Warcross by Marie Lu
For the millions who log in every day, Warcross isn’t just a game—it’s a way of life. The obsession started ten years ago and its fan base now spans the globe, some eager to escape from reality and others hoping to make a profit. Struggling to make ends meet, teenage hacker Emika Chen works as a bounty hunter, tracking down players who bet on the game illegally. But the bounty hunting world is a competitive one, and survival has not been easy. Needing to make some quick cash, Emika takes a risk and hacks into the opening game of the international Warcross Championships—only to accidentally glitch herself into the action and become an overnight sensation.
Convinced she’s going to be arrested, Emika is shocked when instead 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. With no time to lose, Emika’s whisked off to Tokyo and thrust into a world of fame and fortune that she’s only dreamed of. But soon her investigation uncovers a sinister plot, with major consequences for the entire Warcross empire.
Spoiler Free Section
I absolutely loved this book and gave it five stars, it has now become one of my all time favourite books. I had heard nothing but amazing things about this book since it was released but it was always really expensive to buy and so I gave up and just got it from the library. I decided to pick this up after watching the Ready Player One movie since I really enjoyed it and was really wanting something similar to read.
The world is so exciting and extremely high tech which I am finding is something that I really love to read about since everyone’s ideas of what it would be like are all different. I love how in this virtual world the glasses and headphones that you wear connect your brain to the game in such a way that it seems so incredibly real and you can do anything that you can imagine. I also love how doing basic things in your everyday lives can earn you exp towards your Warcross character, I would love to have that in real life and it would actually motivate me to do so many boring and mundane things, haha. I also love that in this world almost everyone is preoccupied by the game of Warcross and that your level in the game can actually make you well known all over the globe and get you sponsorship and jobs. I also loved the Mariocart and other video gaming references.
I loved the plot of this book, the game of Warcross was so interesting and really spoke to my love of video games, I loved learning about how this game works and how it affects everyone’s lives, especially the whole underground world that exists because of Warcross. I also really enjoyed all of the spying and mystery aspects of the book as well and how this really effected Emika and her team. The hacking is something that I found really cool in the plot as well, I am terrible with computers so I don’t have even the faintest grasp of how it works in real life but the way that Marie Lu wrote it with the code being a visible and tangible thing that they are able to interact with it made it really cool.
I really enjoyed all of the characters in this book especially Emika, I loved how strong and capable she was and how she really took charge of any situation that arose. I thought that it was pretty amazing how she took all the pain that she was feeling at the loss of her father and channelled it into something productive and that is how she became so excellent at hacking. Hideo seems like a very dark and guarded character at the beginning but as we continue we see some of his past and what made him become this way as well as seeing his softer side when he is with Emika. I really enjoyed all of our side characters as well, they were all pretty unique and seemed to have a lot going on in their lives that wasn’t really explored and I am hoping to see a lot more from them in the next book.
I love the relationship between Emika and Hideo, it was really sweet and I loved watching them banter back and forth, it really made me smile which I don’t get from every bookish relationship. I also enjoyed how their shared family loss and excellence in their work brought them both together, especially when Hideo finds it so hard to connect with other people.
I did not see the plot twist coming at all! and I love the moral dilemma that it poses, I mean both aspects have positives and negatives. On the one hand Hideo is just trying to prevent crimes and save lives but at the expense of free will, whereas Zero is trying to stop that but by assassinating Hideo and committing other crimes which is obviously not a good way to do it. Also how Hideo’s brother Sasuke, who was kidnapped at a child is Zero! I really want to know how all that happened and where he has been all this time.
This book didn’t have as much emphasis on the science of how Warcross came to be or how it can alter your brain waves, which I think would have been a nice touch, and which also would have made it a bit more realistic like some of the others that I have read recently from this genre. I would definitely recommend this book to anyone who loves video games or just the science fiction genre in general because really this is just a fantastic book and with the increasing popularity in esports now I think that it is a book that anyone could enjoy.
Let me know if you guys have read this book and what you thought of it 🙂
Thank you for reading!