science fiction

Mark’s #25: Ready Player One by Ernest Cline

August 19, 2015 // 0 Comments

Ready Player One: A Novel After reading Ron’s somewhat raving review of Ready Player One, I too decided to take the journey back to the 1980s through this book. I am a fan of dystopian future novels, the development of technology (video games included), and social critiques of our increasingly connected world.   Thus I had very high expectation going into this book. While I enjoyed this book, I did not love the book.  As Ron pointed out in his review, at times the plot and dialogue seemed written by an amateur.  I suppose that was because the story is told from a first-person perspective of the teenage video game/1980s obsessed main character. At any rate, the writing style constantly grated on my nerves. What I appreciated about the book was the subtle warning about losing our real lives for the sake of digital avatars we create to our own liking.  While the real world around them deteriorated, the masses escaped through the OASIS online world.  This escapism problem linked to technology is nothing new, but it is increasing, pervasive, and destructive in our 21st century lives. In a moment of clarity, the main character Wade, saw his OASIS gear for […]

Justin’s #36 – Out Of the Silent Planet, C.S. Lewis, 160 pages

August 9, 2015 // 0 Comments

This book was recommended to me by a friend and I am glad she did! I have often thought I need to read more C.S. Lewis; as a child, I read all of the Chronicles of Narnia series and as far as I can remember, enjoyed reading them. What I can appreciate about Lewis is his imagination and creativity in purporting a Christian worldview. This demonstrates that things like art, literature, and humanities can be a redeemed from a world full of negative entertainment reminiscent of Nancy Pearcy’s comments on “Saving Leonardo” (which I read last year but didn’t care to write a review). I think Ron will be happy to hear I’m reading more C.S. Lewis! Apparently, Lewis was inspired to write science fiction because he grew up reading H.G. Wells; books like “War Of the Worlds” and the like. But where Wells went wrong was in the philosophical underpinnings of his works. Lewis, coming from an obvious Christian worldview as seen in the Narnia books, and sought to write a Wellian-type book that had Christianity at it’s core. And therefore, we meet Dr. Ransom at the beginning of the book. Ransom gets captured by two other fellows and […]

Ron’s #15: Ready Player One by Ernest Cline

June 14, 2015 // 0 Comments

A parent of a student I teach recommended this book to me a year ago. It looked interesting, but I do not run headlong into sci-fi books. Recently, I watched Atari: Game Over, a documentary about the company’s E.T. game. In it, the author of Ready Player One was interviewed, which reminded me about the book. I picked it up, and could not put it down again until it was over. Ready Player One is one of the most fun and interesting novels I’ve read this year. The story focuses on a teenager named Wade Watts, an outsider living in the year 2044. While his life living in a ramshackle trailer with an opportunistic aunt, he finds support, friends, and adventure in an online world called OASIS. OASIS started as a World of Warcraft-type of online game, but now has morphed into a complete online experience where people live and work and fight and love. At the start of the novel, the programmer of OASIS dies, but left his multi-billion-dollar fortune to the player who finds the secret Easter egg hidden somewhere within the world of OASIS. Wade spends years trying to find it. If I read this summary, I’d […]

JRF’s #11: The Island of Dr. Moreau by H.G. Wells – 185 pages

May 4, 2015 // 0 Comments

  Part Robinson Crusoe, part Brave New World, and part Frankenstein – H.G. Wells’ classic is a fun, engaging read.  Wells weaves together a compelling plot full of adventure and suspense while delving into such things as the nature of humanity, the limits of a materialistic worldview, and bio ethics. The plot follows English castaway Edward Prendick as he is stranded on the titular island and slowly discovers the horrific experimentations of it’s resident outcast/mad-scientist, Dr. Moreau. It took me a while to get to this book, as I had seen the abysmal movie of the same name staring a pre-obese Val Kilmer and a very post-obese Marlon Brando. That movie was so poorly done that I’ve had not desire to read the book until I heard it being brought up in a recent conversation about cloning, IVF, and bio engineering. I’m glad I picked it up from the library.  A quick, fun, read that can lead to some good contemplating on important issues. Share on Facebook

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