What happens when we die? The answer to this question becomes personal for a teenage boy who named himself, "Schmendrick," when he is reborn in a world called the Sanctum. As a Reborn, he is thrust into an unforgiving society splintered between the Gifted, those blessed with Aether-fueled Powers, and the Powerless, who are treated as outcasts and forced to live in the dangerous Recovered Land.
When Schmendrick discovers a hidden secret in Rezdi City and the system seeks his capture and extermination, the teenager is forced to leave Rezdi City and makes his way to the wasteland known as The Shar. There, he makes another discovery which will change his life as a Reborn forever.
During his sleep, Smendrick is plagued by dreams and memories of his past life. Who was he before he died and was reborn? How will these revelations affect his new life as a Reborn?
My Opinion: 177 pages, $2.99, Available on Kindle Unlimited
The beginning of the story drops the main character (MC), Schmendrick, and a group of others into a RPG world as reborn where they’re supposed to serve the game system. The next 33% of the novel is a tedious of forced Noob schooling where the newly Reborn learn how to access the game stuff and train in basic combat. Yes the MC gets XP and levels but he has no agency and makes virtually no decisions. Instead, everything is dictated by the instructors.
That’s pretty much how the rest of the story ends up too. To put it plainly, it’s boring. It feels like the MC is being led by the nose through the entire story and doesn’t make a single decision. Not only that but the character himself lacks depth and emotional range.
The occasional combat scene is decent but it doesn’t make up for the rest of the story. Even though the MC goes on a variety of quests, gains specialized skills, and abilities, what he never seems to gain is any character development that makes me care about him or the ability to make a decision. Instead, he goes along with anything anyone tells him to do and is apathetic about it.
Score: 5 out of 10