I know Yahtzee Croshaw from his web series ‘Zero Punctuation’, where he is an incredibly satirical video gamer critic, so when I found out he had written books (starting with Mogworld) I knew I had to get hold of them! As it turns out, I found out that Croshaw narrates his own audio books – so naturally I decided to try out a free trial of Audible and gave audio books a go for the first time – how could I not?!
As it turns out, Mogworld makes for a really easy ‘read’ – yes, I know I was technically listening – but I think it’s transferable in this case! The general story revolves around Jim. Jim is dead, but 60 years after his death he is resurrected by a newbie necromancer. Now Jim just wants to die again…permanently. But things, as in life, just aren’t that simple, thus hilarity ensues on Jim’s quest for his own demise.
Before I start, I should probably clarify that Croshaw’s particular style of narration might not be for everyone. Fans of ‘Zero Punctuation’ will notice that this narration is markedly slower. Being honest, I sped up the narration – only slightly – to x1.25 as it was a little slow for me too.
“I had passed on from life, from the world of struggles and hardship and big fat women with annoying laughs, and entered a glorious new existence of utter peace, and joy, and love.
And then some git brought me back to life.”
Mogworld is an absolute gem for gamers, but it’s easily accessible to non-gamers too! Swords-and-sorcery isn’t my usual genre, and books that fall into to the category rarely fall open in my hands, but Mogworld isn’t your typical S&S novel. Instead, it reads much like a video game in the sense that Jim’s main goal Is to die, but his main ‘quest’ is interrupted by lots of smaller side quests.
Mogworld is surprisingly well written, considering critics don’t tend to do well in their own creative ventures.
I absolutely loved that Jim wasn’t a hero in any way, shape or form. He wasn’t a villain either. He was just there – and it works! The supporting characters are also brilliant.
The entirety of Mogworld is genuinely funny. There were plenty of moments where I was smirking to myself and a couple of moments where I genuinely laughed out loud. There were puns, jokes, tongue-in-cheek moments and a lot of satire of MMORPG’s.
“There was a minute of awkward silence before someone near the back with their head held under their arm said “who’s this twat?””
I actually hadn’t realised that out main characters were actually characters inside an MMORPG game (Mogworld) had turned sentient for a while. The emails that confirmed this were bloody funny, as were the moments where the characters spoke to the programmers in the real world.
The humour throughout Mogworld is very dry, very deadpan, very sarcastic and classically British.
The story was good and had good pacing but was perhaps a few chapters too long. I also don’t think it’s necessarily well suited to multiple reads but Mogworld is very meta and a lot of fun and is an entire parody in book form. Cynics everywhere rejoice! Because this is a book for you!
“Then there was a sound rather like a bag of wet laundry being hurled across a gravel driveway, and that was the first time I died.”
[PLEASE NOTE]: I was not paid or sponsored to write this review – all the opinions are honest and my own.