(Review + Giveaway) Warcross by Marie Lu

Warcross (Warcross #1)
by Marie Lu
Publisher: G.P. Putnam’s Sons Books for Young Readers
Release Date: September 12th 2017
Source: NetGalley / Publisher via blog tour (thank you Raf @ theroyalpolarbookreads!)
Genre/s: Sci-fi
Age Category: Young Adult
From #1 New York Times bestselling author Marie Lu—when a game called Warcross takes the world by storm, one girl hacks her way into its dangerous depths.

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.

In this sci-fi thriller, #1 New York Times bestselling author Marie Lu conjures an immersive, exhilarating world where choosing who to trust may be the biggest gamble of all.

my thoughts & whatnot

Thank you Raf theroyalpolarbookreads for hosting this rad blog tour and PRH Int (and NetGalley) for providing a review copy. All thoughts are my own.

This book is definitely one of my most anticipated reads this year because (uhm... duh?) it's Marie Lu. I willingly dived blindly into this Warcross world because I trust that Marie Lu would be writing an elaborate one. And I'm not wrong; the world building was intricately written, so vivid, I could almost imagine myself playing Warcross. You'd think that a book filled with technical terms would make someone yawn, but this book made it easy to like futuristic technologies. Since I have a background on computer engineering, everything I read is a new way to look at something I've learned in the past. One fun nugget that I love about this is: Marie Lu truly knows what she's writing as she have been immersed in the video game world.

One of the biggest thing that I love in this book is our main character, Emika Chen. She's a smart, strong-willed, determined, independent, young woman, who knows how to code — which makes my computer engineering heart trembles.
Hideo Tanaka, the Warcross creator himself, is a character that I couldn't fully like because 1) he's a prime example of tsundere*, which I don't really like, and 2) I find him shady af. He's this mysterious type of character that would make you wonder if he's a protagonist or an antagonist. Marie Lu surely knows how to keep us on the edge of our seats. The other supporting characters were such a fun and diverse (and I mean diverse) addition to this book. They all played their roles beautifully and I couldn't wait to read more of them. I'd love to read more of Kenn Edon, though.

Overall, this was such a great book to start a series/duology. It's been weeks since I've read this but reminiscing about it still makes me feel giddy and excited. I don't really have anything to compare Warcross to since I haven't read anything similar to this but it definitely opened a big, new realm of reading possibilities for me.
I highly, highly, recommend this one to everyone. You like sci-fi? Read this. You don't like sci-fi? No worries, you would after reading this one.

*tsundere (ツンデレ, pronounced [tsɯndeɾe]) is a Japanese term for a character development process that describes a person who is initially cold and even hostile towards another person before gradually showing a warmer side over time. (see what I did there?)

I hope you don't mind me sharing this:

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Finished paperback copy of Warcross 09/21 (PH ONLY)
Follow this link to go to the giveaway.
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About the author:

I write young adult novels, and have a special love for dystopian books. Ironically, I was born in 1984. Before becoming a full-time writer, I was an Art Director at a video game company. Now I shuffle around at home and talk to myself a lot.

I graduated from the University of Southern California in ’06 and currently live in LA, where I spend my time stuck on the freeways.
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