011)
The breadth and cleverness of Mr. Cline’s imagination gets this daydream pretty far. But there comes a point when it’s clear that Wade lacks at least one dimension, and that gaming has overwhelmed everything else about this book.
added by zhejw | editNew York Times, Janet Maslin (Aug 14, 2011)
"Video-game players embrace the quest of a lifetime in a virtual world; screenwriter Cline’s first novel is old wine in new bottles. "
added by bookfitz | editKirkus Reviews (May 1, 2011)

» Add other authors (32 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Cline, Ernestprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Brand, ChristopherCover designersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Fowler, RalphDesignersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Massey, JimCover designersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Rothfuss, PatrickIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Spini, L.Translatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Wheaton, WilNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Wheaton, WilNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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For Susan and Libby
Because there is no map for where we are going
First words
Everyone my age remembers where they were and what they were doing when they first heard about the contest.
Like most gunters, I voted to reelect Cory Doctorow and Wil Wheaton (again). There were no term limits, and those two geezers had been doing a kick-ass job of protecting user rights for over a decade.
It was the dawn of a new era, one where most of the human race now spent all of their free time inside a videogame.
"No one in the world ever gets what they want and that is beautiful." [199]
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Information from the Italian Common Knowledge. Edit to localize it to your language.

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Wikipedia in English (1)

Book description
A world at stake. A quest for the ultimate prize.
Are you ready?

At once wildly original and stuffed with irresistible nostalgia, Ready Player One is a spectacularly genre-busting, ambitious, and charming debut — part quest novel, part love story, and part virtual space opera.

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.

Haiku summary

No descriptions found.

"Ready Player One takes place in the not-so-distant future--the world has turned into a very bleak place, but luckily there is OASIS, a virtual reality world that is a vast online utopia. People can plug into OASIS to play, go to school, earn money, and even meet other people (or at least they can meet their avatars), and for protagonist Wade Watts it certainly beats passing the time in his grim, poverty-stricken real life. Along with millions of other world-wide citizens, Wade dreams of finding three keys left behind by James Halliday, the now-deceased creator of OASIS and the richest man to have ever lived. The keys are rumored to be hidden inside OASIS, and whoever finds them will inherit Halliday's fortune. But Halliday has not made it easy. And there are real dangers in this virtual world. Stuffed to the gills with action, puzzles, nerdy romance, and 80s nostalgia, this high energy cyber-quest will make geeks everywhere feel like they were separated at birth from author Ernest Cline."--Chris Schluep, Amazon Best Book of the Month.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

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