- Traumatising content
There are two things to know about the Wick: first, climbing it is tantamount to suicide, and second, reaching its mountainous peak guarantees an audience with the Gods. For years, Celeste has watched expeditions climb the Wick in pursuit of scientific knowledge and glory, longing for a Script which would allow her to follow in their footsteps.
However, after the unthinkable happens, Celeste’s ambitions become reality. Together with a dysfunctional quintet of child prodigies, she leaves the only home she’s ever known and enters a treacherous new world—a world of ancient mysteries, eldritch abominations, and impossible truths—in the hopes of reaching the top of the Wick and discovering something worth living for.
But Celeste is not alone in her discontent and search for meaning. A nomadic android with no past and no future works to uncover the mysteries of his creation. An ambitious politician fights to make her mark on a world that wants her dead. An ageless mastermind vows to tear down the heavens themselves. A people destined for genocide rebel against their oppressors with the dream of building a better tomorrow. The flames of unrest burn ever brighter, and no one will make it through unscathed.
New chapters every 4-5 days.
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I don’t think I have ever read something like this. I don’t think I have even heard of something like this. The story starts with an AI engineer [or something of the like] but we take a hard left from there and move into the world of fantasy which does not include the previously mentioned character. It seems that this new world is a simulation, as all hints point to that, but it is not explicitly mentioned.
The fantasy world rich. It is rich in world-building, rich in characters and rich in magic. We have gods dictating every action of the character’s lives from deciding eating something for dinner to mundane chores. At the same time, we have the gods bringing the dead back to life, after MC and her team died.
However, this is not it. The plot of the novel is convoluted and thick and I love it. We have brain mapping and usage for military usage. Then we have a simulation. We have an AI that is trapped. Then we have gods leaving hints for the MC to discover and come to her own conclusion. In short, there is a lot going on.
The grammar is good and the story flows nicely. If have to point out one thing, then I would say that the author has a tendency to randomly leave large paragraphs of text. If these walls of texts are removed, the story would be A+!
The first chapter is almost heartbreaking as we get to witness firsthand the grief of a child when she suddenly and inexplicably loses a parent. The loss she feels is obvious as she throws herself into her work developing an AI that will change the course of human history, called GENESIS. Even the choice of name for it indicates its importance. The next chapter after the prologue begins the story of a different character, who in some ways seems very similar to the character in the prologue. It hasn't been revealed yet, but I get the impression that the story is set inside the test simulation being run by the AI. The world is unique with each person's fate being determined in advance by the 'gods' which people have access through a tablet to see any significant events that happen throughout their life called a 'script'. It reminds me of an NPC's routine. It is a very interesting psycological twist to get me hooked.
Style is good, the author has clearly planned the plot in advance with a specific underlying mystery to be solved as you read.
Story is great, the initial character, Claudia's grief immediate draws the reader in before moving onto reveal a mysterious AI that will alter people's way of life in an attempt to save a dying world.
Grammar is top-notch, there were no obvious mistakes that ruin my immersion.
Characters are intriguing, the characters immediately feel real and draw the reader in through their empathy towards someone else's loss.
The first chapter is so well done - in fact, has a huge emotional draw. But then the newly introduced POV character and setting disappear completely, with no connection at all to what comes next.
I can appreciate it that the author doesn't spoon-feed the reader and I'm sure the character will reappear at some point. But it did strike me as a bit of a bait and switch to create mystery. Perhaps offering the chapter as a prologue, or later in the story, would be more appropriate.
At this point, the settings change drastically and several new characters are introduced. There are shifts in the state of consciousness, at times. It's an interesting technique, but it could stand more hints - I found it hard to keep track of where the characters were and what had actually happened ...
Again, since it's early in the story, I really have to stay general - it's a complex tale and things aren't always as they seem ... even the monsters! The style is solid and consistent and creates an interesting path of mystery and history.
Some of the characters are young prodigies, so the advanced vocabulary goes with the territory - although, at times, I found the characters' self-dialogue not very believable.
The grammar is very good with no distractions.
All in all, there's more than enough room for a lot of team-style action and monster fighting. With such a lofty world goal, I'd expect it'll be considerably deeper than that. The plot is easy to invest in, and the hope of the very first character returning is enough to keep me turning pages.
Story- I won't go into any major spoilers, but the story deals with some very interesting aspects. What if everything you did was determined by the God's in advance, what if you could get to know in advance if doing a certain action would be beneficial to you, or completely irrelevant. These kinds of stories, the ones that break a cycle of fate/predestined outcome that is dictated for the main character are one of my favorites. Is there a point of living such a life, a mere pawn of the gods that is forever shackled to their whims? The scripts is a very interesting mechanic that I want to know more about.
Character- I don't see any issues with the main character so far, but there's going to be many different point of views introduced later on so I don't want to judge too early. Celeste comes across as a rational and relatable character so far.
Grammar- High quality grammar and don't see many issues. The author has a good grasp over the English language, the story is well articulated.
Style- Lot of effort has been put into perfecting the prose and dialogue in the story, the results of which can be clearly seen. The worldbuilding is fantastic despite the story only begining, with intricately crafted mechanics that I want to know more about.
After a mysterious opening, the story doesn't hesitate before launching into danger and harrowing experiences for the cast. Ominous hints and layers of mystery combine to provide an interesting introduction to Baton. Hints of a Tower of God-esque mystery have left me wanting more and eager to learn the reality of what's happening.
Overall the story is well-paced, with enough left unsaid to provide motivation to continue reading. Easy answers seem far off, but small details add up in interesting ways to provide hints for the reader as to what's really happening. Although the style is slightly odd with flashbacks and seemingly disparate stories creating minor clashes, Baton is well worth giving a chance.
