The Two Week Curse

Ten Realms, Book 1
Narrated by: Todd Menesses
Series: The Ten Realms, Book 1
Length: 19 hrs and 47 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (4,564 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Thrust into an unknown, unwanted situation, most would feel panic, fear anger, and fall into chaos. Erik and Rugrat are not immune to those feelings, but they have stepped into chaos so many times, it is simply a different challenge.  

Two weeks ago, Erik lost his legs and his arm.   

Today he got a message.   

"You have been randomly selected to join the Ten Realms. One may choose to ascend the Ten Realms, thereupon making a request to the Gods of the Realms. Only those who are Level 10, 20, 30, 40, 50, 60, 70, 80, and 90 may ascend to the next realm. Fortune favors the strong!”  

For a retired combat medic and Marine Recon sniper, the Ten Realms offer a clear challenge and sense of purpose that they had only found on the battlefield.   

How much trouble can you get into in a new realm?

©2018 MC PUBLICATIONS INC. (P)2019 MC PUBLICATIONS INC.

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2 Combat Vets, Kingdom Building, Great Litrpg!

Great Litrpg!

It has the kingdom building and ruling aspect of litrpg's that I love, while being mixed in with plenty of action to keep things interesting! Each book features a unique new tiered realm, a great idea allowing the protagonists to get incredibly powerful, until they get to the next realm where everything is a challenge again. It helps keep things fresh with each new realm allowing the writer to go in new directions.

Having two "brothers in arms" as the protagonists sets a great tone for the series. The wounded warrior opening had me really identifying with the characters. I also loved how the blacksmith and alchemy professions were a main focus of character leveling. RPG professions and min/maxing have always brought out my inner geek, and it was done very well.

What makes this new book great isn't anything super unique, but Michael has taken several different ideas from other authors and refined them into something that works better. I'm hoping more authors will use a similar tiered world system to avoid writing themselves into a corner.

I enjoyed the narration from Todd Menesses enough to browse through other books he's done, I hope he gets the other books narrated soon! Check out the new book on Patreon if you are as impatient as me!

8 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Better than Expected

I love the LitPRG genera, but it's become absolutely saturated in the last year with sub-par, self-published books with the same rehashed plots and mechanics. For that reason I didn't go into this book with high expectations, I expected it to just be a generic time filler, but while the book was not perfect, it was refreshingly different and very enjoyable.

PLOT:
The book is about 1/3 adventuring and 2/3 base building. Honestly I didn't expect any base building, so I was surprised by this. I personally like that style of LitPRG, but others might not. Some sections of this become a bit dull as I think too much time was spent on the mundane aspects of city management, but most of it is good. There are plenty of scenes outside of this base building, but they are all focused at the beginning and end of the book. There are some interesting sub plots from the first part of the book that do get followed up on in the end, which is nice because in a lot of LitRPG those things sort of get forgotten, The Land series is a prime example of that. I don't want to give up too much about the plot, because it's hard not to spoil it, but I will say the story does not proceed in the way I was expecting.

I should mention pacing and chronological order is a problem for me with this book. Sometimes it feels like a month of activity will go by, taking up a dozen chapters, only to be told later the amount of time passed was 5 days. Things seem to be completed in unrealistically fast time. This would be OK if there was some reasoning behind it, but we are lead to assume time flows normally. Some mentions are made later about the amount of time it takes to, for example, build a building, but it feels like too little too late and it still does not explain how you can do things like turn farmers into grizzled veterans in a matter of days. The worst part for me though is feeling like the timeline got messed up.... almost like entire pages were misplaced. Sometimes it feels like they are talking about something they are planning to do in the future as if it already happened, or that they are discovering things they should have already known about. Sometimes it feels like things happen more than once. I actually wonder if the Audible app messed up the chapters or something, I will have to re-read it to be sure.

CHARACTERS:
There are two main characters, which is a bit different for the genera, as most LitRPGs focus on a single player. They are a bit different than your typical MC as they come in with a military background. The other characters are mostly decent, with a couple that stand out. Character development is not the best in this book, but it's pretty good for the genera.

