A Dungeons and Dragons inspired adventure with a realism-focused spin on gamelit.
Hump grew up believing his master was nothing but an ordinary hedge wizard. However when the old man unexpectedly dies, his book of spells binds to Hump’s soul. Now without a master, Hump sets off to find his place in the world, to discover the secrets of magic, and to understand the Book of Infinite Pages.
Book 1 and 2 are now complete.
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I rarely give five stars but this story has texture, earthiness and a depth you feel in your bones.
The story unfolds in a natural way, feeding you crumbs of information as a consequence of the story not rammed into you before or after as a wall of text.
Characters make snap judgements of other characters on how they are equipped and their actions. They react when things happen or to information that they have different to other characters naturally.
The descriptions are minimal and only become more elaborate if the story dictates it is necessary. Making it seem more vibrant without bogging the whole story down with elaborate frippery hiding the story from view.
This story so far is story telling done well and I look forward to this and any other writing the author is willing to publish.
Ps brought here by another author
I love D&D. I love wizards. I love party dynamics, adventures, and dungeon delving. This story gets all of these things right. If you're a fan of any of the things I wrote above, you're going to love this story. It reads like a TRPG campaign brought to life and I wouldn't have it any other way.
So now that I've talked about why I love this story, I'll get into what made it so enjoyable.
Wonderful. The story is written in a third person perspective, and it's written in a way that brings the magic to life. The author says they aren't a wizard, but with the way some scenes and spells are described, I doubt it. There's some sorcery at play here, and it's not just the story's interesting spellcraft. It's in the author's control over his prose as well. The descriptions are intricate when they need to be, poetic when it suits the tone, and simple when the current scene calls for such.
It's smooth all around and has never been jarring or uncomfortable to read. At certain times, I can almost imagine the characters on a tabletop, with all their successes and failures left to the dice. Except in this case, it's not luck that's causing tension, but the author's own ability to kepe you on the edge of your seat.
Perfect. At least as far as I'm concerned. There might be a typo here and there that I missed, or a weird comma that I didn't notice, but when the story is written in such a way that causes me to ignore potential errors entirely just to find out what happens next, it says something about the quality of the text.
The story starts strong and immediately grabs you by the back of the neck. An apprentice with a dead master, now left with his old man's mysterious spellbook. It's an engaging hook, and the story builds even more momentum as the chapters pass.
The Hedge Wizard isn't a wish fulfillment story. It's an adventure in the perspective of a low-level hedge wizard, and the story reflects that perfectly. Things are tough, gritty, and victories are short-lived. There's always another problem to tackle. The world moves around the MC instead of the other way around and there are plenty of difficulties he has to overcome as someone at the bottom of the adventuring society's barrel.
While I have made comparisons to D&D plenty of times in my review, this story is anything but a copy. Even derivative seems like an insult to it. The world is original, the magic has its own identity despite the inspirations taken, and it's more than just a tabletop adventure's mess of encounters. It's a moving story independent of its inspirations and it deserves recognition for that fact.
The MC is a young wizard. Smart, competent, and flawed. Where his companions succeed, he fails. And where they have difficulties, he makes up for it in his knowledge and expertise. He's everything that a wizard in a party should be. He and his companions cover for each other and each one is as vibrant as the last. They have friendships, disagreements, and personal goals that differ from each other.
So far, not a single one of the major characters has disappointed me. They're presented in a manner that's interesting and they stay true to themselves from beginning to the latest chapter. This story may have its own share of flaws, but the characters are not one of them.
If you're looking for a cast of characters that captures the feeling of low level D&D, look nowhere else.
And in case the review above still hasn't convinced you to read the story...
The author has cat pictures in their author's notes.
I rest my case.
I have finished the first book today, so I decided (completely willingly and not pressured at all) to give it a review I've been putting out for a long time. So, first of all, if you are here for a fast overview of the story to know if you should or not read it, you should. It a great story so far, with the very top quality you can find in the entire site.
Now for the Advanced review:
The story here in the first book is pretty simple, we begin with Hump, an apprentice Hedge Wizard forced into turning a full one when his master dies unexpectedly. The first scene is inspired in the graphic novel Hedge Knight by GRR Martin, which I found great. But returning to the topic, from there our protagonist has to go on his own, only with a few coins, a staff, a horse and his master's spell book.
The story proceeds with Hump's short travel towards the Dungeon in a nearby town. From there the story becomes mostly a dungeon crawl. I really like that choice, there's a lot of action and intrigue inside the dungeon, even though it hurts the world building in a way staying mostly inside a Dungeon.
Overall, I find it a great story for the first book, and the author has said he intends the second book to have more worldbuilding and not be as confined as the first.
I love the writer's style, it fits in my taste like a glove. His prose is on another level to nearly every other author in the site, and it's better even than most GameLit/LitRPG published right now, he is clearly not a novice. There is just enough descriptions to make the world feel alive, but not overwhelm you with details. The action scenes are very well written, and gets you pretty excited every time, dialogue is fluid and intersting for the most part and the author dont shy away from violence, but he is not in any way over descriptive of it.
Overall great, probably the strongest element of the novel.
I gotta be honest, I'm not a huge grammar guy, I dont really care for a couple of typos here and there but even then I can see that this story has rock solid grammar, the author takes care when writing the story and editing it, so even if you care a lot about it you will be completely satisfied in this point.
Finally, to probably the most enjoyable part of the story. The characters are fantastic here, Hump, our protagonist, is an extremely well written character with a lot of depth and far from perfect, he is greedy at times, self deprecating some times and an asshole more than a few, but he is also a great guy that will go to great lengths to help his new found friends and the innocents, extremely relatable may be his best characteristic, which is only enhanced by those around him.
