Do you remember That ‘70s Show? It was a show built off of nostalgia and stereotypes that people look back fondly upon. Do you remember That ‘80s Show? No? You’re lucky, it was bad and too soon.
Ernest Cline has waited the right amount of time for people to have a fun nostalgic look back at a formative time for many of today’s adults. Ready Player One is a story that finds its success in shared experiences and fond memories. I’m sure I’m not the only one who feels a kinship with James Halliday and is left with the impression that Ready Player One was written just for them. Well, it wasn’t, it was written just for me! I had the TRS-80, made the ball move across the screen; and yes, I played Dungeons and Dragons, so what!
Ready Player One took all of the things from the 80s and made them great again. On top of that, he created a fantastic futuristic science fiction extravaganza that captivated me. I don’t know when I last had so much fun reading a book.
But beneath all of the fun and nostalgia, I also found a social commentary that I connected with. A social commentary about the time that we, as a society, spend avoiding real life and real interactions. I don’t normally go for heavy messages in my books, but this was one that hit me and was a perfect balance with the rest of the book.
Ready Player One is a book that I could’ve kept reading and reading. I connected with it and never wanted the story to end. Game Over.