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Shadow Sun Survival

Shadow Sun, Book 1
Written by: Dave Willmarth
Length: 15 hrs and 47 mins
5 out of 5 stars (9 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

How well would you fare if the apocalypse fell upon you? Could you survive more than a few days? Would you be able to feed yourself? Find clean water? Safe shelter? Heal your wounds?

Allistor is a gamer geek who has spent most of his life indoors, playing virtual reality MMORPGS and reading classic LitRPG books. But when Earth is seized by an ancient race wielding incredibly advanced tech, who transport the entire planet to a new location with twin suns, he finds himself fighting to survive in real life. The human race is declared a contaminant, and the new overlords decree that 90 percent of us will be exterminated. Creatures out of myth and legend are sent to do the killing. Dragons, titans, alien creatures, big and small, all with a hunger for human flesh. Humans who survive the first year will be rewarded.

After seeing his family killed in the first week, Allistor leads a small group of survivors in their struggle to stay alive. Not satisfied with simple survival, he strives to make himself and his people stronger. The new "magic" RPG system that now governs the planet is something he can work with, and teach others to exploit. Thrust into a leadership position, and with vengeance in his heart, Allistor aims to establish a stronghold, then take the fight to the monsters who seek to enslave his people.

©2019 Dave Willmarth (P)2019 Dave Willmarth

What members say

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

a really solid fantasy book

I've listened to quite a few litrpg books and fantasy books and I have to say this one was great it was solid story with lots of action the narrator was excellent I would recommend this to any fantasy lover my only complaint was it ended too soon.

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  • Christopher
  • 2019-08-17

Another great book from Dave Willmarth...

...And a questionable production by the normally fantastic Soundbooth Theater.

First, this book falls into the sub-genre of post-apocalyptic RPG GameLit where after an outside force hijacks the planet, seeds it with horrible monsters and introduces an RPG style interface/stat system, the remaining humans must level up to survive.

So yes, this does have quite a few similarities to The System Apocalypse by Tao Wong among others. That said, though the circumstances might be similar, the characters are totally different. And Willmarth is telling such a compelling story that the similarities fall by the wayside. I think it would be shortsighted and petty to lower the number of stars given just because this book’s setup shares some of its primary features with another book that came before it.

Now on to the production. As I said up top, Soundbooth Theater has generally produced great audiobooks in my experience. There have been a few titles here and there that didn’t rock my world, but on the whole they’re great.

Here, for some unknown reason, they decided to add a bunch of totally unnecessary sound effects and tension building drums to all of the action sequences. I found it jarring, ham-handed, and lacking in any kind of subtlety. Worst of all, it repeatedly pulled me out of the story. I could compare it to watching a movie and every 20 minutes or so your TV would shoot out a cloud of the smell of whatever is happening...

Though it didn’t ruin the book, I didn’t ever get to the point where the sound effects and drums were ever more than a distraction. When the narrator tells you that a character shoots his rifle, you really don’t need to hear a canned sound effect of a gunshot two seconds later in order to understand that the rifle has been fired and what that shot sounds like.

In essence what Soundbooth Theater has done here is decided that our imaginations are not competent to recreate these things in our minds eye and therefore has decided to help us out by making a crunching noise every time one of the characters breaks a bone. What’s next... will they start including accompanying video files and flashing a picture of the car that the characters are driving every time it’s mentioned that they entered an automobile?

Though I applaud their enthusiasm and efforts to bring the art of the audiobook to a new level, the way they are going about it is just misguided.

That said, the narrator and most of the character voices were superb as usual. Regardless, of the problems with the sound effects this book is still a no-brainer when it comes to spend a credit.

34 of 35 people found this review helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
  • Patrick
  • 2019-08-29

Just okay….

Narration: The biggest adjustment you have to get used to is the use of a narrator from the U.K. and an A.I. from France (I assume that’s a French accent). It doesn’t make sense in a story that takes place in rural Colorado, U.S.A. You’re already using Soundbooth Theater for other vocals, or at least Jeff Hays and Annie who are vocal powerhouses and have monster vocal ranges, so why did the author go with a British Accent for all the narration, shifting back to American voices for characters? Sure, I appreciate a soothing British accent as much as the next person, but it was misplaced here, and the suspenseful parts were distracting because of it. I also didn’t care for the production as used here either. Drums, intense music, or victory sounds have been used before in other titles and were done so in a tasteful manner, here they’re used during vanilla fighting sequences. It’s not that suspenseful…it’s a rat. No need for Braveheart drums sequences. I also don’t need to hear every sound like a bear sniffing, somebody burping, whatever. Background noise when somebody walks into a tavern in other titles is well placed. What was done here was not.

