Ryk Brink

Doncaster

South African born British writer, blogger and generally charming bloke. Rykbrink.com

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This surprised me.

The last story I reviewed was another erotic novel and I have to say again, I am the last person on earth that should be reviewing erotic novels. I am not the intended audience, not even close. And the last one was sort of aimed at a younger like twilight tumblr crowd and it lost me. I'm not a fan of erotic novels, I'm not some soccer mom, if I want porn I'll watch real porn haha.
But I have to say everything wrong with the last one I reviewed is right about this. What do I mean by that? The last one I read was a porno trying to be an erotic novel, it tried to start slow and develop the characters but it was obviously just a quick canter to get to the sexy stuff, which it then didn't deliver. Which is a problem for me, in my opinion you either go all in or all out. You can't have the best of both either you go in hard or not at all and you went in as hard and as strong as you possibly could.
I have to liken it to horror/thriller novel because that's what I'm accustomed to and in those novels, you have to have something big happen in the first chapter and then take the time to set up the characters. If you start trying to set up the characters in the first chapter, you'll rush it or you'll bore your readers because they don't want to learn so and so's life history before they've decided whether there's a story worth reading in the book. You have one chance to hook them and if you can't do that in the first chapter, fuck even the first paragraph you're screwed and I think you did that well.
You started as hot and heavy as you could and that will hook your audience who will then want to get to know Jenna and the professor more as the book goes on. They come for the sex and if the characters are good they'll stay for story and the development. I think you really showed your strength right from the get go with and that will pay off in the long run.
The plot is simple but effective, the sex was hot. I like the chased feel to it despite the fact they fuck in the first chapter it still feels almost like nothing happened. There were a few mistakes but that seems almost worthless to mention, a good edit will smooth out any creases.
The writing style is good, the dialogue was a little cringey and I think less is more when it comes to dirty talk. it did sound like a bit of a porno in some of the dialogue and what's with referring to her pussy as her 'sex'. I thought that was a little weird, why not go the whole hog on the filthiness and just call it her 'cunt' haha?
Some perspective changes were bad, I thought it broke the flow a little bit going from her perspective to his. Keep it from her perspective unless there's a chapter change. It's jarring going from one perspective to the other mid-scene.
Otherwise, it works really well, it's hot, it's well written. All I can say is that I was pleasantly surprised. I think that's the best you're gonna get from someone that doesn't read these kind of books haha.

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Very entertaining.

My initial first impression is this story and style would be very at home in the plethora of mainstream teen book titles. It almosts seems like Harry Potter in space. Take that however you want haha.
It flows well, it's technically very well written and it's competently executed and very entertaining and easy to read.
The only negative criticism I have is that it could be seen as very derivative of those same teen titles. There's nothing I can pick out that's very original about the premise or the writing style. Although as I said it could fit in neatly to professional teen writing scene very easily. I could see this sitting on a shelf next to the hunger games or divergent or something like that very happily and I think it could do well.

Overall it was an enjoyable read and although I'm not a great lover of sci-fi it was very easy to read.

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Decent creepy pasta

Not really much I can say about it, kind of just went over my eyes. Its basically a really drawn out creepy pasta and thus I think it's pretty diluted. But at the same time the story is sort of ethereal and just dropped into our laps without any real ceremony, boom dead sister, boom cigarettes summon a magic cheesy anime slenderman. It's not so much a story as just a bunch of stuff happening in quick succession.

The chapters are pretty short and they're fairly easy to read, if a little mechanical in their delivery. It reads almost like a journal because it's very matter of fact and even when he's talking about falling down the stairs it sounds like he's describing tying his shoes. some spelling and grammar errors but that's pretty irrelevant when it comes to inkitt, 99% of people don't have the professional editors to pick over their work.

It's not bad, just kind of middle of the road, I don't know how old you are but it seems like something a teen would write and if that's the case it's a solid effort, it has the makings of something fairly interesting. It kind of reminded me of like death note or silent hill. I don't know if that was your intention or if you've seen that show or played that game but it might be worth checking them out because they could have the elements you're missing to really nail the atmosphere down.

Definitely think you should keep it up because if this is your first sojourn into writing it was decent. There's a lot to work with there and if you're young a lot of time to work on it. So I wish you the best and hope you keep at it.

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Liked it from the get go.

Straight off the bat I'm feeling tarantino, a little guy ritchie in my head too. You have a quick and self aware hook at the start and then it leads off into this funny tarantino style conversation akin to the one in reservoir dogs about Like a virgin, It works really well. Honestly though I don't see why you couldn't just turn it into a novel, I mean the screenplay works fine but it wouldn't take too much effort to turn it into a novel. It has a nice flow. The characters are interesting and you splice the scenes together really seamlessly.
I don't know when you wrote it but I was reading the part when they're talking about ghostbusters two wishing they were talking about the new ghostbusters haha. Also I don't get the hate for ghostbusters two haha.
I'm not gonna say the story is some masterpiece but with Tarantino style stories, it's more about the characters and the style. He's not trying to tell this epic story. I think you have the characters and the atmosphere down pat.

Overall, I think it's fun and cool and has a nice vibe, not too pretentious. Well written quirky characters. Doesn't take itself too seriously, a lot of fun all round I'd say.

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I could see it as a movie.

I liked it, I'm a pretty big fan of alien stories, X-files all that junk, conspiracy shows, ancient aliens, can't get enough of it, so this is right up my alley.
That being said my only real criticisms are structural. I guess you felt the need for a prologue because it starts a little slow but honestly, I don't think it really needs one and it kind of robs the reader of the mystery of the old man.
I think you could have held out and been a little more coy with the old man's story. It would have garnered a little more intrigue, a little more mystery rather than just lying it right on the table.
There's a lot of telling, not a lot of showing, it's very spoonfed, lots of backstory, lots of character bios right off the bat that kind of weight down a first chapter and are better kind of left maybe for the second chapter. I mean the only people that really get away with that are the old epics.
These days it's better to start with the inciting incident, which is exactly what you did but in a way that sucked all the mystery out of it, so it's kind of a catch 22 you're in here.
You need something interesting to happen in the first chapter that grabs people and makes them want to read on but you also could do with a little more mystery, a little more showing, less telling.
But those are my only little criticisms, other than that the writing is good and confident, couldn't see any mistakes really. You have a good grasp for the area since it says you actually lived there, so that helps haha.

I wish you the best of luck with it.

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What did I just read?

