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Publisher's Summary

Unlike in real life, Max is pretty good at playing games, so when a new limited-time dungeon opens up in the virtual reality game he plays, boasting a huge cash prize, Max knows he needs to try and complete it if he wants to be able to pay rent this month.

Fortunately, the only guild strong enough to attempt to take it on before the timer runs out needs a tank.

There's just one problem, he's never played with them before, and even if he convinces the Sisters of Artemis to let him join in time to tank the dungeon and collect the prize money, if they wipe, it's all over.

That would be bad because without that prize money, both he and his baby sister will be sleeping in a cardboard box under a bridge, and Max really hates sleeping in cardboard boxes. Been there, done that, sold the T-shirt.

©2017 Jason Cipriano (P)2017 Jason Cipriano

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

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Performance

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Story

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  • Overall
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  • Story

Excellent gamer story

This is a really enjoyable and exciting audiobook. I'm not a gamer but I found this story made me want to be one. I'm sure if you like teamwork fantasy combat games you will adore this story. The duel tale of immersion in a virtual reality game, where quests can be undertaken, friends made and money gained, and the real word, where the physically disabled are struggling to survive, kept me totally entranced. Max is a great character, confined to a wheelchair and taking care of his equally disabled sister in real life. He needs money in order for them to survive and gaming is the most viable source. In the game he is a excellent tank and team leader, he has built a team that he is starting to consider as friends (some a bit more than just friends) and they are leading the game in newly released quest. The narrator does an excellent job, I think it is some of his best narration work. He draws you into the story and makes both the fantasy and the real life seen alive and captivating. You soon become invested in Max's life both in reality and in the game. I really enjoyed both the story and the narration and I look forward to listening to the next in the series.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

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So glad I gave this a chance!

So I heard about this book from a friend and his thoughts on this weren't terrible but he couldn't get over the weirdness of not being able to speak about real life in this book. So I came in with lower expectations than I might have otherwise. His issues with the book were addressed if only in passing which makes me wonder if he missed that paragraph. So yeah it passes that world building requirement at least as far as it goes with me.

I was also surprised to find that, while this isn't the most in depth lit rpg book as far as numbers go, this has one of the more "cute" romances I've seen in these books at least as far as it was allowed to bloom in this first book. I'm looking forward to seeing where it goes later. Especially with the how main character's real life circumstances are arranged.

If there's something I'd love to see more of here it's the characters in the book. They're so likable that you just want to know more about them but the main hook of the book kinda makes it hard for anything past the surface level. I'm interested in seeing how the author works around that little fact as it's clear there's some real chemistry between all of them. I'm definitely looking forward to more from these authors!

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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Not my style

It seems to me there should now be sub-genres of litrpgs. This book in particular would be classified as litrpg/drama/romance.

7 of 8 people found this review helpful

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A Good Yarn

I'm not going to lie and say this is a great work of Literature, nor even one of the best books I've read. However, I will gladly admit that this is one of better and more fun books I've read this year, which given it's book 48 is pretty high praise really.

The Cons: I suppose the first one would be the suspension of belief at how similar the 24th century is to our own, almost the same issues with just slightly better technology. Secondly as other reviewers have pointed out, this isn't tech heavy book, if you want a story with hours of detailed sudo-science explanations this isn't your book or even your sub-genre. The female character is kind well, lacking in character though there is promise of more development later. Lastly, the one thing that should have been really edited out of the audio book was the sections about damage, leveling and so one info. Without an actual page too look at the info is hard to understand and track and really more of an annoyance that adding anything useful.

The pros: While predictable, it's predictable in the right way, with enough turns to keep from getting bored but not so many you sit back and wonder what the writer was thinking. The book has a lot of layers going on and isn't a simplistic, trapped in game, sort of plot this genre generally has. The characters seem like they'll develop nicely in the following books. The pacing Is neither too slow nor to fast. Lastly and most important to me, is the book was fun to listen to and I could genuinely tell the author enjoyed writing the story which just makes for a good book for me, if not great literature.

