- Traumatising content
Touch is a story about a boy named James, and his friends: a group of young, superpowered people brought together by trauma; all trying, in their own ways, to come to terms with what that trauma means to them and who they want to be in response to it. This is a learning process, and mistakes are made, but they grow, learn, and adapt to these difficulties in ways that some might say only young people can.
While it may look it at first, this is not intended as a sad story, merely an honest one. I wanted to make the characters human, and unfortunately, that means that difficulties hit them in very real ways through the story, but then again, they have some equally human moments of warmth between one another as they grow.
Triggers: Explores the aftereffects and recovery process of sexual abuse, and some other forms of physical abuse. I like to think I avoided making it edgy, but you deserve to be informed. Some readers have told me that it can feel a bit too real at times. A bit too honest.
If you like what you read, feel free to comment or review. I like the feedback. Or you can vote for Touch on TopWebFiction.
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Anger. Fear. Happines. Excitement. Desperation. Europhia. Disgust. Awe.
All the emotions i felt while reading Touch, broken down to eight words. And they can't even begin to express how much i loved this read. How much the characters matter to me. How real they feel. How...amazing this story is.
I'm not going to blab on too much here, just get down to the nity gritty.
Touch tells the story on three young adults in the modern day world with superpowers. Seen this before? Well, think again. There are no superheros or supervillians here, at all. Powers are hidden from the world, any evidence of their passing carefully written over by the well aware governments of the world.
These powers are only manifest through trauma and stress, meaning that more often than not, those that recieve them are not the friendliest of people. james, our primary MC, recieves his after being raped. Sounds disurbing? Well, it damn well should be. Rhytmn doesn't gloss any details over, realistically portraying Trauma and it's effects on the human psyche. I won't go and spoil the other characters, but all of them have had horrible things happen to them in the past, and this makes them so much more interesting then many of the blatantly fake 'revenge MC's" you see by the dozen on RRL. This isn't some event that happened and turns the MC into a ruthless killing machine, this is horrors happening to children, events that scar them for life.
This might turn off somereaders who want generic power creep MCs or glorify this, but i appluad Rhythm for the the way they portrayed this. RRL needs more stories that research this sort of stuff as much as you do.
Lets be honest. I like Rhytm's style and have absolutley no critique for it. The dialogue is presented well, the action flows much better than most stories i've read and the plot moves at just the right pace. Everything just clicked for me when reading this. A story, no matter how epic or emotional it might seem, is nothing without a good writer to convey it, and Rhythm doesn that beautifully.
Again, the grammar in Touch is FLAWLESS. Nuff said. Either Rhythm is the God of Grammar or it has an entire editing team on standby. Don't know which one is sacrier to me.
Characters: ( WIP Will expand this later. )
I'm not going to mince words, Touch's cast is amazing. Small at first, but steadily growing. Spread out and varied, it's downrigh amazing.
A challenging read, one that constantly asks you if you have the balls to turn the page, or just run back to your normal weebo reads. But is it worth it? Five hundred pages in, and i say YES.
Touch was worth every page, every minute i spent reading it. And i WILL be back for more.
It's weird that this story is here in RRL, it really shouldn't be. The quality of this story goes far beyond anything posted on the site (apart from the top 5). So If you're looking for a legit book about the lives of people with superpowers (with the nitty gritty details, no gary sues showcasing 100% positivity and good) then this is the novel for you. Everything seems to have been planned for and is interconnected. The characters have depth and we might actually got some sort of plot later on. Thnx for the read, Author.
First things first, Touch is not a story for everyone. It handles its subjects tactfully, but even so, this is a story which is fundamentally about troubled children and painful emotion. I don't see that going away.
I'll be honest and state straight out that this isn't my kind of story. It's a bit of a slow trek, with prolonged descriptions of the minutea of emotions and motives of its characters. That's not necessarily a bad or a good thing, but it is something to be aware of if you're looking for a quicker story. Heavy detail and a slow(ish, but measured) pace seems to be the writer's style.
That said, what it does, it does well. The writing is very technically solid. The characters and dialogue are genuine, even in their awkwardness. Nothing is 'prettied up' for the sake of the reader. There was a brief conversation between a husband and wife which made me cringe, until I realized it was an honest representation of a real pair of cringe-worthy parents. Touch can definitely boast of very genuine and 3-dimensional characters, all of which are easy to empathize with.
The writer begins early laying the framework for larger plotlines later, and there are enough glimpses of strangeness to keep intrigue high from start straight on through. There are strange and interesting things going on in Touch's otherwise seemingly normal world of car rides, schoolyards, and bedrooms.
STRENGTHS: Well written from a technical standpoint. The pacing is slow, but consistent, and it handles many perspective changes smoothly. From the first chapter, the plot leads towards interesting reveals, and the writer knows how to sprinkle questions and answers both to keep that rolling with a good pace of escalation. If this is your genre, it's quality writing and story-telling.
WEAKNESSES: Even taking the slow pace into account, scenes can linger for too long on occasion. Excessive detail can be given in explanation where hints or implications might carry more weight. This does get better as the story progresses, though.
CONCLUSION: Touch is an emotional drama set against a backdrop of super-human powers and mystery. It's very difficult to ascribe strengths and weaknesses to it because of how strongly preference factors into enjoyment. The story is slow going, the descriptions long and detailed, the content fairly unsettling. But the characters have soul, and the mystery is definitely there. For some people, that may be exactly what they're looking for. But for others, perhaps not their style.
