Review: Children of Elisium || littlehera

Webnovel Story. Genre(s): Fantasy. # of Chapters: 31

TQ 3   PD 2   CF 2   ||   RL 2   CL 3   ||   Overall: 12

 

Important Note: There is a big difference between a webnovel–a story of the internet and mobile world–and a published book. Besides straightforward editing, published stories are constantly polished to be more engaging, meaningful, and clear. So a successful webnovel doesn’t equate to the same caliber of a published novel. This is due in part to an online writer typically being a one man/woman show. Thus, reviews will be given as if regarding whether this could be a published print or e-book.

 

All 31 chapters were covered in this review.

 

First chapter of Settings and Characters explanation:

One of the goals in storytelling is to be able to convey all this information within the story itself by weaving bits and parts into the plot as a form of development. As a webnovel, this sort of setup information is common, but consider withholding from this.

World-building:

Not even considering the first setup chapter, you do a good job of this in the beginning of the story in chapter two (which is really chp one). The spells are a nice touch. While there aren’t direct explanations to what each means/does, it can be easily garnered from the actions following the command.

Technical, and Writing Style:

You employ descriptions clearly and quite generously without detracting from the story or boring readers. Overall punctuation and grammar are correct. This is one of the better written stories I’ve seen so far on Webnovel.

Aria/373 and Michael:

A bit of a cliche first meeting between a boy and a girl; nonetheless, you wrote their first interaction quite well. It doesn’t quite make sense that Aria is so cognizant for an eight-year old, (“All he knew was that when she released a sigh, she sounded less like a child and more like an adult – like a young lady trapped in a child’s body.”) nor is a sixteen (17-18) year old’s interest in a child. “Was she content with the result she gained? Was she content with how things were right now? … No, she wasn’t.” Most children wouldn’t really think this as it’s only when they’re older that they become more consciously unsatisfied with life. But, well-written stories about a young child is rare. Consider even Harry Potter who was older. 

As the story progresses, Michael has underlying motives, so this is good. “She was still the same girl who had taken a piece of his heart and his soul.” This makes a lot of sense, now. Not to mention, it makes things vaguely less disturbing. It’s a bit of mediocre reason, but nonetheless, fitting.

Other characters: 

Salamander – Interesting abilities. The healing and torturing experiment has been done before in stories, but you employed this in your own unique way.

Gabriel – A typical kind of bully but introduced pretty well.

Silas and Ashe – Silas in particular, is pretty well done. His character can be grasped in lines such as, “The man didn’t respond, ended the call, and dialed the cafeteria for another serving of spaghetti.” He apparently seems to be the antagonist, but I appreciate that he isn’t the typical evil villian. Not much to say about Ashe since she acts somewhat typical of a “villain”; except, their interactions (with master) are rather comedic.

Astaroth – typical demon. Nothing much good nor bad to say on this.

Bob – “Michael felt like Bob was the reincarnation of a rapper who loved rhyming his stanzas off. Regrettably, Bob wasn’t a rapper or a lyricist. If he was, it would have been interesting.” It’s descriptions like these which give character and make them 3-D and able to be fully visualized.

Zain – Good BG story and fight with Aria. It drags on a bit much, but again due to your writing abilities, you kept it interesting to follow through. Also, it gave further insight into Zain’s character. However, since she’s rank one, if feels like Aria’s a little too OP. Perhaps more balance can be made considering she has also made a deal with a demon who doesn’t seem so much threatening as supportive.

Jeorge – “I hate my life.” Haha!

Plot:

“If they merged the child’s body with a demon’s, would she survive? If they exchanged the girl’s blood with that of a demon’s, would the child gain eternal life? Would it enable Asha Claire to live forever?” Here is where it feels like the first driver of the plot emerges. While everything before was written well and therefore engaging, it still felt like the real action hadn’t yet started. This leads to my final conclusion…

Conclusion:

You undeniably know how to write well and tell a story clearly, deeply, and thoughtfully. Continue expanding upon your strengths in character formation and action & event-descriptions. However, therein lies your weakness. The plot. It’s clear, but after 31 chapters, the events move slowly. This is a bit of a tricky issue as this is a webnovel. If it were a published book, this wouldn’t be too much of a concern as in all those chapters, you fleshed out all the characters introduced very well. But even regardless of that, the events are too meticulous/methodical and account every step 373 and Michael take to escape and I presume, reunite if her memories are restored.

The underlying scenario is escape. They still haven’t escaped even after 31 chapters. But, this wouldn’t be problem if many events occurred up to this point as escape in itself can be made complicated and dangerous. The synopsis seems to suggest that it is the act of escape and choosing whether to only save herself is the entirety of the story. While this isn’t necessarily bad, it’s somewhat limiting. There is greater potential for this story. After escape, even more complexities could be added in a building of a climax and a resolution of unraveling the mysteries and details. A story merely on escape can only linger and go so far because there lies the outside world and aftermath.

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