Tejoka

Tejoka

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Reviews
The Precipice of Power

Cultivators can be nice, too ... some of them.

This was a good story so far, and I have high hopes for the future. It's definitely xianxia, although not the same as the typical translated novel.

Style: Quite good. The story is written in third person POV with different viewpoints. A few times, I found the wording a bit awkward, but that might just be the genre and its conventions. But otherwise, it flows nicely.

Grammar: Good, I didn't notice any mistakes. Great job.

Story: It has only started so far, but the beginning shows a lot of promise. The world is shown well, especially the society of the clan, although there's never much explanation of it.  A little more worldbuilding might improve it, but it's not really necessary. The story is paced well, and it steadily builds tension, connecting various characters' perspectives.

On another note, while I can see how the story is 'wholesome', there's quite a bit of violence, including child abuse in the prologue. Just wanted to mention that in case someone has an issue with that sort of thing.

Characters: Honestly, this is the weakest point in my opinion, although that doesn't mean much. The characters are described pretty well, but they feel a little flat. Granted, this is only the beginning, and there's a lot of room for character development. I'd think teenagers with a backstory like the twins might have more issues, but maybe it's just their coping mechanisms. In any case, none of them are really unrealistic, and it's not a huge issue.

Overall, this story is off to a very good start. It feels like a classic fantasy, and at the same time a subversion of the genre. If you like fantasy, especially cultivation, give it a try.


The Morgulon

Creative ideas, great execution

This is a great story, probably better than any werewolf novel I've read. It's certainly not a typical werewolf story (but don't let that stop you from reading it, the werewolves are still amazing.)

The style is good. I didn't notice any mistakes, and it flowed really well. It's written in third person POV, with several perspectives, which all add to the story.

The grammar is good, as well. I did notice a few typos, but not many.

The story itself is amazing. First of all, the worldbuilding is great. It resembled the eighteenth or nineteenth century, but with magic, which is integrated well. New facts about magic, the society and werewolves are revealed over the course of the story, which adds a lot of depth.

Personally, I really like how werewolves work in this setting. Especially the way everyone is affected by the change differently, even though they're all affected by new moon and full moon. But there's more to their magic, and I get the feeling the story so far has only scratched the surface.

But the plot is great, as well. There are a few twists and turns, although the overall direction seems clear. Personal struggles are interwoven nicely with political intrigue and action. The story follows great change in both the characters' lives and the society at large, and it's handled very well.

Where this story really shines is its characters. All of them, even the minor ones, feel believable and realistic according to their circumstances. Greg, the MC, and the other major characters are vibrant, realistic, with flaws but likeable enough you find yourself emphasizing with them. There's one character who seems set to fill an antagonistic role, but gets good development and is by now probably my favorite. The ways werewolves differ from humans, and each other, is done very well. And extra bonus points for the diverse cast.

Overall, it's a great read, especially if you like fantasy with a historical flavor and complex characters.


World Game Room

A very engaging story, and a nice take on a real world survival game.

I like the premise, and the way this 'game' plays out is very realistic. At least considering there are still a lot of open questions, but everything feels consistent and makes sense in the story's context. The game elements don't detract from the story. It's the kind of read where you just want to read one more chapter, the pacing is good, and the storyline engaging.

The style is good. I personally would have preferred it to just follow Iliya, the MC, which it does most of the time but sometimes dips into what's going on with other characters, but that's a matter of personal preference. There are a few awkward phrasings, and I feel like the name Iliya is repeated a bit too much in some paragraphs, but that's a minor issue. Overall the style is vivid and flows well.

The grammar is also quite good. I noticed a few typos, but not nearly enough to take away from the story.

The characters are drawn well. I think the MC might be a bit too self-posessed, accepting this weirdness a bit too easily, but otherwise he's described well and feels realistic. The side characters are also vivid, even though they don't get much pagetime (so far), but I got a clear sense of each of them. Well done.

I'm eagerly waiting for more chapters.


Cybernetic Dragon

I've never seen a premise like this before. It's bound to get interesting.

The story hasn't really taken off yet, although it's been set up well. We have the main characters as a dragon and his cybernetic AI implant, in a fantasy world where magic 'corrodes' advanced technology. The pacing is good so far.

