Overworld by Dennis E. Taylor

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After finishing the Bobiverse series by this author and absolutely adoring it I went to find other books by him and just start going through his collection. Unfortunately, I didn’t enjoy this one nearly as much as the Bobiverse and there are a few reasons for that.

This book tried to be two different things at once, and both of those separate plot points were really interesting by themselves. So, there’s a super volcano about to blow in Yellowstone… and a group of college kids find a way to open portals to alternative Earths and start exploring different ways the Earth evolved in different dimensions.

Either one of these plotlines as a book in itself to let the topic be explored in depth would have been great. Trying to smash both of these concepts together made it feel a little forced, and just a bit too much. The fact that one of the MCs is involved in both plotlines didn’t help like it maybe it was intended to do — it just made it seem implausible that this same woman would be involved with the Super Volcano and just so happen to also know this kid who’s opening portals.

The characters were okay, I didn’t latch on to any one particular person but I didn’t dislike anybody, either. I did find them to be vehicles for the story more than the ones driving the story, however.

The tone and prose for this book were slightly more serious than it was in Bobiverse, the atmosphere wasn’t quite as light hearted, but it was still fun. The prose really got out of the way of the story and let me forget I was reading. I liked the dialogue a bit more in Bobiverse as well. I went to see what the publishing order is for his books, and I’m not surprised that the Bobiverse is a later installment and this was one of his first book. Bearing that in mind, that just makes me excited for what’s coming next. I love it when an author clearly makes leaps and bounds in their skill level, it makes me anticipate the next book all the more.

Overall, this was an enjoyable book but it didn’t wow me.


  • Plot: 10/15
  • Characters: 10/15
  • World Building: 9/15
  • Writing: 11/15
  • Pacing: 12.5/15
  • Originality: 8/15
  • Enjoyment: 6/10

Final Score: 66.5/100