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Summary

"Are you still alive? Then you're still learning."

Era Gualtieri lives his life on permanent hard mode. His right leg is gone, his hometown was bombed into toxic waste, and he's elvish in an age when pointy ears are the mother of all "kick me" signs. He's spent the past four years hopping trains and shoplifting just to survive, with only his flying sword to keep him safe.

Now, he's suddenly the only guy on the planet who's legally allowed to stop the new Dark Lord.

But Era's in no mood to bail out. Besides, his new government-appointed comrades (the edgiest sorceress in the food court, and a healer who's all heart and zero percent brains) wouldn't stand for such nonsense.

But there's an ancient conspiracy lurking at the heart of the whole Dark Lord fiasco, keeping the world in a cycle of constant violence for profit. Era's determined to get to the bottom of it, even if it means being branded an outlaw for the rest of his life.

Give a Gualtieri two paths to choose, and he'll take the third.

Neverstone: Mad Elf is a zany love letter to JRPGs far and wide. Thrilling, morbidly hilarious, and character-driven - what else can you ask for from a LitRPG Adventure? 

©2021 Ned Caratacus (P)2021 Tantor

What listeners say about The Mad Elf

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Witty, observant fantasy with superb narration

Witty, observant fantasy which skewers issues of the modern day. Funny, compelling and full of interesting characters. Lighthearted and fun listening which nevertheless manages to touch on racism, disability, conspiracy theories and more. Never feels forced.

Narration is among the best I've heard in an Audible book. Ochlan has a great range and creates believable voices - you'd think this was a full cast recording at times.

1 person found this helpful

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Meta

Funny, if a bit too clever for its own good sometimes. There's a lot of fourth wall breaking and little sidetracks which can be a plus or a minus, depending on the reader. I enjoyed the book, it's well written and the characters are funny and interesting but it can be a bit too hectic, making it easy to miss important details. I can still easily recommend it though 🙂

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  • Jacob
  • 25-09-21

Tired of the politics

Really tired of all the politics that were in this book. I'm not talking about any sort of made-up politics in a fantasy world, I'm talking about real-world politics that pretty much show which way the author leans politically. It wouldn't be as bad if it was just a couple of times, but it seems to be the entire persona of the bad guy.

Not only that, but it felt like the author had a checklist for making a diverse party of characters or something. A minority character, who is called a derogatory term by most people and has a disability. A badass girl who is probably the most powerful damage dealer in their group and doesn't take crap from anyone. A trans person who has a difficult past and another girl who is probably lesbian, but I stopped listening after she joined the party.

In short, I don't want to be preached to about real-world politics in my fantasy stories. If that is your thing, then maybe you'll enjoy it better than I did.

As for the narration, I think it was fine and the narrator did a good job with tone and making his characters sound unique.

10 people found this helpful

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  • Kevin
  • 03-10-21

Don’t Bother

The storytelling is disjointed and confusing. The comedic asides are not funny and take away from the tiny-bit of actual story. It is annoying. So far, every attempt at a back-story is nothing more than an internal schizophrenic ramble that is so full of snark that whatever context the author is trying to convey is lost. Maybe that is intentional? I don’t know and I no longer care. Seriously… did Deadpool write this? I’m trying really hard to give this book a shot, but four chapters in is my limit.

7 people found this helpful

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  • Tim
  • 25-08-21

Can’t stop laughing - this is awesome!

Wow, this book is hilarious. It’s very strange (insert horse elemental, and that’s just getting started), but as you fall into this incredibly creative world, you also bust up laughing along the way.

This is my first PJ Ochlan narrated audiobook, but it won’t be my last. His ability to hit the snark and comedic tone is perfect. I’m so glad I bought this book!

