Let me just say something right at the start, because it needs to be said: I love Ernest Cline’s Ready Player One.
Normally, I wouldn’t have to thrust such a declarative statement at the top of my post; but, the thing is, what started as a simple review of the book leading up to the movie has turned into a defense, strangely. Because at this point in time, it’s impossible to talk about Ready Player One without acknowledging the chatter surrounding it. And there’s a lot of chatter.
Now, far be it for me to tell people what opinions they should and shouldn’t have. I certainly don’t want to argue someone down from their own conclusions. What I’m writing here is my take on the book—particularly why I enjoyed it so much, and why, to me, it’s an important book for our time. Is Ready Player One a nostalgia-fueled, reference-laden, nerdgasm of a story? Yup. To the nth degree. But it’s more than that—so much more than that—and once you strip away some of the more superficial elements, you find a story that speaks to a generation’s loneliness with great profundity and heart.