She had welcomed Death with open arms, and was more than happy to spend her afterlife floating in the void. Until a Goddess decides she has better plans for her and offers her a choice any fantasy loving geek would die for. However after accepting the offer she learned the hard way that one should always read the fine print, especially when dealing with a God.
Now her new life has begun, only she's been dropped into the world of her favorite game. Except, instead of becoming a side character or even one of the heroes of the game she's inhabiting the body of the game's final boss, 8 years before she became the villainess. Now she has to navigate a hostile home where her own father sees her as nothing more than a pawn on a chessboard, and her stepmother wants her dead to free up succession for her son. She has to try to navigate the confusing relationship between herself and her stepbrother, who could be her greatest ally or her most dangerous foe. The original Liliana Rosengarde fell from grace and burned the queendom on her quest for revenge. Can she prevent that fate from happening and save the queendom, and her own life?
And maybe, she's not the only one who needs to be saved.
She'll need to gather allies, both human and beast, if she has any hope of subverting the destiny that was already written for her.
[participant in the Royal Road Writathon challenge]
Tags that fit this story that aren't options:
Slow Burn, if you don't like slow stories that build to action very slowly this isn't the novel for you. If you like slow development, copious introspection and a story focused on a single character you will probably enjoy this!
Crunchy LitRPG, numbers, math, boxes galore adorn these pages.
This story has been posted to Royal Road and Scribblehub. Anywhere else I have not authorised the posting of!
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Honestly I don't think the story is bad, just not for me. The novel is confused on what it is, and wasn't what I thought it would be. The MC is almost bipolar in her decisions. In one sentence she will describe why a character is a terrible person then describe how they aren't like that in the game, then will talk about how they are a friend, then talk about how she can never trust them all in the same paragraph. Which is it? Are they a backstabbing liar or a misunderstood idiot? I get that its supposed to be a grey area that isn't clear cut, but what I don't get is how her feeling are so wishy washy. One moment she wants to give them the benefit of the doubt and the next is waiting for the backstab. Its tiresome to read it chapter after chapter.
The original appeal of the story to me was a villianess who tries to lead an upstanding life, except the villian isnt a villian but a traumatized girl. So the MC who already has decided she didn't want to become a villian, just doesn't. There isn't really a plot point that signifies where the MC goes off the original stories rails, because she just simply isn't on them. Which leads to the issure where the MC just forgives everyone for being shitty to her. I understand how you don't want to be a villian, but I don''t believe for a second you want to bring the duke to ruin and shame him when every other sentence is begging for his approval. Sure it makes sense in context, but it takes the suspense and drive out of the story for me.
Finally my biggest issue is how inconssitent the world seems. The MC knows the plot of the game, but the suspenseful part is supposed to be the fact that this story takes place 4 years before the start of the story. Which should mean, there are plenty of things that she may be blindsided by that can change her plans. Except, she seems to know exactly what happens in this time period, and even claims to have played through it which doesnt make sense if it was before the game started.
A few examples:
The bandit encounter. She knew EXACTLY the way this played out in the game, when this clearly shouldn't of been anything she would have seen.
Or the goblin dungeon which should of appeared years prior to her playing Alistair or Emyr. Yet she keeps talking about all of her experiences in it.
All in all, the story is actually quite good and I think many would enjoy it. I just personally don't see the point in the story when the tension was taken away 15 chapters in.
Also another thing that annoys me drasticaly is how dumb the MC is by talking smack about healing magic. For one it doesnt make sense that she knows nothing about it when her favorite charcter is literally the healer of the MC's... She has perfect recolaction of the game, yet can't remember the starting stats/spells of her FAVORITE CHARACTER? Its pretty minor, just bugged me a lot.
The story starts out pretty well, and there is a strong persevere and overcome vibe from everything the MC is doing. I enjoy that, so I was eager to see her strive towards independence and carving her own path. Then she started to befriend the people who neglected, tormented and abused her for years. The story is not bad, but it turned an MC who was attempting to work through the changes in her personality and situation in a meaningful way into a doormat of a people pleaser for no reason in my opinion. The story has potential, but I can't follow an MC like that.