I don't think I've ever cringed so hard in my life.
You couldn't get a worse audience for this than me, I am not the demographic this is intended for at all, not even close. So please forgive me for this review because in all honesty a teenage girl or some edgy kid off Tumblr would probably love this. Someone who likes twilight but wanted it to be more like fifty shades of grey. But is fifty shades of grey or twilight well written, are they styles that should be emulated? I would say no but there are thousands upon thousands of people who would vehemently disagree with me. But I'm not going to rate this on a scale of other people's opinions, I'm going to try and look at this as objectively as possible.
First things first the writing style is ok, it's easy to read, which is great for the intended audience. The main characters is a good base, she's you, she's the reader, it comes through very well. She's a costume for the reader to slip into.
The main problem with this story is it isn't one, it's a porno. It's fifty shades of grey with magical wolves. Thus, it feels like the characters and the story are just filler for the sex basically. The characters are stereotypes, cookie cutter and that's perfect for a younger audience. I mean that's why we have archetypes and stereotypes so they're easily digestible, that works perfectly for younger readers. But it doesn't seem like they serve the story other than just to be the frame for the sex.
It's not a bad porno though, me saying it's a porno doesn't invalidate it or instantly write it off. A porno can still have a decent story which for your intended audience is exactly what will help them get into the eroticism in the book.
The writing style is a little barebones for me, a little teenage, it doesn't really have a lot of description, it's not paced well. It just jumps from scene to scene. I mean one minute she's having an argument, the next she's fighting a vampire, the next she wants to get double teamed by two wolves she just met. There's no real progression, no atmosphere or build up or scene setting. You're too eager, you need to take your time, you need to build the world a little, let us get to know the characters a little more, do more showing and less telling. We need to know more about the place they live and about them as people, not just tell us they like books or partying and they like black. You need to show us.
Other than that, it's not poorly written, the dialogue is not great, it's very stiff and some of it just cringe city and what do you have against speech marks? Also, vampires why? Isn't this enough like twilight?

Overall, it's not so bad I would outright bin it, but it's not something I would read, I'm just not the intended audience. It just needs a lot of work if you want to sell this, but if this is just a hobby for you, this will probably be a lot of fun put in the right hands (i.e. not mine).

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A tired premise done as well as can be expected.

Pretty much sums up how I feel in the title, this sort of premise has been done to do death, no pun intended. But that's no reason not to do it again and try to do a twist on the previous stories. Most stories don't have to be original nor are they when dissected. They just take something old and tired and breath new life into them. Which is what I think you've done here to an extent.
To be honest, this isn't my cup of tea, I'm really petty so you put me off in the first paragraph when the main character says 'literally' when they mean 'figuratively'. Just a forced reaction from me to cringe really hard at that, I can't help it haha. Little things like that really set me off, like the characters name 'Kai' just makes me cringe every time I hear it.
Don't get me wrong It's well written, there were very mistakes that I saw when reading it but some of the dialogue is a little cringey in my opinion, but I'm not everyone and I don't read romance novels, I'm not the demogrpahic this is aimed at probably the exact opposite. So for that exact reason I cut it a lot of slack.
All I can say is I didn't hate it, and honestly that is the highest praise you can get from someone like me, a person that would rather glue golfballs to his eyes than read romance novels.

No but seriously, this is good solid work and you should be proud of it and keep it up.

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Decent first outing.

My first impressions are it's written quite well, there are a few hiccups, it's needs a good proof read and an edit to smooth out the bumps a little.
The first person narrative is something that I shy away from because I think it can get quite annoying but this was done quite well. It's not over the top where the character is spoon feeding you his personality but it's not devoid of personality either. It doesn't lay it on too thick.
I like the premise, it's been done before, but that's because it's a good premise. New kid in a new town with secrets, it perfectly emulates the readers experience. Although you notice in a lot of horror movies/stories, they usually start further on and work back or jump back. Or they have a murder happen at the start as a hook and then take the time to set up the characters and relationships. But I see it a lot on here they just want to get straight into the relationships and the character without giving the reader any reason to stick around through the slock. The characters and their relationships have to serve the story.
Although i think in the first chapter you don't just barrel into the feelsy kinda stuff, you do make a point of the nightmare and the people going missing. i read so many stories on here where people seem to think their actual plot isn't as important as the contents of their characters purse or some other nonsense,
Maybe I would have liked to start in the nightmare, might have been a little cliche' but I want my gore and horror upfront as foreshadowing so the character development serves as a build up when the plot arrives.
Overrall I thought it was pretty good, it didn't blow my socks off but it didn't leave me cold either.

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Original for anyone that hasn't read 1984.

If I was into YA fiction and 1984 wasn't one of my favourite books I'd think this was really original but since I'm not and it is, I have to say it's a little cliche'.
I mean the writing style is fine, the story works, the first chapter is nice, it flows well and it has somewhat of a hook, a thread of main plot to drive the story. On paper it's good, it's a little stream of consciousness, like it doesn't seem well rooted, it seems like one minute she's here and then she's there like she blacked out and there isn't a lot of description. The first person narrative is quite restrictive for a story like this but maybe that's what you're going for, so I can't outright say it doesn't work, I'll say it just doesn't work me.
I'll be the first to say YA fiction makes me cringe to my core and the idea of a YA take on 1984 in line with something like hunger games or something is probably the worst thing I can imagine. I'm obviously not the intended audience but I can see what someone else who maybe hasn't read 1984 would see in it.

So in summation, it's good but it's not my cup of my tea by a long stretch.

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Pretty decent.

It's an enjoyable easy read. It trips up a little bit, it seems a little juvenile and not as in depth as I'd like. I want to feel research when I read mysteries. I want to feel like I'm there. But for a first outing, which I'm assuming this is, it's competetent.
The overall story kind of twangs of some lovecraft although, I'm probably wrong, it's more than likely a coincidence, but it reminded me of shadow over innsmouth a little bit for some reason. Makes me long for some slight hinted supernatural elements to the plot. The build up to the plot is good, nothing really happens in the first chapter but it's fine, it's all set up, the story is laid out, now the detective just has to immerse himself in it to get the ball rolling.
The writing style is a ok, a little haphazard, a little wet. I'm more into hard edge noir and this is very loose, which stands to reason, this isn't a hard nosed vet this is a wet behind the ears pup and that was made apparent from the get go.
So as a piece of YA fiction it works perfectly.
The technical writing needs work though, I don't know some of the dialogue runs together and it's tough to tell who says what sometimes.
Otherwise, overall it's nicely put together. Keep up the good work.

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Bloody good.

Hands down this is probably the most professional story I've read on inkitt. I wouldn't be surprised if this was an actual novel someone had copy pasted here haha.
It's very professionally written, the prologue is nice, but after reading the first chapter it seems a little bit surperfluous to have her locked up. I think the first chapter has enough of a hook the prologue draws it out a little too much and considering the first chapter is already very long, it seems a little excessive and overindulgent.
The style is perfect, first person narratives are hard to get right, but you nailed it. It's just right, not too cocky or self-depricating, it hits a sweet spot right in the middle and I like the character of Ana. Female characters are tough, if you make them too nice they come off as Bella Swan wilting violets, too tough and they just sound bitchy. Ana is not too hot and not too cold, she's just right. Not too nice as to be boring and not too mean to call a bitch.
The first chapter is everything I'd want from a first chapter, it sets up the story, the characters, and leaves a nice thread for the overarching plot, culminating in a very nice hook. It's a little long but it really makes use of all that length, there's never a point that seems unnecessarily drawn out or boring, it's all vital and interesting and gripping.
Now to set this aside, the level of research is great, the medical knowledge on display, is very believable, and it really helps pull me into the story. This to me and any else reading it says, this took time and effort, somebody loved this book and put their time into.
The only real criticism I have are few and far between and almost too middling to mention. Ok well the paragraphs are really much too long, you just have these big long walls of text that need mountaneering equipment to scale.
That's gripe one, gripe two, the title, it's incredibly generic. Just type 'blood ties' into google and you get a laundry list of book and shows and movies and what have you. It's much too mundane a title for such a skillful book.
My third and final gripe; Vampires? Really? haha.

