Dec 29, 2015

Review: Armada by Ernest Cline

Author: Ernest Cline
Publisher: Crown Publishing
Number of Pages: 349

"Zack Lightman has spent his life dreaming. Dreaming that the real world could be a little more like the countless science-fiction books, movies, and videogames he’s spent his life consuming. Dreaming that one day, some fantastic, world-altering event will shatter the monotony of his humdrum existence and whisk him off on some grand space-faring adventure.
But hey, there’s nothing wrong with a little escapism, right? After all, Zack tells himself, he knows the difference between fantasy and reality. He knows that here in the real world, aimless teenage gamers with anger issues don’t get chosen to save the universe.
And then he sees the flying saucer.
Even stranger, the alien ship he’s staring at is straight out of the videogame he plays every night, a hugely popular online flight simulator called Armada—in which gamers just happen to be protecting the earth from alien invaders. 
No, Zack hasn’t lost his mind. As impossible as it seems, what he’s seeing is all too real. And his skills—as well as those of millions of gamers across the world—are going to be needed to save the earth from what’s about to befall it.
It’s Zack’s chance, at last, to play the hero. But even through the terror and exhilaration, he can’t help thinking back to all those science-fiction stories he grew up with, and wondering: Doesn’t something about this scenario seem a little…familiar?
At once gleefully embracing and brilliantly subverting science-fiction conventions as only Ernest Cline could, Armada is a rollicking, surprising thriller, a classic coming of age adventure, and an alien invasion tale like nothing you’ve ever read before—one whose every page is infused with the pop-culture savvy that has helped make Ready Player One a phenomenon."
I've been raving about Ready Player One by Ernest Cline this entire year. It is definitely my favorite book of the year, so I had high expectations for this book. I wouldn't say it disappointed me, but it definitely wasn't as good as his other book. I know a lot of people didn't like it because they thought it was a lot like Ender's Game, but I haven't read it so...

The characters were the strongest aspect of the book. The author did a really nice job of creating a group of funny, relatable characters that the reader falls in love with. Although, I will say that I thought the romance aspect of the book was a little unnecessary, but I grew to be okay with it. My favorite character was definitely Zack and his two friends, the Marks, because they were hilarious and relatable.

Although, I didn't love the plot. The entire time I was stuck thinking that this book could have gone in so many better directions. I mean, the book wasn't bad, and the ending definitely came as a surprise but I expected something... more. The whole story seemed a little cliché and typical of a science fiction novel. And I've seen a lot of Goodreads reviews saying the same thing, so just a warning for those of you who love science fiction. This isn't the most original. 

Although, for anyone new to science fiction or looking to get into it, I would definitely recommend this book. It's funny, the characters are amazing, and while the plot isn't the best it's a nice start. Overall, I enjoyed the book, but it could've been so much more and that left me a little disappointed.

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars!

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