Marie Lu’s Warcross at first seems like an overdone virtual reality dystopia, but provides a somewhat original take on the topic. Emika Chen, a hacker barely able to pay rent, shocks the world by “glitching” into the international tournament of Warcross, the most popular virtual reality video game. The creator of Warcross enters her into the tournament to gain inside information on someone trying to infiltrate the systems.
Lu’s future world is believable and immersive. The description was well-mixed with plot that was engaging and moved at a decent pace; however, the ending confused me and seemed like it should have been the first chapter of the sequel.
The characters were incredibly well-developed, especially Emika. She comes off as a strong, knowledgeable protagonist, but later on, her vulnerable side begins to show. While I would have liked to know more about the supporting characters, they had unique personalities. Also worth noting is the characters’ diversity: along with the Asian-American protagonist, Warcross features a disabled character, a gay character, and a Hispanic character. My only criticism is that the romance seemed forced.
All in all, Warcross is an enjoyable but not spectacular read, especially for fans of YA or science fiction. – Tasha M. ’20