Otherworld by Jason Segel & Kirsten Miller (Book Review)

Otherworld by Jason Segel and Kirsten Miller

Book Blurb:

That’s how Otherworld traps you. It introduces you to sensations you’d never be able to feel in real life. You discover what’s been missing—because it’s taboo or illegal or because you lack the guts to do it for real. And when you find out what’s missing it’s almost impossible to let it go again.

There are no screens. There are no controls. You don’t just see and hear it—you taste, smell, and touch it too. In this new reality, there are no laws to break or rules to obey. You can live your best life. Indulge every desire.

This is Otherworld a virtual reality game so addictive you’ll never want it to end. And Simon has just discovered that for some, it might not.

The frightening future that Jason Segel and Kirsten Miller have imagined is not far away. Otherworld asks the question we’ll all soon be asking: if technology can deliver everything we want, how much are we willing to pay?

 

Tags: Virtual Reality, YA, Sci-fi, RPG, Gaming, Romance

My thoughts banner

Otherworld centers around virtual reality and its impact when things go too far. It reminds me very much of Ready Player One but I enjoyed this version better as it had references that I actually got, unlike with RPO, where I felt swamped by all the gaming and pop-culture refs(I think they were of the 80s?).

Otherworld was going good in the first half, but my enjoyment got kind of knocked off balance in the latter half. Let’s first talk about what I liked:

  • ‌Simon’s(our MC) humor
  • ‌His maturity(which also felt like a downside sometimes as it feels a tad unrealistic for a teen to be THAT mature. But I liked it more than didn’t)
  • ‌The adventures and dangerous moments meant there was always something happening or about to happen
  • ‌The small rag-tag bunch he teams up with
  • Simon’s upbringing(at first I thought he was an insolent brat but soon after I realized WHY he treated his parents that way and sympathized with his situation)

What missed its mark with me:

  • ‌I did not connect with Kat(Simon’s bestfriend) as much as she was absent for long spans of time, so that you don’t feel like she’s a completely real character in the end.
  • ‌I hate to be that person who can’t pinpoint exactly what they thought was lacking, maybe I’m not as insightful or aware as I’d like to be but there it is, I just felt the story did not live up to it’s potential.

I appreciated how the authors expressed what was driving the antagonists to do what they did. Despite their wrong actions I understood their logic. I appreciate that kind of POV as it encourages discussion.

Overall, I liked Otherworld better than Ready Player One but the idea’s not new and the plot wasn’t fresh enough to make me excited for book 2.

P.S. I didn’t know one of the authors was an actor I knew, Jason Segel! It’s a little strange seeing an actor becoming an author, nothing good or bad about it. It’s just uncommon.

“The real world?” asks the Child. “Why is your world the real one? How can you be so certain that you humans were not created by someone else? Does your history not speak of a Creator too?”

Review end banner

Parental Guidance: 15+
Violence – Killing of humans and creatures that resemble animals. Medium gore. Mention of cannibalism. Drug references.
Sex – Mention of hedonistic pleasures.
Religion – None
Profanity – Medium

Recommended for: Readers who love stories with virtual realities and RPG gaming(though, going by this Amazon review, only light gaming refs). This book has been likened to a mashup of Westworld and Lord of the Rings, which is true to a certain extent, but isn’t as epic.

Grab this now on: Amazon | B&N | BookDepository | Goodreads

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