My World To Live
Essairyn had never felt truly alive on Earth. It felt like something was missing ever since she was born, but even after nearly 20 years of mundane living, she could never pinpoint what this or the emptiness in her heart was.
Suddenly, she awakens in a grandiose, primordial forest and encounters both demons and spirits in a parallel world called Sol'h'meyr. She befriends, in particular, a sassy fox-spirit named Akari who just reincarnated after three millennia.
Essairyn is an abnormal human with elemental powers, and Akari is being chased by those of her dark past. Together, they set out on an adventure in a world of magic, danger, mystery, and intrigue.
But this not a game. That simple adventure is actually the modest beginnings in a chain of disruptions that tear even the dimensional fabric of time and space. No one, not even Essairyn, was who she thought she was. And not even the gods can change the destiny of the universes...
A single promise shook eternity’s existence.
— Fantasy || Adventure || Romance || Action || Mystery || Drama || Science Fiction —
The My World To Live (MWTL) series, the alternative short name is Canaan, is comprised of three books symbolically named My World, To Live, and My World To Live.
Two years prior, the entire story had been planned and detailed out from start to finish before actual writing. Thus, the story will never be dropped.
While the genre is largely Fantasy, the book is comprised of many other elements including a School Life (Magic Academy) story portion. MWTL has a lot of scattered symbolism and allusions, hence, the mystery aspect. The science fiction elements progressively become more pronounced, and the slow romance is a late bloomer. The female lead is strong and independent, and her backstory and identity unravel as drivers of the plot. Expect lots of action/fighting throughout and scattered philosophical and psychological themes arising. It's a human journey to find the essence of one's living and purpose. What kind of world do I wish to live for?
Any feedback is greatly appreciated. I hope to share the journey with you~!
Canaan's Original and New Covers: If you're curious about my art and the various covers I made for this series and other authors, I have a RR thread that makes free covers and shows art processes.
[October 1, 2020 Notice:
Hello, I aplogize to all followers for suddenly taking an extended hiatus. Life threw a lot at my face and then the pandemic happened, so I hadn't been able to write until around the last month when I decided to challenge myself and finish the first book in this series. I am ok now, and thank you for your patience and understanding. No words can express how much every reader means to me. RR was the first writing platform that I ever felt accomplished to any small degree, so I am forever grateful to it.
Multiples changes have been made since this final revision and writing of the ending, so please see the latest chapter detailing the update. This also includes my decision to submit this story to the 2020 Wattys contest (the deadline was Sept 30th). That means I will not be posting the updated version of this story on here until the contest is over (since I doubt I'll win anyway lol). And so, if you want to read the full, now completed (woohoo!) story, please go to my Wattpad. Thank you once again, and wishing you all the very best health and happiness! <3 ]
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I have to preface by saying I don't often do reviews, so it might be an incomplete version and not give a wholly full version of events.
'Canaan: My World To Live' is a Isekai-eqsue book except it's not a game. It follows Essairyn's journey as she finds herself in a new world: surrounded by new animals, monsters and creatures that are quite reminisicent of heartless in Kingdom Hearts.
I don't like first person stories, I realise that is purely my own opinion but in book it makes a lot of sense and the character is no less jarring for it: it has allowed Chryiss to write in a more affluent and emotive manner and I really appreciate that about the writing and for anyone who reads it, I think you'll appreciate it as well.
The writing is apt, but it is also very wordy in areas: using phrases that someone eloquent might use - which for a reader is great in exploring the exact dimensions of what someone is trying to describe, but sometimes it can miss out on the simplicity that words can offer in lieu of something blazé
The last few paragraphs on the first chapter I found were a bit hard to follow: whether it was meant to be the character or the author writing it, I couldn't clearly understand.
Not all is lost: Chryiss has managed to capture absolute vividty in exploring the world around the character. This is the part I've found I loved the most about the writing.
It works slowly, and follows a normal approach for 'what-if?' if someone were to be transported from one world to another.
