- Sexual Content
- Traumatising content
A teenager struggling after the death of his best friend finds himself in a fantasy world - one which seems to be an amalgamation of every Dungeons and Dragons campaign they ever played together. Now he's stuck trying to find the answers to why he's there and what this world is trying to say. The most terrifying answer might be that this world is an expression of the person he was back on Earth.
This work is complete.
- Overall Score
- Style Score
- Story Score
- Grammar Score
- Character Score
- Total Views :
- Average Views :
- Followers :
- Favorites :
- Ratings :
- Pages :
Leave a review
I started reading this story at the beginning of this year, though I had known about it for much longer than that. I started on a whim, trying to find a way to burn some time between assignments. I quickly discovered that doing so was one of the worst mistakes I could have made, since I could not stop reading even when the next assignment was nearly due.
Needless to say, I like the story. Like its characters, it has some flaws, though I think that is fitting. Also like the characters, the plot develops along the way. In the beginning it felt like a pretty cut and dry isekai; become strong, complete X goal for Y reason, happily ever after. And at the end of the day, it is just that. MC gets stronger, completes goals, happily ever after. What really makes this story special is that X and Y evolve as the characters develop and polish their flaws.
There were points along the journey that I didn't love, as I'm sure everyone could agree, points where I wanted to stop. But looking back now that I've finished, I'm very glad that I didn't. I may not have enjoyed every second, but I think the fact I read all 6k pages is a testament to how uncommon those seconds were.
I can't put into words how cathartic the resolution was. It was perfect, a final bit of character development that completes the journey perfectly. Sadly, I can't say more without delving into spoiler territory and as much as I would love to do so, I have standards to uphold (no I don't, I just like to pretend I do) and this review is rambling enough as it is.
(Side note: I've always found it ironic how people say 'I've no words to describe ____', as saying that is a way to describe the thing they say they don't have the words to describe.)
I've read a lot of LitRPGs, and Worth The Candle is the best of them.
The first chapters of Worth the Candle will be very familiar to most readers on this site, and seem very similar to other stories. The main character, Juniper, has a special ability that makes him grow stronger faster than everyone else. There are standard blue menu boxes and skill pop-ups all over the place.
However, if you continue to read the story, the levels, skills and quests eventually take a backseat to excellent worldbuilding and lots of character development.
Juniper travels to many different locations in Aerb throughout the story, and the author makes every city feel like a place where people actually live. There are explanations about how the local government works and descriptions about the most important parts of their economy. The side characters have distinct personalities, interesting backstories and motivations that exist independently of Juniper.
If you are a fan of LitRPG, this story has everything that you enjoy in the genre. There are level ups, detailed and creative magic systems and awesome magical items. If you aren't a fan of LitRPG, I would still recommend you give Worth The Candle a shot. A complex plot, immersive worldbuilding and multifaceted characters are waiting for you if you do.
This story is incredibly good. On the surface it's an RPG about an incredibly crunchy/stat heavy system set in a world that's always on the brink of falling apart.
In actuality it's an almost intentionally disorienting story about the main character dealing with depression and loss. Now, don't let that drive you away. The RPG sections are done VERY well and I suppose you can sort of skip over the emotional depth (a good portion of which is done via flashback) if you want to. That said, as much as I enjoy the RPG portion of the book, the parts devoted to broken people trying to fix themselves are where it really shines.
This lost a half star because some of the book was so hard to read that I simply skipped over parts of chapters. I didn't take more than half a star off because I 100% agree with the author including those sections. Its more a testament to the author's skill at creating believable characters that I connect with emotionally and then putting them in positions where they have to confront the stupid, immoral or just bad things they've done in the past. Some parts of the story seem intentionally disorienting (the lack of chapter numbers and the flashbacks in particular left me a bit lost), but they honestly do a very good job of feeding into the overarching sense of desolation and confusion that serves as the foundation of the work.
Very good- nothing else to say really
The story is great. Flat out. It's almost a metastory, the story of how a storyteller tells a story and using metaknowledge of that narrative to try to gain an advantage while still always being on the knife edge of failure. It does a very good job of establishing political elements, stakes, and pacing.
The characters are why you read this. All of them are broken in some way and the adventure is almost more about them healing than it is about saving the world. As good as all the other elements of this story are, the characters are what take it to the next level.
This will probably get buried considering I'm posting it like 6 months after everyone else, but just read it. It's really good.
As another immigrant from AO3, I've read all nine hundred thousand and change words of Worth the Candle that have yet to be released here, and there's one thing I feel comfortable spoiling: it's fucking great.
The worldbuilding is meticulous and expansive, reconciling a wide range of ideas into a coherent, interconnected whole. Part of the premise is that the setting is built from many worlds invented by the protagonist, and the depth of thought shows. There are throwaway lines that could serve as seeds for stories in their own right, dozens of species, and more forms of magic than you can shake a stick at.