WORLD AND GAME MECHANICS:
Lots of new concepts and ideas in this book, most of them pretty cool. Unfortunately some of them don't feel consistent or feel completely thought out. Some of the mechanics are explained over and over to the point of being annoying while others are barely touched on. Most of the mechanics and systems are really interesting though, it's just some of them feel awkward or unfinished. Most of it is not major to the story, just slightly annoying. Some examples are being given a list of resources in the city management screen, but resources are never talked about in the story, there really is no resource management, it just feels like there are infinite resources. Another is how skill books are consumed when they are used, yet they want to build a library where people can go and read them, making it seem like they have infinite uses. Just lots of little strange things like that.

WRITING QUALITY:
It falls somewhere in between self-published and a traditional published book. There are mistakes and awkwardness, It's not so much there are glaring errors, it's more that there are a lot of odd wording choices, and scenes and dialog that could have been executed better. There are times where the writer goes on odd tangents or randomly returns to the same topic discussed a few paragraphs earlier, like when someone is telling a story and remembers an earlier part of the story, so they mention it before continuing with their original train of thought. Again nothing terrible, but it just felt like it could have used some more time in editing. This is pretty common in this genera, especially since many of the books coming out are self published or translated.

NARRATION:
Pretty good, but I took a star off for the bad Chinese accents. Many of the residents of this world are apparently Chinese, but the narrator uses the same cheesy accent for all of them, making it hard to differentiate. The accent he uses sounds more like the type of fake accent someone would use to make fun of a Chinese person. His other accents are fine, he has a decent southern sounding one, and he is not a bad narrator, I just don't think this narrator was well suited to a book with so many Chinese characters.

105 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Where's the rest of the series?!?!?!

FINALLY!!! An author that actually sounds like he knows what it's like to have been in the $*** and low crawled out of it, or at least knows some who have. I have never laughed as hard listening to a book as I did for the first 20 minutes of this one, the conversations and actions are exactly like some of the things my old squad mates and I used to do and say to each other all the time back in my time in service. The story line is awesome and while it moves pretty fast at times the narrator doesn't try to rapid fire the words out just to make up for a lack of skill to voice the urgency.

These two make an awesome tandem in a wonderful story line. Now Amazon just needs to saddle up and get the next two books in this series on audible so we can enjoy the others.

67 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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Good story, writing needs work.

The narration is good but could use a little more bite during combat.

The story is also good but needs work. There are times when it focuses too much on little things then skips ahead days just to progress.

The main nitpick I have is how much repetition the author uses. Every other chapter is filled with repeated words. An example would be a paragraph that has the word body in it four times, twice in the same sentence. The very next chapter has the word city in it four times. It makes me cringe and you can hear that the narrator doesn't like it either.

It's a shame because the story is really good and I like the main characters. But, it hurts my soul to hear the same word used over and over.

16 people found this helpful

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Was it really that good?

Short answer.. I couldnt put it down. I listen to it in two days.... Now I'm waiting for second book to come out.

I been listening to a lot of litrpg books and this book was refreshing. Micheal Chatfield did a great job with character development. Making you feel like you are there. While one the edge of your seat. I always put a 30 min time on when I listen to book in case I get board or fall asleep. But this been had me up for 3 hours resting the time until I had to force my self to go To bed.

First time hearing Todd Menesses performance. He bring all the characters to file and I will be looking into other books he has been apart in. You made a good pick.

4 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Perfection

First off, how have I never heard of todd menesses before. His narration was absolutely fantastic. The start was a little slow but after that it took off like a rocket. Absolutely amazing storyline wile avoiding most of the clichés. Would definitely recommend.

Note: I paid for this book with my own damn money, and this is a REAL honest review.

59 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

What happened??

The firat sixth is really good. Then the story goes everywhere and turns into a dungeon book? I got the audiobook and loved the first few hours. It was ok after that. I was honestly bummed out after that.

It's still worth the listen. Just be warned the story does go haywire for a loonnnggg time.

