Book Review: Otherworld by Jason Segel and Kirsten Miller

Welcome to real life 2.0. Are you ready to play?

There are no screens. There are no controls. You don’t just see and hear it – you taste, smell, and touch it too. In this new reality there are no rules to follow, no laws to break. You can live your best life.

It’s a game so addictive you’ll never want it to end. Until you realize that you’re the one being played.

Step into Otherworld. Leave your body behind.

What I Thought:
I was thrilled to get hold of an early copy of Otherworld at YALC 2017 and, considering how much I enjoyed it, it mystifies me why it’s taken me so long to review it!

Having said that I enjoyed it, I’ve read around quite a few reviews that hated it – and I can see why other reviewers might say that as the book was not without fault, but my overriding feeling was that I loved Simon, the abrasive main character, and I wanted to read more.

There is a bit of the set up of the novel that is a bit sketchy – Simon’s motivations in entering Otherworld to save Kat, the damsel in distress, does make you roll your eyes a bit, but once in the game itself, The White City and the attached game levels are beautifully written and described with a vast array of characters and the main characters find themselves in some dangerous and sickening situations.

I really liked the delineation between Simon and his group and some of the other players who think they are just in any other RPG and don’t realise that Otherworld really can mean life or death.

As I said, Simon can be quite abrasive and in the real world this has done him no favours, but in Otherworld it really helps him butt up against players and NPCs and come through. I’m interested to see whether he is like this in the next novel, or whether his experiences have changed him at all.

Jason Segel and Kirsten Miller have written together before for a Middle Grade audience and it’s really important to note that this is most definitely a YA book as some of the scenes are NOT for younger children.

So for a book that has evoked such a wide range of opinions from reviewers, it’s actually one I really enjoyed and I’m hugely excited for book 2, Other Earth, which comes out in October 2018.

Otherworld is published by Rock the Boat. To find out more about Kirsten Miller, you can check out her website. You can also find out what Jason Segel is up to on Twitter.

Please note: I obtained a copy of this book for review purposes. All opinions are, as ever, my own.

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