Book Review: In Real Life

Posted December 23, 2015 by Maryam in book review, Maryam / 0 Comments

Book Review: In Real LifeIn Real Life by Lawrence Tabak
Published by Tuttle Publishing on November 11th 2014
Genres: young adult, romance, realistic fiction, contemporary
Pages: 288
Format: eARC
Source: Edelweiss

Fifteen-year-old math prodigy Seth Gordon knows exactly what he wants to do with his life—play video games. Every spare minute is devoted to honing his skills at Starfare, the world's most popular computer game. His goal: South Korea, where the top pros are rich and famous. But the best players train all day, while Seth has school and a job and divorced parents who agree on only one thing: "Get off that damn computer." Plus there's a new distraction named Hannah, an aspiring photographer who actually seems to understand his obsession.
While Seth mopes about his tournament results and mixed signals from Hannah, Team Anaconda, one of the leading Korean pro squads, sees something special. Before he knows it, it's goodbye Kansas, goodbye Hannah, and hello to the strange new world of Korea. But the reality is more complicated than the fantasy, as he faces cultural shock, disgruntled teammates, and giant pots of sour-smelling kimchi.
What happens next surprises Seth. Slowly, he comes to make new friends, and discovers what might be a breakthrough, mathematical solution to the challenges of Starcraft. Delving deeper into the formulas takes him in an unexpected direction, one that might just give him a new focus—and reunite him with Hannah.

I received this book for free from Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

This book might have caught my interest when I realized that it’s about GAMING. And I loooove games, and everything that’s got to do with it. But I have to admit that reading this book was not comfortable, and I think it was because I am not used to reading a YA book from a guy’s POV. The narration throughout the whole book was a teeeny bit monotonous and I could totally imagine my brother reading this book aloud to me. I honestly thought I was going to have a problem with it, but I didn’t. I definitely love this book!

The story line hooked me in since reading the blurb. A geeky boy whose whole life is playing video games, and finally he has the chance to go Korea and PLAY ALONGSIDE WORLD FAMOUS PEOPLE?! That is like me wanting to play Destiny with Pewdiepie and his friends, UGH. I was pretty much jealous of the MC HAHA.

This book deals with tons of issues, that ranged from romance, to insecurities, to knowing when a hobby can ever be turn into a job. The romance part was unique, in my opinion. It didn’t immediately fall into the topic of Hannah and Seth, but instead touched on other girls first, which I find refreshing. We always read books about how there’s only that one girl/guy for that person, so seeing Seth go gaga over another girl before Hannah WAS REALLY REFRESHING. And hearing Seth’s thoughts, that made the relationship much more unsteady. It’s like, he’s Seth, the ultimate geek. And she’s Hannah, the uber hot artsy girl. We definitely come face to face with Seth’s insecurities and his interpretation of whether Hannah likes him, or not. There were funny scenes pretty much most of the times, especially when Seth gets into one of his daydreaming mode.

This book was divided into two sections – Home and Korea. (At least I think it was called home?) So, it was sort of like a before, after situation, in which we get to see him at two very different time zones. The emotions in this book were pretty high, and the book swept me with it, in all the excitement, the adrenaline. I was bouncing on my seat, while reading this book, trying as hard to devour EVERYTHING.

ALSO, THIS KID IS A GENIUS. And that was what made me love this book more. Have you read it? Because you should, especially if you love gaming. It’s like living a dream.


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