All in all I think this is probably the most accomplished thing I've read on inkitt, I could easily see this in print, easily. Even a film adaptation. Bravo.

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Dexters Dons a Dress

Honestly a five star rating is rare for me, look at my reviews if you don't believe me. The reason I gave this five stars is because the first chapter is great. It's punchy, it get's right to the point, it delivers but doesn't all together rush it either.
One thing I'm really critical of is long middling slow boil first chapters. Sometimes they work but most of the time they don't. I think the story should start at the most interesting part of a person's life, I don't care if they're great at cross stitch or they got a b minus in history, If that's not the what the story is about and it's not interesting I don't care. I want meat and this story has meat, buckets of fresh bloody meat.
The story is great, not a lot happens at the start, by that I mean you don't learn a hell of a lot about the main character but it was quite a short first chapter. That being said her voice is very strong, acerbic and a little self-depricating which is why I likened it to Dexter.
Although the Dexter analogy is a double edged sword, because although I loved those books and the show and I love the first person style. I like being inside a serial killer's mind. It's been done before and it's been done incredibly well. Trying to compete with Jeff Lindsay is like trying to wrestle with a miami aligator, it's not gonna go your way. And although I love the style it seems a little hackneyed a little by the standards of a Dexter Devotee like myself.
That's my only real criticism. I loved the jump from the date to the murder, just no time wasted, cut straight through the bullshit like a hot knife through butter. It functions perfectly as a first chapter, just gets right into it and delivers a succint synopsis of what's to come. A really great hook, which is what a first chapter should be. So you nailed in that respect I think.
The description of the murder is very nice too, gory but not over the top, it's tasteful but still sates the blood lust of the reader.
Another criticism I have is I think readers when they write women they tend to mistake bitchiness for confidence or character. I see this slipping into that. So in some regards I think you should make her a little more self-depricating like Dexter. One great thing about Dexter is his ability to laugh at himself, which allows him to be the monster but still allows him to be likeable.

Final thoughts, I actually think this is something I could write, the style is a mirror of mine in some respects and I've dreamed of writing Dexter fanfiction this might be the inspiration or the push I need to do that. The last book just left a hole that needs to be filled by something.
I loved it, keep it up!

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From one viking to another.

I really enjoyed this first chapter, the start is really good, I loved the restrained style. I enjoy slow starts, I enjoy when people promise intense action from the title and the description but then take their time building up to it so I thought that was great.
I couldn't give five stars for the story because then that would be three sets of five and that's way too nice for a first review, gotta be objective haha.
But there is very little going on in the story so far and some of it is a little cliché' despite that I realise that that obviously was the intended goal.
Plot I had to give five stars alone just for the pay off of the chapter, this slowly building frame work for what they're talking about. Dealing with this stereotypical condescending new age douchey guru passive aggressive psychiatrist trying to use your brain as a chew toy. I liked the line about the government, that sort of classic almost bitchy innuendo that if anyone says anything bad about the government you infer that they're the next Oklahoma bomber haha. That annoying way of talking to someone who picks up on unintentional things in what you're saying and uses them against you to get you riled up.
I thought the main character hammed it up with the tough guy/petulant child routine, maybe you could tone it down, maybe not, it was a little cliché' but the whole scene for me centres around that comedy pay-off at the end so it still works.
The dialogue is very good, flows well, makes you want to punch the psychiatrist in the face too and it keeps it's card very close to it's chest and I really respect that in a first chapter.
I utterly loathe when a first chapter just sort of ham fists you right into the action with no thought or pause, I think you handled it delicately and in fact the exact same way I probably would have done.
I actually think we have a similar writing style, very pithy and sarcastic, I thought some of your description was great, overall I found it very easy and enjoyable to read despite nothing really happening.
The pay off at the end makes you want to read more and get more information, the subtlety surrounding them talking about his job and you having no idea what they're talking about because you're just this fly on the wall and you want to know more and then the pay off I thought was pretty funny, it worked well.
It sucks that grammar and technical writing comes last because I have to give it to you, there was a spelling mistake in the first paragraph, that's not a great start haha. It's 'were' not 'where', so quick go change that before someone reads it haha.
Also you commit my own personal pet peeve of grammar errors, this fucking drives me nuts, it's 'then' not 'than', makes my skin crawl haha.
Other than that, I thought it was a lot of fun, it was well written, very interesting and I would recommend it.

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Hints of Resident Evil and Fallout.

The first chapter is pretty short but of what I read I found it interesting, it's definitely not boring. It starts sort of slow, which I really like, the action is sort of muted and grim which I also like. I hate when stories start right in the action, I like a little build up.
The intro is a little cheesy and I rated the story lower because not a lot happens in the first part and there are some inconsistencies and sort of black holes, there's a part where they're in a school then they're down a hole and I have no idea how we got to that point, there has to be more between those two things. I can see the author has it in their head and as just a lack of experience just glossed over it, it just takes time and practice to realise what's in your head needs to go down on paper because people can't read your mind.
I liked the plot though, it reminded me a lot of resident evil with the strong female leads killing zombies in a tactical fashion and the grim aesthetic, a little fallout crept in. I don't know if that was intentional or not but the war with china and the bombs, maybe that's just a little too general but I liked it. Some thought went into that and I imagine more will be built on it with more instalments.
The writing style is a little stunted, I feel like the description could use more work and this definitely needs a proof read, it needs some rephrasing I think, but overall it's a good start, it's legible and confident sounding but It needs rereading, try reading it out loud to yourself..
Grammar and spelling I'm afraid to say is the albatross of this piece, there are lot's of really noticeable spelling and grammar mistakes and a lot of it could have just been a job for spellcheck haha. So in my opinion it needs a good read through.
I liked the feel, I could sort of see it as like an indie horror movie, I could imagine some of the camera angles, with that slow build up, just a group of people on a mission in a desolate world fighting monsters, it just needs a little more work, it needs that description, you need to put exactly what you see in your head on the page so everyone else can see.
Overall it's not bad, and I wish you the best of luck with it.

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Flowery language and perfumed prose, sumptuously descriptive with an intriguing child like story which still keeps the reader fairly on edge.

