The Hedge Wizard
by Alex M
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 - Crypt of the Wolf Dragon
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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
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.
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!
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.
When Alex M told me about his concept many moons ago, I tried to convince him to turn the story into a raunchy comedy called Hump the Hedge Wizard. Where hedge wizardry opposes the will of the gods and therefore divinity is out to destroy and discipline Hump. However, Hedge Wizards are beings of power and their offspring are born with incredible gifts. As a result, women are constantly throw themselves at Hump, getting him in all kinds of trouble.
I'm glad Alex M ignored my advice and tailored the story to his tastes and not mine. It's much better than anything I could've written.
Lets skip over categories like Style and Grammar. Both are great and will be better if/when it's plugged through a decent editor. I'd rather focus on Story and Character.
It's apparent that Alex spent several months formulating the story instead of throwing ideas at the screen until something came together. This is a rare skill amongst indie authors. Hump's growth and journey from apprentice to wizard is a compelling one and I can't wait to see where it leads him. Every character, including him, is entertaining and has as much depth as the primary cast.
As a beta reader it's hard for me not to give away spoilers, but you're in for some great things, fellow readers!
Probably one of my new favourites of RR:
In this world the Gods choose a few, in their opinions deserving of their gifts, to wield the power of nature with but a gesture: Sadly for him, our protagonist is not one such chosen. Not letting the rejection discourage him, we follow Hump as a fledging Hedge Wizard, a human that takes the power of nature with study and effort, rather than as a gift. Which is a lot harder and less glamorous that what it might sound..
After his master found himself in the wrong end of an unexpected arrow, Hump graduates early from his studies and embark on a quest to find greatness, or food, a warm bed and some coin. With no clear goal other than glory, we are left to wonder what awaits for Hump in this world, as we get to know it.
This novel has; interesting well defined characters; a world full of potential and wonder; good flow in its style, which always leaves you submerged in the story and waiting for more; impecable Grammar, with the few mistakes that are made from time to time getting corrected right away by the author, and, most importantly, a great Main Character, with whom we get to enjoy the story from his perspective.
Highly recommended. I think anybody that's into fantasy would enjoy this novel.
PS: The author's cats are also really lovely
Hedge wizard so far has been written very competently, now I can not speak about grammar and word choice as the way I read means I don't pay it enough attention as I should but the fact that nothing stands out implies to me your doing things right & the writting flows well. From a story perspective the story flows very much like an action packed thrill ride which feels great but I don't necessarily feel like it gives itself space to breath at times. The world of dungeon crawling and the party's adventure feel fleshed out and I personally feel immersed I also feel like that's all there is at the moment. It's as if the world is a stage for this story not a world the characters live in. Now I very much understand why this is the case at the current moment due to the problems the characters are facing but it's a concern if the story continues in the future without fleshing out the world.
Altogether I'm really enjoying this and will keep reading it and would recommend it to people. I would love further world building going forward once the current adventure is finished with.
Absolutely brilliant book, flows naturally , you can feel the envy flow of the pages of the hedge wizard on a world dominated by God's chosen and the wizard just getting by on his wits and spells inherited from his master via a semi? Sapient grimmore.
Book feels like reading an already published book, Can't wait for the published work. Read till chapter 21, binge read it in one sitting
This story has instantly become my favorite.
Wizards are portrayed very differently than usual. Gone are the masters of the inner workings of the universe, who bend reality to their whim through sheer understanding and will.
In this world, wizards only have bits and pieces of magic obtained by stealing and reverse engineering the divine magic of the Chosen of the gods.
The gods do not like this, and they do not like wizards.
Hump is a working class wizard, as was his master before him, and he's not trying to understand the universe, he's just trying to get by.
The characters are smart and well developed, the monsters are cunning, and the dungeons are realistic and not limited by arbitrary rules like "the monsters can't leave".
I can't wait to see what happens next.