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Summary

Solve the maze. Find the girls. Win the game.

I was just an anonymous clerk at a game store. Then one day a disgruntled customer ran over me and my hot coworker Kelly–all because of an unreleased game I wouldn’t sell him.

Now we’re trapped in a huge three-dimensional maze where gravity seems optional, competing in dangerous contests with a team of fellow social outcasts.

And failure is often fatal.

But I think I know what’s going on here. We’re gathering territory, I’m gaining strange abilities, and every contest we win adds another member to my team of hot girls.

We just need get to the bottom of this maze. If only we can find it.

The Escherian Core is is a dark base-building isekai GameLit adventure.

©2022 Michael Dalton (P)2022 Royal Guard Publishing LLC

What listeners say about The Escherian Core

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Amazing

The plot and story is absolutely brilliant, I love the games and puzzle they have to compete and the team competitions. As well as the different timeline subplot which is also very intriguing.

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Great book

very sci-fi game lit Action sexy women good all rounder the narrators have done a great job on this book

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A Unique Concept

It is preciously rare to find something that isn't just like every other Isekai Harem this story is very much that and does a good job of slowly revealing the core plot elements while leaving plenty of room for the work to continue into the subsequent books. Alyssa Poon is a narrator I have heard and enjoyed many times before and Trevor does a great job as the voice of the Harem Lead.

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Team Based Death Game!

This was my first experience listening to a Michael Dalton book and really enjoyed it.

The Male and Female MC are killed by an angry customer and wake up in a room with four other individuals all of whom have recently died. They have no knowledge of how to escape but are given instructions as to how to proceed. The are told the are a designated team and that they are required to complete challenges to advance and even compete against other teams in the hopes of surviving and continuing the game.

Both the narrators did a really good, Alyssa Poon has been around for a little while now and she is fantastic as always, I recently listened to another boom featuring Trevor Jordan (Arm Cannon Academy) and enjoyed his narration in both.

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Epic

A great start to this series very enjoyable and done well amazing narration can’t wait for the next one

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amazing

really great book. loved the isekai. and the way the author used the spectrum to find common ground between the mc and his women was amazing. Can't wait for the next one

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I really enjoyed this book.

Sometimes you come across a book and it turns out to be a retelling of another story just different. It normally doesn't do anything for me but this book is different as the story just flows so perfectly and the narrators do such a great job bringing the story to life. I eagerly await the next chapter of the story as I think it will only get better.
Well done! 5*****

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  • Nate
  • 13-06-22

Really good

I really liked this book, It's one of the best harem books I've read in the past couple months. Micheal Dalton writing was very praiseworthy and this has to be one of his best books.

Trevor Jordan and Alyssa poon did very good, they were a very good duo and its astonishing on how good they worked together.
all the voices were different, and the voices weren't annoying. I really liked Alyssas voice and I can't wait for more of her.
Trevor was also good but I honestly liked Alyssa more, they were both good, but Alyssa performance was superb.

This book was something different, I wasn't expecting this at all. I liked what I read, but it just wasn't what I was expecting.
This book is very short so this review isn't going to be really long, but let's get into the thick of it.

Now I do think this book is good, but with how short it is I don't think it's worth the credit. I do think it's a fair bargain for how much it is, and I would certainly spend money for this book.

The characters in this book are actually quite nice, I like them. not overly so, but i think all the side characters are likable and have a unique depth to them. I also like the mc and I think he's quite relatable.
I do like the premise this book is set under, but I think it could be performed better, at the start of the book I didn't really know what was going on, and what the author was trying to portray or trying to accomplish.
it all settled out later in the book, and I started to really like this book.
I do think the plot was lacking, it could've been better, or it could've been performed better. i do think it'll be better in the second book, but right now it wasn't cutting it for me.

I do have one complaint, the chapters end so suddenly for some reason. it's like the author doesn't know how to end a chapter, and it was annoying. not overly so but it was still annoying.

I really liked this book, I do think it's one of the best harems I've read lately, but don't expect something mind changing, this book is good but it's not the next best harem book of the year.

4 people found this helpful

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  • Haremsfan
  • 04-07-22

Solve the puzzles, surrender, or die. No pressure!

The Escherian Core (Neuro-Divergence Book 1) offers entertaining and clever twists to the “I woke up in a strange place after being killed, and now must fight for my life while building a team of hot women” trope.

Initially, I didn’t care much for the male VA (Trevor Jordan) in this book…he performed the part of male gaming slacker just a bit too well. Once he was killed and became an integral part of building a team, his voice (and those of the other male characters) grew on me; he actually did a terrific job! The female VA (Alyssa Poon) was fantastic with all her roles.

Much of this story reminded me of David Burke’s terrific “Descend” series. Both series require the characters to advance in the “game” or die, the women all have distinct personalities, and we don’t find out until later in the book/series much about who is directing the deadly events, or for what reasons.

Also, as in “Descend”, we find the MC and his harem drifting back and forth in timelines, or here….alternate universe earths, and getting memories confused with what is a dream and what is reality. If you liked “Descend”, you’ll enjoy “The Escherian Core”. It’s definitely its own story!