I cut the story some slack because truthfully not a lot happens but baring in mind it’s a small sliver of a much larger story, of what there is story wise is very well executed and fairly riveting.
I found it very sweet and charming but with a bitter edge that propels the story and characters and keeps a moreish intrigue pushing you to want to go deeper into the world and characters.
Some tired tropes used but a cliché used well is nothing to turn your nose up at besides and given the brief foray into the book, it serves the excerpt well, giving scope to the overall project.
I’ve been reading some of the previous reviews and back-biting besides, I see I’m not alone in finding the narrative quite fulfilling despite not being a great lover of sci-fi or fantasy. My favourite criticism is of the ‘flowery’ language used, either in regard to the oddly placed swearing or the verbose sentence structure; Either way it strikes as if someone reading Shakespeare would finish a midsummer night’s dream, laugh and then call Shakespeare a ‘fag’ and throw book away laughing. The style is the style, you either like it or you don’t to be unbiased is to overlook your personal tastes and doing so I find a very competent in the descriptive style and the story telling, rivalling any of the modern novelists of our day.
Tense and bewitching, the story is a small glimpse of a larger world but from what I’ve seen the characters and the world(s) are well worth exploring further.

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Interesting concept.

Very cool concept, a little like 1984 meets xcom or something like that's it's hard to place because it takes the dystopian concept and gives it a very original twist almost like They Live or something like that, it's quite unique. Because usually when an alien race comes and they just take over by force and then they go about rewriting history and claiming they saved humanity when in reality they've just enslaved them. But this is very different because the people basically give them permission to enslave them to save them from themselves. And of course it raises interesting philosophical questions about free will and self determination.
I'd actually been planning to write something just like this so this was very interesting for me to read because even right at the start I could sort of see where the story was heading.
Not a huge fan of sci-fi myself but I enjoyed it.

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Hard boiled second grader

I read this with much 'perspicacity', new word learned haha.
I actually really liked this, I don't know why people are down on it. I wanna say it went over people's heads without seeming too pretentious. People who aren't a fan of this kind of genre like I am wont really get it. it's like a fun kiddy version of a Sam Spade novel.
I see it for what it is, a nice neo-noir almost essay or an opener. It's a nice little show piece. Fun kiddy noir style diaglogue and characters, i don't see what's not to like. I can't say I'd like to see you do an actual noir story with adults because that would lose it's uniqueness but maybe you could use this as an opener to a book with a bigger mystery down the line or a series of cases like this for a children's book.
I think it has a lot of potential.

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Engrossing.

The writing flows very well, it's confident yet subtle. Descriptive but not too heavy handed.
It's very well written, I can put it together in my head very easily, I can almost hear and see Maggie Smith in my head as I read the part of the grandmother.
Some typos and grammar errors, my pet peeve is mixing up then and than, can't stand that.
The dialogue is really good, this isn't my type of thing honestly, I would never pick up a book like this to read, I need some kind of dark thriller, basically the kind of thing I write, but the dialogue is good enough to get swept up in. It really does feel like I'm right there.
The hook is good, it's a really solid plot and a genuinely nice piece of writing. I could see this sitting on a bookshelf. It's not for me but I'm sure it's perfect for the right audience.

I wish you best of luck with it.

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Another great opening.

Again you had me second guessing myself right at the start, I'm like a paragraph in like 'Is this some lame sadgasm story about a girl in a car accident' nope it's some kind of zombie/monster apocalypse story with cars and swords- ok, I had literally no idea what was going on at the start but I liked it haha. It pulled me in right away.
Don't get me wrong though it still needs some work, just some of the description and some of the metaphors didn't connect. Some of the lore around the world and creatures could have been delivered better. Like you could have had the kid disgusted by the guy killing the little girl monster rather than having him just thinking about people's reaction to it. Little things like that have a big effect, keeping showing instead of telling. Some of the dialogue needs a little work, it's a little too edgy for it's own good. It doesn't feel very natural.
But overall it's fun, it has a cool concept, the action is good, like a modern Witcher, very entertaining.

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Solid fantasy slock

It's not my kind of thing but its pretty good. Admittedly fantasy really puts me to sleep unless it's the brutal grittiness of a Conan or a Solomon Kane my eyes completely glaze over but this is sort of getting there.
It's not as dark or as brooding as I would like in line with something like the Witcher but it's close to that. I don't really have much criticism that isn't the stock 'it needs an editor' just for the minor grammatical and spelling things and some of the writing is a little wooden. And honestly what puts me off about stories like this is the writing style feels a little forced or at least it feels like I've read this style of writing a million times before.
But I think there's enough in this to set it apart, so it has a lot going for it.
I wish you the very best with it.

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Creepy

Wow, that was a hell of an opening. It's weird because it's like the way it unfolds is so dream like and trippy that it almost drains it of all the tension and anxiety that the scene should have but in a weird way that makes it almost better than if it had been just an action scene. It sort of slips into the side like it's your own dream, it's playing on your own dream logic and that makes it even creepier, like it feels as real as a dream does right after you wake up.
The writing is kind of rigid and it doesn't flow well but again it's weird because that fits with dream logic, people in dreams don't talk like they do in real life, they don't think like they do in real life so it just seems to add to the feeling like you as the reader are having a dream.
It remind me a lot of a David Lynch movie and the way it starts right in the middle of this event just sucks you right into it in a really strange way and then it just ends.

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Went a little over my head.

A great read, it hits that spot for me that sits right between your Dan Brown schlock and your serious crime thrillers, your noir mysteries.
The opening is tense and sets the scene well and then the inter cutting with the past is a nice touch to build upon the mystery further and bring in a fresh additional level of intrigue. I really love stories that do that, it just adds something out stretching the story entirely, linking the past and the present.
Honestly it's a little slow, a little dry and a little too cerebral for me I like what I like, you can tell in my writing. I prefer hard hitting action from the start and this story is very methodically paced and I have a very short attention span,
But I'm fairly young, so I'm guessing it's not really aimed at my age bracket and I think an older lover of mystery/thriller epics would be thoroughly engrossed in this if and when it goes to print.

Overall, solid, well researched work, a great deal of time and effort evidently gone into it.

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Excellent.

Now, I have to say this is the last type of story I would read, I'm english so period dramas are played incessantly here and bore me to tears but even I liked this.
The characters are likeable and believable and the world is effortlessly constructed, I can almost smell the wood and the food.
I thought the writing was very high quality, this is something I would expect to read in print.
The plot and the backstory is delivered very very well, I was expecting this to drag a little and be a slow burn but we get the plot rolling right after we set the scene with the house and their affairs. So right off the bat after the first chapter you have a great reason to turn the page because you want to find out what's wrong with the prince. It's a great way to start a story, you've met and like the characters and now are sprinkled with a little mystery and intrigue.
I feel kind of silly giving you my zombie novel to review now, it pales in comparison to this, I should have had you look at my mystery thriller haha.
I didn't notice any problems grammar and spelling wise, I don't really have much more to say about it, I pretty much made my mind up about it halfway through the first chapter, excellent work.

I wish you the best of luck with it.

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Very nice package.

