So initially I wasn't going to review this because I felt it was still just starting out and much work hadn't been put into developing the setting or the plot. But honestly most of this is just ramblings, very interesting ramblings but ramblings nonetheless. The Main character is not well introduced or described, I'm imagining it as a woman though I don't know if I'm correct. I'm not sure if the prologue is a flashback, there is some kind of weird disconnect between the prologue and the first 2 chapters.
This story is a lot of things; it's sci-fi, fantasy, and LitRPG, and as a result the tone is very inconsistent, there are certain words which you use in certain fields which give off a certain vibe, OP uses words with random tonation which doesn't allow the reader to get a particular vibe. Is this Sci-fi? is this fantasy? is this LitRPG? is this a philosophy dissertation? I don't know.
The synopsis has been cleaned up, its not quite there yet, but its okay.
(As always, I'll check back in a few weeks or when the site decides to inform me of changes. I'll adjust my review accordingly)
So the story is very much in the space fantasy genre, it combines themes of fantasy with science fiction, more on a narrative level, the "gods" in this sense are not "god-like", there's little to no signs that anyone actually worships them, in fact most of the story is spent with them being treated like commoners or even less.
At times the story is more fantasy than sci-fi, the creature/alien designs are somewhat interesting. The moral tone of the story however seems very distorted.
It is very well written, however, the dialogue system at times can get just a bit confusing, the depictions are quite good and the way they are paced really makes it all the more shocking, I really felt creeped out by a lot of it.
The story is funny but I can't help but get confused at times by the chronology of events, there's so much reference to before and after the "gods" became immortal.
So the story has a very Anime feel to it, the first chapter is very fun to read but I can't help but feel being reincarnated into a different person has some damaging effects on one's perception of self. The MC seems very chill about everything, as if having a near death experience doesn't scar you for life. But still it's quite fun to read and the narrative voice is very friendly. This is somehow a LitRPG aslo, wasn't expecting that, the grammar in some places is a bit amusing because you can sense some of the writer's japanese sensibilities. There's a lot of exposition in the second chapter, along with a weird break and flashback which was a bit offputting, it came off more like a civics lesson. The raunchiness is a welcomed feature, I can't help but laugh out loud whenever the word "breasts" come up.
Although this story wasn't a comedy I found myself wheezing (a lot). It seems to me OP hasn't really developed this idea much, everything feels shallow, I was expecting a gripping psychological drama about dealing with the trauma that comes with extended longlivity, making friends only for them to die on one reason or the other, over and over.
(Yes, even with "Le science" people can still die from household accidents,violence, poor lifestyle choices, poverty, disease etc, even in the story accidents happen so I'm not inclinded to belive at least some of these haven't been eradicated).
I was expecting a character with derealization who struggles to understand who he is, (After having so many bodies, learning and forgetting so much, lifetime after lifetime). But there was nothing, the book's world is childishly free of conflict, the closest thing to it is questionable given the level of "Le science" that exists in the story.
I mean with the level of survailance we have in this present day and age how would the underlings get away with an operation that big in "le future" with persumably better means of tracking people's movements and communication, heck, all the "husks" could have voice recorders and transmitters.
I feel the writer doesn't have enough insight into the topics she wishes to write on, I suggest extensive research; perhaps a journey into military history.
Essentially the "perfect" world in the story isn't well explained, nor is the reason for the underlings wanting to destroy it, (i'm assuming its religious given the exposition dump in "Eleven"). Also, exposition dumps aren't helpful though there are ways to do successful expositions or alternatives to it altogether.
I can see some paths the story might go down in the future, and I'd still follow progress and adjust my review likewise. I'm picturing more explantion of "le wurld waa teeree", like maybe scarcity of resources (an actual reason for war) which religion and ideology are often used as a scapegoat or execuse, maybe throw in some irradiated wasteland idk, do something.
Upon going through the fiction, What strikes me the most is the potential for emotional conflict, I like how there is a valid reason for the princes to be at odds, in fact there's an abundance of reasons. The comedy within the story was decent, I actually found myself chuckling at the bedtime joke. The story starts off with an interesting hook, something I almost never see done on RR. The story's world is explained with a lot of nuiance, though I'm not sure if I'd consider them exposition dumps or not, there's a lot of narration, dialogue is used sparingly, I enjoyed the narration though, even though some of the revisionism of classic modern fantasy tropes was laughable. The only immediate fault is that I did not find anything particularly unique about aformentioned world, it is not a world that upsets my sensibilites much though, it does at times give off a very grounded feel, while also making me reminise about RPGs I played as a child, so that's a plus i guess, the overall tone compliments this too.
So, OP decided to make a story about a post WW3 world, and from the very first breath messes it up. Countries just start fighting each other for no reason other than "muh resources" and he makes it out that every country in the world is fighting in this war, (get it, cuz its a "world" war). Read a history book maybe 10 before you try to write a continuity like this. Google mutual assured destruction, read about the Cuban Missile Crisis, read about the Chechen War or the Russian invasion of Afghanistan, because everything you've written just reeks of ignorance.
His segment has very good depiction, and an overall excellent concept. But it's not a story, it shows no signs of being a story, it lacks action and reaction. It lacks an antagonist, it lacks stakes, what is at stake in the future viewing? I feel this has lots of potential to be a mysterious horror story as long as OP doesn't go and add some bs explanation for the future viewing. Essentially if he just puts the MC in a conflict situation, like man vs reality, and have an antagonist, likely someone in his future which only his past self can overcome, maybe his dad, maybe his dad can be the antagonist he struggles with across both ends of the viewing. Or maybe it could be a hatred of women rooted in abuse from his mother at an early age idk, just something. Also I got an odd blurriness when reading it, idk I think visions should be distinguished through some visual queue.
You know, the idea of a novel is that it tricks you into reading several pages when a few paragraphs can convey the same information. The synopsis more or less predicts everything that's going to take place. I'm curious about the first paragraph though, the experience OP describes with the shadow people is one I've never seen written before and it's something I've experienced myself, almost felt like OP was speaking straight to my soul.
The book has manageable characterization, the setting is pretty generic. But it lacks a story, (you're confused, I know, how can it lack a story?) A story requires action, reaction and stakes, action can either be on the part of the protagonist or antagonist, same with reaction.The stake is what will happen if one side fails to react or does not react adequately. "Delve" is characterization and setting but no story. (It's pretty well written tho, will elaborate on story in the comments)
The story uses a cinematographer narrative where OP just describes the environment and things going on (as though it were a movie) and gives zero context about what is happening or why it's happening. You need a lot of patience to read through the book to find out what OP is getting at with this story. Also it feels like things just randomly happen, the story has no direction beyond "cool thing happen, next cool thing happen".