Beware - > *spoilers ahead*
The cursed pendant/amulet plot was too much, in my opinion. It messing with her perception of reality, this blatantly, was the last drop that broke immersion, for me.
Sure, I had other issues with the story, shady Goddess deals, traumatising memory dumps, and how extremely wishy washy the main is with her feelings, on family, on what she wants to do, on living, etc...
Then there's way too much angst, and the panic atacks start to loose any impact, because they're present, every other chapter, or there abouts. Some have actual meaning, some seem gratuitous.
Though I do appreciate how Astrid, Emyr and even Allistair, help her through them.
It does explain how the OG Lily got power, and leveled enough to attend the academy. So thats the mystery wrapped.
It could have been shown diferently, taking the cursed thing to a church (she went to unlock the wind affinity off screen, so she was there), taking it to the queen, just dumping it somewhere away from her, hell she could have bribed someone to take it back into the dungeon.
Yes, I know she's just an abused, sleep deprived kid, but the story tells us that she's smart, that those original memories aren't supposed to kill, all that makes this transmigraded soul, herself, that she understands most of the dangers surounding her, and that she's capable of dealing with them, but unfortunatly, that's not what we are shown.
Checking to see if mind magic resistance is something she could purchase, or unlock, after the nighterrors started, maybe mentioned bybAstrid or Silas, would have given her knowledge that it was not just stress...
The main seems almost masochistic in pursuing the unobtainable, her parents "love", and her place, in noble society, then wallowing in how miserable everyone is to her, how they are all out to get her, while ignoring her bond and all she already acomplished, even before the amulet. The plot shenanigans then make such feelings justified, because people are out to get her, though she only focuses on the malicious people.
I'd have prefered some more interactions with Silas, even though he's supposed to be trainning her in the afternoons, after getting her Bond, it's all off screen.
This is only my honest opinion, sorry if it was rant'y, some of these points are pet peeves of mine, so it's very likely that many others do enjoy reading this story.
Early chapters are just her min/maxing by farming stat points before killing a monster to reach level 2 because you are capped on how many points you can get a level. And big pet peeve: we have a magical swordsman/jack of all trades with no right to being one. She is described as being small and slender with her own training instructor having said she wouldn't be suited to being a fighter. Lo' and behold, she has magic to magic the difference into making her a great fighter! It doesn't matter that even if her baseline characeterists are described as being inadequate to being a fighter. I'm sorry but these are the instances where I especially hate the overdone jack of all trades charactertype. She wants to learn using a weapon alongside magic because magic alone in 1v1 situations is bad, BUT she wants to be a magical animal tamer too. Make it make sense. She isn't going to be 1v1 with her magical monsters? This is the scenario where you want to be a pure caster. The MC rationalizes this because there are places she won't be able to carry her summon around due to being a noble. Okay great, but she can carry her favorite weapon, the polearm, there to these venues?
All in all, it's an okay read. My main concern is that it feels like two different stories. The first part is getting isekai'd into the body of a villainess and coping with that. The second part feels like a Cinderella-esque YA adventure.
Characters - the characters are written distinctly enough, though sometimes I find the protagonist hard to understand. Also, I'm unclear why it's an isekai (or rather, I'm not sure the isekai is adequately applied to the character's personality). The protagonist's character quickly develops into its own unique thing that the otherworldly memories have little impact on. Especially when the plot dives into a YA/anime vibe. And I'm totally baffled at the character interaction between the protagonist and Emyr.
Plot - there are some serious pacing issues. Also, the worldbuilding is kind of wonky. Given how extreme her family's disdain is portrayed, and how cheap life appears to be, I can't wrap my ahead around why the protagonist is still alive. Also, the setup is that the protagonist is the villain of a game, but she actually comes across as more of a Cinderella figure. There's some attempt to allure her to power, but it's not really well written.