Some of the challenges in the story were so hilariously over-the-top I was also reminded of the terrific Star Trek spoof “Galaxy Quest”, where the characters questioned the absurd challenges confronting them! Oh, and there’s a specific Stargate SG-1 episode that you’ll recognize, but I can’t mention it because of spoilers. It’s a great episode, though!

In addition to many action sequences, there are plenty of well-done intimate scenes too! No FTB here, I’m happy to report! The writing is intelligently done, and even uses the Fibonacci Sequence to solve a puzzle!

Well, I started writing more about The Escherian Core, but everything was coming up spoilers. So, let me just encourage you to get this terrific audiobook and enjoy the story yourself! Definitely a 5* book, and I look forward to the next book in the series: The Kafkaesque Passage. Oh, btw - author Michael Dalton has several audiobooks available on the US Public Libraries affiliated website Hooladigital.com, and the subscription site Scribd.com. Those books were published by Tantor Audio. Escherian Core is published by Royal Guard Publishing and the audiobook is exclusive to Audible. Given the dual narration gained, I applaud the move to the different publisher!

I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review. Receiving a review copy did not influence my rating or my review.

2 people found this helpful

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  • DaynenMc
  • 20-09-22

Fun concept.

I love that this book's main characters are all ADHD and "on the spectrum" like myself and many others.
The Escher style dungeon is pretty cool but I would have liked a bit more Escher things and not just the perspective defying stairs.
I definitely enjoyed this book and I'm looking forward to the 2nd one.

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  • Andrew Epperson
  • 29-08-22

Super fun ride!

I love base building books and this one is a bit light on the building side of things, but it made up for it in the relationships between the characters. I am already listening to the next one!

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  • Jaymes
  • 26-08-22

Now this is how you start a series!

Now this is how you start a series. Freaking awesome, I was hooked from the first couple minutes and finished it all in one binge session! Can’t wait to listen to book two!

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  • Molenir (Argent Wolf)
  • 15-07-22

Porn, porn with a twisted story

So, I admit it is partially my fault for not looking closely at what I was getting. I thought it was a dungeon core story. Instead it was one of those idiotic harem novels with lots of unnecessary and graphic sex. If that's what you're looking for, great. If you were hoping for more of a story, with base building and adventure, not so much.

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  • Jonathan
  • 09-07-22

An unusual and refreshing spin

This book was an unusual spin on the genre. without spoilers, it balanced survival aspect and the harem aspect while keeping an air of mystery which is all wrapped up in a nice story that makes sense and does not push the boundaries of the imagination.

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  • Joeseph Baxter
  • 26-06-22

loved it

I enjoyed this book, if you enjoy core books and fantasy you'll love this book

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  • Daniel
  • 20-06-22

A fantastic start to a new series for an establish

I've been a fan of Michael Dalton work ever since The Makalang series. He's got a new one out called master of thieves that's also a joy. So, I was very excited to see what he's bringing in the form of sci-fi. Our heroes are snatched away at the moment of their death or have they died. They show up in a room with four others. They're getting messages from someone or something that compels them to complete tasks. There are six-person team gets whittled down quickly eliminating the only other guys. They face off against another human team and not everybody makes it. That's when things get really weird. I'm liking the story so far and I'm interested in what happens for book two. The narration team did a fantastic job with their performance. I am unfamiliar with Trevor Jordan’s work, but Alyssa Poon is a favorite narrator of mine. I recommend anybody still reading this review that they take a chance on the story. And As for the team that's responsible for bringing this story to us the audible listeners I say thank you and keep up the good work.

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  • Craiu Remus Armand
  • 17-06-22

Shockingly good

Not sure where to start, this was surprisingly very good and engaging.

The story itself is a huge mystery, of which only a small part seems to have been revealed to us, but enough to feel satisfactory. Basically people from all over the world/worlds have been gathered in a "cube" like experiment, having to defeat other teams and solve various puzzles all while making their own team stronger through bonding and receiving new abilities. Not all relies on using brute force, in fact quite a lot depends on using knowledge and especially by thinking outside the box. More can be said, but that would be going into spoiler territory.

The MC is likeable and avoids a lot of the tropes we usually see in these type of novels which was quite refreshing. the FL's are also very fun and unique in their own ways. Maybe the building of the team could have been done more slowly, but it kinda works like this also, and makes me wonder how it will develop in the future, while keeping all members relevant (hope this aspect will count in future books). The bonding ability was also quite fun and kept things interesting in that department.

Now for the narration. Alyssa Poon did an amazing job with the female characters, they all sound like different people with various accents and inflections, I could tell all the time which character spoke with it having the need to dwell on it. She also made them feel real and adorable in various ways. Trevor Jordan was also a good pick for the main character, but his role was a bit easier, so to say.

In the end it's a very good book that successfully combined both elements present in the genre while keeping us engaged and entertained. I really hope the next books live up to the hype because I'm quite excited for the next books to come and want to see more of these characters.