Ready Player One by Ernest Cline

89%

49 Critic Reviews

...engaging...
-WSJ online

Synopsis

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. 
   But 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.

 

About Ernest Cline

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ERNEST CLINE has worked as a short-order cook, fish gutter, plasma donor, elitist video store clerk, and tech support drone. His primary occupation, however, has always been geeking out, and he eventually threw aside those other promising career paths to express his love of pop culture fulltime as a spoken word artist and screenwriter. His 2009 film Fanboys, much to his surprise, became a cult phenomenon. These days Ernie lives in Austin, Texas with his wife, their daughter, and a large collection of classic video games. READY PLAYER ONE is his first novel.
 
Published August 16, 2011 by Broadway Books. 386 pages
Genres: Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Science Fiction & Fantasy, Action & Adventure, Literature & Fiction. Fiction
Bookmark Counts:
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Critic reviews for Ready Player One
All: 49 | Positive: 44 | Negative: 5

Kirkus

Below average
on Apr 18 2011

...it’s clever but not exciting...Too much puzzle-solving, not enough suspense.

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NY Times

Above average
Reviewed by Janet Maslin on Aug 14 2011

... 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.

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Publishers Weekly

Above average
on Apr 25 2011

...sweet, self-deprecating Wade, whose universe is an odd mix of the real past and the virtual present, is the perfect lovable/unlikely hero.

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Blog Critics

Excellent
Reviewed by Craig Falgo on Sep 18 2011

Ernest Cline does an excellent job with this mash-up novel.

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WSJ online

Excellent
Reviewed by Tom Shippey on Aug 20 2011

...engaging...

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Examiner

Excellent
Reviewed by Yumin Ye on Jul 31 2012

Read this book for your own escape, but once you put the book down, look at the world you physically live in with a new pair of eyes.

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Examiner

Excellent
Reviewed by Kristin Wilson on Feb 06 2012

...I still enjoyed the nostalgic trivia and the perils of the competition in the OASIS by Wade and his friends.

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Examiner

Excellent
Reviewed by James Fleenor on Aug 12 2011

...Few books work their ways into my heart, make me want to continue to adventure with the protagonist and this is one of them.

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Examiner

Above average
Reviewed by Peter Kelton on Jun 05 2011

...Examiner notes that if you like this kind of stuff, you should probably read it.

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NY Journal of Books

Excellent
Reviewed by Renee Fountain on Aug 16 2011

...an action-packed, highly entertaining, nostalgic thrill ride through the past...

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AV Club

Good
Reviewed by Kevin McFarland on Aug 24 2011

... for readers in line with Cline’s obsessions, this is a guaranteed pleasure.

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Entertainment Weekly

Excellent
Reviewed by Anthony Breznican on Aug 24 2011

Cline strikes the nerves of nerd culture as expertly as Andy played that skeleton organ in The Goonies.

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Booklist Online

Excellent
Reviewed by Donna Seaman on Feb 14 2013

Cline’s imaginative, rollicking, coming-of-age geek saga has a smash-hit vibe.

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The Bookbag

Good
Reviewed by Iain Wear on Aug 01 2011

It's got the action quotient and the subject matter that would appeal to the teen audience, but the 1980s retro feel that would appeal to 30 somethings looking to relive their youth...

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USA Today

Excellent
Reviewed by Don Oldenburg on Aug 21 2011

This novel undoubtedly qualifies Cline as the hottest geek on the planet right now. The good news for readers is it's no revenge of the nerds. You don't have to be a geek to get it.

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Dallas News

Good
Reviewed by Ted Gioia on Feb 14 2013

...Cline has written a fun, fast-paced and entertaining book.

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Pajiba

Excellent
Reviewed by LurkeyTurkey on Feb 14 2013

If you’re not into all the gaming/music/film homage, this book is still a good frolic, but to truly fall into it, harness your inner nerd and get your geek on.

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SF Site

Excellent
Reviewed by Greg Johnson on Feb 14 2011

...Ready Player One turns its characters' inner fears and innate geekiness into their greatest strength and virtues, no small accomplishment for a novel, or game, of any kind.

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SF Site

Excellent
Reviewed by Charlene Brusso on Feb 14 2011

...an excellent entry-level sf novel for more mainstream readers.

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About.com

Excellent
Reviewed by Mark Flanagan on Feb 14 2013

If you've ever rolled a 20-sided die, had your initials up on a Pac Man...scoreboard, or memorized lines from The Breakfast Club, you will likely enjoy losing yourself in Ernest Cline's debut as much as I did.

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Watermark Books And Cafe

Excellent
Reviewed by Melissa Fox on Feb 14 2013

If you get (and smile/grin/laugh at) more than half the references in it, Cline will have you...eating out of the palm of his hand.

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Chamber Four

Good
Reviewed by Nicco Vreeland on Sep 01 2011

Cline set out to write a nostalgic novel, and he succeeded.

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Starburst Magazine

Above average
Reviewed by Chris Holt on Sep 04 2011

Ready Player One is a great debut novel from a promising new talent, it manages to make watching someone else play videogames over their shoulder into a cracking read, which is quite a skill.

