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review 2017-03-08 22:49
Review- Eden's Gate: The Reborn
Eden's Gate: The Reborn: A LitRPG Advent...  Eden's Gate: The Reborn: A LitRPG Adventure - Edward Brody

I seem to be on a LitRPG kick as of late...

 

The Hook (blurb taken from Amazon):

 

Eden’s Gate

When Gunnar Long is transported into the first fully-immersive virtual MMORPG, he finds himself in a new world filled with magic, mystery and adventure.

No more 9-to-5 job. No more studio apartment. No more reality TV.

Finally, he’s in a place where he can call home, a place with people he can call friends.

But as more people want to trade their real world lives to get inside Eden’s Gate, the government of the outside world wants the “game” shut down at all costs.

Gunnar must learn to survive, grow in power and find a way to find send a message back to his old home.

“We’re fine. We’re alive. Eden’s Gate is real.”

 

My opinion:

 

If you haven't heard of the genre or are curious about it, I recommend this book.  The author is a native English speaker, which is a definite plus when it comes to this genre.  I am not dissing translators, but since a lot of these novels are translated from another language and done so at the author's expense, there is a great disparity in quality. 

 

Mr. Brody provided interesting characters and a very original premise as to the circumstances of the players within the game and the driving force behind the plot.  That said, I found the ending very quick and weak.  He spent so much time in the first few chapters building up the apparent dastardly actions of the game developer but then abandoned all of it at the end and tried to present him as doing something for the greater good. 

 

A little disappointment in that, but since it appears this is going to be a series, perhaps another plot twist is coming.  I will be keeping an eye out for the next book in the world of Eden's Gate.

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review 2016-07-26 19:23
Taboogasm Review
Taboogasm - Gregor Xane

Disclaimer: Gregor Xane is a good friend of mine. We speak daily. I also helped to design the layout of the cover for the hardcover edition and did the font work on the Kindle and paperback covers, although the artwork is all Mike Tenebrae's fault. And before you brush this review off as a biased review from a friend, I am overly critical of the people I surround myself with. I don't kiss anyone's ass and I sure as shit am not going to help promote someone I don't think deserves it. Gregor is one of the good ones. Probably the best indie author working right now. That is my honest opinion.

Now for a little goofiness.

My buddy Gregor knows his way around weird. He's spent a significant amount of time honing his craft and perfecting the art of explaining the unexplainable. While he is my friend, I look forward to his newest work like I do the works of Stephen King and Rachel Ray and John from the now disbanded band John and Kate Plus Eight. And, once you've completed Taboogasm, I'm sure you'll become a dedicated Xanist, as well. But first, a history lesson.

My purely-platonic-yet-erotic man-crush on Gregor Xane started when I read his debut, Six Dead Spots, and gave it a critical review. Gregor contacted my eliteness soon after to express how much he wanted to massage my manly bits. I responded by telling him I was married but we could totally cyber sex like it was 1999 as long as he agreed not to tell my wife about our late-night, virtual saber-clashing sessions. Between rugged hammering of each other's tent stakes, Gregor asked me to do a proofread of another piece of classy literature entitled The Hanover Block. I fangirled all over that thing until it became stiffer than a pair of old sweat socks baked in a kiln. Since then Gregor's sexy ass has taken me from mound pounding to goat loving to puppet shows to cattle farming, until finally we stopped here at Taboogasm.

Now, I know what you're thinking. You're thinking, "Who the fuck is Edward Lorn and why should I care what he thinks?" I have no answer to that question. But what I do know is that Gregor Xane should be a household name by now. It is an affront to Tom Cruise's good name that Gregor Xane is not on the tip of your tongue every morning and the last thing in your mouth before you kiss your significant other goodnight in the evening. And Taboogasm is a damn good reason as to why that should be the case. This man has proven he can write anything and write it well. But what I find most impressive about Gregor's writing is the fact that he can make the craziest shit so damn real and enthralling. Because, in the hands of a lesser author, his premises would not be taken seriously. It is a testament to Gregor's writing chops that I was able to suspend my disbelief while reading the story you are about to experience. For fuckery is afoot, and you're about to have one helluva freaky ride.

In summation: Taboogasm is a must read for many reasons, but the simplest reason is the best one. You have never and will never read anything like it. Come for the experience. Stay for the fantastic writing.

Final Judgment: Men's Adventure with a Xanist twist.

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review 2016-07-22 05:20
The Reapers are the Angels Review
The Reapers Are the Angels - Alden Bell
  I've debated back and forth on whether or not to post a review for this book because I have nothing new to add to the conversation. But that got me thinking. What is a conversation other than the sharing of opinions and ideas? So what if a book has umpteen million reviews. So what if none of my friends might be interested in it or have already read it. To even think I hold sway over what anyone else reads stinks of narcissism, and, while I am the sexiest, smartest, and most-loved reviewer on this site, I don't have much of an ego. Egos are for authors and authors are assholes. Anyway, moving on...

