Skip to main content

Armada by Ernest Cline: Gamers! iiin Spaaaaace

Do you guys remember Ready Player One? Do you remember how AMAZING and fun it was and how you wanted to re-read it even though you rarely re-read books because omg there are SO MANY BOOKS and life is finite, so how can you justify the time? Remember all that?



Right, so that guy wrote another book.

Armada is basically Ender's Game + The Last Starfighter, and Cline definitely puts a lampshade on that particular aspect. The main character, Zack is in high school, plays video games all the time, and is very very very much obsessed with his dead dad. Then one day he looks out the window of his classroom and -- hey, it's one of the spaceships from the main video game he plays, which is called -- wait for it -- Armada.

So the book goes from there. There're some pop culture references thrown in, but honestly...while entertaining enough, this one let me down a bit. I couldn't help thinking that part of the reason Cline's insane number of referenced copyrighted items went down so much is that he was thinking about a movie deal the whole time. And the main fun part of Ready Player One was that the protagonist goes to places like the Tyrell Corporation from Blade Runner, and has to solve puzzles using knowledge from areas of nerdery.

Didn't know THAT, did ya

You spend most of Armada knowing how it's gonna go down. It's still fun along the way, barring the introduction of "cool gamer girl" who is instantly charmed by Zack's "m'lady"-style flirting. I think I was actually really on board with the book until that point. Cline does a pretty good job of including people of color and having diverse characters, but this is still a Dude Dominated book, and it's very focused on kids with dad issues, which.....I personally am not fond of.

BUT. Cline's writing is easy and fun like before, and while I gave this a 3/5 instead of Ready Player One's definite 5/5, it's always pretty awesome reading about the trope of the kid who suddenly has to help save the world. I'd say read, but maybe don't buy and cherish forever. Which you should definitely do for Ready Player One

...you should read Ready Player One

(Note: I definitely got a copy of this from the publisher, and while that obvs didn't prevent me from saying the issues I had with it, still, TRANSPARENCY AND SO FORTH)

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Harry Potter 2013 Readalong Signup Post of Amazingness and Jollity

Okay, people. Here it is. Where you sign up to read the entire Harry Potter series (or to reminisce fondly), starting January 2013, assuming we all survive the Mayan apocalypse. I don't think I'm even going to get to Tina and Bette's reunion on The L Word until after Christmas, so here's hopin'.


You guys know how this works. Sign up if you want to. If you're new to the blog, know that we are mostly not going to take this seriously. And when we do take it seriously, it's going to be all Monty Python quotes when we disagree on something like the other person's opinion on Draco Malfoy. So be prepared for your parents being likened to hamsters.

If you want to write lengthy, heartfelt essays, that is SWELL. But this is maybe not the readalong for you. It's gonna be more posts with this sort of thing:


We're starting Sorceror's/Philosopher's Stone January 4th. Posts will be on Fridays. The first post will be some sort of hilarious/awesome que…

How to Build a Girl Introductory Post, which is full of wonderful things you probably want to read

Acclaimed (in England mostly) lady Caitlin Moran has a novel coming out. A NOVEL. Where before she has primarily stuck to essays. Curious as we obviously were about this, I and a group of bloggers are having a READALONG of said novel, probably rife with spoilers (maybe they don't really matter for this book, though, so you should totally still read my posts). This is all hosted/cared for/lovingly nursed to health by Emily at As the Crowe Flies (and Reads) because she has a lovely fancy job at an actual bookshop (Odyssey Books, where you can in fact pre-order this book and then feel delightful about yourself for helping an independent store). Emily and I have negotiated the wonders of Sri Lankan cuisine and wandered the Javits Center together. Would that I could drink with her more often than I have.


INTRODUCTION-wise (I might've tipped back a little something this evening, thus the constant asides), I am Alice. I enjoy the Pleistocene era of megafauna and drinking Shirley Templ…

My Cousin Rachel by Daphne Du Maurier: DID SHE OR DIDN'T SHE

Daphne Du Maurier's 1951 My Cousin Rachel prompts the age-old question: what if you were a young dumb dumb with an estate in Cornwall who is convinced your charming, thoughtful, and recently-widowed cousin Rachel wants to abandon her native Italy forever and live with you, your dogs, and your elderly butler in a damp house by the sea. AFTER ALL WHO WOULDN'T.

Also she's a widow because she'd married your uncle who raised you who then recently died, so also this has just become the MOST oedipal and makes everyone feel gross thinking about it.




Said dumb dumb is Philip Ashley, who is 24 and aptly referred to in the recent film version as a "glorious puppy." He is so excited about some things. And so sulky about so many other things. He's our narrator, which here means he is our misogynistic, xenophobic lens through which to view all events. His uncle died in Italy soon after marrying Rachel. Said uncle suspected he was being poisoned. He also probably had a bra…