5 people found this helpful

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  • George F Backofen
  • 09-09-21

Better as You Go

P.J. Ochlan brings the entire cast of characters to life with unique and colorful voices for everyone, which is a relief since the the ensemble is quite large and diverse.
The story starts a bit slow for my taste, but once it gets moving, there is a sense that there is a whole world within it. We only get to scratch the surface of this world, but it's clear there is more to it than we see, and that makes it feel more real.
I was not fond of the narrative style, however. I felt it pulled me out of the immersion in a jerky and irregular pattern and it made me far to aware that I was listening to a story being told, rather than experiencing it. Towards the end, it becomes a bit more evident as to why, but I still didn't care for that aspect of it, much.
I'm on the fence as to whether I will continue with the next book, or if I've had my fill or this world. I like the characters and I like where the story seems to be headed, but I don't know that I want to spend the time jumping in and out of immersion for it.

4 people found this helpful

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  • Lizard
  • 03-09-21

If Douglas Adams wrote an RPG after dropping acid

Favorite part was either the Taco Restaurant Mimic battle or the makeshift courtroom scene, this book is a riot. P.J. Ochlan knocked it outta the park with this one. I wasn't sure about the Koschei family having German accents but once I heard Gregor Koschei's morbidly hilarious plastic death gun advertisement, it won me over. Can't wait to listen to the next book!

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  • Daniel
  • 14-03-22

Only thing I liked was the narrator

I'm not one to normally write reviews for stuff but I felt it appropriate in this particular case.

As I said in the title, one of the few things I liked about this book was the narrator. He was able to give each character a distinct voice and tone. I'd say the story idea had promise and I liked the fun narration tone of the writing style (although it could be a bit all over the place sometimes) but the author made basically the whole book overtly political. I don't mind some real-world politics in my books but the "big bad" wasn't well developed or written. It was basically what I think the author thinks of when they think of "the right" in terms of real life politics. I don't know about you, but when I read fiction I want a glimpse into another world. I want to laugh with the characters, I want to cry with them, I want to get angry with them, etc. I don't want to be preached at about controversial mondern day politics. This could have been so much better and I feel like the author could really make some fun stories if they could be more objective and focus in telling a story and not making hate mail for a group of people they disagree with.

I give the author one star, the story two stars, and the narrator five stars. I'll definitely be looking for more stuff he's done.

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  • Dallas Meck
  • 21-09-21

The Best!

By flame, fleece and wheel this book is fantastic! It's hilarious, with a surprisingly good adventure. The world created by Ned Caratacus has been built masterfully. I am eagerly awaiting the second installment.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Bryce
  • 15-05-22

Don't Trust the Low Reviews,

Hello! I write reviews about books I like on here, as a few people do. Unfortunately, some people specifically write reviews because they see their views in the text, displayed openly, and they do not like it.

In, "The Mad Elf" The Primary villain is a race-supremacist, slur-touting, murder-happy idiot dude-bro and his cacophony of like-minded doofuses. They are portrayed as idiots without much in the way of critical thinking and social skills, in other words, this fantasy story about Elves, Dwarves, and Gods, has realistic villains that we all know and despise.

Some people think those kinds of folks aren't villains, however, I write this review after 3 consecutive mass shootings, one of which carried out on livestream by a man spouting about "Replacement Theory." Doing what the skin-heads are shown to be doing in chapter 1 of this very book, finding minorities and trying to find the easiest way to kill them while avoiding any blame for themselves.

Pick up this book, enjoy this book and its diverse set of characters, truly unique narration style, and systemic villains that we can all recognize as metaphor for our own world's problems. If you see my review and think "Wow, they aren't giving the other side enough credit" or "there's bad people on both sides" Please avoid this book, its glory is not for you.

If you are sick of all the hate, if you are LGBT, if you just want a story about nice people doing the right thing even though it can be VERY hard, then this book will be your refuge.

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  • Patrik
  • 17-11-21

All over the place

This book is all over the place and the Maine character doesn’t feel like the main character. They are all push overs and just go along with anything they are told like they don’t think for themselves just kinda stumble along and complain

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  • Fernando Granea
  • 02-11-21

it's a lot of fun!!!

It's hilarious, creative, well written and i learned a lot about the genre, i absolutely recommend it!!!