Review of Game Runner by B.R. Collins

Rick is a Gamerunner. His job is to test there are no glitches or bugs in The Maze - the computer game that is much more than just a computer game. In The Maze you physically become your avatar. You fight, run and loot, all the time avoiding the deadly slicing traps - whirling blades that appear from nowhere. Rick has known nothing outside The Maze and his life at the headquarters of Crater, the company that created The Maze. When Rick's father falls out of favour and Rick is faced with being thrown out of Crater HQ into the outside world - a world of flesh-dissolving acid rain and ferocious, feral roving gangs - Rick has some life-changing decisions to make ... 

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It seems like lately I've been reading bad book after bad book and Gamerunner is no exception. It starts off by throwing you straight into the action, showing you the maze. Then after Rick leaves the maze his Guardian, Daed, asks him to re-enter and stop someone from completing it. Rick does this but does what Daed ordered him not to - he completes the maze himself. His actions causes a lot of problems in his world and he finds himself caught up in a lot of politics.

I found myself with more questions than answers in this. I wanted to know who exactly the Government is. I wanted to know what the world outside of the building was like. Mainly, I wanted to know why everyone kept saying 'Gods' when there seemed to be no religion. Mostly, I was just bored. 

I'm not sure why Ganerunner failed to entertain. I think it was due to a number of things: the two main characters, Daed and Rick, seem to have spilt personalities - Rick is childlike at times and a moody teenager the next and Daed is a loving Father-figure one minute and a complete psychopath the next - so it was hard to understand them. The world itself was rather grey, I never got a glimpse of the world outside the building which bothered me, with Dystopians I like to have a good look at the whole world. I spent most of the book waiting for plot twists and action but the story failed to deliver - there was plenty of action at the end but it was dulled by an annoying cliff-hanger and if there were any plot twists I fell asleep through them. It's a shame, as the cover is amazing!


2/5

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