WFTM Podcast 17.1: Just the Books Please

It’s our very first split podcast! This week in books and comics, we’ve been reading the first volume of Brian Azzarello’s Wonder Woman¸Three Days in April by Edward Ashton and discussing banned books, Moon Night and a return of the Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle stories written by Ann M. Martin. Join Leslie and Fernando as they geek out about books and comics!

Download it from the iTunes store here!

We’re now on Stitcher as well!! If Stitcher is your chosen app of podcasting choice, listen to the Working for the Mandroid podcast here

So what’s in Episode 17.1?

Where we just talk about books and comics!

News:

Ann M Martin is going to write a new Mrs. Piggle Wiggle story!

Moon Knight is coming back in 2016

It’s Banned Book Week!

What We’re Reading:

Three Days in April by Edward Ashton

Wonder Woman Volume 1: Blood by Brian Azzarello & Cliff Chiang (spoilers starting 32.07)

What We’re Reading This Week:

Fernando: Dark Disciple by Christie Golden and Robot Uprisings

Leslie: Uprooted by Naomi Novak and Last Song Before Night by Ilana C. Myer 

Follow us on Twitter @WorkforMandroid and @fernborrego

Email your questions, concerns, thoughts and comments to WorkingfortheMandroid@gmail.com


Intro & Outro Music is “Robot Army” by Quiet Music for Tiny Robots, provided via freemusicarchive.org through a Creative Commons License

Review: Ready Player One by Ernest Cline

Ready Player One
Ernest Cline 

Random House (2011)
372 pages
Geekiest of Geekness / 80s Nostalgia / Fantasy 

Purchase it from Amazon

It's the year 2044, and the real world is an ugly place. 

Like most of humanity, Wade Watts escapes his grim surroundings by spending his waking hours jacked into the OASIS, a sprawling virtual utopia that lets you be anything you want to be, a place where you can live and play and fall in love on any of ten thousand planets. 

And like most of humanity, Wade dreams of being the one to discover the ultimate lottery ticket that lies concealed within this virtual world. For somewhere inside this giant networked playground, OASIS creator James Halliday has hidden a series of fiendish puzzles that will yield massive fortune--and remarkable power--to whoever can unlock them. 

For years, millions have struggled fruitlessly to attain this prize, knowing only that Halliday's riddles are based in the pop culture he loved--that of the late twentieth century. And for years, millions have found in this quest another means of escape, retreating into happy, obsessive study of Halliday's icons. Like many of his contemporaries, Wade is as comfortable debating the finer points of John Hughes's oeuvre, playing Pac-Man, or reciting Devo lyrics as he is scrounging power to run his OASIS rig. 

And then Wade stumbles upon the first puzzle. 

Suddenly the whole world is watching, and thousands of competitors join the hunt--among them certain powerful players who are willing to commit very real murder to beat Wade to this prize. Now the only way for Wade to survive and preserve everything he knows is to win. But to do so, he may have to leave behind his oh-so-perfect virtual existence and face up to life--and love--in the real world he's always been so desperate to escape. 

A world at stake. 
A quest for the ultimate prize. 
Are you ready?

This is quite possibly the geekiest book I have ever read. Ernest Cline is not only well-versed in every pop culture aspect of the 1980s, but obsessive about incorporating all this culture into a brand new world full of despair, poverty and artificial adventure. I can only imagine the amount of research he did to put so many minute details into every aspect of his 80s obsessed protagonist. This is very much a book written for a certain demographic and it holds that up as a badge of honor instead of trying to hide the 80s nostalgia behind updated science fiction tropes.

Main character Wade reads much younger to me than his 18 years. Despite living on his own and being hunted down by evil corporations, I kept seeing him in my head as some scrawny 14-year-old, which made some of his later adventures a little more out of left field. Perhaps it was his naiveté or that he had excessive amounts of time to dedicate to the hunt, but Wade never comes across as an adult, but more like the leader of a pack of other young teens on a daring adventure against the evil adults. It felt like the Goonies but in a VR world. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing, just a cognitive dissonance thing.

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