Summary

What happens when the haggling is done and the shops are closed? When the quest has been given, the steeds saddled, and the adventurers are off to their next encounter? They keep the world running, the food cooked, and the horses shoed, yet what adventurer has ever spared a thought or concern for the Non-Player Characters?In the town of Maplebark, four such NPCs settle in for a night of actively ignoring the adventurers drinking in the tavern when things go quickly and fatally awry. Once the dust settles, these four find themselves faced with an impossible choice: pretend to be adventurers undertaking a task of near-certain death or see their town and loved ones destroyed. Armed only with salvaged equipment, second-hand knowledge, and a secret that could get them killed, it will take all manner of miracles if they hope to pull off their charade. And even if they succeed, the deadliest part of their journey may well be what awaits them at its end.
©2014 Andrew Hayes (P)2014 Tantor
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By DAVID EELES on 31-01-16

great listen

loved it great listen, nice story will be getting the next in the series, brilliant

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3 of 3 people found this review helpful

3 out of 5 stars
By Alex Kite on 11-05-17

Struggled a little with the narrator.

Was still a good book with am interesting idea at the heart of the story. Was short enough that got through it in 2 or 3 days just didn't find myself caring for the characters didn't buy in and feel invested in the outcome. Would give the author and his books another chance maybe it was my mood at the time I started.

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2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
4 out of 5 stars
By Miachi on 23-01-15

Enjoyable if you manage your expectations

This book is written for a fairly narrow audience.

1) You must be fond of old school RPGs. Table top dice rolling is best, but something like a text-based MUD would be good, too. Me, I loved Gemstone III.

2) You must be able to laugh at yourself and your fellow players.

3) You must embrace the awkward phrasing that lots of players liked to use to create "character." Aye, 'tis true.

4) You must not be looking for anything deep or meaningful. This is a romp, and the author's tongue never comes fully out of his cheek.

If meet these criteria, then enjoy! This book is for you!

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218 of 232 people found this review helpful

4 out of 5 stars
By Jonathan on 14-10-14

Charming and Cute

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

If you're a gamer, you may appreciate the meta-ness Hayes offers. Without giving away too much, NPCs takes some of the conventions and tropes of tabletop roleplaying and applies them to a world, treating them more seriously than Order of the Stick does - while still keeping a fairly light tone.

The story isn't grand or revolutionary, the characters aren't gripping, but the story still has its own charm and the prose is both readable and has a welcoming feel to it. There are three real action sequences in the book and the first two do get a bit long, because they are told from multiple characters doing their own thing on the battlefield. That said, this point didn't grow too onerous. Overall I enjoyed the book and would gladly read more by Hayes along this vein.

Would you be willing to try another book from Drew Hayes? Why or why not?

Yes - he has a pleasant writing style and a sense of humor that, while it doesn't make you laugh out loud, can still make you smile.

Any additional comments?

The narrator does a good job. His voice is pleasant, and all of the character voices are both distinct and enjoyable. I'd listen to more by him.

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71 of 77 people found this review helpful

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