Like Major Spoilers EIC Stephen, I sometimes wonder if my corner of social media is one of the quiet, conflict-limited places of the internet, or whether I’ve curated myself the proverbial “echo chamber.”  Thankfully, news out of SDCC has reassured me that I’m not just nestled in with like-minded nerds due to the response to the trailer for ‘Ready Player One.’  I’m literally able to transition from a tweet saying that it was the hackiest hack that ever did hack to one calling it a modern masterpiece, thankful that a legend like Spielberg is the one to handle it.  Since I’ve been vacillating back and forth on reading the novel for at least a couple of years now, I think it’s time for today’s remarkably selfish query…

The MS-QOTD (pronounced, as always, “misquoted”) won’t mention the ego problems associated with being repeatedly told both “This is terrible, predictable and self-indulgent!” and “It’s right up your alley!”, asking: Should Matthew read ‘Ready Player One’?


About Author

Once upon a time, there was a young nerd from the Midwest, who loved Matter-Eater Lad and the McKenzie Brothers... If pop culture were a maze, Matthew would be the Minotaur at its center. Were it a mall, he'd be the Food Court. Were it a parking lot, he’d be the distant Cart Corral where the weird kids gather to smoke, but that’s not important right now... Matthew enjoys body surfing (so long as the bodies are fresh), writing in the third person, and dark-eyed women. Amongst his weaponry are such diverse elements as: Fear! Surprise! Ruthless efficiency! An almost fanatical devotion to pop culture! And a nice red uniform.


  1. Yes! Great book. I usually take two or three months to read a novel. This book i read in two weeks. That’s how much I enjoyed it.

  2. Yes it’s a good book. I’m not a huge reference guy but I really enjoyed it and got me into researching the references.

  3. I think you should. I have no trouble picturing you and the Widget as a Dad and daughter team in the hunt. It may lean too heavily on the nostalgia center of your brain which detracts a bit from the story telling, but it is still a fun read.

  4. I enjoyed the book on the whole. The writing is a bit young adult for my taste, but it’s an entertaining story I’ve gone back and re-read several times. I didn’t have cable as a kid in the 80s, and in Canada we didn’t get a lot of the shows and products referenced, but I got a kick out of the ones I did.
    That movie trailer appears to have very little to do with the book however, so if you plan on reading the book, know that it’s probably not going to be exactly the same in the movie (not that it ever is) whether that’s good or bad, time will tell.

  5. Yes… and maybe no. This book is steeped in nerdy pop culture from the ’80s – an era that you and I both know and love. From that standpoint, having a DeLorean show up in the book, or Tomb of Horrors, Joust, Iron Giant, and more make this a great read from a “Oh, Hey, I remember that – kewl.” It brings a level of nostalgia that many will really like.

    The downside, is Cline sometimes has to explain the reference, which can (and does) bog the story down in a few places, which I think you would not like. The world of Ready Player One is big, and filled with so much, you may find it filled with too much referencing even for you. So, when Ward has to explain the reference, he not explaining it for Matthew Peterson, reference nerd and ’80s dork, he’s explaining it to those who aren’t from the time period.

    I stopped reading the book the first time before it kicked into the push in the first couple of chapters. Once I started it again and saw what Cline was doing and why, I enjoyed the heck out of the Ready Player One. I had the same problem with the first episodes of Stranger Things, where I felt the creators were just ripping from every ’80s movie out there until I put that aside and found out the joy of embracing that as part of the story telling process.

    The big question for you is, “If everyone says ‘Yes,’ will you actually read the book?”

    Also, there is a really cool meta game hidden inside the book that (sadly) was already won in 2012.

    Finally, the movie won’t be the book – it can’t be – not by a long shot. The trailer already proves that. So there will be a bunch of people who will point at Spielberg and say “See, it’s nothing like the book. My childhood is ruined!”

    • Yes. It isn’t a perfect book but it is a fun read.

      “Finally, the movie won’t be the book – it can’t be – not by a long shot. The trailer already proves that. So there will be a bunch of people who will point at Spielberg and say “See, it’s nothing like the book. My childhood is ruined!””

      All people have to do is read Jurassic Park and then watch the movie. They are not the same but they are both good in their own right. Spielberg nailed that one I trust him with this one.

  6. Yes. I think you would enjoy it. If for no other reason than it contains the sentence, “That’s not just lame. It’s Highlander 2 lame.”

    Also, if you have the means and time to listen to the audiobook edition, I highly recommend it. The narrator is,Wil Wheaton, which adds an extra layer of fun.

  7. I had three paragraphs written about why Matthew should read the book… but Stephen pretty much covered what I was going to say about the pro and cons for Matthew. I don’t know you personally but I’ve probably listen to you drop references for about 600 hours. If you come with the idea that this is just for fun, you might enjoy it. Plus giant Japanese robots.

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