Riley is a bigshot VR star who supports himself through an online game called Sigil. He spends his days inside the game hooking up with various groups, killing monsters, and picking up loot. Until the day his bigshot character is killed and he has to start over.
Riley makes the mistake of reading press about his now dead character. It’s not good. People didn’t like him. They thought he was a jerk. So, he starts over and tries to fix the flaws in his game that made him so unlikeable. He meets other gamers. They allow him to tag along on their expeditions to build his levels. Something happens. Riley begins to care about the other gamers. He thinks of them as friends. Soon, he must make a decision. Will he go back to his former ways and bounce from group to group to use whoever he can to get more loot and move up in the game? Or will he stick with his new friends and watch their back and maybe move more slowly but have the comradery he is missing in his real life as an orphan?
I liked this story. I cared about Riley and wanted to see him get his levels back. But I wanted him to include his real life friend more in his life. And I wanted him to have friends and people he cared about because he was so alone in real life. I was rooting for him. I saw where the story was heading and who the white worm was long before it was revealed but enjoyed they story and stuck with it to the end.
The narration for Jeff Hays was somewhat subdued in this listen. There were no sound effects and his voices were less varied than I’m used to. So, it was just OK for me. I usually jump at Hays’ narrations because they are phenomenal. This one wasn’t a standout for me but it was still very good.
I received this audiobook for free through Audiobook Boom! in exchange for an honest review.