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Charlie Norwood, a goblin-exterminating bounty hunter working in the frontier desert, finds herself embroiled in conspiracy when she stumbles across some gnomish warmechs chasing down an elven prince.
A Fantasy Western.
[Participant in the Royal Road Writathon Challenge]
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When you think about it, westerns are a perfect match for tolkien fantasy. Lots of bandits, lots of "friendly" racism, lots of wasteland and wilderness to act as buffers between pockets of civilization.
In retrospect , im surprised i havent seen it before.
The magic / magitech is a nice touch. Magic feels a lot more magical when its prone to breaking, overheating, exploding, and being prohibitively expensive to repair.
For those of you familiar RavensDagger's work, this is the grittiest yet.
A magitech western (with mechs!) in a world with elves, kobolds, dwarves, gnomes, etc. The world building is good with even minor characters showing hints of backstory and distinct cultures.
The MC is a hard bitten bounty hunter, but not in a moody noir way. She is slow to trust out of a realist approach to the world of the story, not out of teams or misanthropici tendencies. It's a refreshing take.
The grammar, pacing, release schedule, etc is all solid, which is true of all RavensDagger's stories.
I'm enjoying the story and I can easily recommend it.
Started out as a bounty hunter in a mech fighting goblins in mechs just to make a buck. Pretty fun.
Pretty quickly traditioned into a bodyguard against the world type story, with a massively epic new plot. Which was not interesting.
Grammar is great, author has talent. I just wish the original premise of a bounty hunter going after bounties had held true.
(This review was made at chapter 38)
Lever action has a very unique and interesting setting, with everything being so spread out I found I actively wanted to learn more about the geography.
Charlie is your classic Han Solo-esque 'roughntuff with a heart of gold' but she never strays over towards edgy. Her suspicion and aloofness is justified in such a dangerous world. If she was trusting the story would just be her getting repeatedly mugged.
The grammar and spelling is impeccable, as far as I can tell.
My only gripe is that sometimes the action can be a little hard to follow, to follow, I found myself often thinking how well it would work in the silver screen, though.
If you enjoyed Ravens other work, you'll probably enjoy this, because you know how good she is. If you didn't enjoy her other work, you may well still enjoy this, because it's just plain good.
I do like a story that is not all action, and that takes time to build a sophisticated world and mutildimentional characters.
Dont get me wrong the action is good, but the journey and the mechanics of trading with the nomads is great.
good frequent updates. what more do you need.
oh did i mention the mechs?
TL:DR; the series is new.
Setting is an original mix of Wild West/fantasy with mechs (not steampunk). Trust me, the author is blending it magnificently.
Too early to form proper criticisms of the characters/story but so far it's very good!
Writer has a lot of experience on several previous novels so character & story will likely develop well.
Worth recommending this series to friends.
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It's stil in early days of this series (ch19 as of review) but this series looks very promising!
The female MC is a grizzled bounty hunter in a rough Wild West setting. Water is scarce and the dusty air will kill you without a rebreather. It's hard surviving in this desert, and so are the people in it.
*Wild West established. Now let's tweak it.
You don't just need a six shooter and a Remington rifle to get by; you also need your 15-foot battle mech. Which has a much bigger a six shooter and rifle. All of which fire enchanted bullets.
*Magitech-Western established. Let's add another layer.
The MC lives in the desert but the world is wide. Elves, dwarves, gnomes, goblins, kobolds, dragons and monsters.
*Expect plenty of fantasy elements. We've barely scratched the surface.
Western-Magitech-Fantasy. How's that for an original setting?
The worldbuilding is going to be amazing.
It's too early to comfortably evaluate the characters. MC has barely talked about her backstory. The larger plot is nascent.
But don't let that dissuade you; Raven knows their way around a keyboard.
RavensDagger is a veteran & prolific writer. They've completed several novels on this site; concurrently pens five series; successfully keeps to a weekly update schedule on each; has earned a large following; and has hit trending on RR.
All this is me trying to say that they are an experienced writer of quality fiction.
LA is both a tonal and setting departure from their other works. All signs point to this being a great read.
It's definitely worth your follow.
I don't know how Raven does it, but here is another cross genre genius of a story. Loved the intro chapter, and it has a lot of potential going for it. I hope Raven will be able to keep up with all the stories on their site and give us more Fluff, but this is a nice interlude. Keep up the good work Raven.
I feel like I'm reading Tolkien, but thousands of years into the future of Middle earth where all the forests have perished and all the rivers have run dry and all the lakes evaporated due to magical global warming and or perhaps a magitech nuclear war!
I love, love, love this series. It reminds me of one of my favourite anime series - desert punk!
This story is something one could easily fall in love with because of its interesting, delightful catch - magical mechs.
The world of Lever Action is a gargantuan desert without end, filled with dangers such as lurking goblins, heat and deadly storms.
The intrepid protagonist of this novel Charlie is a girl operating a magical mech that she can synchronize with. She's been working with magitech machines since she was twelve.
As always with Raven's works the spelling/grammar is superb, no complaints there. The style lends itself easy to get immersed in the world along with Charlie, experiencing the hardships of a wasteland desert with her.
The book draws you right in with fun gunfighting action and escalates from there with even more gunfire, but now between magically powered machines. The magitech visuals of gunfight scenes are beautiful and the explanations of how it all works are logical. This is an exciting setting jump from other books of Ravensdagger into a world of apocalyptic steampunk magitech adventure. Check it out!
The main character is one Charlie Norwood, a lean mean gal with a rusty magitech mech, she has to survive a fantasy western and everything that goes with it, guntoting goblins with more respect for their ammo than her (which given the state of them is saying something). Elves, and mechs that are sometimes more scrap than machine. Will she make it? Let's wait and see.
Overall: It's looking to be a fun story, with the polished writing and relatively light tone you would expect from one of Raven's (Cinamon Bun, Lovecrafted, Stray Cat Strut, Fluff, etc.) stories. If a story featuring magitech mechas mixed with a western sounds appealing, this story seems, thus-far, to deliver. I'm looking forward to future chapters. If you've enjoyed any of Raven's works (especially Stray Cat Strut), this is definitely worth a shot!
Style: The story is written in actual first person—you can very much see the main character's personality in the way it's narrated. Something that particularly stood out to me as an example was "fist-sized hole through a plate of good steel as thick as your thumb was long". Obviously, this could be specified in centimeters or inches, but that's not how people talk, and you can definitely feel the rough western in the style.
Grammar: This one is pretty self-explanatory. I've seen a typo here and there, but generally very good.
Story: As I typically do, I'm considering world-building part of the story and so far it looks very interesting. As the author says, it's a "fantasy western", which in this case means mixing typical fantasy elements—goblins, elves, magic—with the rough frontiers of a western and magitech. I can't speak to how consistent or thought through it is yet, but it definitely has personality and I'm excited to learn more about the world and see where it goes. The tone feels pretty light so far and with Raven's history, I think it's a fairly safe assumption it'll stay that way—this isn't really a positive or negative in general, but might be one way or the other for some people. The actual story seems like a pretty straight forward "escort mission with detours", but it has direction and serves more as a backdrop for character interaction and adventure, it seems so far.
Character: The characters are fun, engaging, and have continuous and identifiable personalities, so I'm not sure what else you can ask for. They're not charicatures either.