Great hook at the start, the blurb, the mini blurb, the chapter titles, the title of the story. It's a very neat well presented package, it makes a very good first impression.
I like the way the stories unravelling, short snippets of information, we're getting it just as the main character gets it. You don't dwell too long on his grief which I like, a lot of stories like this lay it on way too thick at the start when you'd more than likely be too in shock to feel grief at that point. It wouldn't be totally real at that point.
I liked the case, sort of a take on the Venibles murder but with a twist. The prologue makes you think there's more too it as well the fact it seems open and shut from the start. Obviously there's some kind of mystery unravelling and it does pull you in, makes you want to know more. Which is exactly what it should be doing.
The writing style is very confident, not trying to hard, flows well, very relaxed.
The only criticisms I have are that you have these big block paragraphs, just huge blocks of texts. It would be a lot easier to read if you broke them up a little.
Other than that I can't fault it, it's a solid story.

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Conversers?

Is that a shoe or some kind of hightech weapon? A jetpack maybe haha. Just messing with you. I assume it's converse shoes.
Paragraphs, use them, please god use them.
Is English even your first language?
I didn't even know she was in a hospital, all this pointless description just going over my head.
We get it, shes worried about her sister.

Honestly, I can't read this, it's too tedious and sloppy and it just keeps going on and one without any story with these huge blocks of texts. It's a chore to read and it barely makes sense.
I'm just gonna give it a four because it's not terrible and if English isn't your first language or you're using some sort of translation tool then it's great, it makes some sense, it can be followed.
It just not grabbing me.
It's not horrible, it just needs loads of work.

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It's pretty interesting.

The start is well written, grabs your attention,, gets some set up and then goes straight into the plot very confidently. Got lots of Harry Potter, also weirdly got some John Carpenter vibes, maybe some anime sneaking in there.
It's a strong start but then the first chapter does get a little bogged down towards the end, lots and lots of talking and then it ends with talking. Don't get me wrong, nothing wrong with talking but to have such a strong start and then sort of trail off towards the end of the chapter is a bit of a let down. It would have been much better if it had built to some sort of crescendo. First chapters almost need to be complete stories in themselves.

But other than that I have no real criticisms., it's well written, confident voice comes through, the story seems solid, the world building isn't cringeworthy at all which you get with a lot of fantasy type stories. I don't see many massive grammar/spelling mistakes. All in all it's pretty solid stuff.

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Pretty good (coming from someone who hates fantasy)

It's ok, structurally it starts off strong. The dream is a good way to start, a little action a little foreshadowing, it serves it's purpose but there's a mistake I think in the very first line. It says 'burst' when it should be 'bursts' I think, I'm not sure. That's a stumble at the first hurdle.
A little fairytalish, the evil queen and the good but different princess, it's nothing that hasn't been done before, but it's original enough to stand on it's own depending on what direction it goes in. The writing is pretty good, some of the description, some of the similies at the start were pretty cringeworthy but it got a little better as it progressed.
Overall, for fans of the genre I don't see why they wouldn't enjoy this.

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Not a big sci-fi guy but it carries itself.

Honestly sci-fi to me just goes over my head. There's just so many words I just glance at or skim past because it's filled with words that mean nothing outside of the context of the world it's in. So the prologue put me off as a reader because I'm just like; 'Woah that is a word salad of stuff I'll never remember'.
But the style is sticking close to star wars and I can see how that fits sci-fi but in any other genre that's telling when you should be showing, it's a word dump. It's straight up spoonfeeding, here have some backstory. It would be totally hacky in any other story but sci-fi.
It's why fantasy and sci-fi put me off, you have to dig through so much crap to get to the actual story which is always about people, all stories are when you boil it down. It's about love or revenge, it just depends how you dress it up and this is dressed up very well.
The writing is strong, the voice is there, the dialogue is good. It all strikes me as very professional and something I wouldn't be surprised at doing well on shelves as an authentic book release.
So despite my ranting, I think if you like sci-fi, this is a solid piece.

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Not really my thing.

I didn't read all of the last book because I'm pressed for time and honestly it's not my thing. I don't like fantasy, I'm not a big fan of anything to do with this genre.
So the prologue makes absolutely no sense to me, I get it's meant to be kind of cryptic and maybe someone that read the last book would get it and be like 'ooh' but I was just scratching my head at this arrangement of words not knowing what they were talking about in the slightest. So I, as someone that hasn't read the whole of the previous book find that prologue kind of pointless.
I can't really go all on board with this but I can't hate it either. It doesn't blow my mind but it doesn't completely turn me off either. If I liked this genre or if I was a young girl, I could empathise with the main character, but I'm not so I don't and I'm not saying at all you need to cater to snarky twenty something men haha. I'm just saying it didn't appeal to me but there's nothing I can object to.
The writing is easy and smooth and works well, it's a little self indulgent and maybe a little flowery but that's your style, that's cool. There were a few spelling errors and what not but it's not a big issue for me, inkitt in my opinion is one big draft factory so I'm not that critical on it.
Overall it's solid work, and although I can't give it five stars because it didn't really blow me away I'd be remiss to give it any lower than a four because of the amount of work, effort, love that's no doubt been put into it.

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Better written than the walking dead novels.

Not as much of a ringing endorsement as you might expect. But it's pretty damn good.
Honestly even as an author of a zombie novel, zombie novels sort of garner an eyeroll for me. Which is why I tried to subvert the standard walking dead super serious zombie apocalypse and go for something sillier. You've stuck to the walking dead formula, which is fine, it's just I've read so many books like this, I own so many books like this, I personally know too many authors who write books like this. So I'm not saying I hate this book, by no means I'm just putting this review in the context that I'm sick of this story playing out haha.
I love zombies, a little too much but I'm tired of them being taken so seriously, it kind of destroys the fun of them for me to have them used as just a vehicle for what is essentially an edgey character drama.
Not to say your characters, are bad, they're well written, believable characters. I think you go a little too far with the female character, I see a lot of people do this and its something I tried desperately to avoid when I wrote my heroine. You've tried to make her tough but she comes off as a bit of a bitch. She has to be likeable, she can be tough but she still needs to be empathetic and somewhat vulnerable. Even writing a good villain involves making them empathetic, making them likeable enough so their actions matter to the reader.
I'm not saying I read enough to really get her down as a character, maybe she gets more three dimensional later in the book, but my initial impression is she's not very likeable.
All in all though, it's very well written. I find the walking dead novels, very sticky, the dialogue is very forced. The dialogue in this is superb, very real, flows well. There isn't really a story but that's zombie novels, survival is the story, humanity is the story, so you cant judge it like that.
Honestly I think with a little marketting this would do really well on amazon.
Best of luck with it.

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Well written but underwhelming.

