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Ready Player One: A Novel Paperback – Jun 5 2012

4.7 out of 5 stars 168 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 400 pages
  • Publisher: Broadway Books (June 5 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0307887448
  • ISBN-13: 978-0307887443
  • Product Dimensions: 13.2 x 2.2 x 20.3 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 113 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars 168 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #643 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description



“The science-fiction writer John Scalzi has aptly referred to READY PLAYER ONE as a 'nerdgasm' [and] there can be no better one-word description of this ardent fantasy artifact about fantasy culture…But Mr. Cline is able to incorporate his favorite toys and games into a perfectly accessible narrative.” —Janet Maslin, The New York Times

“Triggers memories and emotions embedded in the psyche of a generation...[Cline crafts] a fresh and imaginative world from our old toy box, and finds significance in there among the collectibles.—Entertainment Weekly

“A most excellent ride…the conceit is a smart one, and we happily root for [the heroes] on their quest…fully satisfying.” Boston Globe

“Enchanting…Willy Wonka meets the Matrix. This novel undoubtedly qualifies Cline as the hottest geek on the planet right now. [But] you don't have to be a geek to get it.” USA Today  

“An addictive read...part intergalactic scavenger hunt, part romance and all heart.”

“An action-packed, highly entertaining, nostalgic thrill ride through the past combined with the danger and excitement of a not-too-distant future. It marries the fantastical world of Harry Potter with a touch of Orson Scott Card—where fantasy is reality, geeks are cool, and the possibilities are endless.”New York Journal of Books

Ridiculously fun and large-hearted, and you don't have to remember the Reagan administration to love it…[Cline] takes a far-out premise and engages the reader instantly…You'll wish you could make it go on and on.” —

“A delirious, crypto-nerd fantasia...Crammed with ’80s nostalgia and sugar-high prose, it's ridiculous and addictive and full of toy surprises.” —Village Voice

“A smart, funny thriller that both celebrates and critiques online culture...Layered with inside jokes and sly references.” —San Francisco Chronicle

“A fun, funny and fabulously entertaining first novel…This novel's large dose of 1980s trivia is a delight…[but] even readers who need Google to identify Commodore 64 or Inky, Blinky, Pinky and Clyde, will enjoy this memorabilian feast.”Cleveland Plain Dealer

“The grown-up's 'Harry Potter’…the mystery and fantasy in this novel weaves itself in the most delightful way, and the details that make up Mr. Cline's world are simply astounding. READY PLAYER ONE has it all.”Huffington Post

“If you identify yourself as a nerd, geek, gamer, 1980s history buff, a fan of science, fantasy, or dystopian fiction, otaku, 1980s movie fan, romantic, someone who grew up in the 1980s, or a human with emotions—you will enjoy Ready Player One. If you identify with two or more of the above, it’s a guaranteed new favorite novel.”Sacramento News & Review

“A modern-day fairy self-assured and enthralling that it’s hard to believe this is his first novel.” —Long Island Press

“Incredibly entertaining…Drawing on everything from "Back to the Future" to Roald Dahl to Neal Stephenson's groundbreaking "Snow Crash," Cline has made READY PLAYER ONE a geek fantasia, '80s culture memoir and commentary on the future of online behavior all at once.” Austin American-Statesman

“An exhilerating, unpredictable trip...Part Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and part The Da Vinci Code with a healthy dose of Tron.” —Asbury Park Press

“READY PLAYER ONE is the ultimate lottery ticket.”New York Daily News

“[Picture] the adventure comedy of Mike Judge’s Idiocracy meets South Park’s Imaginationland with a dash of Willy Wonka, except all of the cynicism has been replaced by sheer geeky love. Grade: A.” —

“A preposterously great read and a richly imagined science-fiction world that uses the very idea of nostalgia as a thematic jumping-off point...One of the true geek events of the year.” —

“This non-gamer loved every page of READY PLAYER ONE.” —Charlaine Harris, #1 New York Times bestselling author of the Sookie Stackhouse series

“A treasure for anyone already nostalgic for the late 20th century. . . But it’s also a great read for anyone who likes a good book.” —

“A gunshot of fun with a wicked sense of timing and a cast of characters that you're pumping your fist in the air with whenever they succeed. I haven't been this much on the edge of my seat for an ending in years.” Chicago Reader

“A rollicking, surprise-laden, potboiling, thrilling adventure story…. I loved every sentence of this book.” —Mark Frauenfelder, BoingBoing

"A 'frakking' good read [featuring] incredible creative detailI grinned at the sheer audacity of Cline's imagination.” Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

[A] fantastic page-turner….READY PLAYER ONE may be science fiction, but it's also written for people who have never picked up an SF novel in their lives…”
—Annalee Newitz,

“Intriguing and thrilling. Gamers and fans of '80s pop culture will find many familiar references throughout the story...Definitely an enjoyable read and one that can be appreciated by fans of many different genres.” —

“Gorgeously geeky, superbly entertaining, this really is a spectacularly successful debut.” Daily Mail (UK)

“Fascinating and imaginative…It's non-stop action when gamers must navigate clever puzzles and outwit determined enemies in a virtual world in order to save a real one. Readers are in for a wild ride.” —Terry Brooks, #1 New York Times bestselling author of the Shannara series

“I was blown away by this book…A book of ideas, a potboiler, a game-within-a-novel, a serious science-fiction epic, a comic pop culture mash-up–call this novel what you will, but READY PLAYER ONE will defy every label you try to put on it. Here, finally, is this generation’s Neuromancer.” —Will Lavender, New York Times bestselling author of Dominance

