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Okay guys, we are cutting quickly so we can announce our semifinalists quickly. The ones I’m cutting fall under the same category as last time. These are books that made it through my round one cuts since I made it to the end and didn’t DNF. That means that by in large it was engaging enough for me to see it through to the finish and I’d recommend it to others! Kristen’s review is still part of her round one cuts as it was a DNF for her. We do hope that all of our cut authors find new readers through our reviews!! What doesn’t appeal to one will be a favorite for someone else.

Without further ado, we say goodbye to:

The Stillwater Project by Craig Askham

Review by: Kristen — DNF

This is a portal fantasy about a guy named Troy Cooper who lives in the fairly distant future. He is a realtor that works for his father, showing very nice houses in the biodome of Beverly Hills while living in the killer smog that is the rest of Los Angeles. In his free time, he plays a popular online game in his VR chair, but he’s starting to find even that boring. Troy and his friends decide to try the highly advertised Stillwater Project, which is a literal wormhole portal from Earth to a medieval planet. Shenanigans ensue. 

This book unfortunately bounced right off me immediately. The main character is in his own head a lot and I really, really did not like him, at all. So, I had trouble finding the motivation to read it. This book would appeal to people who like LitRPG books, I think. It had a very similar vibe, to me. 

Saint Dorian and the Witch by Michael Raship

Review by Esme

This was a unique book in that it had an extremely story-teller like feel to it, with heavy emphasis on narrative prose over dialogue. It’s a story about a heretical monk who has chosen to follow a newly self-proclaimed Saint Dorian and has been cast out of his temple and out of society in general. It lands him in jail but he happens to be rescued by a witch, and things take off from there. This will be for people who like old school mysterious magic, philosophical books that make you think, and characters who have been cast out from society.

This Quest Is Bullshit by JP Valentine

Review by Esme

Oh, it is with a heavy heart I say goodbye to this one. I really enjoyed it, I read it first out of my batch given the title and it didn’t disappoint me at all. I got more than expected. It’s not just a book of laughs, it has heart that gave it depth which made it enjoyable and approachable. Even if you don’t like litrpg, I would still suggest giving this a shot since it’s equally character and plot focused. No, this is not some great exploration of character depth, but she absolutely was NOT two dimensional, she had such a great personality, it was so fun reading about her ridiculous journey to take a loaf of bread to the next town over. I absolutely, positively recommend this for people who like litrpg and humor.