Heir Apparent - THE book for girl video game lovers!

Heir Apparent - Vivian Vande Velde

4 Stars


First let me say, this book is not for everyone. This was written for gamers or maybe parents of gamers, because of the way the story is laid out. A solid example of young adult literature, this is not a coming of age story but rather a character learning and maturing story.

Giannine is a 14 year old girl whose absent (and uncaring) father has gifted her a certificate to play at the virtual reality arcade of Rasmussem Enterprises. However, soon after she was hooked up to play their new multi-choice Heir Apparent game, an activist group against video games and fantasy in general breaks into the center and damages equipment. Now, she is trapped in the game unless she can beat the game and the damage has shortened the time she can safely remain in the game. If she doesn't find a way to win soon, she might not make it out of the game at all.


*The Gush*

I have read this book at least once a year since I first discovered it at my local library. It's not the best YA book ever, but if you are a gamer, you can't help but love this book. Giannine is a gamer who does not get much of a chance to play, so her skills are less then the best. However, she makes up for this by being a fun, sarcastic character who tries her hardest even before she learns of the real dangers messing up too many times might bring. Her solutions are interesting and perhaps a bit too 'modern' at times, yet her interactions with the characters of the game are fun and will keep you guessing. All of the game's characters are fantasy staples, and are not terribly surprising. Yet, they are all solid and integral parts of the story; some are hilarious to read while others make you mad as they keep standing in the main character's way.

This is a fairly easy read, so most readers regardless of skill should be able to follow the story and enjoy it.


*The Rant*

While not a problem for me (indeed it is one of my main reasons for liking this story), some people might grow bored with returning to the beginning of the game over and over again. Most gamers will realize that this adds to the immersion of the character playing a game; I myself generally have to restart new games multiple times. While fun for most gamers, some readers might find this repetitive and boring.



If you love playing games, fantasy, and/or YA Literature I would give this book a shot. A solid story in a genre made up of a lot of tripe.