Friday, September 22, 2017
YA Pick: Warcross
by Marie Lu
G.P. Putnam's Sons
Goggles on. Enter Warcross.
Warcross is not just a game; it's an alternate reality lifestyle embraced by millions worldwide. In a decade, professional gamers and ordinary people have become hooked on a lifestyle that enables them to escape the mundane of every day. Hooked is the key word. Some people are so wrapped up in Warcross, they illegally bet all their money and end up homeless or dead.
Warcross inventor Hideo Tanaka becomes a billionaire. Emika Chen is just a girl when she sees his photo for the first time. She follows his career and learns code due to her infatuation for him.
Emika is a bounty hunter who collects money when she catches illegal betters on Warcross, but she's beyond living paycheck to paycheck. She's living meal to meal and her landlord is threatening eviction. Emika corners a criminal worth a hefty $5000 only to lose him again. Distraught, Emika is about to give up and become homeless when she slips on her Warcross neurolink.
Emika is not a pro by any means but she knows code and she's discovered a few weak areas of the game. Never before has she thought of sneaking in, but times are tough. Emika slips into the game and steals a valuable piece which captures Hideo's attention. She is just the type of girl he's looking for. Hideo contacts her, pays her debts and hires her. Hideo needs someone for security. Someone sneaky. Someone no one in his company knows. Emika is the perfect person. No one will suspect a player to be security.
Soon Emika becomes a worldwide celebrity of the game. The matches are bigger than the Super Bowl, but Emika has a job to do. She has to find out who is bugging the game and why. Emika is living a surreal experience: she has fantasized about meeting Hideo for years and now she's working for him. All is not as it seems.
Warcross is a slam dunk and a high powered adrenaline rush. Gamers will delight. If someone doesn't develop Warcross as a real game, it's a missed opportunity. Cover art is spectacular. Kudos to the marketing and graphic arts team.
Highly, highly recommended grade 8 and up. Reluctant readers who enjoy video games may be intrigued.
FTC Required Disclaimer: I received this book from the publisher. I did not receive monetary compensation for this review.