The first chapter is emotional, a little bit raw, and just overall pretty awesome. It just drew me in right away and led the story with such an strong hook. The little bits of the world shown in it was interesting and leaves the readers with lots of questions.
I was a bit lukewarm about the switch in character perspectives and setting change, but the characters grew on me and after chapter 1.2 I was looking forward to their story.
Reading this was a delight. The prose was smooth and descriptive, the dialogue between characters reflected their relationships well, and it looked great. It might be a little strange to mention in a review but I liked how the paragraphs fit onto the page. It made things flow and also made me want to keep reading.
It's great how quickly things move and how many concepts and the like are put in without feeling forced. The chapters are longer than what I would consider RR normal but they don't feel long because of how well things are paced and organized.
I'm interested in seeing the journey of other characters and when they'll be introduced since Celeste seems very layered. I think the choice to go with a first person perspective adds a ton to the characters' relatability.
Overall, I'm surprised this doesn't have more readers. If you're iffy about whether to sit down and read this story, just go and do it. The chapters are a little long and might seem a bit daunting if you're used to shorter chapters but they're worth nearly every word.
I have an idea about what's happening so the spoiler tag is speculation.
I'm guessing that Claudia or the machine mentioned in the first chapter are the Gods they're referring to. They worked on some kind of device, the scripts I suppose, that guides the people like Celeste to reach their potential or something similar.
I couldn't be any dumber. Wanna know why? I didn't ration this out, I could've done a chapter a day but I sat down and caught up in the matter of a few hours. My bad, I fucked up. Now I gotta wait for the next chapter, which I'll be eagerly awaiting.
Style - My god(s) this is well written. Everything. Everything is well done. The rich, descriptive prose. The dialogue and character interactions. And the worldbuilding. Holy shit the worldbuilding. I'll never not be amazed by how many concepts this author introduces, and how they all seem to meld together to form this weird, post-apocalyptic/futuristic society on the brink of collapse. Every time we get a sweet, sweet nibble of exposition, I just want more. I've never said I wanted an infodump before, but just give me one already!
Story - I started out thinking this was Blade Runner meets Control meets Terminator, but it ended up being Blade Runner meets Made in Abyss meets Worm. The story (mostly) follows Celeste, a member of a society devoted to climbing the Wick, a mysterious entity that crashed into Earth an unknown period of time ago. Those who reach the top of the Wick are said to be able to talk to the Gods, who guide this society with tablets called Scripts, which predict their entire lives. Thing is, climbing it is basically a death sentence. The Wick's arrival may have also brought on eldritch abominations, but that's neither here nor there.
Grammar - Nothing to complain about, great job!
Character - So, right now, I've only got Celeste to go off of. Though, the synopsis tell me there's gonna be other PoVs. Celeste hasn't done a ton just yet, but she's a really interesting character. Her inferiority complex compared to her friends and sister, Eris, make for some really great moments. However, because this story is still in the early stages, I can't say much about her yet. However, I'm sure (like everything else in this story), she's going to blossom into an amazing character.
Fantastic job, author. This is among some of the best I've ever read here.
I started reading this story expecting one thing and getting something else entirely. The first chapter lacks the majority of elements that the blurb describes, even being set in a near-future where the world is going to crap. What immediately lept out at me was how well written it was. Not only was a very believable future presented with minimalist brushstrokes that evoked more than they had the right to but the POV character's emotions when she loses her father were poignant and touching. As someone who has lost several family members in the last three and a half years, it resonated with me on a deep and personal level.
Then, when we switch to a different world with Gods and fantastic elements, it is a bit of whiplash but no less fun for the ride. There are monsters and magic and all sorts of things to explore. I look forward to seeing how the two combine!
Style: The style is excellent. There are no slips in tense or POV.
Grammar: This is excellent writing. I didn't see any errors as I was reading.
Character: The characters are fantastic. They feel like real, living and breathing human beings. I look forward to watching them grow and experience the story.
Story: Excellent. I am fully invested. The only reason this isn't 5 stars quite frankly is that I didn't want to leave the first chapter's vision of future earth for the fantastical one in chapter two! I believe there will be cross-over and such as time goes on, but it was so gritty and fully fleshed that I wanted to stay there! Awww...who am I kidding, this is a five as well.
I feel like a gushing fan-boy, but seriously, read this story!
ok, first off the gore tag is not there just to be extra safe. Early on there's a bit where the MC (of the moment) gets dismembered, and we get pages of her experiencing the gory disassembly of her friends and self. In great detail. So, fair warning.
There's a lot that's (deliberately) unclear, but one thing that seems clear is the overal pattern of very dark, very grim,very depressing. If you like that..great. Maybe see a therapist?? ;) Not my thing.
The writing is actually quite good, mostly. I really don't feel like subjecting myself to something this violent, negative, and (at least so far) hopeless, so I'm gonna pass. But it you like such things, it's thoughtful, complicated, and well written. Still, not something I need to add to my 2020 experience, which has been a s**tshow already, so I'm out!
The story overall has a strong voice. The change of focus between the first chapter and the succeeding chapters comes a bit jarring at first, but both parts are good in their own way with the previous one more emotional and the next chapters having an easier flow of information.
Another thing that is fascinating is the portrayal of past and present in how there is a certain nostalgia on things in the past. The key character in the first chapter seemed apathetic or just resigned to how things are in the beginning and it would be nice to see how it plays out in the setting constructed in the next chapters.
I'm liking the questions raised and the themes surfacing in here.