The characters are well written, I only have the reservation is that Essairyn seems naturally reserved and seems to know a lot from the start, such as the part where she's flipping from tree to tree or suddenly being a craftsman with no explanation: I did question a bit whether it was realistic, since she'd suddenly transported from one world to another: that there would be more confusion.
That being said, I think it's an insightful introduction and likewise nice entry to the book. I will continue reading and see how I get on!
This is my first review on RR and I admit that this story wasn't my cup of tea. Despite this fact, I appreciate the style and uniqueness of the author's writing. This review will contain spoilers and I will stress out certain scenes or chapters to make my points clear through examples. You could decide on your own wether you agree or don't after experiencing them yourselves.
I will talk about the prologue because it felt very distinctive from the rest of the novel so far. I actually didn't get most (90%) of it. Maybe I am too stupid to read between the lines lol.
If it becomes clear at the end of the story, it could be interesting indeed, but when I first read it I felt very confused about a girl walking from one street over to the next ... and yeah that's what I got from it haha. I only kinda got a good grasp about the last paragraphs about rebirth and now that I have read the chapters I can also see some links here and there.
If it's supposed to be the transitioning of the old world to the new world, I might suggest to simplify it a bit more and make it more direct. Sure, the notes say it's intended to feel open and make room for theories but ... I didn't get anything I could base theories on. But maybe I am too stupid. I don't come across novels like this one very often. Maybe because I like it simple and straight. I dunno.
I will also mention/talk about first chapter as it feels like a good springboard to start discussing the style and grammar section. If you don't want to get spoiled, I will also add my opinions spoiler free.
The first chapter was a bit longer I think than the rest of the chapters in this novel. The reader was also warned about the incoming massive detailed descriptions. I still underestimated the author at that point.
"But realizing that she had no idea where she was going, her pace slowed, and she came to a leisurely plod. She stopped deep into the forest, gazing in wonder at its breathtaking splendor. She scrutinized the nearby foliage, noting the fascinating leafage and alluring blooms.
Peering down at one particular plant, she was in awe at the intricacy of its stalks and blades. The thin petioles formed lattices interweaved with adjoining mini leaves and florets. The spiderweb-like structures drooped from a sturdy stem, the entirety resembling that of weeping willow with wings. The whole plant seemed to shimmer as if it was covered in a veil of glistening water. She tentatively prodded one of the mesh structures and was surprised at its durability.
From the corner of her eye, a nearby bush on the right caught her attention. The plump berries looked almost iridescent, ranging from ultramarine blue to cyan and violet. Light orchid colored blossoms carried miniature berries in their centers; their silky petals curled slightly backwards to reveal the growing fruits. Just beyond the bush, golden leaves graced ecru dappled, caramel bark. The slender trees boasted luxuriant branches, and the sunlight coruscating through its foliage casted gold streams upon the forest floor.
In the verdant grasses that layered the ground, larger and more complex plants were scattered in between. Plants with leaves like fire wisps rose above the grass tops. Silky ferns were draped over tree roots, and wide palm plants with flowered-tipped stalks at their centers made their appearance in the near distance. Fallen logs and flat boulders peeked out from beneath the cover of rich, deep malachite green moss that was dotted with small multi-colored flowers. The edges of the moss melded into the soil beneath the bordering domain of the grass below"
My brain literally short-circuited because of the load of description offered to the eyes to read. The beginning of the chapter was still okay, still highlighting the special environment MC was put in. Author uses a bit too many adjectives for my taste. I felt a bit overwhelmed and my mind had to work to try imagine everything as detailed as the author described her visions.
I admire the ability of the author to put her vision of the world she created in to words this well. But I also kind of think that by making the description so massive and detailed, she inadvertedly or not forces the reader to accept her vision as she wants it to be and leaves not enough room for the reader to create his own imagination of how this world could look like. I was also a bit stressed because my english wasn't always able to translate her very eloquent words into fitting images in my mind and I ended up with less than what was available.
I could have struggled with every sentence as long as necessary to create a good picture in my head but I am a rather lazy reader (;)) and if it takes too much work or time to imagine a picture or scene I just skip it and read the next sentence. Not patient enough in this aspect haha.
