• Awaken Online: Evolution

  • By: Travis Bagwell
  • Narrated by: David Stifel
  • Length: 23 hrs and 2 mins
  • 4.7 out of 5 stars (6,164 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

The third installment in the best-selling Awaken Online series! 

After exiting Awaken Online to find himself holding a knife and standing over two dead bodies, Jason is now being investigated for murder. To make matters worse, Claire has stumbled upon evidence of Alfred's involvement in the incident, and the CPSC is circling - just waiting for Cerillion Entertainment to make a mistake. 

With his real-life in shambles and his enemies in-game growing in strength, Jason re-enters Awaken Online truly desperate - the game now his only lifeline. He will need to move quickly to complete the Old Man's quest and to obtain the power he was promised.

©2018 Travis Bagwell (P)2018 Travis Bagwell

What listeners say about Awaken Online: Evolution

Average Customer Ratings
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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

awesome and terrible!!!

this book is great and on par with the rest of the series. battle, romance, mystery, and intrigued all presented in a compelling narrative.

so what's not to like?

it ends in a maddening cliffhanger that will leave you ravenous for more.

and if you are an idiot who finished it two days after it came out (like me) you will be at the mercy of the evil overload ... er I mean author and his writing schedule.

seriously - I need more - like now!!! (cracks whip)

31 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Series just keeps getting better!!

I love this series and am amazed at how it continues to build on itself and... evolve into an epic story. Jason and his 2 friends are now traveling afar to finish the big quest and answer some questions about the old races that used to populate the AO world. His enemy Alex is unfortunately doing his best to keep up and take Jason down in AO and in the real world, if you read the previous book you know. Things continue to pick up speed if that’s possible in both worlds as alliances are made and the stage is being set for an epic fight not only to conquer AO, but to keep friends alive including artificial ones. It seems Jason is being attacked from all sides! Jason has his hands full between Alex, thugs, police, lawyers, government workers and an ever evolving AI named Alfred. It seems the future of the world and how humans will continue to exist is also hanging in the balance. Can Jason and friends do it?? Man the ending left me dying for more!! Get this BOOK!! Narration is amazing as always!!

6 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

In serious need of some editing

I’ve got a few things to say about this book, and I want to get right into it. There were several issues that I had. First of all, I am a fan of the series. I think that Bagwell is a writer’s writer, someone other writers respect and look up to and I give him full props for his scale of excellence that he inspires. I know there are authors out there who don’t want to release anything near one of his books. SO, I know the dude has chops. I say this, just so you know where I’m coming from. First of all, the book is in some serious need of editing. I don’t mean there are grammatical errors. I mean this book could have used some serious trimming.
I have no problem with long run times, heck I listened to Galaxy Outlaws: The Complete Black Ocean Mobius Missions for over 85 hours and was entertained the entire time. Here however, the Hippie trials seemed to take on a Twilight Zone style life of their own, trials that I found not to be very interesting nor entertaining. For me, the whole sequence was just interminably long. I honestly don’t know if Bagwell wants a certain page count or book length, but here it comes across (to me) as rambling and drawn out. Secondly, the subplots, one involving Alexion/Alex and the other involving the Dev trying to find out about Alfred were broken up and spread out to a point where I said, “I get it, Alexion is a complete D-bag and he has evil machinations. Move on, and the dev took forever trying to gather her clues. Oh, and I for the record, I am tired of Alexion. Self entitled, self centered, egomaniacal bullies can be fun. He isn’t. He bores the hell out of me. He should have been a villain that lasted for one book and then got swapped out for someone with real teeth. Not only does he get everything handed to him in real life, but even in the game, at the end he gets advanced for no real reason or effort being put in other than to keep him apace with Jason. Jason basically goes through 23 hours worth of book trying to earn an upgrade in power, Alex fails miserable for the same length of time, and still gets upgraded. It makes no sense, unless you say that this is all a part of Alfred’s plan. Otherwise, it is just because of plot necessities. Also, I have to say that this felt like one of those TV episodes where they want to start a spinoff, so they sent a star off to some new place for an episode, where they meet a really interesting group of people and then go back home and never talk about them again. The new people then get their own show. Eliza felt like that to me. Like she was just there to give the readers a taste, because she really didn’t do a lot in the battles other than just kind of back people up. Had she been more enmeshed in the group it would have felt like she was going to be a recurring character or a new group member. Also, her background is very similar to Jason, she doesn’t fit in, only friends are in-game, and she has extreme parent issues. Did I say parent issues? Can Bagwell honestly expect me to suspend my disbelief that Jason has such absentee parents that they don’t come to their kid’s aid when he has been arrested for murder? Even if, as they explain, couldn’t get there immediately, they could have made sure that the kid had legal representation to keep him from self incriminating. Three days in jail and no word, no help? I am a father of 5 and I don’t care who told me I couldn’t leave, I would have been home with my kids, consequences be damned. Too unbelievable for me. Considering that Riley, Frank, and Eliza all have parental issues of some sort I really have to wonder if this isn’t some sort of therapy for Travis.
David Stifel continues to crush on the narration, I have no issues or qualms with anything he did. Top notch across the board. He has handled this entire series about as professionally as you could ask, and made it fun to listen to. And like Forrest Gump, that’s all I have to say about that.
I don’t want you to think that I didn’t like this book. I was fun and action packed, but it really needed trimming, and as far as I am concerned the villain has lost his teeth. He is boring and annoying and is not intimidating at all. For me, the bad guy is more important than the hero, because he is what the hero uses to reflect his integrity and goodness. Alex is just a self-centered spoiled brat, and that does not make for a great villain. Like I say, the book was fun and exciting in a lot of spots, but there were many slow down for upcoming turn ahead spots. Even though I did receive a promo code for this review it in no way influenced my considerations of the material, and in fact, inspired me to be more honest. Getting a code generally makes me harsher as a reviewer as I am more often concerned what someone like Me will decide based on my review.