The characters are pretty well described, although they still feel a bit flat. But this is early days yet and there's a lot of room for them to develop. The author tends to rely on 'telling' rather than 'showing' what the characters are like to some extent. The interplay between the dragen and AI is fun.

There are a few grammar errors, like missing commas or mistaken words (like 'differential' instead of 'deferential'), but nothing major.

The style seems like a third person omniscient narrator, which some people don't like. It tends to be quite descriptive, and I think a little more 'showing' what the world and the characters are like in action would be good, instead of having the narrator explain it.


MERTICORE

Fun story with reality-altering programs, mages and parallel dimensions

This story is a bit wacky, but it's definitely good.

The style is really good. I didn't notice anything amiss, it flowed nicely, and metaphors or comparisons were good and appropriate. It's not super-serious, but it fits the story. The story is written in first person POV, following Ian, the protagonist, and in present tense.

The grammar is also really good. I noticed a few typos, but they were very few, and there were no grammatical errors.

The story flows well and is quite engaging. It starts with everyday problems, has a lot of references to (object-oriented) programming, and then dissolves into chaos. The magic system of the main character is interesting and funny, with the potential to become OP. There are other magic systems in the story, although they haven't been explored much. So far, the story follows Ian as he mainly tries to figure out this new magical world.

The characters are overall realistic, but they make stupid decisions. Especially the main character, who seems otherwise smart but not good at planning or making smart choices regarding potential danger, and even forgets important information. A few other characters are similar, very hot-headed, although I suppose their background explains some of that. There are a few other characters, who so far follow typical patterns, but they're well done and might grow beyond those archetypes. They have a lot of comedic potential, too. For some reason, most of the important characters are female, make of that what you will.

 


Grimoire Knights

Interesting premise, has potential

It’s a good story with some rough spots.

I really liked the premise of the story. The relationship between the MC and her familiar is set up well, and what obstacles the two of them might face going forward. There are hints of a larger multiverse that seems promising. The pacing is a bit slow at times, but I think it fits the story. So far, it seems like the plot has only just started, but it’s been fun so far.

The worldbuilding is pretty good. We get a sense for how people live and how the mage guild operates, as well as the prejudices and conventions they have. I really like the magic system, it feels fresh and the idea of what the ‘Grimoires’ mentioned in the title (at least I assume it’s that) are is cool. There are a few stat tables later on, but they don’t detract from the reading and instead complement it. (And they look nice.) If you like creative magic systems with stat elements, especially around plants, give this a try.

The grammar is okay, but there are a few issues. Nothing that really detracts from the reading experience. But the occasional typo or missing/misspelled word or the like, or missing commas.

The style is overall pretty good, although there is switching between the past and present tense. Later on, the author mostly seems to have settled into present tense, which I think is a good decision. The story is mostly written in first-person POV, but there are parts in third-person POV, too (even for the same character). It’s relatively easy to read over those switches, but they might throw you off. There are a few other stylistic errors. The author occasionally uses sound effect (like *thump*).

The characters are pretty good, for the most part. A few of them feel a little flat. The female MC is pretty archetypical (not a bad thing), and she seems to struggle with low self-esteem and ‘dark thoughts’. There’s definitely a lot of potential for character development here, even if I had trouble connecting with her so far. The male lead (I’m assuming there will be a romance, but who knows?) has an interesting backstory, although he’s pretty reserved so far and we don’t get too much insight into his thoughts and feelings. Their interactions are interesting and also have a lot of potential. The MC’s best friend and father are reasonably well-drawn, too.

Overall, I’d describe the story as a nice fantasy with a classic feel but also a system and interesting magic system, with some stylistic issues.


Requiem

Like reading an anime

This series reminded me a lot of Japanese writing and anime. The names especially (Yokai etc.) and descriptions of the characters. But it also resembled it in style. It was a very visual read, almost like reading the script for an anime. I think I would prefer to watch it rather than read it ...

The grammar was pretty good. I noticed a few errors, mostly punctuation, but not enough to detract from the story. The style was also pretty good, although I stumbled over odd word choices a few times. There's also a lot of switching between characters' perspectives. Also, the descriptions tend to be heavy on the 'was' and adjectives, but maybe that's a nitpick and your mileage may vary.

