Warcross (Warcross, #1) by Marie Lu
My rating: five stars
Genre: YA, sci-fi
Goodreads summary: 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.
I have been wanting to read Marie Lu’s writing for a long time. All three of her series seem incredibly interesting, but since I love gaming, I figured I should read Warcross first. I listened to the audiobook and it was great, I will probably listen to the rest of her books since I liked it so much.
Likes: As stated above, I love the narrators and listening to her book. Some books either have narrators I don’t care for, or the books themselves don’t translate to audiobook well. However, this one worked great in this form! As with the story itself, I love how Marie Lu describes the game. Creating and describing a video game sounds difficult, but she does it so well that I can picture the game as if I have played it before. The game sounds like so much fun, I wish that I could play it! The romance was cute, and though it seemed unrealistic, I didn’t mind it. I enjoyed most of the characters and how they learned to like each other and work together. Being able to learn about each character, and see their growth throughout the story, made me connect more to the story and come to love it.
Dislikes: Unfortunately, it was predictable to me. I won’t say exactly what since this is spoiler free, but there was a certain part of this that I saw coming since the beginning of the book. This book also seemed a little unrealistic to me. It is hard to imagine that someone so important, with so many resources, picked Emika to help him fix the security problem. I understand that she is incredible at what she does, but he is literally one of the richest, most famous men in the world. I just felt like there should have been another way that she was picked because it just seemed far-fetched.
Overall, this book was a lot of fun. I enjoyed the video game, the characters, and the way that they had to learn how to use team work to get past problems. The overarching story line wasn’t as interesting to me as the game was, but I still enjoyed it. I felt for the characters and wanted to learn more about them. The writing style was so good! It made me able to picture what was going on and made me invested in the characters which is what I look for in stories. This was a great book – five stars from me!