Mid-Lich Crisis by Steve Thomas

Posted On 8 January 2021

Filed under Book Reviews
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midlichMid-Lich Crisis is one of the books that was included in my batch for the Self-Published Fantasy Blog Off and was a strong contender. I had some very good books this year which made choosing semi-finalists and an eventual finalist very difficult indeed and the fact that Mid-Lich Crisis was eventually cut stands testament to just how good this year’s selection actually was.

What I really liked about Mid-Lich Crisis is that it tells the story from the opposite side of the coin.  Instead of following in the footsteps of the typical ‘good’ hero we instead look at things from the villain’s perspective.  And here’s the thing, does a villain really think he’s the ‘villain’ or is he simply misunderstood?

If you put any faith in the meaning of names then you could be forgiven for thinking that Dread Wizard Darruk Darkbringer is immediately off to an unfair advantage, Dread and Darkbringer not really inspiring warm and happy thoughts after all, but Darruk is determined to be better understood.  He is definitely not evil and his ruthless actions were all undertaken in the pursuit of rescue.  Darruk is trying to save the world from the Doomclap – and so a few people died along the way – for the greater good.  He’s not ‘e***’ and he’s going to prove to the world that he isn’t.  First step, stop dying, second step become a celebrity, third step, save the world and show everyone that you’re really the hero that you claim to be.

So, how is it that Darruk keeps dying but then popping back up.  Well, he’s a lich.  Basically this means that he is a wizard who plans ahead and has the foresight to place his soul in a receptacle, that, provided it is kept safe, ensures he never truly dies.  Of course he might need a little help being resurrected, but that’s what furry talking minions are for, and although his last ‘death’ lasted longer than he would have liked, leaving him less time than ever to save the world, he’s still determined to do so.

I part read and part listened to this one which proved to be a winning combination, particularly as the audio narration is particularly impressive.

The world feels part mediaeval/part modern – there are certainly modern references thrown in but at the same time it has a middle age feel.  Strangely enough, this didn’t create any problems for me and perhaps that’s down to the overall style of writing which is very much in the style of ‘let’s not take things too seriously and just enjoy where the flow takes us’.

In terms of the characters.  This is pretty much a one man show, I mean, there are other characters, obviously, but Darruk is the star here and so if you find yourself unable to get on board with his peculiar brand of wit then you may struggle.  I didn’t have that problem and found the humour here very easy to get on with.

The plot is a little bit jumpy, or rambling maybe – or perhaps even chaotic.  Or at least that was my take on the whole thing.  We have all sorts thrown into the mix from rock bands to bread makers and the perfect flatbread recipe.  The only slight issue I had was a slight feeling that I’d lost the plot a little during the middle section, but, given my ‘covid brain’ this year, that could simply be due to a lack of concentration on my part.

Overall, this is an easy to read, slightly irreverent, satire that isn’t afraid to shake things up a little.  Obviously, it’s not always easy to achieve the right balance when aiming for laughs but the author certainly managed to give me a few laugh out loud moments which is always appreciated.

I received a copy courtesy of the author, for which my thanks.  The above is my own opinion.

My rating – between 3.5 and 4 stars – rounded up to 4 stars

8 Responses to “Mid-Lich Crisis by Steve Thomas”

  1. Tammy

    This sounds pretty good, and more on the lighter, funnier side, which is a nice change of pace:-)

  2. Mogsy @ BiblioSanctum

    I’m glad you reviewed this even though it didn’t make the final cut, it’s nice to see some of the lighter books get some attention!

    • @lynnsbooks

      I still have another review to complete and a couple of books that I intended to return to and complete. Time though.
      Lynn 😀

  3. maddalena@spaceandsorcery

    The mix between medieval and modern that you describe is interesting, and I wonder if this might be some sort of post-apocalyptic world… 🙂

    • @lynnsbooks

      Ahh, I didn’t think of that but you could be right. How intriguing.
      Lynn 😀

  4. waytoofantasy

    I have heard a lot of good things about this one, I know that he does comic fantasy and that can be fun if you’re in the mood for it. Appreciate your thoughts on it!

    • @lynnsbooks

      It was a good read – pity I could only have one finalist – so many likely candidates this year.
      Lynn 😀

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