Bud, his Knight friend with his knightly ways and great looks, but an even greater heart, the guy is a big gentle giant who is always trying to do what he thinks is right and he instills the best in Hump to show. He is the main one, but there are other great characters here which I wont get into as to not spoil it for anybody wanting to read it.
Suffices to know, the main cast of characters is very well written, with great dynamics between them and a lot of depth in some cases, the side characters dont have a lot of screen time (it's not a super lengthy book) but they all mostly leave an impression, in a very subtle but remarkable way.
Overall, if you like good character work, you will not be disappointed here, 10/10 as far as anything I've read on RR.
My conclusion here is, The Hedge Wizard is a story way above the normal here on this site. I can only see you not liking it if you either throughly dislike any kind of dungeon crawl (which is just the first book mind you), only likes crunchy LitRPG, or only likes exaggerated power fantasy. In any other case, you will most probably enjoy this story (it is not among the top of best rated for no reason). Byeee!
First off, I should give a disclaimer. I do know the author, and I do have access to some advanced chapters, so do take that into consideration with this review. With that said, I will still be honest, and I do genuinely enjoy this fiction!
The writing style used here is great. It more resembles the style of a traditional published fantasy novel, than that of a longer-form web serial, and is executed to a really high standard. Dialogue is solid throughout and feels natural and genuine, and there are no info-dumps to speak ot. The author does a great job of showing what is going on, rather than spelling it out, too, which makes this a much more enjoyable read.
I really like the story here. It’s at once a humble tale, but also has the inklings of becoming something bigger. We’ve gotten great glimpses into how this world functions so far, and I’m really enjoying the intrigue and setting so far.
Beyond the more general stuff, this fiction has just about everything you might want, story-wise. Lots of combat done to a very high standard, intrigue, magic, you get the picture!
Nothing much to say here. The grammar is very good, by and large. Very few errors, although maybe the odd one here or there. Nothing immersion breaking, and it is structured really nicely too. I’ve never spotted an error unless I’ve been actively proofreading, so it is far above the standards of most fictions!
The characters here are actually really solid! They all feel very genuine and natural, and stay true to themselves. The characters all have unique personalities and behaviours, and interact really well. Dialogue is super natural and fits the characters, with great use of humour as well. Even the characters we don’t know much about yet seem quite unique, feeling more like the things we don’t know are being kept from the MC, than that they have lacked development.
So, to finish off the review, I wholly recommend trying this fiction out. It is a genuinely entertaining, well written fiction, and I’ll certainly be keeping up with it myself!
Chapter 9 - strong start, slow buldup of action. There's a little mistery, growing stakes, and a plot im invested in. The fight scenes are also actually believable for a new wizard, where they are compatent but still foilable.
But its the characters and dialogue that makes it. The characters are fleshed out with quirks and issues. The diologue is funny, without doing that thing where the author tries way to hard to make it a comedy.
Hi there, I was manipulated into giving this five stars by skilful use of cute cat photos. Author displaying devilish cunning.
actually the story is good so far, the MC is neither cute, devilish but possibly slightly cunning. He has just inherited a spell book that may have a mind of its own but is otherwise a bit down on his luck. He is already meeting up with interesting friends and character development is coming along. Preparing for a dungeon crawl at pout of reading, no doubt they will be tested.
The MC has a mixture of common sense, grit and talent that I like to see and read about. Personally I don't like extremely immature MCs who act like idiots and this MC has got a level head as they say. So that's a plus.
And don't forget the Cats.
Okay so to start, the synopsis really undersells this fiction. I've read 'd&d inspired stories' before and they're usually quite bad. This isn't, sure there's a few nods here and there to Gygax's baby, but this is a solid story well worth your time that deserves to be higher on trending than it is right now.
Grammar is consistently good throughout, no typos, missing punctuation or hard to follow sentences that I can detect.
Style is good, consistent and a pleasure to read. No exposition just sexy, sexy show don't tell. Great dialogue, well written descriptions and lovely narrative pacing.
Story is really good, no dead air or worse dead chapters. It's moving along at a brisk pace more often seen in novels than web serials and Alex has managed to do the hardest thing of all: high stakes early novel conflict! Seriously first arc peril is so hard to write, and it's done so very well here.
Characters are good, they read differently, their consistent, believable, blah blah blah. However, Hump has in my opinion met his party too early in the story and has been denied a chance to shine as a result. We know that he has a spine, magical mojo, common sense and wit, but he's the caster in the party not THE caster who makes the party. I've drank wine so I may not be as eloquent as I would like to be but my point is this. Narratively Hump needs an opportunity to either be separated from or take charge of the party and be awesome. There are times particularly when he's with the rest of the cast that he just doesn't feel like the protagonist. I like this story a lot, Alex has way more talent than most authors here, but Hump needs more moments to be the badass wizard I know he can be.
Discovered this story a couple weeks ago and have been hooked ever since! Really excited to see where it goes and what happens next. So far I've been enthralled with the character development and storyline. Easily one of my favorite wizard type stories I've found (Review of up to chapter 44)
The writing falls into the cliche category or drama before consitency. The main character uses the last bit of his magic over and over. The knight character tries to throw his life away over and over. The enemies that are behind them sudenlly cut them off again and again. They are in a desperate hurry, but the rescued captives need to sit around doing nothing till the enemy reinforcements arive, again and again. All this repetition is in the first dungeon. The writing is contradictory.
The Hedge wizard is a very cool fantasy story about a wizard
It's at the edge of dark fantasy. For now, it involves multiple characters, different plot, a low key spellbook, and some nice character moments. I recommend it.
It's all very fleshed out, and yet not slow a single moment. 5/5