The excerpt above is my example about where I thought it was just too much for me too get into it. I just skipped it because I might have felt boredom as the descriptions never ended and every corner or leaf was mentioned in one way or another.
I suggest to try and find the right balance because this descriptive writing style can be a huge boon and talent when used well and ! in the right moments.
Style and Grammar
Can't say much about grammar, there wasn't anything that turned me off. Style-wise, as mentioned above, author uses rich vocabulary, stylistic devices, descriptives writing to fill the world with nearly endless depths. Maybe too deep for my body to digest properly. While others are usually lacking in this aspect, I think it's used too often. So often that it becomes a burden to the eyes. A soup turned sour. Luckily, this only happens in the first couple chapters and gets balanced out somehow later on so that you can enjoy it if you are a fan of the english language.
As some of the other reviewers already mentioned, it feels like isekai type of story where the MC is thrown into a fantasy world, completely different from the world (earth) she had come from and then needs to manage her live somehow (depending on the authors plans). The World is being described very vividly as mentioned before, the fights have been written very detailed and easy to imagine, while still keeping a sort of flow to the scene happening. This is a strong point of the author I want to stress out.
There are certain scenes where I believe somethings just felt out of place and shouldn't have been included at that time.
The notion of reincarnation was a revelation. If reincarnation was possible in this world, Essairyn wondered if it had something to do with why she appeared here. And seeing that the demon and fox knew one another, it seemed that past memories were also retained. However, it was also possible to lose the ability to reincarnate too. These discoveries elicited ambivalent emotions inside Essairyn. Humans had always feared death and the unknown after death. Yet the prospect of reincarnation wasn’t completely palatable to Essairyn. The idea of having no definite end to existence made current lives and time seem less valuable. It was no longer about living a full life without regrets.
But the man’s barbaric words triggered something inside Essairyn. Somehow, ending a living existence through the inability to reincarnate seemed more cruel than simply dying once. Humans lived knowing they would die one day. Those with the ability to reincarnate died knowing that their goals could be achieved in the next life. But if that safety net was suddenly stripped from them while they still had these aspirations, then it was an existence with regrets. That kind of desperation and despair… How sorrowful was that kind of end?
It was a conflict, and somehow during this conflict happening, MC took herself the time to contemplate about the meaning of life, reincarnation and the cruelty of it. And she accepted it as a matter of fact, not even questioning what the heck was actually going on, why there was a talking fox and ... well, this is partially connected to the MC's character but that philosophical bit should have been introduced somewhere else along the progress of the story in my opinion.
and some info dumping that could have been avoided, or should have been avoided.
In the beginning of a certain chapter, a lot of information about the geography is being delivered but not all of it is really necessary and could be left out
Currently, Essairyn was in As’pyze, the land of humans. She had awakened in the Spirit and Demon Forest that served as a physical border between As’pyze and As’rien, the land of rain. The three other main kingdoms: As’iyse, the land of coldness; As’fyre, the land of warmth; As’eryt, the land of earth; laid westward where the Spirit-Demon Forest ended and the Eeuriyos mountain range began. She deduced all this from the Andelrin’s explanations on their map of Sol’h’meyr they showed her.
When I read it, I was confronted with a lot of places I had no connection with before and none was foreshadowed. I would leave out the parts mentioning the other three kingdoms, because I think readers will forget them anyway at this point in the story.
But thats just my personal opinion.
Another chapter is ... well the title could have been changed to 'Info dump place' and it would have been fine anyway as the there is a lot to take in and not everything would remain in the head after reading.
As others mentioned, it should be solved in another way, through sub-quests maybe, little interaction, dialogues whatever. Slowly but gradually filling the world with actual content. Show don't tell, is a good general advice.
A general thing to criticise, but maybe subjective, is the lack of progress or red thread. The MC and co travel from place to place and learn more and more on the way, but there isn't a different desire or goal to accomplish. Well, it's still just the beginning and to the end more things happen which lead to other events, so this can also be neglected.
It's still beginning to unfold, so I can't say much more to it.
On the other hand, I can talk much more about the characters and how I felt about their depictions so far. Highly spoilery of course.