Story: I have over 70 LitRPG titles in my library, so I’m pretty confident when I say there’s nothing new here, and while I enjoyed the majority of the book, I found myself skipping 2-3 minutes at a time with over-explanation of events. I don’t really feel like it’s necessary to explain somebody descended the stairs, step by step, flipped on the light switch, light filling the room, boards creaking beneath him, dust faintly swirling about, etc. etc. etc. I definitely want to be immersed in the environment, but telling us about each door, what’s behind each door, how many tables and chairs are in every room, what type of rug is on the floor, etc., at every new location the MC goes to is just overkill. Seemed like it dragged on in so many places. A simple “MC caught the rest of the people up on the system and how to distribute attribute points" is sufficient. No need to walk through every conversation among the characters. This is a very slow moving end of the world survival story with LitRPG elements. Much of it was entertaining; however, much of it was just boring as it was entertaining. The author could’ve either made the book shorter, or lessened the over explanation of things and added more action into the story. Either would’ve been fine.

LitRPG: Where art thou? There’s almost no stat building. Seriously, he levels up and then they say nothing about where he chooses to place his stat points. The magic system is barely explored, no talk about how much mana is used when he casts spells, no concept about how hard something hits, just “Runs in, attacks, gets bit, health level is XX%, kills MOB, eats food and drinks water (no explanation of statistical effects), then heals.” Why wouldn’t you sell a bunch of stuff, buy alien technology, and own everything in the area? I mean a car can be traded for enough funds to purchase superior weaponry to Earth’s, so…. I don’t know…just seems to be a survival story that the author went back through and added a couple of LitRPG elements into, not really being well versed in MMORPG’s (as pointed out by another review here).

I’d say it’s worth the free credit if you also don’t mind purchasing credits to obtain books you enjoy, but if you rely on the one free credit every month to obtain a new novel you otherwise couldn’t afford, then perhaps look into some of the better LitRPG’s. I’m hoping the following installments will have corrected some issues I found in this one, otherwise the next book will be where I move onto something else in my wishlist. Hope that helps some that might be on the fence.

11 of 12 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Uria
  • 2019-08-23

soso story

characters do not seem to act in a convincing fashion. main character loses both his parents and his young sister and he's fine and joke with people hours later.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Taniko w
  • 2019-08-18

Dave you did it again!

A great start to a great new series, Dave Willmarth shows again why he is one of my favourite writers.
I started with his greystone books and when Shadow sun survival came out to kindle I brought it without hesitation.
The audio version of the book only brings it further to greatness, with some cute little Easter eggs to his greystone books tossed in to the delight of myself and I’m sure many others who has read the series. The next instalment of the shadow sun series is already out and is even better then book 1, I can’t wait for it also to join audible it’ll be a great listen.


7 of 8 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • clyde emmanuel
  • 2019-09-09

Solid

I somewhat stumbled on this one, very enjoyable. The story and performance did not disappoint.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Jeffery M
  • 2019-09-02

loved the story

the story was excellent and can't wait to see more. I could of done without the background music and sound effects though.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Anonymous User
  • 2019-08-31

This is the First full 5 Star Book

Awesome story great character development so much connection Between characters and Really interesting mindset please continue I hope you do well making the series Bloom Don't change what you been doing you will do well

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Daniel
  • 2019-08-20

Amazing book

Great book, a good entry into the sub genre of post apocalyptic game lit. It stands out from similar books and is a fun take on the genre. Not depressing like some of these can get. Can’t wait for the next book. The narration was great as well.

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Amazon Customer
  • San Marcos, Texas United States
  • 2019-09-24

A refreshing listen

It has been a while since I've listen to a litrpg that didn't involve a game per say. Was also nice to see the MC take certain actions that I believe most readers would.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Indalesio Martinez Jr
  • 2019-09-20

I think its Great

So i love how he changed things up and made this feel like this could happen if it was real life, not just some isakai where you enter the game world. I listened to it twice in a row and discovered things I missed. The main character acts like a person, not some hero or jaded man. he learns as he lives. changes and grows.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful