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Forging Hephaestus

por Drew Hayes

Series: Villains' Code (1)

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686305,883 (4.35)1
Gifted with metahuman powers in a world full of capes and villains, Tori Rivas kept away from the limelight, preferring to work as a thief in the shadows. But when she's captured trying to rob a vault that belongs to a secret guild of villains, she's offered a hard choice: prove she has what it takes to join them or be eliminated. Apprenticed to one of the world's most powerful (and supposedly dead) villains, she is thrust into a strange world where the lines that divide superheroes and criminals are more complex than they seem. The education of a villain is not an easy one, and Tori will have to learn quickly if she wants to survive. On top of the peril she faces from her own teacher, there are also the capes and fellow apprentices to worry about, to say nothing of having to keep up a civilian cover. Most dangerous of all, though, are those who loathe the guild's very existence. Old grudges mean some are willing to go to any length to see the guild turned to ash, along with each one of its members. Even the lowly apprentices.… (más)
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Mostrando 1-5 de 6 (siguiente | mostrar todos)
Yep, I keep coming back to this one - a definite favorite. Solid, inventive, well structured characters make everything else work. Even the completely crazy bits. ( )
  wetdryvac | Mar 2, 2021 |
A swing and a miss. The convoluted moral system is to confused to provide any kind of narrative structure. ( )
  frfeni | Jan 31, 2021 |
Making evil good

I love when an author manages to insert a turn of phrase or imagery that is unique. Especially when it punishes an evildoer.

What Kristoph is responsible for is...the description, is so simple, but it's so...

"“The tamest way I’ve seen him kill someone was to animate their skeleton so that it clawed its way out from the inside while the person was kept alive to feel every excruciating second."

Someone who conceives of a scene such as that, and then only references it in his writing...that's creativity and artistry. A little disturbing. But I love it. ( )
  wildwily | May 28, 2020 |
Making evil good

I love when an author manages to insert a turn of phrase or imagery that is unique. Especially when it punishes an evildoer.

What Kristoph is responsible for is...the description, is so simple, but it's so...

"“The tamest way I’ve seen him kill someone was to animate their skeleton so that it clawed its way out from the inside while the person was kept alive to feel every excruciating second."

Someone who conceives of a scene such as that, and then only references it in his writing...that's creativity and artistry. A little disturbing. But I love it. ( )
  wildwily | May 28, 2020 |
This one's a whopper. While I usually steer clear of self-published novels this size – often it means the author believes everything that pops into his mind is wicked cool, and HAS to be in the book – I'm thankful I gave this one a try. It's a great, incredibly detailed addition to the superhero fiction genre.

I'm not going to go into much detail about the basic plot. Others have already done that. There are heroes who don't always act heroic, and villains who don't always act villainous. Plenty of gray areas: you get the usual tenuous alliances and forbidden relationships between hero and villain. Hayes handles all of it excellently.

Characters: the characters are varied both in powers, temperament, and motivations. There are a ton of viewpoints; even minor characters get their fifteen minutes of fame. Some characters are bland, but most make you keep reading.

Tori is our de facto protagonist, though again, we'll spend time with nearly everyone before the novel is done. I have mixed feelings about the fiery – in more ways than one – namesake of this novel.

While Tori does care about her friends and guildmates, and while her intelligence and drive are admirable, she has too much of the “boss bitch” style to her persona. I can't stand this character type – and no, my dislike isn't gender-specific. Male characters who are portrayed as loud, brash, take-no-crap-from-anyone jackasses are just as irritating. In the real world, I avoid people with these personalities like the plague. Tori isn't as bad as some, though, which is why I give her a middling grade.

Battles: the battles are usually satisfying, especially the ending melee. Some characters have silly or poorly defined powers, or powers that are so versatile they can always come up with a “get out of jail free” card, which dampens a battle's awesomeness. Chloe is an example of this versatility. As many clichés as there are in the English language, Hayes could find one to get Chloe out of any situation. Perhaps it's his intent to make her overpowered, but the real tension in superhero fiction comes from the characters' limitations, not their strengths.

Writing Style: Solid. Good mix of dialogue and narrative. Few typos or head-scratching sentences.

Pacing: Here's where Hayes stumbles a bit, mainly in the beginning. We have to get through seemingly endless repetition about the Code, until we're as sick of it as Tori. And while I hate to trot out the “show, don't tell” shibboleth, Hayes does love to tell. I found myself thinking on multiple occasions, “Yeah, I understand the stakes. I understand what he/she is thinking. Let's move things along, please!”

Logic: Since this is a superhero novel, I expect to suspend my disbelief. Still, there are plenty of “WTF” moments. I still fail to see why the powers-that-be of the different factions let the crisis happen, for example.

In sum: Though it may look like I've just been bashing Hayes, that's because I prefer to write honest reviews instead of gushing praise. This novel is exceptional, and I'll surely check out Hayes's other work. Its flaws don't warrant a star deduction; this is still a five-star read. Get it! ( )
  roguehomebody | Nov 13, 2018 |
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Gifted with metahuman powers in a world full of capes and villains, Tori Rivas kept away from the limelight, preferring to work as a thief in the shadows. But when she's captured trying to rob a vault that belongs to a secret guild of villains, she's offered a hard choice: prove she has what it takes to join them or be eliminated. Apprenticed to one of the world's most powerful (and supposedly dead) villains, she is thrust into a strange world where the lines that divide superheroes and criminals are more complex than they seem. The education of a villain is not an easy one, and Tori will have to learn quickly if she wants to survive. On top of the peril she faces from her own teacher, there are also the capes and fellow apprentices to worry about, to say nothing of having to keep up a civilian cover. Most dangerous of all, though, are those who loathe the guild's very existence. Old grudges mean some are willing to go to any length to see the guild turned to ash, along with each one of its members. Even the lowly apprentices.

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