Gaming, Virtual Reality & Hacking in Warcross

[Image is a book cover. The font is rainbow in color. Marie Lu is at the top in blocky font. The book's title War Cross is towards the middle in this rainbow rubic's cube. At the bottom it says "Player, Hunter, Hacker, Pawn"]

I discover new books mostly from other book bloggers. They give me first-hand knowledge about new books to read that peak my interest. I have been reading Super Space Chick’s blog ever since Kristin appeared on Syfy’s Fangasm TV series. Her blog gives me book inspiration and whenever she posts a review, I always read it. This book sounded good and even though I never read a book by Marie Lu, I knew she had written other successful series. Warcross was everything I wanted it to be and more. It featured a fantastic female heroine, diversity among the characters, and a shocking twist I hadn’t seen coming. I will keep this review spoiler-free because I want everyone to know this book exists.

Warcross is a successful virtual reality game almost every gamer plays around the world. Emika Chen is one female gamer who plays Warcross in between her work as a bounty hunter in NYC. During the Warcross Championships, Emika accidentally hacks into the gameplay. Instead of being arrested, she’s flown to Tokyo to meet Hideo Tanaka, the designer, and creator of Warcross. He offers Emika a job for a bounty on a mysterious hacker named “Zero” who is interfering with the championships. Emika must use her skills as a hacker and as a gamer to identify Zero and prevent major consequences for the Warcross empire.

Emika Chen is probably one of my favorite female characters in a book. Without giving spoilers, she’s someone who won’t sacrifice her values for the sake of someone else.  A lot of female characters will abandon a part of themselves for someone they care about, and Emika doesn’t do that. She has rainbow-colored hair and a sleeve of tattoos which makes her appearance unique.

The ending though, holy shit. I read the last 20 pages and I thought I knew how this book would end, but I was wrong. I like not being able to predict how a book will end.

One criticism I have been seeing with this book is that it’s too similar to Ready Player One. My counter-argument is Ready Player One takes place in a dystopian society? I don’t know for sure, I haven’t read the book. Warcross takes place in a future society still in the U.S. and I wouldn’t put it in the category of being a “dystopian novel”.

I wanted to end my review with a quote from Marie Lu which can be found in the acknowledgments section of Warcross: To all the Gamer Girls out there, you inspired this.

4 thoughts on “Gaming, Virtual Reality & Hacking in Warcross

  1. I have to buy this book! It’s in my to-read-list, but I have so many books that it’s scary O.o Anyway, if it has a diverse cast and the story is as juicy as you say, then it’s my type of book. I haven’t read Ready Player One yet, so I have no clue if they’re similar or not. Whatever the case, I’ll give this one a shot as soon as I clear some books from my to-read-pile!


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