This audiobook caught me by surprise in a big way. It is my first book by Outspan Foster and it knocked my socks off. I can’t even find them. Then when I looked in my sock drawer at home…it was empty. All my socks are gone. If you can’t tell already, I loved this book. Wow, it was amazing. It is the book that has removed Dante’s Immortality as my favorite litrpg book of all time. It just gets better and better as it goes along. It was interesting at first, then as it went along it became so clever and so brilliant. I had to take a break several times just to absorb the awesomeness. LitRPG elements are fairly light in the novel and that is ok. Stats aren’t plentiful, but jawdropping, unique skills are. The main character Wick isn’t a righteous hero. He is actually a greedy little bastard for a large part of the story. He is interested in gold and power and he wants to be the puppetmaster of what goes on in the city of Outlast. One of the amazing things about this story is it jumps from Wick’s past and future and I wasn’t confused. You would think that knowing things that happen in the future would reduce the excitement of reading about his past. Outspan Foster weaves the story brilliantly. Don’t let this time jumping scare you off. The vast majority of the book is in the past and there are only a handful of chapters in the future.
There isn’t a great deal of combat or action in the story. It concentrates on building a stable of fascinating characters and a rich world that you just want to explore more. The action that is in the story is fast paced and jawdroppingly orchestrated. Towards the end of the book you follow some really unique combat that at times and it feels like you are tripping on acid visualizing what is going on. The only negative that this book has is that I want more, it is so fascinating and exciting. The progression of the main character is so interesting. The new powers and skills he obtains reinvent the character and how he journeys through the world over and over again. One thing I didn’t expect is the cultivation that is in the story. It isn’t labled as a cultivation story, but Wick does it a lot starting halfway through the story. I cannot reiterate enough how well written this story is and just freaking brilliant it is.
The narration from Ramon De Campo is stunning. He is such as joy to listen to and I hope he has more litrpgs in the pipeline. 9.8 from me. You must read or listen to it. This is a god-tier book in the genre.