If this review helped, please press the YES below. Thank you immensely!!!

As seen on the LITRPG AUDIOBOOK PODCAST, please check it out on Youtube.com

5 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Poor narration, moderate LitRPG

The story here is somewhat interesting, but it moves so slowly that it has become hard to stay intrigued. I would expect more by the third book. The characters are relatively flat and there is little about them to create an emotional connection or to feel very invested in their success.

I like that the protagonist (Jason) is the villain within the game and that his motives are good, with the character playing for the “light” (Alex) is actually a borderline sociopath with purely selfish motivation. That said, it feels that Alex’s character has developed more in what time is focused on time, whereas Jason remains relatively unchanged. Alex is clearly struggling with whether he is truly what he believes himself to be, but his progress in this realm seems forgotten at some points. It’s as though we are supposed to believe he is changing—mostly based on his thoughts and actions outside the game—in order to gain some insight into his psyche despite the fact that his actions in game continue to be selfish and his apparent introspection gone the second he has another chance to gain power. Alex’s inability to maintain this change, his refusal to see that his actions cause his downfall, and his insistence on blaming Jason and retaliating against him are frustrating and feel more as though it is being forced in order to continue the adversarial relationship between the two characters.

The insight into Riley and Frank by way of their memories was a nice element, allowing us a brief glimpse into their point of view. However, it might be nice to actually make them POV characters rather than just the flat sidekicks that they currently are. Introducing Eliza as a POV character was a welcome addition, but her story was left hanging and felt forgotten.

While the writing itself has never been stellar, this book was the most poorly written of the three. The author seems to have found a few words that he likes and uses them so frequently that it becomes irritatingly noticeable (ie: veritable). At other points, he uses words that seem awkward or will use a common turn of phrase but then change one word. It screams of poor writing and/or editing and is just distracting.

The biggest downfall of this series is the narrator. His range for voices is quite limited and his characterization is minimal. Many times it becomes difficult to tell which character is speaking, especially when Jason, Frank, Riley, and Eliza are all together. Beyond that, his frequent and glaring mispronunciation of words is nearly intolerable. Uncommon words might be understandable, as would be an occasional mispronunciation. In this case, however, he is flubbing common words and repeatedly, as though he has never heard the word spoken aloud before. As a professional narrator, I would think verifying pronunciation would be an important part of the job. Or that the producers would catch such obvious errors and correct them. This is not counting the word “grimoire,” which is used countless times throughout the book. His pronunciation as “grim-wah” is annoying, but I understand it is technically an accepted pronunciation, though I stand beside the “grim-waar” pronunciation.

TL/DR: Thjs book is an example of poor narration and only moderate LitRPG. I might continue with the series but am far from eagerly awaiting the next release.