“I really, really loved READY PLAYER ONE…Cline expertly mines a copious vein of 1980s pop culture, catapulting the reader on a light-speed adventure in an advanced but backward-looking future.” —Daniel H. Wilson, New York Times bestselling author of Robopocalypse 

“A nerdgasm…imagine Dungeons and Dragons and an 80s video arcade made hot, sweet love, and their child was raised in Azeroth.” —John Scalzi, New York Times bestselling author of Old Man’s War

“Completely fricking awesome...This book pleased every geeky bone in my geeky body.  I felt like it was written just for me.” —Patrick Rothfuss, #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Wise Man’s Fear  

“An exuberantly realized, exciting, and sweet-natured cyber-quest. Cline’s imaginative and rollicking coming-of-age geek saga has a smash-hit vibe.” Booklist (starred review) 

“This adrenaline shot of uncut geekdom, a quest through a virtual world, is loaded with enough 1980s nostalgia to please even the most devoted John Hughes fans… sweet, self-deprecating Wade, whose universe is an odd mix of the real past and the virtual present, is the perfect lovable/unlikely hero.” Publishers Weekly (Pick of the Week) 

About the Author

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.

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
Ready Player One is Ernest Cline's debut novel, in which a kid has to beat a video game to save the world.

Now, granted, this is no ordinary video game. In the 2020's, immersive virtual reality finally takes off in the form of the OASIS. The OASIS is like a usual RPG, with avatars, quests, magic, monsters, and all that, but is also so much more—it has quickly become the world's dominant platform for economics, education, and leisure time. So many users spend so much time logged into the OASIS, for such a wide variety of reasons, that "real-world" economics, education, and leisure have nearly disappeared.

Before the eccentric creator of the OASIS died, he coded into the OASIS an elaborate and fiendishly difficult Easter egg hunt, with the top prize being full control of his multi-billion dollar company. For years, the leaderboards sat empty, until a high-school kid and egg hunter (or "gunter" for short) named Wade (avatar Parzival) finally cracks the first clue. Overnight, Parzival is an OASIS-wide celebrity, attracting interest from fellow gunters as well as the IOI, a multinational corporation dead-set on winning control of and exploiting the OASIS, even if it means murder.

Ready Player One has a unique style—following the theme of video game Easter eggs, the novel is packed with references to nerd culture of the 80's (which is itself the theme of the hunt). Maybe I'm just 20 years too young, but the rapidity with which Cline fires off these references grows quite tiresome. I understand most of the references, but I just can't appreciate them with any sense of nostalgia.
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Based on reviews, I was expecting much more. It is not a bad book, but ultimately I think it is forgettable. It is amusing to read because of all the cultural references, but that is the best feature of the book. Characters are not specially likable or relatable, and the story overall is not too innovative or interesting.
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Sometimes a book i just a great escape. This book is one of those.Combine the following themes: a detective mystery (who done it?), a western (the good guy against the forces of nature and the bad guys), innumerable references to the 80s and their games, TV shows and music, a teen age coming of age story, sci fi in the future, medieval sorcerer type action..this has it.

It starts somewhat slowly, but after some number of pages the pace picks up, and the adventures start. Get it; you won't regret it.
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AN AMAZING BOOK. For a short description on why I love this book, It's a gaming/pop culture teenage nerd book! What's more to love for a geek such as myself. It's written well enough with great flow and its obvious that the author poured all his childhood fantasy in this book. I myself have such a fantasy (and i think it's safe to say that many other have had them whoever loves gaming, movies and geek stuff!) of a world with an amalgamation of everything that i love in fiction! You want a world where you can be Conan the Barbarian and fight GODZILLA? In the world he created, it's possible :). It is such a fun book to read and see all the characters and worlds you love all in one and interacting with one another. Not only that, the future Cline created is something not very far off and feels real, which gives this dream fantasy a grounded reality. The character is relatable and someone you'll sympathize with. You'll cheer for him, but at times you'll say "awh man why did you have to do that!?..if you did this you would've gotten this!?"..he'll be a friend who's telling you this long story. This book had a TON of 80's references which as a 90's kid, didn't really feel it touch me as it would for someone who grew up in the 80s but i can definitely appreciate the love. Fellow lovers of fiction/gaming/pop culture and the 80's(or someone who can appreciate it), don't even hesitate because this book will put you in a ride of dreams, real hardships, and awkward teenage romance that you'll cringe too and relate with. It's amazing. Please read!
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By Rose TOP 1000 REVIEWER on July 31 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Tsk, Tsk, Ernest. I didn't see any reference to Top Gun or Gremlins, The Police or Huey Lewis, Tetris or Circus Atari, and everyone knows the best Schoolhouse Rock was Conjunction Junction. That's it - one star.........

.......alright, alright, of course I'm joking. That was the coolest book I've ever read. It was like I hopped into Mr. Peabody's Way-Back machine and ended up back in my teens again. I couldn't help but get nostalgic through most of this story. I think anyone my age would (No jokes about being old!!). You wrote about things I forgot about a decade or so ago. We were the coolest generation, weren't we? Big hair, crazy music and fun video games....we rocked!!

Oh yeah, this was supposed to be a serious review. OK, here goes....It's an awesome book. It's lots of fun and you won't be able to put it down. It's a dystopian, sci-fi, futuristic, historic, adventure, fantasy romance. That pretty much covers everyone's wonder it's a best-seller!!
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