JonH

JonH

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I Suck At Titles

Isekai? Sure, but feels like something more.

While some may jump into the isekai boat with this one, it feels much classier than your typical isekai fanfare. And I mean that in the most complimentary way. Reading this took me back to Magic Kingdom for Saleā€”Sold! by Terry Brooks. It has very similar wit and premise, and plays it all to its strength. 

The humor is present from the get go, and the somewhat absurd-whimsy of the narrator carries the reader through the story easy. Prose is nice and easy to digest, and chapters are put out in convenient spurts, allowing one to pick up and stop as needed!

There is a very interesting mystery that the story has set up, and the mechanics of the world revolve around it. The stakes also seem quite high, without being too serious. That's a hard line to walk, but Ellen has pulled it off well here.

Grammar is nearly flawless as far as I noticed.

The characters seem like real people and are written as such (even though they are very much not real people, even within the story), but so far there hasn't been any great standout aside from the narrator. But that's not really an issue, as the narrator IS the story. And the narrator is quite likeable, for all his cynic humor. 

Story gets five stars for originality, prose, and humor. Please, please, give it a shot!


Duty, empty dreams and trying not to become a monster.

Man, I am just impressed by the sheer amount of effor that has gone into this piece. From the start, the world seems well developed and fleshed out. Characters speak in their own unique voices and are well differentiated. Lots of the dialogue seems to be spent cursing, but that doesn't bother me personally, and it never feels unwarranted, just extra. 

The writer has put a lot of thought into the setting, and manages to combine some wild stuff here(avoiding spoilers, but it gets weird in a fun way), while also keeping the story together. Fantasy and sci-fi come together and merge into a nice, nerdy mixup. 

Prose is well done and easy to read, and I never felt like getting through it was a chore. That's doubly impressive given my understanding the writer's first language is, in fact, not English. 

If I was into wolfkin-related or adjacent fiction, I'd love this stuff. As it is, the setting might not be for me, the writing is arguably high quality. 

If you're looking for a nice, long fiction with an incredibly detailed world and many moving parts, look no further. 

Good luck to the writer! Keep doing what you're doing. It's excellent so far. 


Why are there no Healers?! [A SYSTEM-BASED PROGRESSION LITRPG]

Overall, litRPG's just aren't my thing, but some of the prose here makes it readable. The writer seems to have a good grasp on drama, but sometimes it feels as though the story leans a bit too heavy into the tragedy going on in the background. The systems here are well defined, and I'm a fan of the injected nerd-elements. This is worth a shot for folks who are fans of the genre, and I wish the writer all the luck in the future!


Beneath the Bodies of their Betters

Intriguing worldbuilding; clever dialogue

Beneath the Bodies of Their Betters, from the get-go, leads with an intriguing and dark prelude that sets the tone for the rest of the narrative so far. 

The prose is extremely well written for something found on RR, and feels comparable to a printed book in quality. The writer has a very defined voice that bleeds through the words written, and brings the world to life in a way that every fiction book wishes it could be. 

Characters all speak in their unique voice-- which was initially a surprise, because how do you even begin to differentiate and individualize goblins? Still, Beneath accomplishes this with resounding success. 

This is the kind of story that reminds me wholesale of the game Dwarf Fortress. Interesting and terrifying creatures roam the world, the (one of the) smallest of which the story follows. Action is violent and brutal, and you can feel the impact through the main character's experience.

I would recommend this title to anyone interested in a gritty kind of fantasy with body horror elements. In a perfect world, this would one day be a graphic novel. I absolutely recommend this story, and see it going a long way as the writer continues it. Godspeed for your writathon goal, friend!


Knights of the Partition

Bite sized fun-- great humor and enjoyable story

As the review title states, this story really was exceptional for RR content. From the start, the dialogue is witty-- being military myself, the "combat medic" vs "nurse" line got a good chuckle from me. It feels kind of like flash episodes of something akin to Stranger Things-- it's got D&D in it's DNA.

 

The story, 8 chapters in, has real stakes. This isn't a series of fake outs. Characters are very mortal. Have I mentioned the humor yet? There's lots of it. One of the benefits of being set in the modern day is the writer now has the ability to reference pop culture in his dialogue, and usually it lands. 

Chapters are easily consumable, and can be read in little spurts if that's what works for you. If this was on print, it'd be a page turner. As it is, we'll just have to settle for e-reading (for now!)

You'll get good urban fantasy here, along with real risks. The author plays with suspense often, and it never feels cheap. Good stuff, I'm excited to see more!

TL;DR, if you like D&D, Stranger Things, Neil Gaiman-esque modern weirdness, or anything related to the above three, give this a shot.


Summoner Legends : a Pokemon Inspired Xanxia/Progression Fantasy

Very reminiscent of old school monster-collection anime. The descriptions of the summons are quite fun, and as chapters progress, you can see the writer improving his craft. This fiction is quite action heavy, and story details are filled in between action sequences. Because of that, the pace is nice and fast, and should keep readers excited.

Grammar and sentence structure leaves some things to be desired, but is far from the worst I've seen on this site. With some work, it could be polished into something truly decent. 

The writer claims some inspiration from Shin Megami Tensei in particular, and without going into spoilers, I can absolutely see elements of that series bleeding through the story here. It will be exciting to see where it goes.

Truly, the story's only negative is its prose. Elsewise, everything the reader is looking for is there-- twists and turns in the plot, cool monsters, action heavy sequences, and emotional payoff. If the writer improves the prose, as he has already from the first to the most recent chapter, then he'll be approaching five star content. Give it a chance!

 

TL;DR, if you're into monster collectathons or anime of old-- read this and see if it's what you're looking for. 


Tales of Ishtar

Not for me, but it may be for you!

I'll get the negatives out of the way-- my biggest issue is the quality of the prose itself. Many words are redundant, dialogue feels like reading a conversation between two pre-teens on MySpace in 2008, and characters feel like cardboard cutouts of well-known archetypes.

That being said, the author does throw a lot of humor in there, which, even if it doesn't all land, makes the story easier to read. There also seems to be some kind of worldbuilding going on, somewhere in the background. 

I can see effort here, and this isn't a bad first venture into writing. Keep going and you'll improve a lot, Magin. Thanks for the story!