AudioBook Review – Ascend Online

Finally this got out of ‘being pending’ on audible –

Ascend Online: Ascend Online, Book 1 | [Luke Chmilenko]

“Great listen! more please!” 

Concept/world-building – 4
Plot – 4
Character – 5
Dialogue – 5
Prose – 5
Conflict/resolution – 4
Overall rating 4.5

I picked this up as Luke’s highly recommended in the litrpg Facebook groups. So, when the audio was put up for pre-order with Luke Daniels as the narrator I nabbed it quick.

It’s a long listen, so it did take me a while. But it was well worth it.

Plot

For me, the start of anything takes a while, and I do admit this was a little slower for me than usual, but it’s more than worth it.

Where the world that Marcus actually lives in, isn’t very well defined or spoken about much. The interaction with his friends at the start and then into the game is. I enjoyed all that each character brought to the story, and more from the NPC’s.

Once the story really does start to move forwards, you get the experience of Luke’s gaming and background as the world of Ascend Online develops, bits of history and information are peppered in just the right places so not to feel like too much of an info dump and you are as excited as the players for the challenges they’re about to face.

It’s got enough crafting, fighting and loot to make all the gamers want more, and the stats read out aren’t as heavy as some other litrpg books. It doesn’t slow the pacing at all, and Luke does a great job with reading them so they’re also not just hard core skill lists. The story telling around these alone helps make this a book to remember.

Character

There wasn’t quite enough of the ‘real’ world for me. I would have wanted some more interaction with it through Marcus, even if it meant he had to log off once. However, each of the characters that Marcus/Lyrian enter the game with are well defined enough once he meets back up with them in the game.

As for them being supporting characters, they’re pretty great all by themselves. As for a fav one, I’d have to say Natasha has a spot, but defo Amaranth has the biggest. (sp)

Dialogue

I thought all the characters had decent dialogue. And also with Luke narrating, they were a breeze to listen to, each with their own personalities which really shined through. Luke did a great job with the ladies in the group and also with the demons and other worldly creatures. I did, however, think that the two overlords of the game were brother and sister at first, till I realised they were sisters.

Graves’ character drawl was also really good to listen to. Awesome job from both narrator and writer in design of the bad guys and in the way he really stood out in the narration.

Conflict/Resolution

I think because this has so much scope for the series, that there’s always going to be underlying threads we don’t see tied up. But the overall conflict in this book was left with a satisfying ending. Even if I did want more of the book and story world.
You can’t expect me to listen to almost 18 hours of something and not come away with a book hangover! Omg give me more!

I am glad I picked this up. And I really do look forward to more in this series from both Lukes’

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AudioBook Review – Cthulhu Armageddon

Had the terrifying experience of CT Phipps this last week. 🙂 awesome book and great narrator!

 

Cthulhu Armageddon | [C. T. Phipps]

“Western/Horror/Humour”

I have to admit, that following Jeffery Kafer around brought me to this book. I kept looking at it, reading the synopsis and then not picking it up, but I did still keep on coming back to it. A friend kept pushing me to give it a go, and I’m glad that I did. I’m not very familiar with Cthulhu as a story, but because it seemed to be myth/law, I did a little digging and found many references to it. Nice job on creating this amazing world around something so diverse in its creation.

C.T. Phipps has an extraordinary imagination, both for the setting and the characters. It starts off really quick and the action just doesn’t let up. The humour, both dark, and gripping kept me listening even with the horrible creatures and destruction of our world.

Booth’s mission with his team turns bad and he loses them all or so he thinks, he’s not only any clue how he eventually escapes but he’s left with a strange handprint on his shoulder. As things unfold Booth’s adventure grows in intensity, he’s to take the blame for his team’s death, resulting in a public execution, that the ‘torturer’ Mercury fakes because she wants him as a guide in the wastelands. It seems her life is on a short leash as well. So booth agrees to help her reluctantly.

The friendships that develop and the journey that Booth sets out on is fraught with monsters, danger, and death.

The monsters are horrible. I didn’t think that anything he could continue to see and witness would scare him more than the previous encounter, and in one sense, I think that being terrified all the time did get a little repetitive. I believe that more you’re exposed to these kinds of things the more that you get accustomed to them, or at least a little immune, the horrors of war and life in the wastelands would be more and more like normal life, but the fact was that Booth seemed to just keep on finding things so horrible and sickening that it kind of detracted it for me.

The narration was, of course, pretty spot on, there were great characterisations from Jeffery especially with Booth, I enjoyed the performance and the ladies, even if they all did seem to fawn over the MC. The only one who gave as much as she was dealt with, without an emotional attachment was Jackie, and she was a kid, everyone else seemed to ‘want’ to be with or had been with Booth, and that got a little old, more so thinking that he actually might want to be with the woman who tortured people…. Booth seemed to just do the opposite of what I thought he might when there was a pretty body near him.

