I LOVED WARCROSS!
Just kidding. I did love Warcross, but I have so much more to say about it. Marie Lu is on my list of auto-buy authors. She writes the books, I buy the books. And, to sweeten the deal, I saw a review of Warcross that likened it to Ready Player One. If I didn’t already have Warcross on my list, this would have done it.
Emika Chen is a bounty hunter living in NYC–well, she’s about to be evicted so she might soon be homeless in NYC. Ever since her father’s death and subsequent placement in foster care, Emika has been obsessed with Hideo Tanaka, the creator of the popular game Warcross and inventor of the device that allows players to enter into the most realistic VR game ever created. Emika’s fangirl crush led her to discover a talent for coding and hacking to pay the bills when the bounty pool runs dry.
A hack gone wrong lands Emika in the international spotlight, giving her the chance to meet her very handsome idol and the opportunity to help him save Warcross from evil doers. Emika is immersed in the world of high-profile gamers more popular than any celebrity or athlete of the time. (It’s the ultimate revenge of the nerds fantasy and I am here for it!) In between thrilling Warcross matches, Emika spends her time searching for the mysterious bad guy Zero and unraveling the secrets of her boy genius. But in a book about virtual reality, nothing is what it seems.
There were so many aspects of this novel that I enjoyed. The cast of minor characters was superb and diverse in a very organic way. I loved how the game bled into the real world and how seamlessly Lu’s technology fit into her character’s daily life. The game of Warcross–a glorified version of capture the flag–was a fun diversion from the emotional tension of the story. And, there were swoons! The twist near the end felt a little too obvious for someone as clever as Emika not to see, but it’s forgivable in an otherwise amazing story.
Verdict: This is a book you want to own so you can revisit as many times as you like!