Wednesday, July 24, 2019

Book Review: Wildcard (Warcross #2) by Marie Lu

Wildcard
Wildcard by Marie Lu

Published: September 18, 2018

Genre: Science Fiction, Young Adult

Hardcover Pages: 341

Synopsis: Emika Chen barely made it out of the Warcross Championships alive. Now that she knows the truth behind Hideo's new NeuroLink algorithm, she can no longer trust the one person she's always looked up to, who she once thought was on her side.

Determined to put a stop to Hideo's grim plans, Emika and the Phoenix Riders band together, only to find a new threat lurking on the neon-lit streets of Tokyo. Someone's put a bounty on Emika's head, and her sole chance for survival lies with Zero and the Blackcoats, his ruthless crew. But Emika soon learns that Zero isn't all that he seems--and his protection comes at a price.

Caught in a web of betrayal, with the future of free will at risk, just how far will Emika go to take down the man she loves?

Thoughts: I finished this a couple weeks ago and just keep forgetting to write up a review! As I'm sure I've mentioned somewhere on the blog before, I've been a fan of Marie Lu's for awhile now, ever since I first read Legend some years ago. I even went to a book signing she had once locally here. I must say that while this and her other series, The Young Elites, haven't quite hit me as hard as the Legend series did, I did still enjoy this Warcross duology. Duologies are all the rage these days!

Anyhow, yes, Wildcard is the second book in the Warcross duology following Emika Chen in a future where everyone wears these implanted lenses that connect them to a virtual world where a game called Warcross has swept the world. One of the things about this series is that it feels very prescient about where the world could be headed. You could easily see something like the NeuroLink being created, and people wanting to spend a majority of their time within it. And, of course, how those in power could come to abuse it as well.

This sequel was structured quite a bit differently than the first book, which focused very heavily on the Warcross competition itself, whereas this one barely spends any time within the Warcross environment. Though sometimes that large of a difference between a first and second book can be maybe a little jarring, or just not give the same feel (which is funny given how I hate when movies or TV series are very repetitive in sequels or follow up seasons!!), I think here it was a good choice. It was nice to see Emika in a different environment, and gave the story more of a personal feel as well.

If you dig scifi, this series is worth checking out. It's not super heavy, is fast-paced, and features compelling characters in Emika, Hideo, and the rest of the supporting characters, and also it just reads quickly, which is also a big plus in my book.

Next up for Marie Lu will be the fourth and final book in the Legend series, which I was not expecting, so I'm definitely looking forward to that one!

Rating: 3.5/5

What I'm Reading Next: Truly Devious by Maureen Johnson

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