SOCIAL SCIENCES

Gamelife: A Memoir

Farrar. Sept. 2015. 224p. ISBN 9780865478282. $25. MEMOIR
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Clune (English, Case Western Reserve Univ.; White Out: The Secret Life of Heroin) recalls a childhood in a rather unique way: by reflecting on the lessons he learned growing up in the suburbs of Illinois through the lens of seven computer games that came to be associated with important events in his early life. This is an extremely well-written retrospective, and while Clune views his childhood with nostalgia, at the same time he acknowledges negative (and ongoing) feelings of confusion, fear, and discomfort he experienced as an adolescent. To that end, the author succeeds in not only sharing poignant memories but also confronting the rose-tinted glasses we tend to wear when discussing the past. Clune's latest is highly recommended for adults whose childhood has been influenced by gaming, as it will cause them to explore their relationship with escapism. Teens with similar interests may also find enlightenment among Clune's words.
VERDICT This strong memoir delves into a topic that will resonate with increasingly more people as gaming becomes a mainstream hobby.

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