3 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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Awkward and repetitive

I've read and listened to a lot of books similar to The Two Week Curse and this is one that I would not recommend you spend money on. First, the language is awkward and unintelligent. I don't have a problem with foul language especially from a group of combat veterans as it lends realism. I do have a serious problem though when the author uses such language in his narration rather than in his character's speech. That shows such an incredible lack creativity that I very nearly stopped listening to the story each time it happened. Characters can swear but the moment the author does it to lend force to the story is the moment the author loses all respect. Seriously, as an author, if you can't find a creative way to add force to your story other than dropping an F-bomb you probably shouldn't be writing. Second, if you removed each time the character sheet or pop-up notification was read or repeated you could remove several hours of audio. It's almost like listening to someone read a game manual at times and so a lot less happens in the 19 hours of audio than you would expect. Finally, on several occasions I restarted a chapter thinking that I must have missed something. I hadn't. There are just enormous holes in the story that either the author assumes you will figure out for yourself or doesn't feel are important enough to provide to the reader. This combined with only cursory descriptions of characters, beasts, and locations paints a picture that is more 5-year-old scribble than work of art. All things considered, this is a poor work of fiction. It is entirely unremarkable and will not be continuing the series.

6 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Great new addition to the LitRPG space!

The TLDR; loved this story, narrator and character development. The plot is really good, but the character development is the shining point here. I really felt like I got to know the two lead characters. For those who wish to know, this isn't a harem nor does it have sexual situations (lewd content). Neither harems or graphical sex dissuade me from a good story and characters, but there are some that do. It is a LitRPG with stats and development.

Character development is great. Not only for the two lead characters but for the entire cast. The characters that are adults are adults. No overdramatic situations that seem so prevalent in our LitRPG books. The deep situations that pull on our Leads are well deserved and have their place then they don't. But, the memory of it stays with your understanding of the character without needing to be brought up again and again. I love that... LOVE THAT.

And the story... I really fell into the story. So much that I'm getting the books 2 and 3 so I can read them because I can't wait anymore (it's been like 6 hours since I finished... too long in my books), Great plot progression, kept me interested and waiting to see how things turned out.

And the last glue to this great piece of audio work is the narrator. Great job in bringing all the characters to life, fleshing out the small nuances that we all add in our mind if we read the stories, but better... at least for me anyway.

And my one negative would be the really bad jokes. The "pull my finger" variety that has aged to the middle-aged level? Yeah, those. Not bad enough to be "so bad it's good", just mediocre bad... the ones you can see coming from a mile away, like a really slow car crash... you wince and cringe, trying to look away but you can't... screaming "my god, no! Can't they see how bad this is going to be?"... but it happens and it's just... not that funny. I can't lie, a couple of them made me chuckle. And that's really my only negative, not enough to remove a star, cause it's really just my opinion.

So, I loved it! Can't wait for the next books, adding it to my wait list of epic series to follow.

36 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

Mary Sue Bros liberating the fantasy land

At first I liked the idea about combat veterans getting stuck in the fantasy realm. But it quickly fell apart when I couldn't relate to the characters at all.

They were always better than anyone in every field. Strenght, intelligence oh and they were also virtuous and humble. Side characters couldn't stop admiring them. The fact that they instantly were just fine and -not lost at all- in the new world ate the immersion as well.

I could've found some fun about the silly "what would 'murican soldiers do in this" situation but most of the book was just tinkering with skills hours on end. Which didn't offer anything creative.

Still stuck with it until the end since I found something fun in in that their Broness was so Strong that everybody were impressed. Part of me wanted this to turn into Terry Pratchett parody.

Narration was top notch! I think that held me in until the end.

9 people found this helpful

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  • Mark Gjøl
  • 12-07-19

Sloppy writing, strange narration

The writer clearly has a story to tell, possibly a good one, but the writing is sloppy. You often get sentences where an item or person is referred to multiple times by exactly what it is, instead of "it". In general the text just isn't great.

The narrator does a lot of weird accents. He also puts emphasis a lot of strange... PLACES..!

Overall I was entertained but annoyed throughout the book. You shouldn't actively avoid it, but it's not on my recommended list either.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Mr. Ir Pinch
  • 01-19-19

a few editing errors

great story performance was good there were a few editing errors where a scroll seemed to turn into a book couple of other minor things like that. I did really enjoy the whole thing though

2 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Ryan
  • 01-23-20

Story, Performance and Characters

This book does a really good job of keeping you interested and engaged. The characters are interesting the story is great. The progression of the story is perfect.
An enjoyable and interesting listen, downloading the second book as I write this.

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  • Opinionated
  • 10-25-19

American Short Shorts!

101 in developing trust issues in talking skeletons!!! Also how to adventure in to the unknown, with big guns and no restraint.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Gerry
  • 08-22-19

5 stars

honestly if I could rate it higher I would started slow then bam I couldn't put it down 20 hrs done in 2 days .

