Staff Picks – Becky: Ready Player One and Redshirts

Ready Player One is great fun for anyone with fond memories of the 1980s, or who loves video games. Set in a dystopian near future, our hero is an inventive schoolboy who has come up with ways to stay connected to the internet (now called the Oasis and it is a more immersive experience in this day) and play a huge online game. The winner of this game will inherit a huge fortune, and power to control the Oasis. The clues to the game come from 1980s pop culture – games, movies and music. There is, of course, danger and excitement in the quest, and things aren’t always as they seem. A movie of this book is in the works, there are lots of permissions to get, but it will be great fun.

Ready Player One by Ernest Cline
Narrated by: Erik Sandvold

2045. Multibillionaire James Halliday dies, leaving his last will and testament online for the world to see. His massively multiplayer online game OASIS has a hidden feature–an Easter egg–and the person who finds the egg first wins Halliday’s fortune. Some strong language. Bestseller. 2011.

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Redshirts by John Scalzi is another tribute to nerd-dom. The name is a reference to Star Trek, where characters who died or were gravely injured just to move the plot along were usually wearing a red shirt. The book posits that those characters are real people, and follows along Ensign Andrew Dahl as he begins his new assignment to the flagship of the fleet. When he comes aboard, he is told to avoid being assigned to an away mission, and notices that the injury rate on his ship is much greater than for the fleet in general. With some help from ship mates, and some other people, he figures out something to do about it.

Redshirts  by John Scalzi
Narrated by: Jim Zeiger

Ensigns assigned to the Universal Union Capital Ship Intrepid have a nasty habit of dying while on missions. Linguistics Department ensign Andrew Dahl investigates and discovers a stunning secret behind the deaths. Strong language and some violence. 2012.

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