Worth the Candle is technically an isekai, but Juniper's relationship with the world he now inhabits is a crucial part of the story. Some parts are played straight, others subverted, but it's a more serious exploration of the genre than anything elsewhere. The characters themselves are all as compelling as they are flawed, and to paraphrase one of them, it's beautiful to watch the cast struggle against and overcome their weaknesses.
Honestly, I wish I could forget everything and dive back in to experience the whole thing all over again, which is just about the highest compliment I can pay to fiction in any medium. That's unfortunately impossible, but fresh readers can and should savor this story.
Formerly the top original novel in AO3, what separates Worth the Candle from the other stories in the genre is the maturity with which treats its main characters.
The heroes are shitty to each other, but they're called out for it, and learn to become better people. They get hurt and still continue to deal with the consequences several books later. Denouement is denied even when it would make for a "kickass" scene. And the eventual payoffs are so much better off for it.
All this combined with the right amount of action, humor and messing around with extremely original magic systems make this one of the best fantasy stories I've ever read. Glad it's finally here.
I really liked this story for the first 40 chapters or so. Then things started grating on me.
- The trope where his companions get random power ups in order to keep relevant.
- The increasing levels of obsession with trying to game the system and the endless discussions about narratives. (far too meta and immersion breaking)
- The MC becomes increasingly sociopathic in trying to manipulate higher levels of loyalty from his companions.
- Mary kept keeping things from the group for 'reasons'.
- The endless whining about his cheat level ability to gain aptitude in basically everything isn't fast enough or good enough.
- The crowning moment of "nope nope nope I'm outskies" is when he meets God and whines about evil and suffering. It's not so much that I mind objecting to suffering per se, since I'm whining about my suffering from reading this story. It's the hypocritical nature of it. He wishes to erase suffering from the world and clone his ex girlfriend while keeping his current one, while also complaining about his budding harem. I'm sorry but if you don't want to hook up with someone, all you have to do is say sorry not interested and move on with your life. Then there's the preoccupation with everything being a Clue or that his piloting skills should come into play and I just find myself thinking. "I don't actually care about any of these characters, I don't care where they end up, so I should just stop reading and put myself out of my misery. "
Spoiler alert, this story is apparently going to be at least 160 chapters and a million words.
In short, this is one of the best written, near perfectly edited stories with characters that will constantly talk about the nature of reality and narratives and will bicker endlessly. As of ch 79, I don't think the story or characters have progressed that far.
First I'll say that this novel is my fav. across the 100s I've read. I'm a big fan of meta-narrative stories and this one does a really good job. A lot of stories fizzle out when seen from the perspective of the narration making the plots sometimes irrelevant but not this one.
Also, this novel falls in the category of what they are calling rational-fiction and this novel seems to be the apt example of the genre. I've not seen a better world building done in any of the recent novels. There might be some minor plot holes etc but the world build around just forces me to keep reading forward.
The fav. part of the novel is the conversations b/w the friends. I'm exactly like the two main friends who love to argue/debate/discuss and reading it was a delight.
WTC is one of the best works of fiction - works of art - that has ever existed on this platform. I highly recommend it. Really, I cannot overstate how much of his lifeblood that the author poured into this work. It is very clear.
Now that it's over, I look forward to the author's next great work.
One of my favorite works of fiction of all time. It just finished so I thought I'd toss it a review. An amazing ride that sticks the landing.
The style is great. The framing of events through flashbacks gives the story a great personal feeling usually lacking in isekai. Fight scenes are excellent and some of my favorite in all of fiction.
The story itself is of course excellent, but where this work truly excels is it's world building. The sheer amount and variety beggars belief and it all has a great amount of thought put into it while still embodying the kind of expansive all splatbooks DnD feeling.
Don't have much to say on grammar. The story is well edited in this respect and there are very few mistakes. It's well done.
All of the characters in this story are great. They move according to their own internal motivations, and interact in interesting ways. One of the great strengths of this story is how the colorful cast bounce off of each other and how there is always more than meets the eye. It's all told through the perspective of Juniper for the most part and he often misses things. Careful reading is rewarded and his views are imperfect. Just excellent characterization the whole way through.
Go read it!
This story is a bit strange to review for me. I read it for 1.6k pages, which is longer than many published trilogies, yet I didn't enjoy it for most of that stretch. It kept my interest by wanting to find out what happens next but after 10 or so chapters with minor plot progress I gave up.
It is too focused on characters and tangents of thought. There were entire pages inside () that you could just skip and miss almost no content. Why is that in the story at all? There is also a lot of focus on things that happened before the story started, which bogs down the pacing and is in most cases only tangentially relevant to where we are in the story.
It boils down to me not wanting to get through the writing, character thoughts and digressions to get further in the plot and world (the parts I enjoy).