In the end I would recommend this book to people that want to listen to a good yarn, like a Edgar Rice Burroughs or Robert E Howard old pulp fiction style story. If you want something that's fun and enjoyable with a bit of food for thought but that isn't too serious then is a good book.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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An excellent read!

A really enjoyable and exciting new series that will keep you entertained throughout this novel.

Looking forward to more books in this series!

The narrator did a well done job of narrating this novel.

Perfect for readers of LitRPG novels.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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❤️

This was one of the best LitRPG books I’ve listened to. If your a gamer you’ll probably love this one. Lots of drama with a bit of romance. Loved it.

Joe Hempel as always is amazing and brought the story to life. Love his work.

This audiobook was provided by the author, narrator, or publisher at no cost in exchange for an unbiased review.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Excellent LitRPG!

In real life Max is an amputee, confined to a wheelchair with limited use of his right arm. In the virtual reality world of Elementalis, he's Shale, a powerful Craggar Warlord. Max uses his skills as a tank for hire in the game to earn real world money to support himself and his disabled younger sister. It's no wonder he spends every spare moment in the virtual world.

Elementalis Online uses neural technology to fully immerse gamers in the virtual world. Max is especially adept at using the technology since it was originally developed to help rehabilitate people with disabilities. When Elementalis Online releases new game content with real world money as the prize, Max jumps at the chance to earn enough to help his younger sister. He teams up with a young Ember Sorcerer named Burndall and a beautiful Nix Sorceress named Kayla to take a shot at the prize.

This was an awesome LitRPG with a sympathetic and interesting main character. The game world was developed and full of action, the type of game I wish I could jump into myself. The story was the perfect mix of in game and real life. It introduced enough of Max's real world troubles to make me root for him, and the game story line kept me reading to see what happened next. The battle scenes were so detailed I could almost hear the boss music. If you're a fan of stats and hit points, there's plenty here to warm your number crunching little heart.

I thought the AI filter was really original. It introduced some really funny moments, but it also limited the character growth. We can't learn a thing about Kayla, besides that Shale thinks she's beautiful and kind, but I'm hoping to learn more about her in the sequel. And there's enough character development with Max to make up for it.

The narration was great, Joe Hempel had the perfect voice for Max, and lightened his tone perfectly for Kayla. When there were scenes with sound effects, he performed them effortlessly. It was a great story/narrator combo. I've already picked up the sequel!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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simple and fun more relationship based no swearing

looking forward to next book. wished it were longer. might recommend to my wife as less focus on fighting.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

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Great LitRPG, really looking forward to the next 1

I was given this free review copy audio book at my request and have voluntarily left this review.

I really enjoyed this book and am eagerly looking forward to the next book in the series. Joe Hempel is a tremendous narrator, and I've found I quite like J.A. Cipriano as a writer. I liked the blending of Max's real life, and his gamer life.

AUDIBLE 20 REVIEW SWEEPSTAKES ENTRY

  • Overall
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  • Trisha
  • Arkansas, USA
  • 11-09-17

For more than just winning

Max loves to play VR video games because it's his escape. He doesn't have to worry about the accident that caused him or his sister to become disabled.... That is until the game he loves so dearly offers a real money prize for new levels in the game. What starts as a push to win the prize begins to turn into real affection for the characters he must battle with.

The book kept me interested. I wanted to see what would happen and if he would be saved in the real world. The only problem I had with this book was that it left off on a bit of a cliffhanger (a story was told but there is more to be told with the story).

Also, I loved Joe Hempel's performance. I've listened to several of his other books and this one did not let me down. I would listen any book he narrates because he always does an amazing job.

If you enjoy LitRPGs with a bit of a romance, this book is definitely worth a credit for you.

This review copy audiobook was provided by the author/narrator/publisher free of charge.