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Tetris: The Games People Play Paperback – Illustrated, October 11, 2016

4.6 out of 5 stars 64 ratings

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Gr 9 Up—Brown immerses readers in the complicated origins of one of the world's most popular video games, Tetris. Its creator, Alexey Pajitnov, was a computer scientist who became obsessed with how games and puzzles affected human psychology. Before long, Pajitnov became caught up in a prototype he'd designed based on a childhood game and shared it with his friends. Soon all of Moscow was consumed by what would eventually be called "the game that escaped the USSR." The art style is reminiscent of the Cyanide and Happiness comic but whimsical in tone. It also cleverly mimics the structure of Tetris itself: straightforward and engaging, without any extra bells and whistles. With the recent Nintendo release of the hit cell phone game Pokémon Go, this title is a timely explanation of the origins of the gaming world, particularly when it comes to the rivalries among various gaming companies. The story resonates and will appeal to fans of Jim Ottaviani's Feynman and Primates: The Fearless Science of Jane Goodall, Dian Fossey, and Biruté Galdikas. VERDICT This quick, thoughtful read will find an audience among teens interested in pursuing a career in video game design or those who wonder just how video games like Tetris have spread like wildfire.—Chantalle Uzan, New York Public Library

Review

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


Product details

  • 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
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.6 out of 5 stars 64 ratings

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4.6 out of 5 stars
4.6 out of 5
64 global ratings
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Top reviews from other countries

Nicola Mansfield
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic! A very interesting history and biography
Reviewed in Canada on November 19, 2016
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AlvaroAlvaro
5.0 out of 5 stars Recomendado para cualquier fan de los videojuegos
Reviewed in Mexico on May 19, 2017
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Vanessa
5.0 out of 5 stars Excelente
Reviewed in Mexico on August 29, 2019
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bbamznsreviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Way more fascinating than you'd think!!
Reviewed in Canada on November 6, 2016
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André Péloquin
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
Reviewed in Canada on March 5, 2017
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