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Boing Boing

Excellent
Reviewed by Mark Frauenfelder on Aug 15 2011

I loved every sentence of this book, and was a little sad when I reached the end and re-entered reality.

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BookRack

Excellent
Reviewed by Admin on Nov 02 2011

...if you’re a video game junkie, this might very well become your Bible.

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Lit Reactor

Below average
Reviewed by John Jarzemsky on Nov 09 2011

...Ready Player One could have used quite a bit more time at the drawing board.

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Bookshelf Bombshells

Good
Reviewed by Crickett Lancaster on Sep 28 2011

Buy It: RIGHT NOW. Run to the bookstore. Knock over children and old ladies if you have to. Just get your hands on this book!

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Geeks of Doom

Excellent
Reviewed by wgillis on Sep 12 2011

The book is a geek goldmine and you definitely will be in for a fantastic treat.

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io9

Excellent
Reviewed by Annalee Newitz on Aug 11 2011

It goes down like escapism, but sticks with you like a fable should.

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The Ranting Dragon

Excellent
Reviewed by Aaron on Dec 03 2012

...Ready Player One’s entertainment factor is the sole reason I recommend it.

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Shelf Awareness

Excellent
on Feb 14 2013

Cline has concocted an alluring, immersive environment...

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Time Out Chicago

Above average
Reviewed by Jonathan Messinger on Sep 07 2011

At times, though, the story has the displaced engagement of watching a friend play a video game, especially when the characters spend pages playing video games.

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Metro

Excellent
on Jan 13 2012

... I urge you take the time to read this book ...as a brief respite from slaying the dragons of Skyrim, besting the temples of Zelda: Skyward Sword, cheating death in Dark Souls and losing to 11 year olds at Call Of Duty and FIFA.

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Escape Pod

Excellent
on Feb 04 2013

It’s a fun, fast-paced read with great characters...

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Greenwood Public Library

Good
Reviewed by Tom D on Aug 25 2012

Ready Player One is a great book and i would recommend it to whoever can read.

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SciFiNow

Excellent
Reviewed by Rebbecca Keville on Nov 16 2011

The author is a genius as he has left me wanting more, it was so descriptive, so engaging that I didnt realise how much time was passing by as I read it, and I didn’t want it to end...

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Buffalo Rising

Excellent
Reviewed by ArielR on Sep 11 2011

This book is “geek culture” at its finest and a must for any gamers and self proclaimed science fiction nerds, but also for anyone who loves vivid descriptions, humor, suspense, social commentary and holds a desire for a once in a lifetime, grand adventure.

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The Horn Book

Below average
Reviewed by Roger Sutton on Sep 26 2011

...the prose seems to be at a fourth-grade reading level; there is no nuance or ambiguity in the characters.

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Nashville Public Library

Excellent
Reviewed by Amanda on May 12 2012

If you watched Family Ties, ever tried to play a perfect PacMan game, know what kind of Apple computers existed before Macs, or get what Ready Player One means – this book is for you.

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W. 11th & Bluff

Good
Reviewed by Andrew on Dec 05 2011

The plotting is good, the puzzles are fun, and the main characters all reminded me of good friends of mine.

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New York Public Library

Excellent
Reviewed by Brian Baer on Oct 11 2012

Even if you are not a fan of 1980s pop culture, it is a really fast read...and the universe of Wade Watts is just as fascinating.

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Daily Camera

Good
Reviewed by Clay Evans on Sep 29 2011

... the gleeful, we'll-show-'em spunk of the kids and all that '80s nostalgia are what makes it so much fun...

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OneMetal

Above average
Reviewed by Dave Convery on Sep 10 2011

There’s an infectious enthusiasm to the description of classic games and films, to the recitation of trivia and the joy of knowing inane crap for its own sake.

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HitFix

Excellent
Reviewed by Drew McWeeny on Aug 16 2011

In my opinion, "Ready Player One" is one of the true geek events of the year...Cline's got a strong, clear voice, a great story to tell, and he is brimming over with geek love of a particular time and place.

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Horror Happy Hour

Excellent
Reviewed by Dave G. on Feb 14 2013

I honestly cannot remember the last time I picked up a novel that once cracked open, I simply could not close it again.

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Shoreline Area News

Excellent
Reviewed by Aarene Storms on Dec 26 2012

Anyone who wants a fun, action-filled dystopian adventure is advised to hide this book from family members who might grab it for themselves and demand a roll of the dice to determine ownership...

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Fantasy Faction

Excellent
Reviewed by Idlewilder on Jun 21 2012

...this book is unbelievably, catastrophically awesome. Seriously - I implore everyone to try and get a copy of this book.

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The Overflowing Library

Good
Reviewed by Hadley on Aug 26 2011

Ready Player One is one of the most innovative stories I've read in quite some time.

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David G. Schwartz

Excellent
Reviewed by Dave on Nov 10 2012

...besides the nostalgia factor, there’s some great world-building (literally) inside OASIS. By the time Parzival had gotten really started on his quest...I was hooked.

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Reader Rating for Ready Player One
89%

An aggregated and normalized score based on 15577 user ratings from iDreamBooks & iTunes


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