I first chapter just didn't really grab me. I moan about this constantly on inkitt. People just plonk a first chapter down and then move on to the next one, but the first chapter is really the most important. It's like a summary of everything to follow. It has to be linked to the overall plot somehow and it's the first step into this greater world, so stuff, a significant amount of stuff needs to happen or if it's even very little it has to be pretty powerful. I mean what really happens in the first chapter? A butcher saves a little girl from being maimed and then gets criticized by passers-by. And although I expect their distaste for him to be a theme I doubt it ties to the main plot at all. So really this incident is irrelevant as a starting point.
I get you probably want to ease into it and I usually like pieces like this and reading this encouraged me to get out my copy of Hound of the Baskervilles. And even in that, a flowery period piece published over a hundred years ago the first chapter gets to the point. They're not talking about the Hound but they're talking around it, building up to it. but it's clear that its building to something and then the next chapter is called ‘The curse of the Baskervilles’. We have none of that here, it’s just one scene with no foreshadowing or hints of an overarching plot at all.
I think this entire chapter could have served better as just a flashback or a story relayed by the girl at a later date and you could have started further on in the story to start at a more relevant point. Giving the main character a little more mystery. You hinted vaguely at a tragedy backstory, so I expect he had a wife and child that died and thus builds a connection with the little girl over the course of the book. As it stands now it’s sort of throw away.
It's well written, I like the period style although there are some typos and errors. It needs a good proof read because these obviously slipped through spellcheck. I have to say I cringed at some of it because it just seems like it's trying too hard to be period even in the non-diegetic stuff and it's kind of unnecessary when it could be done better. When I read a modern period piece I expect to be hit in the face with the research involved rather than just flowery language and period accents. I want to be shown more than I’m told. It was easier for Conan-Doyle because he was obviously immersed in it. But it's not really an excuse, what in this story really justifies a period setting? You could take that entire chapter and just change the carriage to a car and it would be no different.
Overall, it's very serviceable if a little cliché, I save my harshest criticism for the work I think has potential. I like the title, I like the premise, the style is good but frankly your first chapter is boring. The skill is there but the hook is not.
I hoped this helped, I wish you the best of luck with it.

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Paragraphs!

Seriously need to break up those paragraphs, the first chapter is just three massive blocks of texts. It's not a great first chapter, it's kind of an information dump, there's no real plot or characterisation and there's lots of repeition. For instance you say 'took place' atleast four times in one paragraph and you keep reusing 'that fateful day', it really stilts the writing and could easily be snipped out with a good proof read.

The first chapter is exceedingly short and nothing really happens, it's not a story, it's just some backstory on the country and a bunch of stuff happening. A story is more than just a bunch of stuff happening, it needs context, it needs build up, it needs forshadowing and characters and dialogue. The first chapter is your only chance to make a first impression and there's nothing going on in this chapter.

I kind of see what you were going for and I like the style, it reminds me a little of the start of a classic novel by sketching out the political landscape and obviously the story must be close to you and you're talking about your own experience. I think that's the one thing that works about the story. It's just nearly everything else that doesn't.

The writing style is sort of stilted, it doesn't flow well and it's not very confident. It's not horrible, it just needs work. It needs proofreading and it needs practice and it needs a longer first chapter with more going on, the first chapter just sort of ends without a hook, you have to create a reason for someone to go on to the next chapter and I don't think you did that.

No harm no foul, we're all works in progress here, just take it back to the drawing board or have someone else proofread it for you, if you're serious hire a professional editor.

Overall it's not terrible, I've read a lot worse. It just needs going over and beefing up a little.

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First impressions.

I think the prologue was a good choice and I can almost close my eyes and imagine this as a Danny Boyle movie. The prologue was definitely a step in the right direction because I can already tell by the pace of the first chapter that this is a slow burn type of story, culminating into something larger.
The description and the characterisation are superb, with a few little hiccups, I felt like some of the dialogue didn't fit the impression I was getting of dog as a total meat head. Just some of the things he's saying about movies sound more like the authors voice than his own. He sounded more like a film critic than a bodyguard but I understand you're going with a tough with the heart of gold type of trope.
The writing style works well, I'm English and I find it hard to write about English people in general haha. But this handles it well. Some of it seems a little choppy, but overall it's written well.

My only criticism I save for last, I realise I'm making a first impression of the first chapter and the prologue, but in a first chapter 'stuff' has to happen. And I think you realise that due to the implementing of the prologue injecting a little action but you also have a lot of time where you're telling when you should be showing.
There are parts where we see dog's thoughts and I thought that was a little lazy in a third person narrative. And particularly at the end of the chapter I felt an urgency to develop a plot when previously in that chapter it was just a couple of guys chatting about films and not a lot else.

I just really felt the bit where he thinks to himself about the bodyguard job it was a little shoehorned in and could have been worked into his dialogue a little bit easier than it was delivered right at the end of the chapter as an attempt to hook.

Overall it's a very competent read and I enjoyed very much. I could see this being professionally published.

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Shadows of 1984

I have to say I was tempted to give this all five stars because I found myself quite riveted, then I remembered I'm not that nice ¬_¬.
I very much enjoyed it, it reminded me of one of my favourite books right from the start. The parallels from 1984 are unmistakable even if they were unintentional you've captured that sense of feeling alone despite being around people. The sense of alienation and isolation, I very much enjoyed that.
The scene setting is very good, I didn't cringe once, it's very competent, I could see this up there with hunger games and all that stuff, it would make a decent movie.
The writing style is very good, very few mistakes and it seems to flow well. The first person perspective helps to get a feel for the main characters sort of no frills, tough personality.
The plot is great, some of it is a little cheesy, the flashback thing is really clichéd but I didn't cringe too hard it still felt fairly bleak. The world building is stellar, it's simple and elegant and the 1984 fan really did the rest.
But my main criticism is that I felt like I'd read it before, and I don't know if you've read 1984 and did this on purpose or just read hunger games or something else that was influenced by 1984 but this isn't really new. You're going to go to my story and rip it apart now I said that I can tell. Guy who writes a zombie apocalypse story criticizes you for writing something unoriginal haha.
I'm just a little butthurt that you or someone like you could have made a story so similar in feeling to 1984 but not have read it and then ten years from now someone will ruin it with a terrible tween film adaptation haha., Yeah I'm just being a snob because I actually really enjoyed it.
Very well done, I've added it to my reading list and will be keeping a close eye on it because of that blasted cliffhanger ending.

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Morbid fairytale

I read over the first chapter because really I feel like first impressions are the most reliable when it comes to inkitt. The first chapter is where you decide to read on or not.
I like the start, it's nice and steady with a great deal of emotion and it really pushed that feeling of lose and melancholy onto me. That feeling of wishing that nothing was real and I really enjoyed that.
Other than that, not a lot happens in the first chapter, it's quite short so I didn't expect any great developments and the first person narrative is notorious for focusing on emotions and subjective interpretations over actual substantive events.
The writing style is very emotive, I liked it a great deal, very easy to read and not a cringe so far. A lot of the time stories like this get lost in the angst and become very cringe worthy but this kept a level timbre of it's cringe.
The reason I called it a morbid fairytale is because of the description of the body bag swallowing her boyfriend up, I really liked that imagery. Put me in her mind for a minute, made it all feel dreamlike, as if he wasn't really dead and this was just the start of a really messed up fairytale. Kind of makes you think whether anything she's experiencing from then on is really real or if her mind is so shattered from the loss that she's creating a world where she can see her boyfriend again in a fantasy.
There were a few errors and sentences that sort of tripped me up but overall I thought it was very competent and I would recommend it.

