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Publisher's Summary

Jason logs into Awaken Online fed-up with reality. He's in desperate need of an escape, and this game is his ticket to finally feeling the type of power and freedom that are so sorely lacking in his real life.

Awaken Online is a brand new virtual reality game that just hit the market, promising an unprecedented level of immersion. Yet Jason quickly finds himself pushed down a path he didn't expect. In this game, he isn't the hero. There are no damsels to save. There are no bad guys to vanquish.

In fact, he might just be the villain.

©2016 Travis Bagwell (P)2016 Travis Bagwell

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.7 out of 5.0
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Performance

  • 4.4 out of 5.0
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Story

  • 4.7 out of 5.0
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Great series and great narration

I've really enjoyed listening this series. The narration, in my opinion, is really great and voices between characters is very consistent which is really important in my opinion. After reading ready player one, it left an itch that I think this series scratches really well. Between this and ready player one, I've found a new favorite genre in litrpg.

8 of 8 people found this review helpful

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awesome

Best I've heard in a long time. original story plot and fun in the details.

7 of 7 people found this review helpful

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  • John
  • United States
  • 11-11-16

This is more of a YA novel than reviews indicate

Any additional comments?

I enjoyed this book. its clearly part of the emerging genre of "LitRPG" - and reads like playing an MMO video game. And just like such games, the characters are stock and predictable: outsider, loner high school kid; rich jerk; decent girl caught in the middle. But it was still a fun ride.

31 of 34 people found this review helpful

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Ding

Probably one of the best LitRPGs around. Just finished my second listen, and still very satisfying. Highly recommend

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

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fun story

power listened through this! Good book. Going to buy next instead of waiting for monthly credit.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

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amazing story

Absolutely enthralled by Jason's rise to power using superb intelligence and tactics to get there

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

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Bad Guy Is Lame.

That's about all I have to report here. Alex just annoys me. I wish he'd just die off.

17 of 19 people found this review helpful

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Gravely entertaining!

Would you consider the audio edition of Awaken Online: Catharsis to be better than the print version?

Hard to say. For me personally, I may have enjoyed this book more in print. Regardless, it is a very good read if you can deal with some minor eyerolling moments.

What other book might you compare Awaken Online: Catharsis to and why?

Probably "Ready Player One" though that is only for the mmo theme. Otherwise, Im not too sure.

What does David Stifel bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

Mr. Stifel was perhaps not the best choice. He does do a great job at building a good atmosphere, but falls short on some deliveries and tone of certain characters. He is just a tad too robotic and doesn't really fit with the book, in my opinion. When it comes to the cities, describing events, coming through with a building atmosphere or the clashing of titans, he nails it. When it comes to dialogue though... eh. It can be a tad underwhelming or just plain jarring. His voice just seems out of place and the voices aren't too varied. Still he did do a pretty good job and it wasn't enough of a mismatch to make me overlook the good things he did.

Any additional comments?

Overall, I really enjoyed this book, recommend giving it a read or listen even. It has hiccups without a doubt, some enough to make me roll my eyes or frown a bit.

The story itself is very enjoyable, but there are issues. Realistically, I think the Mr. Bagwell did wonderfully on capturing that general teen guy frustration, but at the same time after going through my own phase like this just made me groan. It did seem to be over the top at times.The hatred for the rich and just people that treated him badly was too edgy for me. Don't get me wrong it wasn't too much of an issue, just a small gripe. This bigger issue was that you hear a lot of repeating phrases and descriptions. Normally not something that bothers me, but here it did. Could just be personal bias after listening / reading a different book that had a larger range, but still.

Okay okay, so I whined about the bad. What was good, right? The author is damn good at describing battles, fights, horrors of beast and demon. These monstrosities that linger and tear out of nightmare. The times and convos when the main isn't being your average angsty teen are well-done and usually funny. He captures being an awkward boy in a place he doesnt feel he belongs like a champ. The parts with magic on average, while the casting is about what you'd expect, the description of how they act is pretty good. There are some magics though that made me sit up a little straighter and give the book/computer a respectful nod. Mr. Bagwell is also pretty good at the whole "Hey this guy is getting torn apart. It's not pretty and not everyone can watch it." Killing while plentiful in the book is never really completely normalized. There are parts where spectators or people have to leave cause they cant watch. There are part in some fights or battles where the battle isn't one side of unwavering freight trains versus the solid rock cliff of never crumbling foes! No. People run. People get scared. People leave and are never seen again. The frustration and fear is sometimes palpable.

Mr. Stifel just wasn't the right fit here, for me. I enjoyed his voice, but it was out of place. Went into enough about my issues with that already.