In the beginning chaps, what I didn't like about MC was how she readily accepts her situation, even has fun and explores this world with enthusiasm, people might believe she was playing a game instead of fighting for her survival.
I hope there will be more scenes that show her in distress, reveal her inner thoughts and uncover the facade she is trying to keep up. Otherwise, the cover looks too much like her real self. This fact gets redeemed a little by the end so far due to her male companion, (chap 6), but makes up a lot of her appearance in the beginning I think.
Another point I might have disliked was when she 'played house' and was worried about finding ink to write I guess ... If you get transported into a foreign world, do you worry about the right writing equipment or maybe ... food?
I haven't seen her hungry or eat in the first parts at least. Distress and Fright, just on the surface. *subjective perspective*
MC is bit OP when it comes to magic abilities but those surely have their reasons. What I think makes her really OP is her immediate ability to control and use the magic to fight in combat and win victoriously against all her enemies somehow. That's bit weird I would say. Was a she a martial artist, or sword master in her previous life? Did she practice shooting or play FPS in her free time?
Being able to heal herself and others doesn't make her less op ...
Then there is a certain naivety in her I dislike. All the people she encounters tell her to be vigilant about her fox partner, and everytime they encounter other groups they get attacked by mystical demons and MC is still wondering if those things 'might' be connected.
The fox herself is very cute but for a reincarnated fox god, she didn't offer much more so far to make her stand out or stand on her own.
I liked the rest of the side cast very much, the many fantastical creatures and especially Darren who looks like a stark contrast to MC.
What I hoped to see more would be the differences between the native people and new earth people (travellers), in their behaviour, traditions or ethics. So far, the people MC and co has met looked very typical rural living people.
That's the end so far for my review. I tried focussing more on what I didn't like compared to what I liked, because the other reviewers already mentioned all the good point and I didn't want to sound too repetitive ;)
'Wish' the author good luck in accomplishing her 'dream' and writing this novel to the end lol
Style: As the title says this story is made for those who want to escape to a new world and enjoy the journey more than the destination. Or at least, that is what the style of this story is showing me. It is heavily focused on this new world in which our protagonist arrives and how she explores the new wonders around her. The whole novel transmits a free-spirited feeling of exploration and wonder that is one of the things that makes this story special.
Grammar score: English is not my first language, so I can't say much besides that I didn't notice any major mistakes and the author wields a rich vocabulary (especially when it comes to descriptions).
Story: It is hard to tell where the story leads, the chapters are short so the story hasn't gotten that far yet. For now, it sticks to that free-spirited style with no clear plot or goal other than the exploration of this new world. But judging by the heavy and detailed world-building, I guess that's going to change pretty soon. Hopefully, still retaining that same sense of wonder and exploration that makes this story great.
Character Score: Again, the same problem of the lack of chapters makes it hard to rate this aspect. In my opinion, the bond between the fox and our main character is still a little superficial and their personalities, their motives to do what they do could be more detailed. But again there are few chapters so there is still time to explore their personalities and for them to develop.
Overall, is four stars mainly because the story is still young. Till now ( chapter five-2) is great and I will keep reading it. It has a lot of potential and depending on how it goes it could go downhill or become a really good five star. Judging from the great world-building I'm betting for the second.
The writing and the quality of the story is almost perfect, The details explanation, and the description of her surroundings and their activity was spot on.
The world the author has dreamt up as the setting of this novel is simply amazing. How this amazement is delivered however, makes the amazement a very one-sided thing, as sometimes, the awe the author has for their world seems at odds with his ability to bring it across.
The characters seem badly paced in their reactions and actions, as if a part of their arc had been cut out and abridged into a sinlge sentences without weight.
The author also tries to overwhelm the reader with an endless amount of intricate descriptions and does not let go off their verbose style during action scenes, which slows the reading down at the worst times.
In the first chapters are several allusions to video games, so it comes as an ironic twist that, the way many things are explained in detail, makes it seem as if the reader is playing through the tutorial of a video game that thinks the player is a braindead idiot and tries to introduce every element and mechanic to the player within the first 30 minutes.
