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Peter Watts
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The World Without Us
Alan Weisman
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The Witches: Salem, 1692
Stacy Schiff
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David McAfee
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Ready Player One: A Novel

Ready Player One - Ernest Cline The world is a grim place and the gap between the haves and have-nots is bigger than ever. The one thing they all have in common however it OASIS, a virtual reality universe far more attractive than the real world. Basic access is free and you can even go to school there. When the creator of OASIS dies he leaves his fortune of billions hidden within OASIS as a kind of ‘easter egg’ and up springs a new culture, the ‘gunters’ who spend their time looking for the easter egg and following clues through worlds of 1980s pop culture. But some gunters will stop at nothing to get to the prize first...

I found the start of the book slow-going at first, some paragraphs read like an encyclopaedia of the 1980s but as the story progresses it picks up and I started to enjoy it more. Having played video games myself and now watching my kids play them, I was able to understand the attraction of the virtual life and empathise with the main characters. It’s a simple good v evil story, with a race to see who’ll find the treasure first although there is never any doubt just who will that will be, it’s simply a matter of how he will get there.

I found Ready Player One to be a fun, entertaining read without a huge amount of depth but full of nostalgia for people like me who grew up in the 70s and 80s. It should appeal to all übergeeks out there, who love video games, dystopian stories and the 1980s.