TL;DR - Pretty simple, the book overall is worth your time. I personally don't agree with the choice in reader, but the performance wasn't bad. In some places it was damn fine. The book has issues, if you hate or can't deal with a taste of highschoolesque angst and drama here and there, I'd recommend not listening. It is few and far in between though, keep that in mind. The fantasy and dark magic side is very good to the point of making this book almost amazing.

17 of 19 people found this review helpful

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  • Ian
  • Frankston South, Australia
  • 04-24-17

Hurrah for refunds!

Woeful. In terms of story and narration, it's a cure for insomnia and that's about it.

39 of 45 people found this review helpful

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Decent simple listen

Young adult sci-fi MMORPG fantasy filled with wish fulfillment and overpowered handouts to the typical geek-turned-edgelord protagonist.

But it was a fun listen regardless!

21 of 24 people found this review helpful

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  • Ruth Wade
  • 07-27-17

Loved it!

If you are a fan of Ready Player One, Super Powereds or the Off to be the Wizard series then you will love this. Great all round concept and story, the best audiobook I have listened to in a good while.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

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  • Chris
  • 09-06-17

Best played at X 1.05 speed as narrator is slow

Takes a while to get into but eventually all comes good. Best played at X 1.05 speed as narrator's speech is a bit on the slow side.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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  • Kyle Groenewald
  • 03-30-17

Instant addiction

I found this soon after listening to Ready Player One. I became addicted to this book within the first chapter. The story is good, the reader did a very good job on the voices and the way the plot unfold and twists between the game and real life was fantastic. I have already bought the second one. I highly recommend the heck out of this audiobook​!

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 06-02-17

Great story, okay narrator.

Loved the story. Narrator was okay. Kept saying trebuchet with a hard t, which was jarring.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Sanu Sath
  • 03-02-17

A great listen!

I was on the look out for a book like this, I really enjoy mmorpgs and also love reading works of fiction around the themes

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 02-10-17

great start to a series.

I started listening to this book whilst running a few errands, I ended up listening to the entire story in one go. The LitRPG genre is my current addiction this is one of the better ones. I thoroughly enjoyed the main character and his tactical playstyle. My only complaint would be that the main character seems to be overpowered from almost the beginning of the game.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • David Cooke
  • 01-11-18

loved it

if you play online games, and love zombies, this is for you! I enjoyed the story a lot and there's lots of ways this could go in the future

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  • hlynur
  • 01-07-18

I was greatly entertained.

can't wait to get to the next book this was a great story. ran trough it in 2 days time before of excitement.

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  • Christopher
  • 01-03-18

Reader's style doesn't fit with the story

I think this book would've have benefitted from a younger reader with a better range of character voices.

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  • N
  • 11-21-17

A book you just want to keep listening to

Normally listen to my books in the car , but this was so good i was finding every little excuse to sneak a bit more in

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  • Tarei
  • 04-24-17

Story is ace!

Having enjoyed Sword Art online, this was along a similar vein, the anti-hero aspect is a nice story mechanic and I found myself enjoying more of this than I thought.

While people discredit the voice actor, you might find the tone a little off putting, the story is worth the perseverance, and Druid really makes the story his own. I grew to enjoy the story more due to his efforts.

Have fun, make your own decision - Sword Art/Armada and Ready Player One fans will enjoy this.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Leilani Coetzee
  • 12-12-16

great story

the voice actor is a bit off putting. I recommend this for anyone in search for a good storyline.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Mattias
  • 09-25-17

Love!

I couldn't stop listening. Do I need to say more? Preferably you'd want to have played an mmorpg to really get into it but. Yes. Loved it all the way!

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  • Kerri
  • 05-04-17

Enjoyable!

really immersive book! quite interesting concept with technological advancements in AI regarding game play.
especially enjoyed seeing the other side of "evil" played out by an essentially "good" player.
ready player one, off to be the wizard, armada readers will enjoy this. :)

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  • Luke
  • 01-04-17

Excellent LitRPG

if you're a fan of Ready Player One, Armada, Magic 2.0, or even the Critical Failures series you'll love this. The narrator can be a little off putting at the beginning, but his voice actually lends well to the characters and story. I can't wait for book 2 :)

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  • Tegan
  • 11-01-16

Better as it goes on

As I started this book I found the character development a little under done at best, I think it was my judgement of the main character which came across as unlikeable. However as the author began to gain his footing the other characters in the book slowly began to flesh out. And my judgement of the main character changed as his flaws were recognised, within the storyline, admitted to and positively worked on.
The descriptive gore was a bit much at times and though I can see the parallels between the settings with in the 'game' and this point again I think it was perhaps a tad overdone.
About 1/2 into the book I was about to delete it however I am glad I listened to the end as it definitely improved with much better character development and a less predictable plot. I look forwards to ALFREDS further character development