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The God Game by Danny Tobey


Review

The God Game reminded me a lot of the movie Ready Player One. The God Game is about a group of teenagers, Kenny, Alex, Vanhi, Charlie, and Peter who start to play the virtual reality game G.O.D. that they found on the dark web. G.O.D. sets each individual on tasks that they must complete, very similar to what other role playing video games have you do to earn prizes, tokens, etc. However, the tasks that G.O.D. asks them to do go from easy to more difficult and darker in nature. The tasks pit them against themselves, each other, and the community.

As I previously mentioned, The God Game reminded me of the movie Ready Player One, so if you liked that movie or the book (which I have not read) than you will most likely like this book. It dives deep in the role playing video game G.O.D. and uses some technical coding language. Although, I struggled a little bit with the coding language, I was still able to follow it. It also takes some time to remember what some of the games names are for items, such as "Aziteks" and "Blakk". 

The character development was spot on and the teenagers, Kenny, Alex, Vanhi, Charlie, and Peter are easy to relate to. The book touches on some real life topics that I feel that teenagers are struggling with today, such as bullying and suicide. 

Rating 4 out of 5 because Danny Tobey did a good job at hooking me into the story from the beginning and keeping me hooked. I struggled a little bit with the coding language and with remembering what "Aziteks" and "Blakk" were, which is also why I rated it a 4. 

Thank you St. Martin's Press for allowing me to review this book early.

Summary

You are invited!
Come inside and play with G.O.D.Bring your friends!It’s fun!But remember the rules. Win and ALL YOUR DREAMS COME TRUE.™ Lose, you die!

With those words, Charlie and his friends enter the G.O.D. Game, a video game run by underground hackers and controlled by a mysterious AI that believes it’s God. Through their phone-screens and high-tech glasses, the teens’ realities blur with a virtual world of creeping vines, smoldering torches, runes, glyphs, gods, and mythical creatures. When they accomplish a mission, the game rewards them with expensive tech, revenge on high-school tormentors, and cash flowing from ATMs. Slaying a hydra and drawing a bloody pentagram as payment to a Greek god seem harmless at first. Fun even.
But then the threatening messages start. Worship me. Obey me. Complete a mission, however cruel, or the game reveals their secrets and crushes their dreams. Tasks that seemed harmless at first take on deadly consequences. Mysterious packages show up at their homes. Shadowy figures start following them, appearing around corners, attacking them in parking garages. Who else is playing this game, and how far will they go to win?


And what of the game’s first promise: win, win big, lose, you die? Dying in a virtual world doesn’t really mean death in real life—does it?


As Charlie and his friends try to find a way out of the game, they realize they’ve been manipulated into a bigger web they can’t escape: an AI that learned its cruelty from watching us.


God is always watching, and He says when the game is done.



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