It's a simple story. Boy finds proof that reality is a computer program. Boy uses program to manipulate time and space. Boy gets in trouble. Boy flees back in time to Medieval England to live as a wizard while he tries to think of a way to fix things. Boy gets in more trouble.
Oh, and boy meets girl at some point.
Off to Be the Wizard is a light, comedic novel about computers, time travel, and human stupidity, written by Scott Meyer, the creator of the internationally known comic strip Basic Instructions.
Magic will be made! Legends will be created! Stew will be eaten!
©2013 Scott Meyer (P)2013 Brilliance Audio, all rights reserved.
I really enjoyed this book! not only was Luke Daniels' narration very fun but the book was as well. Loads of comedy, callbacks, nerdgasmic references and tech mentions. one thing I particularly loved was the foreshadowing of jokes and plot points, there are many times where you hear something and think to yourself "i wonder why he said it like that" or "why 30 feet?"
I'd definitely recommend this book to anyone who enjoyed Ready Player One and RPO to anyone who enjoyed this book.
I can't wait to start the next one and try my hardest to not make the obvious joke.
Listened to this in a road-trip with my teenagers. At first I got the usual "Oh Dad, we don't want to listen to one of your dumb audiobooks", but this one... This one grabbed them from the beginning. Dude finds a computer program that.... well, spoilers.
Then we flash back to medieval England and yes, it makes sense. and the riotous adventure begins. So funny, so well told.
And Luke Daniels gives the performance to beat. Wonderful accents, unique characters. He so obviously enjoys doing this book, that we can't help but have enormous amounts of fun with him.
Must listen and must get the sequel!
Recently I listened to "The Death of Ivan Ilych" and "Siddhartha" as well as a number of intense non-fiction titles ("Beyond Anger" and some Great Courses titles). All very serious, all very deep. This book is light fare, but is very funny, well done, and aimed at middle-aged male nerds like me. It's just the antidote I needed.
I enjoyed every second of this story. I even tortured my family by insisting on listening to the last few chapters non-stop through breakfast the rest of the morning and lunch until the book was done.
[SPOILER ALERT] The premise of the book is a fun take on the idea that humanity are the white mice in someone else's science experiment or game. The fun starts when a few learn how to game the game. The characters are all geeky and likable. The basic conflict in the story is a classic. A Machiavellian narcissist psychopath wants power and doesn't give a hoot about those he must crush in the process (just like your bosses at work!). And the good guys are determined to stop him. The catch is they are all very powerful wizards in mediaeval England.
I can't wait to listen to the next installment.
Highly recommended for middle aged male nerds looking for funny, light reading/listening.
The whole story line was fun, I didn't think I would enjoy it as much as I did, but my boyfriend loved it, so I thought I'd give it a try. Excellent story, left my laughing my whole way home in traffic, while getting stared out by the grumpy folks stuck in gridlock.
I loved Luke Daniels performance, he really is fantastic, I can't explain in words what a great job he does; even doing the voices of women. Listen to a sample, and I'm sure you won't be disappointed!
Not only did I want to listen to this in one sitting, I probably would listen to this story again.
Could not hold my attention. Some very light writing that would probably attract much younger audience. And I enjoy many YA books.
No B.S. reviews. I'll never soft-pedal bad writing or inept narration.
This book is delightful, and a really fun listen. Not too serious, but entertaining, well thought out, charming, intelligent, and nicely-written. Overall, it exceeded my expectations in every way.
As to the narration—Luke Daniels was unknown to me prior to this book, but I'm an instant fan. He reads like he's telling—rather than reading—the story, and his characterizations are great!
No—not just great, actually remarkable and amazing! For example, there are very few narrators who can even approximate sarcasm, but for Mr. Daniels, getting it perfect is no problem at all. His portrayal of Phillip, the hero's mentor, is energetic and hilarious. His portrayal of Martin, the hero, is humble, articulate, and spot-on. And he manages female characters without any of the annoying squeakiness or nasal affectations that so many narrators resort to. This guy truly understands his craft.
If you're looking for a diverting listen that bridges the gap between fantasy and sci-fi in a really fun way, it would be hard to do better.
I would have enjoyed this book quite a bit when I was a pre-teen/teenage geek. If you are one now, then feel free to stop reading this review and go ahead and read & enjoy this series as light fiction. But as an adult I found the main character (and other characters), setting, and plot all disappointing. Has such a limited view of people, society, etc. that it is almost offensive in how insular and unaware it is (and yes, I am a white male geek!). As humorous SF/Fantasy it is supposed to be light, but falls short and just feels flat and contrived. My memory tells me that even Piers Anthony was better, and certainly this book is not even a pale echo of humor/parody as written by Terry Pratchett, John Scalzi, Connie Willis, Douglas Adams, Steven Brust, etc. Read those authors first, then don't come back to this book. (As for the narration -- it was good; light in tone befitting the materials. I would listen to other books read by Luke Daniels).
