This proof was given to me for free by the publisher, Rock the Boat. This does not influence my opinion in any way.
The Company Welcomes you To
The new generation of gaming.
Welcome to real life 2.0.
Are you ready to play?
There are no screens. There are no controls.
You don’t just see and hear it—you taste, smell, and touch it too.
In this new reality there are no rules to follow, no laws to break.
You can indulge your every desire.
Why would you ever want to leave?
Step into Otherworld.
Leave your body behind.
This book is another book that I NEEDED to get my hands on at YALC, the Young Adult Literary Convention in London. After one look at that beautiful cover (the ARCs had a kaleidoscope of colors and I was in love) and the short description, I fought tooth and nail to get me a copy. Even sprinting to the publisher’s stand, leaving my bag in the middle of the con. Luckily, I succeeded to snag a book without getting my stuff stolen.
For a book about gaming, there is surprisingly little actual gaming in the first 100 pages of Otherworld. Don’t worry though, the gaming comes and reads like nothing I ever read before. In a short introduction, Segel mentions how he got the idea for the story and how he immediately knew that it would be darker than any of his other books. I was already hooked before I read one word of the actual story. And yes, it’s definitely way darker than, for instance, Ready Player One.
Kat’s visor is on, and the disk has been affixed to the base of her skull. I watch her heart monitor sketch the same peak over and over again.
Segel and Miller take you on a ride through a near future that is not so far-fetched as you might think at first glance. Like every good sci-fi of this kind, it starts with an idea that seems to be a gift to the world, but turns ugly real quickly. And again, it’s disgustingly believable and awesome.
That dark twist to a possible future is so delicious and twisted that it makes up part of a very annoying thing in the story. (It’s really that good, you guys!) The main character is pretty underdeveloped and cardboardy. He almost felt like a robot only programmed to go after one thing: the girl. I could look past it to a certain extend, but it still annoyed me to no end and I honestly don’t understand how a main character can be so badly developed.
I do have to admit that Otherworld is clearly written for a very specific kind of audience: teenage boys. It’s not a cautionary tale that will resonate with a broad audience, but will be loved by who they authors wanted it to love. And as my taste in books is pretty boy-y (every member of my book club will agree on this), I pretty much adored this book.
Have you read this book? If not, does it sound interesting to you? If yes, what did you think? Let me know in the comments!