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.
I don’t do this in my book reviews so I’m sorry…But holy shit a lot of things happened in this book and I’m still mindblown on how everything went down!
Not really my cup of tea (in terms of genre) but has an interesting plot line? Yes, sure I’ll give it a try. New book from Marie Lu? Sign me up. That’s how Warcross ended up being right there on top of my short to-read list. Diving into Warcross, I only knew that it involves a game and that the protagonist is some kind of a hacker (Sorry. I forgot the entire premise and didn’t bother checking it again because surprise me, Warcross! Surprise me!). I also purposefully did not read any book review just for the sole reason that I do not want their feels to be mixing with mine. But what I do know is that bloggers are raving about it.
How many books do we get from this series? Is this a duology? A trilogy? Either way just by reading Warcross I know it’s going to be a packed series and one that I would gladly gobble up. I thought I would have a hard time grasping things considering I tend to shy away from Sci-Fi and I also don’t speak the gamer language. But I should have had a lot more faith on Marie Lu and her writing style.
Warcross, codes and virtual reality are some of the things that awaits for you in this book. I’ll leave the premise as what the synopsis hinted on and won’t dig into it deeper. Find out for yourselves. I can only advise you to prepare yourselves because things get cooler and crazier by each chapter. With Lu’s simply worded yet vivid descriptions and rich world building, she made it so easy for me to get hooked and fall in love with Warcross. The world-building and various virtual reality settings are insane and deliciously written. Her words easily triggered my imagination to work and it certainly was a feast for the mind. There were times that it felt all too real for me, crazy. It even compelled me to wish for this game to be true and yes, I would gladly engage on playing it.
Another Marie Lu “thing” for me is she write stories with great pacing and Warcross definitely did not disappoint. Something big is happening with every page and chapter. Basically, once you start reading it you better strap yourselves in because you will surely breeze through it. I highly recommend for you to read it on the weekends or during a certain day wherein a lot of time is in your hands. I wasn’t able to marathon it and so whenever I spaces out I kept on thinking about the possible things that would transpire in the story. Warcross got my mind filled up to the brim with guesses.
I aspire to be like Emika Chen. She’s such a kick-ass protagonist and basically just screams girl power! Even though life has been tough on her, she stealthily manages to live. I’m beyond amazed with how she connect the dots and instantly think of tactics that she could use for the game. Or the hunt. On the other hand, we also have Hideo Tanaka aka the mastermind on all things Warcross related. His imagination is limitless. He bends and makes everything possible. Both are intelligent with wide range of skills. Aren’t they just the perfect pair to decode the problem?
Getting this out of the way, yes there’s romance in the story. Quite obvious. But I always love the way Lu handles her romance. She sees to it that romance will not take away the focus from the main story line. It’s there to add the perfect amount of kick, thrill and conflict in the story. With Emika and Hideo, I find it so cute how she grew up idolizing him and now she finds herself in that lucky position. I’m a sucker for slow burn and dear oh how I love the drawn out sizzling tension between the two. A big check.
Warcross has an exciting and diverse set of characters. Talk about representation and Marie Lu gives us teams (and teams and teams…) with members coming from different races having different ways of living. Clever move, Lu truly maximized the Warcross Championships. There are quite a number of side characters (Asher Wing, Hammie, Roshan and Ren are some..) and all of them are pro-active. Every time that they appear and every action that they do have a certain graveness to the story. Best part, seeing them convening together and just being one with their team.
There’s a certain twist in the story that I easily pinpointed. I think, you’ll be able to guess it as well. I’m still torn with being disappointed or glad that it got confirmed already. But there are two things that I’m sure of, it’s a game changer and it means that Book two is going to be a lot more exciting. Just by that revelation, I can already picture out the ripples that it created.
Setting aside all the powerful imageries and praise-worthy world building, Warcross and Marie Lu proved that it is definitely more than just a game and more than just about the game. It’s more than just a book to entertain us. Because at the end of it all, Warcross delves into the morals of a person and its conflicting side. The arguments that the characters get heated about are the same ones we fall into in today’s world. The whole scenario reflects what we are, how we think and what we continuously fight for. I’m sure it will continue on to be at the forefront of the next book and I’m thrilled to explore more of this.
If you already read Warcross, come and chat with me about your thoughts on this book. Or if you’re just planning to read it, what are some of the things that you’re anticipating for? Let me know in the comment section below. 😊
“Every locked door has a key; every problem has a solution.”