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Book review: 'Warcross' is a dynamite beginning to a new series

Posted September 7

"WARCROSS," by Marie Lu, G.P. Putnam's Sons, $18.99, 368 pages (f) (ages 14 and up)

Emika Chen is a high school dropout about to get evicted from her dumpy New York City apartment. Thousands of dollars in debt and down to her last few boxes of food, she decides to escape reality for a few hours by logging on to the international Warcross Championship games. While watching virtually, she’s tempted to take something that isn’t hers, only to discover those actions have ramifications that she never could have foreseen in “Warcross.”

After her hack into the Warcross Championship is seen by the world, Emika is shocked to be contacted by the game’s creator and owner, Hideo Tanaka. He whisks her away to Tokyo with an offer she cannot refuse. But as she becomes immersed in the Warcross world, she realizes there is something more sinister going on behind the scenes than she originally had anticipated. And as the time she spends with its creator takes a more romantic turn, her world becomes even more complicated.

Best-selling author Marie Lu puts an action-packed spin on this science fiction series by integrating the world of online computer gaming with mystery and love. Becoming involved with the world of Warcross, all while Emika attempts to find out who is behind several attacks, makes for a riveting read with a plot full of twists and turns. Add in the romance factor with Lu’s amazing writing, and “Warcross” has everything a successful novel needs.

“Warcross” has a handful of profanities and minor violence that includes attempted murder. Romance is mostly limited to kissing, but there is also a scene that contains briefly mentioned nudity.

A former video game artist, Lu is now a full-time author residing in California.

Elizabeth Reid thinks the Great Depression is fascinating, so she earned bachelor's degrees in both economics and history. A wife and mother, she blogs at agoodreid.blogspot.com.

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