I want to, and I try to. To nerd friends, it's an easy sell. To non-nerd friends, I really have a hard time getting them interested in a book like this, based on the premise of a guy trying to be a wizard. Everyone who does read this series, ends up enjoying it.
Martin of course. He's just a average, but loveable guy, who finds trouble with just about everything he does, but just keeps on going.
Sometimes when you read a witty statement, you sorta have to re-read the statement to properly set the pause or emphasis properly. Daniels does a fantastic job delivering the witty elements.
I chuckle every time I hear Luke Daniels describing Martin being angry with himself, for not warning himself, not to do the stupid things he did. Gets me every time.
This book, along with the two other wizard books are frequently played out of my 100+ audiobook collection. It's wonderfully read by Daniels, and not so intense to require playing through entirely.
Was a little skeptical about whether I'd enjoy this or not, pleased to say my skepticism was entirely unfounded.
A witty and entertaining story, Luke Daniels does a fantastic job with character voices although his English accent is unfortunately not very good and as an Englishman myself is quite annoying, I can look past it and still enjoy the book because he is able to read in such a way that you know which character is which and get drawn in to the narrative. Very well done,.
I look forward to the second book and hope this gets picked up and turned into a TV comedy series or film franchise.
"Light and breezy, but could've been much more"
I think I expected a bit too much from this book and consequently it didn't quite deliver. The excellent reviews and innovative idea for the novel suckered me in, but I found it a bit wanting. Perhaps even a bit simplistic/childish (although what should I have expected, I hear you ask!?).
The story was a very straight-forward A to B affair and the humour never got beyond me thinking it was amusing, rather than actually laughing out loud. I think I was just a bit underwhelmed by it all, to be honest.
Having said that, it was in no way a bad listen and I'm still thinking about getting one of the follow-ups because I like the whole concept of the piece so much... but the fact that I have been spending my credits on alternative books might tell you all you need to know!
The narration was excellent.
"Off to be a Wizard"
Liked the unusual story line, fun to listen to, and the various voices for the characters, makes them more recognisable and believable.
Overall I enjoyed it and am already downloading book two.
"A fun book with a fantastic narrator"
I enjoyed the humour. The narrator is spectacularly good - really knows how to deliver a funny line in an good series of voices. He even manages not to be annoying when doing an English accent (like mine) which is rarely achieved by an American. The book itself is pretty amusing, but lightweight. Not genius funny, like Douglas Adams, but gives you a few genuine laughs and has a wry sense of humour. The plot is pretty basic. Oversimple, even. It sometimes feels like he's forgotten to write a plot, because he's so in love with his world. The next two books are more plotty.
Love Scott Meyer, and Luke Daniels performs it brilliantly. Favourite listen so far!
I could never get tired of the time travelling wizards, all living in the past but coming from different times in the future. Looking forward to listening to the next instalment.
"A bit tooo nerd, but ok overall"
I got it, I understand computers enough, but I used to have a friend who worked in IT and when people asked him about what he did he'd gloss it over and move on as quickly as possible because anyone who pushed hard enough to find out immediately regretted it. No one wants to talk about networks or protocols etc.
This story comes dangerously close without having the quality of ready player one (which uses more conceptualism than reference).
Characters are a bit predictable and annoying but theres enough here to make it to the end I found and even (toward the end) be eager to continue. Perhaps this means the next book will improve and be pretty good? I think I will give it a go.
enjoyed it but the main character was a little bit of a disappointment.
will defo read the sequels as the plot was really fun. the performance was amazing
"A great twist"
the premise is a bit weak but once you get past that the story becomes quite gripping. any story that leaves you thinking of a world where the rules are different is worth a read in my opinion. the performance is outstanding
"Not my usual book but...."
Good fun nice story great experience. Good notator that created a vision in my mind.
"Enjoyable, funny, but not perfect."
I’ll be honest, I gave this book a go on the strength of the narrator, Luke Daniels and I’m glad I did! It’s enjoyable, light, whitty in places and delivered with L.D’s talent for making you believe, enjoy and root for characters in a story that enjoyable throughout. I enjoyed it so much I picked up the next two books in the series. This isn’t perfect, but one I’ve really enjoyed listening to.
I’m still looking for a replacement for the Iron Druid books. (if you haven’t checked those out, please do so.) this isn’t that, but plenty enjoyable.
On to book two.
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