Review: Armada

Armada

  • Author: Ernest Cline
  • ISBN: 9780804137256
  • Genre: Science Fiction

The above ISBN is for the hardcover edition, but I listened to the audiobook I purchased.

Armada is an excellent second book by Ernest Cline, the author of Ready Player One.  I enjoyed it from start to finish and was a little surprised at how quickly I got through the book.  With Ready Player One, I felt that it took a while to get into the story due to the somewhat lengthy exposition at the beginning.  However, that wasn’t the case with Armada.  Instead, the backstory was given in little snippets when it was needed, so the pace of the story felt considerably faster.  There was also a lot of action, and the story takes place over a very short amount of time.  I can easily see the book being adapted to film.

As much as I loved it, though, I should have waited a bit longer to read it.  I finished Ready Player One not too long ago, and the main characters in the two books seem to be a lot alike.  Maybe they’re more different than I think.  Maybe the characters seem too similar because Wil Wheaton narrated both of the audiobooks.  Or maybe it’s because Ernest Cline is doing what every author should do and simply writing what he knows.  Either way, I picked up Armada too soon after Ready Player One.  That only goes for the characters, though.  While both books center around gaming, they are completely different stories.

If you loved Ready Player One, or for that matter, if you’ve read and loved Ender’s Game by Orson Scott Card or other books along that vein of Science Fiction, you’ll love Armada.  This book is also an excellent choice if you’re a gamer.  I don’t know if Ernest Cline has a sequel in mind, but if he does, I will definitely read it, along with any other books he writes in the future.

Review: Ready Player One

Ready

  • Author: Ernest Cline
  • ISBN: 9780307887436
  • Genre: Science Fiction

The above ISBN is for the hardcover edition, but I purchased the audiobook.

Ready Player One is the kind of book that has a lot of hype around it, and once again, because it’s classified as YA, I passed it over.  I wrongly assumed that it was another Ender’s Game.  I had also read somewhere that it was Dystopian.  As much as I love The Hunger Games and a couple of other Dystopian stories, I feel like it has become a bit overdone lately.  However, one of my professors recommended it to me, and there was no way I wasn’t going to check this book out.

Yes, technically this a Dystopian novel, but it’s also a whole lot more.  It’s a tribute to my ’80s childhood and involves much of my favorite music, movies, and video games.  At the same time, it shows the reader the horrible ways life as we know it can go to pot, and there doesn’t need to be a super bug or nuclear war for that to happen.  It also doesn’t necessarily have to be far into the future or involve the complete loss of knowledge about how things used to be.

The reason I chose the audiobook over any other edition is because it’s narrated by Wil Wheaton.  All around, Ready Player One is a geek’s Science Fiction dream.  There is a ridiculous number of geek and ’80s culture references throughout the book, but you don’t have to be a geek or have lived during the ’80s to enjoy it.  However, if you are a geek or gamer or you grew up during the ’80s, you’ll probably enjoy this book even more than the intended young adult audience.  At some point, I’m going to buy the ebook and re-read it while listening to all my favorite ’80s tunes.

#COYER Scavenger Hunt #71: Read a book that prominently includes gaming in some way (Book cover is linked to Goodreads synopsis).