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  • Stu
  • 07-25-19

combat vets in a litrpg world

nice angle on the litrpg genre. a thoroughly engaging performance with some extremely likeable main characters led by their strong honest soldiers moral compass.

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  • scobie
  • 07-02-19

the two week curse

first of all let me apologise to the two offers because the beginning of this review is going to sound awful and here it is the best way to describe this book is you can't judge a book by its cover I avoided this book for a while because of its cover and after ran out of stuff to read I came back to it and I am so glad I did halfway through the first book I purchased the second book and look forward to the rest of the books in this series good read with a good storyline and an interesting twist on the litrpg storyline well done guys very impressed

1 person found this helpful

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  • Mark Hodges
  • 06-14-19

Eternal waiting curse.

I love this RPG-LIT storyline and have thougherly enjoyed the first 2 books on Audible but have been waiting for 3rd and 4th realm with deteriorating patience that is very frustrating please please publish on Audible the next books in the series am desperate to hear the 3rd and 4th realm.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 05-27-19

Bit of a slow start but turns into Korean manga

Been reading alot of manga some korean to, translate to english. This book is descripted sutch a world, tempering body manipulation and so on, quite intresting. It acculy made the manga i read before more easy to understand the process of "leveling" the Korean way (tempering) . Though the world is more complex with realms and normal leveling (lv 5 etc) , Village interface. Now onwards to The next book

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  • Thomas Hebdige
  • 05-08-19

a new favourite

this has quickly become a new favourite series of mine and I can't recomend it enough!

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  • Bradley
  • 01-31-19

Excellent book

this book is really good and I even got a few laughs out of it to. The book is in the style of LiteRPG that I like, where they travel to another world instead of just being in a VR pod which is great. Can't what for the next book

3 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Tessa
  • 10-23-19

a solid story i really enjoyed it

i really enjoyed this book the story was great and so was the performance i just wish there was less character sheet reading as at times it read to much

1 person found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Richard
  • 09-16-19

Far better than I expected

One of the problems I have with Michael Chatfield’s works in Emerillia is that the MC/s feel overly naive which thankfully isn’t the case here!

Likewise he has a tendency to drown you in the thoughts of the characters when exploring the world of magic etc. In the Two Week Curse it seems that all the hang ups I had were resolved and overall the story was better.

I liked the dynamic between the 2 MCs (though you only really focus on the one in the story) and their no nonsense approach.

Wish I had tried this out sooner.

1 person found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Anonymous User
  • 06-25-19

Good Listen

I really enjoyed this story. Cant wait for more adventures from Eric and Rugrat. Its funny, exciting and captivates imagination. Might not be for some people. But for me I give it an 8/10, I really just wanted to know what came next.

1 person found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Anonymous User
  • 06-16-19

yes<br />

I liked it. was long but it was a pretty clear cut story. can't wait to start the next one

1 person found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Anonymous User
  • 06-10-19

Fun journey, reminiscent of DnD

Really enjoyed the story, I did get a little sick of the repetitive nature of hearing the stats. However, overall great character development, building of relationships and great story continuity.

1 person found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Anonymous User
  • 06-03-19

Woo LitRPG!

So, firstly, the premise.
It's one of those styles I love where they get trapped in the world, rather than playing it via VR
Secondly, the idea of two meathead army folk left a lot to be desired initially, however, it quickly grew on me as the characters became more complex.
Finally, this is VERY easy on people new to mmorpgs, which may annoy listeners that are well versed in the mechanics.
Overall, if you like LitRPG or are trying to get into it, this book will do you good. Will be listening to the next one

1 person found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Kindle Customer
  • 05-27-19

amazing

I found the story to be amazing, though sometimes I felt like the main characters names were mixed up.

1 person found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Anonymous User
  • 05-11-19

Impressed with the story

A tale that had me listening wherever I was! Whilst a bit slow to begin, it is an original litRPG that really delivers in terms of story, levelling up and the narration as well. Watching the main characters grow stronger and discover the world slowly without them becoming OP is exactly what I was looking for! Looking forward to the next few books.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Telagi
  • 04-28-19

slow first half, then its awesome

takes awhile to warm up, but keep with it.. I'm off to get the 2nd now

1 person found this helpful