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Wayward Salivation ;)

Straight out of the gate you can tell this is his first attempt at writing something like this and like all newborn's the first steps are the trickiest and result in a few bumps and bruises. But there's an obvious natural aptitude as these wrinkles are quickly ironed out and the tension and the atmosphere is built quite easily even for something that was quite benign. I thought it worked really well, putting you in India's perspective and her heightened sense of emotional vulnerability.

The first thing that threw me was the sci-fi theme. And to be honest it seems a little off as I'm reading this and it seems to be a drama and then it turns out Lora, the love interest, is like an alien cat person.

I really found it, I hate to say it; 'Tantalizing' the description is really great, some of the similes suck but that's what a good editor is for but the atmosphere is great and I found myself getting really swept up in the sci-fi romance aspects.

It reminded me a little bit of Mass Effect and romancing Tali Zora, this exotic alien woman, of which the captain isn't even sure if her body is even 'compatible' with his or whatever. So you not only have this dynamic tension of the standard 'Will they won’t they' love romance scenario, it's almost like 'is it even feasible' because you love who you love but as Fry found out in Futurama; you can't fuck a mermaid.

Overall I think the tension is built nicely and he really captured the awkwardness that surrounds forming a new relationship, just telling someone how you feel about them. My only criticisms despite what I mentioned about Mass Effect, is that I don't really get the relevance of the sci-fi back drop. You could literally replace this with any other back drop, steampunk/cyberpunk/fantasy/zombies. I realise I'm being over-critical and this is just a preview/introduction and the initiation of probably a pivotal relationship in the story.
Regardless not a lot happened or was hinted at but again just a preview.

The romance was very believable and frankly fucking hot ha-ha. I'm a little reluctant to say I wish it had gone further.

It fumbled a little with perspective which is a bit of a no-no, we go from India's perspective then it switches to Lora, which editor's usually pitch a fit over but could easily be corrected.

I really got into the chased romantic elements and I can see how it could really be exacerbated in a sci-fi setting. Some of the exposition was a little blunt and hackneyed, it could have been a little smoother but it worked for the scene overall in terms of setting the parameters of their relationship and individual back stories.

Overall I really liked the emotional aspects, the description put me in the room enough to feel the sexual tension and want to push further and the sci-fi back drop makes me want to read more to see how it ties in with the overall story.

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Perhaps he's going to kill me.

I had to laugh at that, what a bad ass 'oh you know he might kill me' nonchalance is excellent haha.

Not a fan of romance at all but there's not a lot to hate in this honestly. Not the typical romance, not too much sappiness so far, no elaborate cringey sex scenes just yet. My first impressions are good, it's well written the characters are sort of boyish and curious and believable with a woman that seems more experienced. It's written in a very casual way. I don't feel like there's a lot of spoon feeding going, it seems to flow well.

The thread of plot is decent, it's been done before but there's room to subvert it. The main character is in love with someone involved in a dangerous crowd and has to overcome physical danger to be with the woman he loves. It's a story as old as time, Romeo and Juliet to name the most famous example. But it's sort of timeless really, people will do anything for love, including risk their own lives. After all what's the point of living without love anyway?

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Piggy back rides?

Sorry what? I just read that and it just caught me off guard, why are people giving each other piggy back rides at the hospital?
You've said 'Crows peak' twice now and I don't know if you mean widows peak, I have no idea what a crows peak is, there are crows feet and there are widows peaks I had no idea there was such a thing called a crows peak.

Ok I just had to get that out, so first impressions are kind of cringeworthy, the names. It's like trying to be a serious gritty story, stepping away from comic books but you still have all these cheesy comic books names, 'Slayt' ,'Zeke Blackwell', 'Glacier city'. It just took me out of it, it made me aware I was reading a story as opposed to being in an actual world. I think it would have been better to just set it in a real world town because it seems a little pointless to create a fictional city but do little to no world building around it. You might as well just set it in new york and then people know what new york is like.

The fight scenes are ok, they're not too self indulgent but they're not really jaw dropping either.
I was about to drop for the plot because there didn't really seem to be one but then you have the thread of the cops taking people to that tower, so you have a nice hook to get people to want to read further to see what they're doing to them at the tower.

Now honestly I hate the way Zeke is immune to the nullifiers, it's just too tropey, 'the main character is immune to the thing that's holding everyone back'. It's just been done to death and it completely drained all tension away from that scene with the cops. There was this great tension you'd created because here was this guy facing down people who could permanently wreck his powers and he does it anyway but no two seconds later he's immune and all the tension is gone.

I like the premise of the nullifiers, I like the idea of supers being sort of second class citizens but it's also been done. I mean this entire plot line is ripped almost entirely from the marvel civil war and to some extent incredibles and I just cant say this competes with those.

The writing is a little sloppy, there's so much telling when you should be showing, just block paragraphs of exposition dumps, it's tedious to read and it really weighs down the chapter. If you can't deliver your exposition in an interesting way that isn't just directly telling the reader, don't bother, it's a waste of time.
The prologue seemed kind of pointless to be honest. I don't see why it was relevant to see that his father dies (also really tropey) right at the start and not just have him mention it later or come up in a flashback or a dream. Why is it so relevant that it has to be right at the start?

Honestly the whole thing is too wet, it feels like it was written by a thirteen year old. This is an edgy teens idea of gritty realism. The mohawk and tribal tattoos on the main character just had me cringing so hard, 3edgy5me dude haha.

Don't get me wrong, if a thirteen year old wrote this I would think he was talented as fuck. There's a lot of potential here it's just weighed down with some bad storytelling, some place holder cardboard cut out characters and tired tropes.

I'm not saying it's bad or shitting on it to be mean, it has a lot of potential its just not there yet,

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Probably make a better anime.

I thought it was pretty cool, the action was fun and not too self indulgent. Gritty and fun and sort of juvenile. It has a decent atmosphere but I think it would have made a cooler anime.
As far as the story goes right off the bat there kind of isn't one outside of the blurb at the start. There's some half decent world building at the start and the set up is great for achieving the tone and the scope of the plot and characters but there isn't much of a hook at the start except the action. I really want some hint, some thread of the overall plot right off the bat. Some foreshadowing and I suppose in a way you subverted my expectation with the blurb because I thought the fight at the start would be the one where he killed someone by mistake. So that was pretty cool, maybe if you made the first chapter a little longer because it doesn't really stand up on it's own.

Otherwise a great solid piece of writing, it's pretty easy to read, flows well, not too pretentious, I didn't notice many errors and it flowed well.

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A little underwhelming.