If you're looking for quick action or grand adventure, this isn't the place. But if you're looking for honest, emotionally driven drama with a healthy splash of intrigue and strange powers, give Touch a look.
The stuff the characters are going through are real life things that actually happen and despite this being fiction what with the superpowers they have actual responses a'real' person would have the plot is great and the writing amazing not to mention that the characters themselves are well developed with plenty of though put into them
in a lot of stories, I'll gravitate to one character and be frustrated when the pov changes...
but in this novel, I've actually found every single character compelling in some way~
they all seem to be like actual people, instead of just caricatures of evil/good to further a plot~
Although this story has a lot of mature themes, it isn't gratuitous and doesn't continually step on the main characters in order to invoke pitty. it starts off with tramatic events, and they are handled really well, but the plot also has many magical/vigilante arcs which are really fun~ It also holds a lot more tension than usual because, unlike other stories, the main characters can and do fail.
The logistics of this world are very well done too. Unlike most modern magic/superhero stories, there isn't the darker undertone of someone inexplicably going out of their way to make characters' lives terrible for no apparent reason. Motivations and plot points make sense for the characters and nearly all of them are redeemable and sympathetic. and those that aren't, at least think they are.
Overall, the story is very exciting and is easily one of my favorite novels on this site~
This story is the best on RoyalRoadl. The realistic reactions and emotions, are of a far higher quality than any others on here, and even the works of formally published authors. I cannot wait for more, my favourite character as of now is most definitely Tasha...She is, seemingly the muse for all displays of sassiness, crude-but-lovable and lighthearted even in the worst of situation characters. Her issues are...different than the others, but no less serious...though how well she's handling her living situation leads me to believe there is another issue that caused her powers to awaken. if that is true, my heart will undoubtly shatter into nonillions of pieces. This story is wonderful, and I hope you the best Rythminthemind.
I enjoyed the story overall. It was definitely a slow start, but the later chapters were more intriguing once the plot got rolling. I like the author's exploration of superpowers in ordinary people, and a lot of the minor details about the inner workings of the powers made my nerdy side giddy. I like Tasha so far. I think she's a well fleshed-out character with fun dialogue and a lot of agency. The rest I don't connect with so much. It seems like a lot of them mill around without much direction to them. Some of the prose was a bit hard to read. Especially the fight scenes made my head spin. I'd say it's still pretty good in terms of web fiction, I've seen far worse out there. Some of the dialogue made me wince, but there were some really sweet lines in there, also. Overall, good job. Thanks for a nice read, Rhythm. I'll be looking to pick this back up once you've updated with a few more chapters.
Totally different from anything you will find on RRL. Interesting take on heros and their dark origins story. Forsure would recommend this story to anyone that enjoys good characters and are okay with dark topics.
Touch is an excellent story that depicts trauma realistically while developing a pretty interesting premise of magic and superpowers.
The basic premise of the story is that a boy named James manifests powers after a traumatic incident, and discovers other powered individuals who went through their own traumas. This group resolves to help each other deal with the new world of powers they find themselves in as the reader slowly becomes exposed to the real nature of the world and scope of events.
While the scope of the story and its associated stakes do scale up significantly, the core of the story remains focused on its characters adapting to these revelations while dealing with their trauma. Many superpower stories that feature trauma-based triggers for powers quickly gloss past the traumatic incident so that the story can to the superhero story it wants to be. Touch is not like that, as it takes a slow and measured approach to presenting characters dealing with a recovering from their trauma. The author doesn’t pull punches in the handling of these issues, but is also not overly gratuitous in their presentation. The actions and reactions of the characters are very thought through and very realistic, leading to some sections that are so frank and mature that they almost become hard to read.
If this was all the story was, it would be decent, and might have faced the fate of becoming the story of some pitiable characters that one just doesn’t want to read. However, the introduction of the magical side of the world and the true scope of world events neatly sidesteps this pitfall and leads the story to the other part of what makes it so good. Once the reader has been introduced to this via the relevant characters, one really understands how out of their depth the main characters are in this world they’ve been tossed into.
The story gets built up from many angles, and really starts to shine when its component parts get forced together and all the characters have to deal with the implications of those events. Its hard to say too much about the story without spoiling some reveals and discoveries that are best read instead, but in a broad sense, the story is a solid and clearly well-planned one with a lot of potential that is slowly and steadily being realized.
The characters are the true strength of this story. The main characters are all complex and well-developed individuals who are more than just victims, and who have journeys that are very easy to get invested in. The supporting characters are also well fleshed out and interesting, with motivations of their own in the grand scheme of events. This story doesn’t have any cartoonishly evil villains since it’s not that type of story, with its antagonists simply being messed-up or twisted individuals, and characters in their own right, rather than just being set up as stepping stones for the MCs to beat.
The writing style of the story is easy to read and follow, but the style of the story as a whole is one element that could be improved. As the story has grown in scope and complexity, adding characters and storylines in the process, its POV style storytelling has occasionally faltered. The nature of the way events are presented across chapters does a good job overall, but in hindsight can sometimes leave some characters feeling neglected as a function of the style. To reiterate, this is not a big issue, but simply a function of the directed/deep third-person writing style used. The style is great at developing characters and show-not-tell, which shows in the story, but can also be narrative-limiting. I don’t think anything should change, but being aware of these style drawbacks and working to account for them would be an easy way to make the story even better.
Finally, the story is well edited, with few grammar issues.
Overall, I would strongly recommend this story for its trauma depictions and characters, while noting that it is not a fast-paced or action-packed progression story, and so might not be for everyone.
(Review as of Chapter 6.6)