The worldbuilding is good, although not much is known yet about the world.

The story moves well, I think the author nailed the pacing. The plot is set up pretty well, and we get an idea of where it's going without making it obvious (I didn't read everything but far enough to get an idea for the story). So far, it's not that 'dark' yet, but it can definitely go there. Also, the fight scenes are very nice.

The characters are drawn well, with many familiar elements. The MC is your typical broody hero with amnesia, but I get the feeling he has plenty of potential for development. Same with the side characters. They all strike me as pretty archetypal, but that's not a bad thing. Archetypes exist for a reason, after all.

Overall, a nice read with good action and a very anime-esque feeling.


The Merchant Prince Book 1: Returning Home

This is an early review, 6 chapters in, but the story looks promising.

The worldbuilding is good. The world seems inspired by the Renaissance, and so far there isn't much magic, but it isn't needed. We learn about the world without too many info-dumps, and everything fits together.

The plot has barely started, and this is shaping up to be a slow-paced story. What events have happened are interesting and leave potential for future conflict that should be engaging.

The characters are reasonably well-drawn. Augustus seems like a nice take on the 'young master' type, with a good mix of being calculating but still having a conscience. He's also shown cunning and charm, although not all the time. Marielle isn't very fleshed out yet, but I think she has potential, and their relationship promises to be interesting. The other characters are very archetypal, which isn't a bad thing, if they're grown beyond just the archetypes.

The grammar is decent. There are some issues, but it's certainly readable. Same for the style. There are some repetitions of words (especially 'was'), and the descriptions could be improved, but nothing that really detracts from the story. There's certainly far worse on this site.

As a disclaimer, I've read this as part of a review swap, but these are my honest opinions. I intend to continue reading the story.


Trickster's Luck

Nice LitRPG with a somewhat ditzy female lead in a fascinating universe with interesting mechanics.

Grammar:

I didn't notice any mistakes. I might have missed a few typos, but there can't be many. Definitely 5 stars.

Style:

The writing is very good. There is no purple prose and no extraordinary voice, but it does its job. The story is written in limited third person POV following the protagonist, and it works.

Story:

My favorite part is definitely the concept. I really liked the setting and the magic/game system. The way magic works on world 9352 and the luck mechanic are creative and cool. The premise of someone uploaded into the game after their death a few hundred years later has a lot of potential. The rest all makes sense. I didn't check all the numbers, but I didn't notice obvious mistakes. The author actually uses the system and things like random rolls to decide what happens. It's currently in the middle of an update, so there are no stat tables for a while, but you can still follow the story easily.

The plot is also pretty good. I struggled to get into the story at first, but it was captivating later. The story can be a bit winding at times, but the unexpected twists and turns make up for it. You never know what's going to happen, but it's definitely going to be a wild ride. This is probably due to the way the story is written, with no clear outline and rolling numbers, but it works. Personally, I liked the middle and end better than the beginning, since the story took a bit of time to get off the ground and introduce other characters. Also, be aware that this is in many ways an underdog story, and so far (chapter 77) the MC is still far from the strongest player, so don't expect power fantasy here.

Characters:

My biggest issue was that I didn't like the MC. Especially at the start. She's a forgetful, oblivious, unconcerned mess - not too unrealistic, especially considering her situation, but I had trouble relating to her. It got better towards the end. Although I wouldn't say I love the character, I was no longer bothered by it. She's still a bit of a mess, but working on it. So, there's realistic character development, although I kind of wish it had starter earlier.

The other characters were good, though. None came off as unrealistic. I liked that there was more to some than you'd first think. A few could use a little more fleshing out, but that's probably due to the limited perspective. Overall, what's really nice is that the other characters do their own thing, exploit mechanic or follow their own goals without necessarily caring about the MC. She isn't the only special or OP character who everything revolves around.

Overall:

This was hard. I'd give the beginning 3.5 stars and the end 4.5, so I settled on 4. But it's still a really good read.

TL;DR: Check it out if you like sci-fi, LitRPG, interesting magic systems, tricksters or a system concerning luck, and don't mind an MC who sometimes makes stupid choices (organically, not because of the plot).

Disclaimer: I read this as part of a feedback swap, but my opinions weren't influenced by that.