This is a spoiler-free review of WARCROSS by Marie Lu! This story follows a vivid, futuristic world where virtual reality is at everyone’s fingertips, and a young girl, Emika, finds herself thrown into the middle of a shocking scandal.
Book Summary via GoodReads:
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.
This was a book that I found myself glued to from start to finish. I was immediately captivated by the stunning world Marie Lu had created. I’m a gamer, and I love esports, so this combined things I love: reading and video games.
Emika was a strong protagonist. She was determined and constantly dedicated, and I loved that she did things even when others told her not to. She was firm in her own decisions which was very fun to read!
For technical stuff, the pacing and voice was strong. Because the story revolved around the Warcross Championships, it kept the timeline strong. This strict timeline also raised the stakes considerably, making the urgency of the story even stronger! The voice was easy to read, detailed, and pleasant!
I loved getting to know the side characters, too. Each of them had different back stories and felt truly fleshed out and dimensional. I found myself wanting to know more about each of them!
The setting was absolutely spectacular. I loved the mingling between the Warcross world and the real world!
Without any spoilers, I just have to say: WOW THAT ENDING, OH MY GOD. I am seriously SO ready for WILDCARD, the next book in the series.
STARS: 5/5 (it was that good)