Armada, Ernest Cline's sophomore outing—following his popular video-game-centric novel Ready Player One—draws more from 1980s films than video games but still delivers the fan experience. Cline's story of an outcast youth called on to save the world from aliens seems straight out of a sci-fi movie, because it is. Armada is an homage to 40 years of sci-fi and action movies, as well as first-person shooter and real-time strategy games. The novel's invading armada behaves exactly like pop-culture aliens—a fact we're reminded of all too often as Cline's story refuses to drift too far from its source material in content, tone or meta reminders not to expect any surprises. Filled with military conspiracies, eccentric nerds and sly nods to works Cline clearly loves, Armada is still a fun ride with great high-tech battles—more than enough familiar fun to enjoy one more pool-side read before the summer sun sets.