Lycopolis – Ali Luke

Yay, my very first book review!

This isn’t going to be like a book report… So yeah. View the details here. It’s also available on the Kindle, which is the version that I have. But there’s just something about paperbacks!

So. Ali Luke is a writer (duh), she also offers all kinds of advice on writing for blogs, non-fiction, and fiction. She’s a font of helpful information for turning your writing into a living. She also runs an online writer’s group.

Now it’s time for the disclaimer. I am a member of the Writer’s Huddle. This, however, has no bearing on my thoughts on the book and I’m neither being paid or coerced into offering my opinion of Lycopolis. (Besides being unethical in the extreme, no one will pay what I require for a paid review. It’s so sad. I don’t see why $150,000 for a good book review is a bad investment. I mean come on. It would totally pay for itself, people. If I did that sort of thing. Which I don’t. Call me!)

Now that the important ethical stuff is out of the way, on to the fun!

Lycopolis is a very quick and very fun read. It’s fast paced and quite happily doesn’t drag at all. She doesn’t brow beat you with description or character development. It all evolves organically through the story, which is important. Another very important thing for me, she doesn’t over explain how the world works. The rules are just there and it all just works. Which is great, cause if I had to read pages of how magic in her world worked, I’d be cranky. (This is something that J.K. Rowling [pronounced Rolling and not Rowling as I found out watching an interview the other day] got totally right and it made Harry Potter totally awesome.)

The other thing that really speaks to me about this novel is that it deals with gaming. A subject near and dear to my heart!

In a nutshell, a group of online gamers are faced with the realization that it isn’t all just a game. That’s a kind of freaky thought, if you think about it. There’s some scary stuff that happens in games that would skeeve me out if it happened in real life. Which is exactly what happens to these poor kids.

I really don’t want to give away anything else that goes on in the book, cause you really need to read it.

Another thing that Ali really excels at in this novel is the relatability of her characters. What do I mean? I love her main protagonist. I can relate to her. I want her to succeed. I feel sorry for the characters I should feel sorry for, and I dislike the characters that I should dislike. More importantly though, her characters are not flat. As much as I like her protagonist, there are times I want to smack her. Conversely, her big bad (not the biggest bad) is a character I can feel sorry for at the same time that I’m disliking him. There’s depth here, folks, and that’s important.

I don’t analyze symbolism or social commentary hidden in novels. So there won’t be any of that here. That’s what lit classes are for. Like movies and games, what matters to me is whether or not I feel like I got my money’s worth and if I was entertained. The answer to both of these is a resounding yes. I am eagerly awaiting the next book and encourage anyone to give it a read.

I’m always up for chatting about books, movies, tv shows, and games, so feel free to comment to your heart’s content. If you don’t want to comment, feel free to email me at aspoonfulofsnarky@gmail.com.

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