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Tetris: The Games People Play Paperback – Illustrated, October 11, 2016
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From School Library Journal
Included in NYPL's "Notable 50 Best Books for Teens" list.
"The story never stops moving until its final pieces are in place."―New York Times
"One of gaming's most intriguing tales...A book to watch." ―Nerdist
"[A] look at the creation of Alexey Pajitnov’s enduring classic and the drama that ensues when people with big bags of money try to cash in the game’s popularity." ―Kotaku
"A rich read that provides valuable context for the rise of video games in the late 20th century." ―A.V. Club
"This is a work about the bittersweet dissonances of artistic creativity and commercial greed and the ephemeral yet crucial joy we get from making things fall into place." ―io9
"Against the backdrop of the Cold War, the saga of Tetris played out like a spy thriller―tragic deaths, corporate conspiracies, the prestige of nations hanging in the balance." ―Boston Globe
"A clean and engaging visual style supports a story that sustains narrative drive, humanizing the characters and making readers care about every development. " ―Kirkus, starred review
"Simply illustrated in a sequential panel format, the charming black-andwhite drawings convey high-concept ideas in a clever, succinct manner." ―Booklist
"Tetris is a remarkably spare work, cleanly and effortlessly introducing countless real-life characters and companies that intersect and tangle together in a game of tug-of-war." ―GQ
"It also cleverly mimics the structure of Tetris itself: straightforward and engaging, without any extra bells and whistles." ―School Library Journal, starred review
"The blocky paneled illustrations are reminiscent of early video game graphics, and the compact text uses dialogue effectively to break up narrative sections and keep the unfolding drama personal rather than historically distant." ―Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books
- Lexile measure : GN600L
- Item Weight : 1.15 pounds
- Paperback : 256 pages
- ISBN-10 : 162672315X
- ISBN-13 : 978-1626723153
- Dimensions : 6.16 x 0.78 x 8.55 inches
- Publisher : First Second; Illustrated edition (October 11, 2016)
- Language: : English
- Best Sellers Rank: #450,938 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
Top reviews from the United States
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Box Brown frames the story as part of the classic tradition of mankind. That the creation of games is part of the fundamental nature of humans. And that the games we play is a reflection of society and the human mind. In the old days, they played physical games to prepare for a life of physical labor. Now the electronic ones prepare us for the online world we are increasingly spend more of our lives in.
It's a fast reader that covers broad concepts fairly succinctly and works as a great intro to the Cold War thriller that is the licensing battle for Tetris. If your curiosity is piqued, I highly recommend the more thorough dives into the story as written in David Sheff's Game Over Press Start To Continue or as filmed in the 2004 BBC documentary Tetris: From Russia with Love (which seems to be the beat-for-beat basis for this graphic novel).
Box Brown's art is easy to follow and makes great use of comic panels to illustrate some of the more intellectual concepts at play. If I had to criticize anything, though, it would be that shifts in time or place are not always clearly delineated.