With the amazing advancements made in virtual reality, gaming has become a sport all its own. Kali Ling has been a gamer her entire life. Now she is the first female team captain in the Virtual Gaming League’s RAGE tournaments. Every week, Kali and her team fight to the death in the Virtual world on National television.
Though the fights are digital, every player feels the pain of their death. Kali is at the top of the virtual world, until one of her teammates dies of an overdose and leaves her to deal with her team and their new recruit. With the guilt of not being able to save her teammate and the pressures and stress of turning her teammates into a new team, Kali is falling apart inside. In order to heal her team and herself, she will have to change her world and the game, but will she be able to?
In the last century alone, gaming has grown more and more popular and advanced. Already we are seeing virtual reality take a grip on the world around us. Therefore, it is not unreasonable to think that in 50 years we may in fact have full immersion video gaming.
Imagining the gaming in the near future is easy, the changes in scenery, is a little more difficult. The idea that all of LA may be completely reconstructed in less than 50 years is harder for me to believe.
Personally, I am not a very big fan of science fiction, but occasionally, I stumble across a book or a series that appeals to me, and this one did, even though I am not a gamer myself. The plot of this story goes far beyond just the gaming world and, in my opinion, the synopsis does not do this novel justice.
The characters are realistic with dynamic personalities and unique qualities. All of the characters on Kali’s team have strengths and weaknesses that balance the team as a whole.
This novel delves into serious areas that are not only futuristic issues, but are also a concern in our world today. For once, there is a young adult novel that shows the negatives behind partying, drinking, and using drugs. It was refreshing to have a writer show these issues in their true light.
I was also happily surprised by how this book discussed the value of appreciating reality and finding balance in one’s life.
I enjoyed this novel and would recommend it to readers who enjoyed “Flashpoint” by Nancy Kress or readers who enjoy the idea of full immersion virtual reality gaming on a large scale.
I received my copy of this novel from bloggingforbooks.com and have received permission from Penguin Random House, Inc. to use an image of the cover artwork above.
Adult, Young Adult, and Teen Reviews.
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