Selected Reviews

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WITH DRAWN

An adolescent with Asperger’s Syndrome, discovers his drawings can come to life.

By millyreads, member

Aug 22, 2014: With Drawn is a story about Jacob Grist, an adolescent with Asperger’s Syndrome, who discovers his drawings can come to life and he uses his artwork to protect him from his tormentors. As a teacher that works with students with Asperger’s Syndrome, I find this story very interesting. I found the narration jarring at first, but then I realized that the narrator either has Asperger’s and is working the idioms and situations out in his or her own mind, or that the narrator is telling the story as if explaining [more . . .]

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TWISTED COGS

An Exquisite Fantasy AU

By E_Foster, author of Cages

Aug 12, 2014: Twisted Cogs tells the story of Elena, a gifted artist who travels from her small town into the city in hopes of being apprenticed to the best artisan in the city. However, she finds that realizing her dreams might not be as easy as she initially imagined. In order to achieve her goal of artistic success, Elena must learn navigate a world that presents her with questionable alliances, dubious friendships, and vicious enemies.

By building an intricate world, the author elevates [more . . .]

 
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GOODFAE

He’s Gonna Give You an Offer You Can’t Refuse

By Maddirose, author of Twisted Cogs

Aug 4, 2014: Goodfae can be summed up in two simple words: “Magical Gangsters”. Every once in awhile I stumble across a hybrid that I never knew I needed, and nowhere is this phenomenon more striking than this serial. At first glance one wouldn’t think the gritty Tommy-gun style mobster story set in prohibition America would mesh well with your typical fantasy work of vampires, fairies, mediums and ghosts. Once the story picks up however, the result of the mashup is a charming new spin on both genre, while not giving up the [more . . .]

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WATCHMIRROR

Magical Oppression is the Best Oppression

By Maddirose, author of Twisted Cogs

Aug 4, 2014: Watchmirror is a strange beast, hard to define in terms of genre. On the one hand it has definite chords of dystopian fantasy that run deep throughout the piece, but on the other it strikes me as very political-thriller with dashes of magic and action. It’s a very complex piece to describe, which is perhaps fitting for its very complex world.

The basic story is laid out so carefully and precisely that I hesitate to describe it, but it centers around [more . . .]

 
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SUPER

Ninja Training Gone Wrong

By Syphax, author of Stone Burners

Aug 2, 2014: This is a story that doesn’t seem quite committed to a genre. This is mainly devoted to victim empowerment, and that’s fine, though not necessarily my cup of tea. But wait! There are subtly super powered people (as the name would imply) in this universe, including Lex, our martial artist protagonist. Now things are interesting. But wait! There’s also this detective mystery thing that’s really at the forefront, not all that super heroics stuff. OK, that works too. But wait! Forget those last two things. All the characters are now [more . . .]

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DEGENERATION

Original-ish zombie premise, awkward writing

By Wildbow, author of Pact

Aug 2, 2014: Degeneration is a story about a human experiment in the midst of a zombie epidemic. I’m afraid I didn’t finish it, only getting to about the end of 2012/start of 2013 in the writing. I do feel equipped to make a review, however.

When I wrote my review for Diary of a Runner, I said it was a damn shame that authors cling to the ‘Walking Dead’ formula of zombie outbreaks. The idea recurs – effectively random groups of people trying [more . . .]

 
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CURVEBALL

Wow, this is freaking awesome!

By alex5927, author of The Men in the Black Coats

Jul 26, 2014: This review is based off of the first twelve issues. I’ll admit, when I started Curveball, expectations were a bit low. I never was one for books whose titles could be construed as comedic even though they aren’t supposed to be (I’m kinda superficial). However, I was pleasantly surprised by how good it is. It reminded me of Watchmen a little bit, but not enough for me to call it a Hunger Games/Battle Royale situation. Talking about the plot without giving any spoilers is going to be difficult, so I’ll [more . . .]

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THE SOLSTICE WAR

No title

By JMK Magnum, member

Jul 20, 2014: The Solstice War is extremely interesting, and explores a lot of fascinating territory that I’ve found underserved by other authors. Basically it’s a fantasy-infused retelling of World War II, with a particular focus on the Soviet perspective and those of queer persons and persons of color. There’s a lot of really great well-grounded action sequences that show the scope and diversity of this massive conflict, and extremely moving characterization. The author has regularly updated Solstice War with two chapters per month of 10-15,000 words each, along with a few supplemental [more . . .]

 
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WORLD DOMINATION IN RETROSPECT

Tap Dancing and Supervillains

By Syphax, author of Stone Burners

Jul 6, 2014: [I help edit this serial. This review is not 100% unbiased.]

Dark humor always walks a fine line between not funny seriousness and over the top crassness. World Domination in Retrospect does not walk that line so much as madly tap dance along it. But, despite the madness, it is a skilled tap dance. Any time it gets yanked down into melancholy or stumbles into the realm of poor taste for too long, it quickly pulls itself back along the aforementioned [more . . .]

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RETURN TO WONDERLAND

Editor’s First Impression

By Palladian, editor, author of Super

Jul 4, 2014: Return to Wonderland acts as sequel to the very well known and loved Alice in Wonderland. Knowing that the two were supposed to be connected, I wasn’t sure how this one would measure up of my memories of the older story. To my pleasure, I ended up enjoying this author’s take on the continuing story.

One of the things that I felt the author did very well was giving us Alice’s point of view. Like in her previous adventures, Alice is [more . . .]

 
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INSIGHTFUL APE

Quirky (But Funny!)

By E_Foster, author of Cages

Jul 4, 2014: Okay, so this story is a weird one (but I do tend to like and champion the weird).

Insightful Ape is essentially a travel narrative (combined with magical elements) that relates the story of a young ape who is attempting to rid himself of a dangerous demon who has taken possession of him. There are quite a few twists and turns in the plot—some of which can get a little confusing—but ultimately, the story kept me interested enough to want to [more . . .]

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CAGES

Editor’s First Impression

By Fiona Gregory, editor

Jul 3, 2014: The short, general blurb for Cages doesn’t do this fascinating story justice. In the 25th century, humanity is divided into two groups, the genetically enhanced A-subgroup, and the B’s, who live on some sort of reserves on the interior plains and do the industrial work. We follow the plight of a little B-group boy violently kidnapped from his home, an action which it seems most A’s would find morally reprehensible but are oblivious to its prevalence. Meanwhile, we the readers learn more about what is going on by peeking at [more . . .]