Book Review 182 // Reign of the Mad(e) God by Joshua Hall


Something a little different today - An illustrated ebook. I felt it traversed both comic and book to fit nicely on a Tuesday post. Some disclaimers first, I was kindly offered a copy of the ebook by Joshua Hall, the author, in exchange for a review. 

Thoughts are all my own, but as I am officially blogging about it you should realize I enjoyed the title.

Title: Reign of the Mad(e) God
Author: Joshua Hall
Fluff:
The first instalment in a series of illustrated eBook novelettes.

The Varangian Guard is among the strongest enclaves in the new world, but they too will be faced with challenges—from massive constructs of iron and science to base human needs like hunger and shelter.

Follow these survivors in the new world through writings and illustrations by supposed prophets.

Don't let your eyes deceive you. There is no magic or miracles here... only science.

After enjoying a period of prosperity and abundance, mankind now finds itself living in a state of perdition, as the great construct, The Answer Man, which brought paradise, has now turned against its creators, forcing them to fight tooth and claw for whatever scraps remain.

Through a series of journal entries and illustrations by supposed prophets, follow the vestiges of humanity as they struggle to survive the new world, faced with either fighting or falling to The Answer Man's own constructs.

There is no magic here, no sleight of hand tricks, no smoke and mirrors... just pure science, untainted by man's greed.

Review

This is a strange title to review; the cover image included above is dark, gritty, and terrifying. I get major Silent Hill vibes from this. We get a strong feeling of man-made horror throughout the read, and you can tell this could have been avoided if the scientists had just stopped and asked, "should we do this?" 

This is early work and is very much a world-building piece. It reads like a bestiary of creatures for an RPG, which I love. There are a few errors throughout the title that I am sure Joshua Hall will fix as he progresses. But we are introduced to an Earth plunged into dark times. Mankind has gone too far, and in hopes of unifying the earth's religions, they have instead released the means of our destruction - The Answer Man! We have a man-made God who has found mankind wanting and is now creating his own version of paradise, filled with half flesh and metal constructs. Through the words of the journal writer, we are led into a world of madness where no sane human can survive for long.

I liked many of the monsters/creatures, and their descriptions were in-depth and lore-filled. I struggled with a few human characters as they felt a bit out of place. Especially the Judge character arc, which was a bit of a miss for me. I didn't ultimately understand her place or her evolution throughout the story. Finally, an exciting teaser into this new author's works and I am intrigued enough to want more.

Go support this writer at 0.99 cents. You can't go wrong.

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