To drive my point home, I'd like to take an earlier section as a perfect example for the story's own shortcomings. A physically impeded character is transported to a world of unlimited physical boundaries and decides to take a run, after so many years of living in a crippled body. Understandably, this would be a very important moment in the character's development and personality, and it is said that she takes in very many different impressions, yet the entire thing takes up only a medium-sized paragraph and is without any vivid descriptions.
It's understandable, that the world is beautiful and fantastic, but it would be better to let a slow discovery tell us that, rather than give us an omniscient tutorial-character to explain everything.
There exists a great vision in the author's imagination, but they just can't seem to free that vision and bind it into words, leaving its true beauty invisible. As the author will improve, they should revisit earlier chapters and re-arrange things, giving characters unique attitudes and chip away the unenecessary and excessive, to let the necessary and impressive shine through.
Good luck to the author in that endeavour. This world and story is a gem worth polishing.
Let me begin by saying that My World To Live is one of the fanciest fantasy stories I have ever read. The story beings with our MC reflecting on her life while she walking in the rain during the night, it did not seem interesting at first glance for obvious reasons but that all is changed when she suddenly steps into another world. This is where the ball gets rolling - we are told of how she adapts to this world while discovering her elemental-like magical powers and battling demon beasts. She also befriends a fox spirit who tells her of this world and wishes to accompany her while she adventures around.
Style and Grammar
I am not sure how to describe the author's style, to be honest. They start with big paragraphs of vivid descriptions which are full of their rich vocabulary, however, it gets a bit boring and jarring to the reader because of the sheer amount of it. Not to mention, although this style creates an atmosphere of escapism by describing every little detail, it also makes it harder for the reader to digest it all. In the later chapters, however, this is more or less fixed for the most part, but it tends to show up sometimes in the form of info-dumps .
The first few chapters involve intense world-building and the story has no actual direction to it except exploring the world around. Therefore, except for the world building and the air of escapism, it doesn't really motivate me to read further. But, I do think the author will introduce a conflict soon after they is done setting the stage.
As for the characters, I can't really say much. In all honesty, I find Essairyn's character not really... suiting my taste. But it is just my opinion, I like Akair and wish to know more about her.
Overall, I like the allusions and subtle hints that the author manages to weave in and coupling them with the lovely world which is much fleshed out, it really makes me forget my surroundings the moment I pick it up. Thus, I will be eagerly waiting for more chapters.
Not yet done reading it but I will take it as simple as possible.
The synopsis says it all and I like how the author put it in a general way.
Style score: 5/5
- The pace is really smooth and I love how it was written. Its vivid, almost like you were there in front of the scene, spectating it face to face. I don't know why, but it's really calming and relaxing. I'm quite amused because it's more on like appreciation of the surrounding and I don't hate it being descriptive.
Story score: 4/5
-Not much to say about this but its about a girl who was transported in another world and got a companion. I'm little curious on what they're gonna do and what conflicts will they have in their journey.
Grammar score: 4.5/5
-The author's rich vocabulary says it all. I didn't find that much major mistakes. (P. S. HAHAHAHAHAHA, REALLY SORRY ABOUT IT. MISTOOK THE GRAMMAR FROM ANOTHER NOVEL.)
Character score: 5/5
-I really like the MC's monologue on the first(?) chapter because I like rain and it really made me happy picturing herself in that rain. Haha. I can't say much about her personality because I still can't get a grip on her but I love her reactions. I'm still waiting on her character improvement.
-I love the fox but I'm still feeling wary about it.
Overall, this story is very interesting in the sense that of the perspective of the charatcer. The first few chapters were using 'she', so i thought it would remain like that but it soon changed to the characters name, which is very interesting due to the difference of persepctives. The world and background setting of the novel is clearly well illustrated, especially in ch2. Nver seen a novel which actually portrayed the setting to such an extent. And this simply continues. I like the phrase "A world is like a mirror, hence the meaning of meyr", its very unique. I also enjoy the pacing of the story, as each chapter is not too long and ends on a note that will entice the readee to simply read the nxt chapter.