Blanche’s Book Club: ‘Ready Player Two.’

Happy Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day! I know most related events today are virtual, so I hope you’ll be able to find time to do something in Dr. King’s honor. I am planning to watch “Selma” this afternoon once I finish some work 🙂

I’m excited to come to you today with a new book review — it’s Blanche’s Book Club’s latest read — “Ready Player Two” by Ernest Cline, who is local to Austin!

So, “Ready Player Two” is the sequel to “Ready Player One” which I read… years ago… and loved. I know “Ready Player One” had quite the cult following and I saw the movie in theatres. If you haven’t read the book, I’d definitely recommend it (my full review is here), especially if you’re into video games and/or 80’s pop culture. The movie is fantastic, too (here’s my thoughts on it)!

The funny thing is, when I finished reading “Ready Player One,” I wasn’t thinking there would be a sequel. The story was complete, and I figured that was it.

So, when I saw “Ready Player Two” was coming out (it came out in November 2020), I was like… but what is that going to be about??

Honestly, I didn’t even look at the description and just added it to my TBR list because I liked the first one so much. When it came up for me at the library, I started reading it still with no idea where it was going.

Here’s the scoop: “Ready Player Two” picks up right where book one left us. Parzival is the CEO of Halliday’s company, along with his “crew” from book one. There’s a bit of personal beef between him and Samantha, but I’ll leave it at that.

Right in chapter one, he discovers headset hidden in the office. It hooks up to a player’s brain (!) so they have have use of their full senses within the OASIS. There’s also some controversial parts to it, but I’m not going to spoil any of it.

The question is, should they patent this technology and release it to the masses? Regardless, there’s more to the plot when an evildoer enters the picture and presents a seriously dangerous ultimatum, putting Parzival and the gang BACK on the hunt for another one of Halliday’s treasures.

The prize this time is much less about money, and most-certainly about life.


I will say that in general, this book has pretty shitty reviews. I think a lot of people opened it up expecting it to be the same as the first, which honestly, is a bit stupid. No book is going to be the same. I thought the writing was just as good as the first one, but obviously we’re working with different circumstances here.

This book was a bit darker than book one, but I thought it provided a more wholistic view of James Halliday and it offers a bit of commentary on the downside of technology and how it affects society.

I also think it’s really interesting that when book one came out, there really was no VR games and now it’s everywhere. So, this technology is probably not far off from where we are… and they talk about how being in the OASIS is safe because you cannot spread disease… since they’re in a pandemic!

I definitely would recommend this book if you’ve read the first one.

The next book Blanche’s Book Club will be reading is “The Fortunate Ones” by Ed Tarkington.

For more book recommendations, be sure to subscribe to the blog (look to the right) and follow me on Goodreads @thebitterlemon – where I share more of my book picks.

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