Series Review: Is this series worth your time? Does it get better as the novels progress? Or does it get worse? Find out below:
Synopsis for Warcross (from Goodreads):
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 Warcross players who bet on the game illegally. But the bounty hunting world is a competitive one, and survival has not been easy. 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.
SERIESous’ Top Picks: Favourite Author
Author: Marie Lu
# of Books: 2 (Warcross, Wildcard)
Book Order: Chronological
Genre: Young Adult, Science Fiction, Romance, Action
Heat Rating: warm
Point of View: First Person, Single
Publication Date: September 2017 – September 2018
Source & Format: Public Library–Audiobook
**This post was originally published as a Fresh Friday review of the first book of the series. It has now been updated to include the newest publications in the series.**
Why I Picked it Up / My Expectations:
After reading (and positively adoring) the Legend Trilogy by Marie Lu, I always make an effort to read her books when they come out. While I enjoyed The Young Elites Trilogy, I found that I enjoyed the concept behind it more than the actual story.
So I was a little apprehensive when it came to Warcross. As someone who has played a few Massive Multiplayer Games, I was definitely curious to see what this world was all about. But the synopsis didn’t give much away in terms of the type of story it would be and reviews from other bloggers had me going in with slightly lowered expectations.
But if anyone can surprise me, it’s Marie Lu.
What I Liked:
What a great heroine she is! I just loved her tech savvy-ness and drive. She thinks outside the box and gives everything her all and how can you not love that in a heroine?
–The Games in the Tournament–
I LOVED the actions scenes where Emika is in the game with her team. Perhaps it was just the fact that I could hear the enthusiasm and expressions of the narrator as she read the scenes in the audiobook, but they were enthralling to say the least. It was reminiscent of those scenes in some of my favourite books like Red Rising and The Hunger Games.
I don’t want to give much away but I thought it was super cute and definitely impacts the plot in a way that not every romance does.
–Not Overly Predictable–
While I had the identity of Zero figured out, I was definitely wrong about what was actually happening which was a great twist!
What I Didn’t Like:
I always find it hard to tell when I listen to audiobooks to determine if it’s actually the narrator’s style/delivery that impacts the pacing of the book or the actual writing itself. (Some narrator’s talk at a slower speed plus reading something out-loud takes longer than reading it with your eyes. So most audiobooks take twice as long to listen to as they would to read). I do know that I sped up the delivery to 1.5X because I found her cadence to be on the slower side (my default is usually 1.25X).
But I did find it took us a while to get into the thick of things. Not that we spend too much time following Emika’s life before the tournament but the first half definitely lacks the suspense of the latter half.
My Expectations for the Rest of the Series:
I can’t WAIT to see how all of this is going to play out! This series went in a direction I didn’t anticipate so I’m really curious about what Marie Lu has up her sleeve.
–November 25, 2018– Book #2: Wildcard
Given that ending, I thought Wildcard would hit the ground running at a much faster pace than its predecessor; but that didn’t seem to be the case. I found the first 75% of this book was just dialogue upon dialogue–which is fine because it helps establish and explain the various aspects of the plot–I just found that I would lose interest along the way. I missed those moments of gameplay and the like where I was thrown into the thick of things. We do get these pockets of excitement along the way; I just found they were few and far between.
I will give some bonus points though for originality. This series went in a direction I never anticipated and I thought this sequel was much less predictable. I was really into the story for the last quarter because I had no idea what was going to happen and I liked that a lot.
My Rating: 4/5
Warcross 4/5| Wildcard 3.5/5
You don’t have to be a fan of video games to get hooked into this page turner!
Read if You Like: stories set in the future, video games, action
Avoid if You: dislike slow stories, want more romance
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