When a game called Warcross takes the world by storm, one girl hacks her way into its dangerous depths.
Eighteen-year old Emika Chen is a bounty hunter, hacker, and trying to survive. On her last dollars Emika does something rash during the Warcross Championships and ends up becoming an overnight sensation.
Much to her surprise she gets a call from the creator, Hideo Tanaka, asking for her assistance in a job. Before she knows it Emika is flown to Tokyo for the championships but despite a new life of fame and fortune, the job Hideo hired her for becomes a life or death situation.
Tattoos and Rainbow Hair
Emika is a refreshing protagonist. She doesn’t have a contemporary look, rides around on electric skateboards, and hunts people down for a living. She sticks up for herself. She’s intelligent and focused. Despite her flaws Emika is a character you can easily root for.
After growing up in a tough situation she has a hard time opening up and this restricts her from getting to know others. It’s understandable.
It’s not just a game but a way of life. Literally. The most advanced virtual reality that allows people to download their memories or relax on a beach while in the comfort of their home. All with a set of glasses. Warcross the game is more to some people. It opens doors to a living.
Based on this information it’s something anyone would want to have but Emika is just the reason why it’s sketchy. She’s a hacker and can get into anyone’s profile, download their information, and know everything about them instantly. There’s even an underground area where people go to deal with illegal trades. What may seem amazing in the limelight has bigger consequences.
However, with this being said, you will want to be in this universe where Warcross exists. To be able to look at our world with a different view. Walk down the street and a virtual dinosaur may be standing there, so real you could touch it. This aspect I can get onboard with. The personal information part, not so much.
Emika grew up admiring Hideo while having a slight crush on him. Only being a few years older she wanted to be like him and create something the world would fall in love with. As if she’s in a fantasy Hideo whisks her away to Japan and opens new doors while opening Emika up.
Yes there is a slight sub-plot romance between the two. And to my surprise I liked it. You get excited for Emika that after all this time her celebrity crush is noticing her. Something we’d all like. However they work. Emika’s snark and sarcasm battle Hideo’s stern attitude. This catches his eye, as well as her ability to hack her way into almost anything. Hideo has his secrets, many he starts to share and others he doesn’t. It’s the mystery behind him that draws Emika in but is also something she would be wary about.
I’ll be honest, I haven’t been this excited over a book in a long time. Something I enjoyed from beginning to end. Emika’s life is exciting to start out with and becomes even more-so after her display at the championship. You want to live in a world where Warcross exists, allowing you to escape reality even for a few moments.
Without spoiling too much, Emika gets hired for a job that becomes more dangerous than she realizes. As she meets new people keeping secrets from them becomes harder as her relationships with them grow. I liked watching her make friends and loosen up. In the end they become more valuable than she would’ve imagined.
I highly recommend Warcross. It’s exciting, tense (in the best ways), and has a main character you want to root for. You’ll love the progression from Emika and Hideo’s first encounter to a budding romance, but don’t get too attached to anything. Warcross is full of twists and turns to keep you awake and wanting to read more.