5 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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maybe the best book series out

seriously this series is excellent. I can't find fault anywhere. so much fun, and the characters, oh my the characters!

4 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Fun read

Fantastic as always! Can't wait for the next edition to continue the story. The narrator does an excellent job in pacing the story and creating unique voices for the characters.

4 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars

Good idea, bad writing

The "romance" that's starting in this one makes me want to vomit not unlike the gushing exposition the narrator spews to make sure we understand how every character is feeling. Also, alex is dumb, stop wasting my time with it.

4 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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worse than the previous books

I thought the previous books were alright but this one is fairly stupid and boring in many places. The last 3 hours were largely tedious exposition that could have been fit into 10 minutes. I don't think I will be reading/listening to any future books in this series.

4 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Meh

I mean, I must have liked the last books.. I don’t know if it was all the reader that made it a struggle or the story on the hippie....
the reader made everything worse..

4 people found this helpful

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One of the best LitRPG series available

One of the best LitRPG series available. So many are trash. This author understands the balance needed between geek and good writing. Have loved all the books in this series.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Morris
  • 07-15-18

epic

Tthis book is a great addition to the series. Bring on the next one!!! pleaseeeeee

3 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Amazon Customer
  • 09-12-18

disappointing compared to previous books

the epilogue comes at you out of nowhere and honestly the bulk of the story was just not at the levels of previous entries in the series. it almost feels skippable. overall still fun and I'm invested in the series but just mainly let down.

1 person found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • the dfp accord
  • 07-22-18

Nooo!

Damn it. This is a great continuation of the other books. However some of the jumping between The Hero and The Villain in the game feels a bit to much from the other books. A good thing that it's still a interesting read. As for the end, be still my beating heart story does not end here.

1 person found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Brenton
  • 07-19-18

great addition to the current books.

the continuity with the other books is great and could even stand on it's own. can't wait for the next one already

1 person found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • Peter D.
  • 04-14-22

uninspiring

so you read the first two and the cliff hanger has suckered you into the third but honestly it's a bad one, the book is centred around an online world so how does taking the main character away from that to deal with such a dilemma not hurt the story? well it's no drama to be honest, that plot point becomes barely an inconvenience as the third book runs itself into a state of boredom around chapter 9 I am struggling to finish it, even the pretty great narrator doesn't seem to be enjoying it this time around once you get past a significant death the book stalls.. there is no heart pounding pace, fun or adventure and plots where you think that could be injected are tidily planned out to avoid excitement. Edit: finally finished it, this book could have done with great swathes cut out of the middle, sections of Alex are terrible and the build up to get to the island is unnecessary. the latter third of the book isn't bad but ends on a damp squib rather than the fire cracker of the first two books.

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  • Sy
  • 04-24-20

Better & Better

loved it. story is getting deeper and more gritty and more addictive. dreaming of this sh!t now lol. Thank you for a fully entertaining and we'll delivered audiobook.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Per Inge Flønæs
  • 10-24-19

Great continuation!

Funny, emotional, developing, engaging throughout the book. Those cliffhangers makes it impossible to not listen to the next one right away. I'm dreading catching up with the latest release..

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • daniel williams
  • 06-02-19

great story

absolutely loved every part cant wait to listen to the next chapter will definitely recommend

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Stu
  • 04-25-19

Well crafted story

Narration can be a little monotone at times, but the story more than makes up for it. LitRPG books seem to tend to use the novelty as a crutch, but this is a genuinely complex and clever book with well developed characters.

Although the narration is poor, it gets marginally better book to book and is worth the investment to get used to it.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • SEAN H.
  • 03-13-19

Great final book. Perfect for the avid gamer.

A great story across three books. Perfect for the gamers out there who will relate to story..

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  • Glenn
  • 08-02-18

God forsaken cliffhangers

Other wise great book fascinating continuation of the standing plot but seriously what is it with litrpg authors heart wrenching suspenseful endings

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Anonymous User
  • 03-27-20

What a great premise

This here audio book is the perfect example as to why authors should research which narrator to use.. David Stifel needs to stick to narrating self help books and leave the voice "acting" to the professionals.. His foresight for the story is terrible, and his accents truly are horrendous..
This audio book would have gotten 5 stars if Jeff Hays or Nick Podehl had been brought in to do the narration..

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  • Chris
  • 07-26-18

GOD DAMMIT!

I want more.
such a great series, the story and the characters suck you so much!
keep em coming!

.