Me thinks Alden Bell is a gamer. Specifically a fan of survival horror games like Resident Evil, Dead Island, and Left 4 Dead. Why? Well that would be a spoiler and I don't do spoilers. I mean, I do, but not here. I'll see you in the Spoiler Discussion. *smooches*

Temple was the best part of the book for me. Her nonchalant attitude toward doing what needed to be done was hella fun to read. Her calling Maury "Dummy" might upset some sensitive types, but I thought it was a perfect example of world building through character interaction, which is how world building should be done. Think about it. In a world of zomb-zombs and... and other things, political correctness would be left on the back burner or forgotten completely. Who gives a fuck about being triggered when you're trying not to get eaten? Priorities, yo. We even get a mention of racial purity, because it wouldn't be a book about the American southeast without a healthy dose of White Lives Matter (Most). I think the author hit the nose on the head (that's not how that saying goes, is it?) with his depiction of a post-apocalyptic Alabama. I currently live in Bama (ROLL EAGLE!), and I must say, we're almost there. If a certain someone wins the election in November, we'll have to move The Reapers are the Angelsover to nonfiction.

(I love that either side can argue that I mean Clinton or Trump because both sides believe the other side's candidate will bring on the apocalypse. This election year really does feel like we're choosing which way we want to see America burn: hellfire or nuclear strike)

I found this book while reading an article online about the most underrated horror novels. I'd read all the others on the list and dug each of them, so I tried this one. I'm glad I did. And, no, I don't remember where the list was posted, nor do I recall what the other books were. I know. I suck. My apologies.

In summation: This is an above-average zombie book. The writing is fantastic. But that can be a bad thing if you have a weak constitution. Because Alden Bell will make you smell and taste things you don't want to smell and taste.

Final Judgment: Redneck zom-zoms best waifu.

Spoiler Discussion:

I liked that Temple died. I dig it when authors have the testicles or ovaries necessary to kill their leads. Rock on.

The giant rednecks were fucking rad. Right out of games like the ones I mentioned in the review. Like Brutes or Thugs. I honestly want to know if Bell is a gamer, because this entire novel felt like a literary video game.

The sex scene was a bit awkward for me to read. But only because I'm a father of a soon-to-be-teenage girl and I don't like imagining fifteen-year-old girls riding dick. Just my personal preference.

Thanks for joining me. If you would like to join in on the Spoiler Discussion, please be polite and use spoiler tags. Danke.
(spoiler show)
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review 2016-07-15 03:33
Addictive
Paper Princess: A Novel (The Royals) - Erin Watt

The heroine was too obedient of the royals and too upset for stupid things for my feminist taste, but overall good book.

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review 2016-07-12 17:17
The Wolf Road Review
The Wolf Road: A Novel - Beth Lewis

Novel is pert-near perfect. One slight complaint I got is that some parts is a mite hard to read. Made my head spun, they done did. Cruise willin' and the creek don't rise, I might give 'er another read one day. See what alls I might of misunderstood cuz it's writ all broke-like.

Writing that first paragraph hurt my heart and soul. I cannot fathom writing an entire novel like Beth Lewis wrote The Wolf Road. I once wrote a story called "Smitten" in this style, and to this day, I want to go back and rewrite it. In both my story and Lewis's novel, the first-person hick-speak is warranted, but Tom Cruise wept, it's hard to read at times. I honestly would've given this five stars if I hadn't needed to reread entire paragraphs to figure out what the silly-fuck Elka was saying.

Halfway through this novel it changes from The Road meets True Gritto The Revenant meets Calamity Jane. I liked the first mash up better. Now, now, brown cow, I dig the fuck outta Doris Day and her goofy little western, but I wasn't expecting the shift. It was a wee bit jarring. For 40% of the book I was left waiting for the story to switch back to the awesomesauce that was the first 50%. Lewis finally brought everything home in terrific fashion, but that doesn't change the fact that she had me worried for almost half the run time. I actually look forward to rereading the novel just because I know what's coming now and I can sit back and enjoy the book for what it is instead of what I expected it to be.

The ending is both emotionally powerful and fantastically written. I was hovering around three stars until the final pages. The novel paid off and left me wanting flip back to page one and start all over again the minute I flipped the final page. Can't say that about many books.

In summation: While the narrative style can be difficult to read at times and forced me to slow down or to reread certain sections, I loved the characters and the chances the author took. Elka was far from perfect, and the Country Mouse/City Mouse interactions in the middle were fun, if a little unexpected and jarring. But that's kinda my fault. I expected one tone throughout, and I got about three different tones. Not necessarily a bad thing. Just unexpected.

Final Judgment: Finger lickin' good.

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