A VR battle royale.
Genre: Y/A, Science Fiction,
No. of pages: 402
When a game called Warcross takes the world by storm, one girl hacks her way into its dangerous depths. For the millions who log in every day, Warcross isn’t just a game – it’s a way of life. Struggling to make ends meet, teenage hacker Emika Chen works as a bounty hunter, tracking down players who bet on the game illegally. When Emika hacks into the game illegally, she’s convinced she’ll be arrested, and is shocked when she gets a call from the game’s creator, the elusive young billionaire Hideo Tanaka, with an irresistible offer. He needs a spy on the inside of this year’s tournament in order to uncover a security problem . . . and he wants Emika for the job.
There was the hype, the gorgeous cover, and rave reviews from Marie Lu’s past titles that had me snapping up ‘Warcross’ as soon as I was able, finding a comfortable corner to escape and read.
I was pleasantly surprised by this title, and it is the first novel of Lu’s that I’ve read. It came on the heels of a similar title ‘Ready Player One’ (and the movie release,) so I was ready to get sucked into a digital fantasy world.
Although ‘Warcross’ was a little too ‘Charlie and the Chocolate Factory…’ Even though our protagonist Emika was hesitant at times, she was lead throughout the story. I was wanting her to show some more grit and independence.
I was not sure about the Hideko-Emika pairing… what is the age gap? Did anyone else feel a bit creeped out by this?
Definitely my favourite parts were the VR game battles. I could feel the tension; and the pace and writing style kept me gripped to the page.
Nice to see the inclusion of non-abled bodied characters in the team, (yay diversity) and their presence as a matter of no consequence, and even the character (Asher) is considered cute. I‘m bored of disabilities used as a plot device or an identifier; and ‘Warcross’ definitely leaves all that ish behind.
The VR world was built thoroughly, and I loved reading about the digital landscapes and conflicts; but the real world had some missing pieces. I wish the landscape was built more thoroughly as the virtual one was.
Some other drawbacks I had with the narrative was the low key, slow to build in the first half. I wanted it to build quicker, or drop some interesting cookies to keep me interested. ‘Warcross’ was mostly predictable, and did not feel altogether original. I think since ‘The Last Starfighter’ and ‘Tron’ movies back in the 1980’s anything using this plot device will feel ‘done’ unless the author can put a new twist on it.
Marie Lu has a great writing style, but was hoping for some more witty banter. I like me some witty banter. Or sarcasm.
Did I mention the cover art? OMG the cover! Drooling.
‘Warcross’ ends on a cliff-hanger – doh! Miss Lu executes a mic drop and leaves the room. Yeah thanks for that. Now I have the agony of waiting for the sequels release. Not to mention reviews of ‘Wildcard’ ARCs making rounds of the blogs – it’s torture.
Overall feeling: I want to be a hacker too!
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