Overall I was impressed both with the story and the narration, so I picked up book 2 and am almost finished with it 🙂 Thank you for the entertainment, really enjoyed the journey and the ending was really exciting! solid 4.5 stars from me all round.

AudioBook Review – Zero Hour

What scares you the most… when the world around you collapses, this kind of novel is truly terrifying.

Great writing, and narration…. just so darned true…

(thank you to amazon who removed this, so I could repost after the world worst typo ever)

Zero Hour: The Blackout Series, Book 2 | [Bobby Akart]

“Scary real story, with excellent characters”

What I really like about this and as a second book is that it’s so so real. It may be fiction, but the true facts behind this are scarily real… and it puts you in the heart of a worst case scenario with devastating consequences.

Bobby Akart brings us characters here that survived the first couple of days, reunited with his family and now is trying to do right by them and the community around them.

When the world collapses and people become desperate, these events would be more likely to happen in your street. The characters here, really make you want to help them, to route for them and of course for their survival.

It is again a shorter piece, but the story moves so fast I think it was gone in a blink of an eye and I so wanted more, to see where the Rymans end up, do they even make it out the street So much is going on around them, so many scared and terrified and dying people.

What I really like about this series and the narrator who does a very excellent job of the story is that as I’m from the UK and essentially not a ‘prepper’ I have picked up several tips and things that I would need, that would be likely just as important over here as in the US.

All in all an excellent second book and I’m going on to pick up the next as I thought I saw it floating out there…. 🙂

Our books are not free!

The biggest event on facebook, I’ve seen in a while! and it starts soon!

https://www.facebook.com/events/206705409792190/

Sorry facebook for the double tap. Well worth it I think. 🙂

I’ve had the best time since we launched TSK’s second book in December, with a really well laid out plan of attack and some well-placed blogs and adds, we’re doing okay, sales and KU reads are really steady! and I’m proud of that.

But in the launch I did what most authors do, I had giveaway prizes. I love and will always love doing things for others if they REALLY want them, but I gave away between 2 events over 16 audiobooks, out of those prize winners only 6 actually have claimed their books.

These books cost a tonne of money to produce, and each gift costs around $20 or £20 (we’re almost even in cash value)

So I gave away £200 worth of goods, that no one really wanted.

So when a facebook friend decided enough was enough and she shared her idea on this event, I fully supported her, and I’m very proud of the gathering that is involved with this event.

Writing is not easy, it’s fun… sure.

It can be highly stressful too.

It is expensive.

To compete in the real world we have to pay out for many things.

Editing,

Cover art…

Proofing.

Marketing.

Our time is worth something.

Yet, all the time, artists and not just in the writing world are berated and asked for stuff for free.

My other qualm was before my book launch in December I took part in a big event for a $100 amazon gift card. We gathered email addresses for our mailing lists, which was fab.

However in January and up to date, because I gave my email address in, I’ve had over 350 emails, with authors GIVING books away for free 😦

I am very saddened by this, and it has to stop.

We are worth it!

Our time is worth it. You as a reader want hour after hour of entertainment, right?

But you won’t pay more than 2.99 ?

What’s that coffee cost you there, that you’re drinking? how much is that barista on per hour?

Yeah, you get my point, right?

I love my readers, and I love my fans, the comments and notes I get all over social media make my day, but I have to eat, I have to put a roof over my head.

Hugs to you all, and I really, really hope you guys will support this fab event.

I’ve got spending money tonight! So I’m going to buy some amazing books from some of these fabulous authors!

 

AudioBook Review – Seabound

I have no idea why this review didn’t post originally, prob hit the review, then the preview, but didn’t actually send. So I went back to this and re visited some of the best moments.

Great book and really worth a listen!

 

Seabound: Seabound Chronicles, Book 1 | [Jordan Rivet]

“Unique twists and serious world building.”

I picked this one up a long time ago, and somehow my review didn’t post, so this is a revised review after taking another stab at it, as I also have book 2 now!

What I really enjoyed through this book and again in taking another listen was the world building. Of course we all expect in a post-apocalyptic world for there to be many events for the characters to get over, but this was written in such a way that these events were not just breathtaking but so very emotional.

16 years after the event that sends everyone to the seas this story digs down and brings us some events that will really tug at your thoughts. The Catalina and her crew/citizens are forced to act after their ship breaks down, but this causes a lot of grief and internal confusion in what to do, and in the people who might help.

I love the characters in here, of course Esther especially who is great with leading and being who she’s supposed to be. they’re all really interesting and fight for all the right reasons.

Ray’s tone and style really suits sea bound stories, (hence the Atomic Sea) and I really love the voices for each character that he choose, they bring the story and the people to life in so many ways. There were some interesting accent choices, and one that really made me laugh out loud, but in a good way. No spoilers, I’ve got book 2 to listen to this next week, as soon as I’ve caught up on some others, so many great books released this last week. I don’t know what to pick!

🙂