A lot of it is kind of "I need power to be safe" progression fantasy. This seems pretty thin, especially in how power works throughout the world. The whole power play has xianxia vibes to it. And so, I have difficulty understanding her position within the rules of the world as crafted. It seems too easy for her to gain power, even taking into account the isekai cheat.
Style - pacing issues. Otherwise, decent style. Most of my concerns are more overarching.
Grammar - no complaints
Edit: general cleanup, and to remove some erroneous material
Who needs a plan B? Unknown monsters not according game knowledge, haha why bother looking it up! Learn to scout, lay traps, ensure you have safe breaks/camps or any tactic/strategy/planning is missing.
Conclusion: Every trip, the young maiden's life is reduced to an object of mad luck, which - as we know - is only ever afforded in finite, minute quantities.
Unless.. plot armor!
She should've learned from her teacher but it sure doesn't look like it.
Still it's quite enjoyable read if you turn off your brain, wonder if she actually learns from her mistakes but I doubt it.
The reviews sorted by top for this give me a feeling like they are tainted in one direction or another and do not provided a reasonable person a reasonable perspective on what they can expect.
Chapters 1-3 are mildly to overwhelmingly DARK based on you own personal feelings for the subjects presented.
Chaps 4-12 are neither exceptional nor dreadful in anyway on their own merits; they are slightly lighter in mood (in my opinionfor an average persons standards).
The Pace is set by this point, other than a glossing over training montages with time skips to assumably avoid boring content bloat.
Chap 13+ is where the LitRPG style really picks up and at the present point in time hopefully sets the guideling of expectations for the story ongoing.
Over all I find that the story is heavily reliant you you as a person. For me there were points did not really add up to my personal understand of "Gamer Knowledge". If you take the time and get through to the 5th chapter. You should know if the story is one for you.
Fated to Fall is a excellently written story. From it's flawless (albeit American) grammer to it's fully fleshed out chapters, the story manages to stay within the realm of comprehension (but not believability) to the reader.
The reason I give it only 3 stars is because of the incredibly frustrating MC. Her mindset and motives are well-written and easy to understand, but when push comes to shove on what she really, really wants? She can't make up her mind. All she really seems to be is a mouthpiece for the author to rationalize everything she does in a really convoluted plot of emotional ups and downs. On top of this, she has knowledge of the game world 4 years in the PAST before the year she started playing the game! What the hell is going on?
But despite all of the complaints I have written above, the author is still outputting the same good quality chapters from start to finish. Annoyingly, the only thing worse than the MC is the author's incredible writing skills that keep hooking me in.
Its has a bit of a dark start, but not the sort of edginess that has me dropping stories like a rock. I would have hoped to see that continue, a gradual shift towards redemption, but it's looking like this is going to toss aside the semi-unique start and turn into another generic "magical school" story.
The MC seemed reasonable and fleshed out, their actions and reactions consistent with their history, but that seems to be changing in favor of a more easily told story. This has become worse in some of the cast. The evil stepmother trope is poorly handled, you'd think there would be some cunning involved in getting where she is, hell, it's stated pretty clearly very early in the story, but by the most recent chapters she's just another cardboard cutout.
The story would have benefitted massively from slowing down, from taking time to flesh out the changes in various character personalities, and make their actions more consistent with who they've been described to be.
The grammar is fine, the style about the same, really the story and the characters are where this is lacking. We're told what the MC became, what they suffered through to get there, practically every bit of it was outlined.
Over the course of a few chapters she turns into what might as well be a happy go lucky magical swordsman, with allies made up of those who had been the fuel for her rise to villainy in that once possible future.
It's starts out fairly typically for otome Isekai, live as the villainess who is abused and treated like shit by her family. So she decides to get powerful so she can escape them and get back at them.
But no. Turns out her brother was just misunderstood and her dad is just a noble, that's how they work.
If you like to see people get what's coming to them, this is not the book for you.