Ok so, at this the point the obligatory claus here is that I'm not the intended audience, I can't really say what the intended audience of this would be. Probably woman, can't say much more than that other than I would never choose to read this from the description or genre. I dont go near romance and I won't touch drama unless it has 'crime' in front of it. So that's just to tell you where I'm at with this and I'll try to be as objective as possible.
As a first chapter goes, it's boring, no two ways about it. I don't know if any of the stuff in the first chapter is relevant to the story overall but it's just tiresome exposition with some dialogue and a meeting in it. Nothing interesting happens unless hearing you have a new boss is some great revelation to you. You have to put the interesting stuff in the first chapter to force people to read the next chapter and if that's the most interesting stuff to happen in this book then god help you.
This stuff might be all really relevent but it should be relegated to the second or third chapter not the first, you get one chance to make a first impression and my eyes glazed over with boredom. There's way too much spoonfeeding, show don't tell.
The story isn't established in the first chapter, so I can't say there is one, the characters are watered down, no one person really stands out. The dialogue is ok, but the first chapter just sort of ends.
I can't tell if this is intentionally boring to justify what happens next in the book like american psycho or if this is just the bottom line throughout. I'm not going to know because I can't read the rest of the book, I can only give you my first impressions of what I see.
I don't know what to say other than it reads more like a diary than a novel and no one wants to read your diary except you (unless you're a psyborg stripper from mars with machine gun for tits haha).
I don't think it's trash, it's salvageably, just needs maybe some chopping and changing, revamping the first chapter to get a hook in the reader from the start. The rest of the book could be pure genius but no one is going to read past that first chapter unless you give them a reason to,

I hope that was more helpful than just an outright reaming, I mean well haha. I wish you all the luck with it in the future.

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An indepth analysis of the first chapter.

First off, I've gotta say, this is the most notes I've ever written for a review ever, I was reading it and going back and forth constantly adding things, because there was so much stuff that was great but I felt needed a tweak. Ok now into the real review.
The opening flows really well, it pulled me right in perfectly, I was right there watching the whole thing unfold.
Something I got criticized for recently was unloading on people with descriptions of new characters but you handle it very well, you sprinkle it in very subtly giving people feel for the character without going overboard.
My first criticism is; It’s a little wordy, a little verbose, but well written. There’s a little too much telling and not enough showing. I found it a little cringey when you introduced Mike as Alexander’s ‘lifelong friend’ it just seemed a little out of place there had to be a better subtler way of introducing them as really good friends.
The description of the murder is nice, it’s not too over the top and it hits home nicely but I think there was a little too much build up. Reading the blurb, you know what this story is about so you know almost as soon as its brought up that Bella is missing that she’s dead. I don’t really see why we need to change perspective twice. I mean I like the fact you’re working in so much characterisation into the first chapter and it makes it feel like a lot is happening but it makes the first chapter a little choppy, I felt myself losing focus and I felt like I was everywhere at once and there wasn't much atmosphere building. I think you can do a lot more by not showing someone something than just laying it right out for them to see.
If this was a movie, it would just focus on Alexander waiting after he told everyone to search and then he’d hear a scream. I think if you cut out the bit with Nora entirely it would make for a punchier first chapter. As it stands her part just seems to belay the point that everyone already knows i.e. Bella is dead. Then you can work in her characterisation later on without it feeling a little shoehorned in.
Also, I think finding her body should be the hook to end on, that would drag people into the second chapter, as it stands Alexander finds her dead and then it just sort of drags on and it takes away some of the punch. If you want the end of that chapter to be punchy you should just have her body lying there and then move his thoughts on the matter to chapter 2.
As it stands it makes her death almost a footnote, she’s dead, now that's out of the way let's get'er solved, you see what I mean?
It just sort of starts, there isn’t a lot of build, as much as there should be really. I know I'm contradicting myself because I just said there was too much build up to her murder. What I mean is either have the murder right at the start and work back or set up the cast of characters and the back story and have some foreshadowing and then discover her body at the end.
This feels like we're having our start and main course side by side when we should be savouring our starter and then making room for the main course, if you get my meaning. The story shouldn't just start the first chapter should be a summation of the whole story, almost a story in itself, this is clearly the start in earnest to the whole story.
There’s just something structurally wrong with this, the first chapter is too long, it drags on and it weighs down with a lot needless information too soon, like the handcuffs, it just seems like a lot of telling, not a lot of showing and you're loading us up with a lot of stuff too soon. Giving away too much too fast.
Alexander's intentions aren't really clear to me, why does he feel it his duty to solve the murder? It doesn’t really make a lot of sense but I’m sure it will make more as the story unfolds.
I can’t help reading it and thinking I would have done it completely differently. I think if I structured it, I may have started where you did but then jumped to Alexander grilling Nora but keep it as vague as possible so the audience doesn’t really know what they’re talking about then save the body reveal until the end of the chapter.
The chapter just sort of ends, it's very anti-climactic. There’s not really a cliff-hanger, it feels like the chapter used up all its momentum somewhere in the middle and then just trundled along.
Overall though, I loved it, the story is great the characters are very distinct and very good. The dialogue is perfect. I can't see any mistakes in the grammar or spelling. Could do with more paragraphs. But the style is there, the skill is there. It was fun to read. I just think it has some structural problems in its delivery which are easily correctable. It's not perfect but it's definitely deserving of a high score for the obvious effort and talent that went into making it.

I wish you the best of luck with it in the future.

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I'm going in dry.

Not a huge fan f sci-fi or fantasy for that matter, I just find myself sifting through too much bullshit that doesn't need to be there. I just read all this stuff that's completely irrelevant to the plot about thrusters or some kind of magic barriers or something and I'm just like 'Why? Get to the point!' I just don't have the kind of patience for either genre and taken seriously I find them really hammy.
Never-the-less I found this entertaining and engaging and it reminded me a lot of some decent anime but that being said I think it would be better as a comic or an anime. Because as a novel without any art it's sort of generic, there's nothing that really stands out about it. I'm reading the first chapter and I'm thinking about how similar it is to some other comic/game rather than what was different. The whole time I pictured it as a mission in armoured core or some anime more than I saw it as its own thing.
The action is great but its contextless, nebulous and sort of self-indulgent. It doesn't have a point, it's like a ten-year-old wrote down what he wants to see in a cartoon and then a really great writer took those ideas and brought them to life.
I really think this has potential and you are a really good writer, there are a few errors here and there and some sentences that had me like 'Did Dan Brown do this?', an example of that would be 'The grenade exploded' well no shit, it's a grenade. But overall it's well written and isn't overly verbose like a lot of my work is.
But there's no real story and in the first chapter it's tempting to just gallop past it but you have to have some hook to make me keep reading, you can't just have one fight scene and call it a day. Who is archangel? Why should I care if he lives or dies? This is why I say the action is contextless. Action is tense because we care about what happens to the character, you've given us no real reason to care about Archangel yet.
And what's worse is this chapter I think has no real room for story that wouldn't just be painful exposition, but that would still be better than no story in the first chapter.
I found the transition from Archangel to Rachel to be a little jarring but I like how you skimmed over the whole 'Casualties of war feels' generic bullshit in every anime ever haha.

Don't get me wrong, I didn't hate it, it was enjoyable to read and it really made me want to play a decent Armoured Core game, pity there hasn't been one of those in a while haha.

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