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Bio Dungeon: Symbiote

The Body's Dungeon, Book 1
Narrated by: Miles Meili
Series: The Body's Dungeon, Book 1
Length: 10 hrs and 24 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (27 ratings)

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Summary

In the icy north exists a young orphan and a war on a microscopic scale... 

Marstin Hardgrove was orphaned at a young age, forced to live on the streets, and needed to turn to thievery to survive. When a special job assigned to him by the Thieves’ Guild went awry, the guild leadership punished him with a beating, compelled him to eat dirt and rocks to soothe his hunger, and left him to die in an abandoned mine. Unbeknownst to the young thief, when he was forced to eat that handful of dirt and rocks…he also ended up swallowing a tiny dungeon crystal.  

Thrown into a highly unusual world filled with cells, bacteria, and other dangerous pathogens, the tiny dungeon crystal is, at first, confused by his surroundings. After seeing how the different complex systems of the body work together, the crystal is quickly fascinated; it isn’t long before he decides that, instead of trying to escape, he wants the body for himself. He wants to possess the living being for his own use as a crystal, wholly unlike anything the world has ever seen before.  

To get to that point, however, the fledgling dungeon crystal has to learn how to survive against the different enemies trying to destroy him. Not only will he have to defeat the hostile pathogens standing in the way of his complete domination; but also, as a foreign invader to the body, himself, Marstin’s natural immune system sees the crystal as a threat. The only way to survive is to create his own immune cell defenders and place traps to prevent anything from reaching his dungeon crystal. In short: He has to turn the body into a dungeon. 

But will his new Bio Dungeon be enough to keep him - and the body he wants to possess - alive?  

Contains LitRPG/GameLit elements, such as character progression, statistics, and resource management. Also contains an in-depth, science-based portrayal of how the immune system responds to foreign pathogens via different white blood cells and other microscopic protectors. No harems, sexual content, or foul language.

©2020 Jonathan Brooks (P)2020 Jonathan Brooks

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  • MG
  • 09-07-20

Mixed Feelings

I'm completely new to the Dungeon Core sub-genre, and only have some experience with LitRPGs (I'm still not quite convinced they are for me).

Bio Dungeon: Symbiote can be best described as a book of 2 parts. One is an oddly satisfying fantasy story with mild LitRPG trappings (they are barely there, and add to the story, rather than cause a distraction). The main character Marstin is downtrodden, and you feel for his plight. You want him to succeed, and his progression in the story is whimsical, but pleasing.

The other part, is (at times) akin to being bludgeoned with a Biology text book. This extract from the Blurb says it all:
"Contains an in-depth, science-based portrayal of how the immune system responds to foreign pathogens via different white blood cells and other microscopic protectors"
It isn't kidding, it does go in-depth, but makes getting consequently through the story a bit of a slog. In comparison to other Dungeon Core books. I can only assume the premise of this one (a dungeon inside.a living body) is fresh and original. In comparison to the more traditional fantasy story however, its just didn't hold my attention as much.


That's not however to say elements of the book aren't enjoyable, they are. I would even possibly try another book in this series. It all depends on how much the Fantasy Story, and the Dungeon Core element, intersect in future novels.

Narration is decent, I cant fault Miles Meili's performance

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love this book would read more when they come out

I love stories like this were you can see the grown in the main characters and with some may options that can come form this sort of book cant what for book 2 to come hope you like this book as much as I did

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Interesting take on the Dungeon Core genre

I love the dungeon core stories anyway, but this is so unique, and quite informative too.

The characters are relatable, and the writing is awesome. I can't wait to see what comes of this series.

1 person found this helpful

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Dungeon core inside the body

ok it sounds a strange concept and took me a lil while to get into it but when I was in I was hooked looking forward to book 2 .

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Fantastically Detailed

I was surprised at just how much I enjoyed this audiobook. It was a slow start but became incredibly detailed and very interesting! I've already recommended the audiobook.

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Something a little different anybody?

Well not just any body but a down on his luck theif's body. This story is not just about what happens in the outside world it's about the insides too.
Educational as well as fun book that is telling a story on two fronts, with in depth bodily functions and a story of someone who has spent his life being wronged and forced down the wrong path.
Well written and read too.
I look forward to book two.

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Different take on Dungeons and love it

Amazing books love the setup. Great characters and ready to read or listen to the other 10 books. Jonathan you Sir Rock!!!! 5🌟

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Excellent new series

This series takes the dungeon core genre to a.whole new level. I loved this book and can't wait for the second.

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  • Jonathan
  • 04-07-20

another solid book from brooks and co.

what can I say. its Jonathan brooks. a unique dungeon idea that has you pulled in but it's the b storyline you actually like best.
another solid book here. worth a credit
anatomy is on point. only downside is the narrator mispronouncing capillaries

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  • Ouroboros 9
  • 29-06-20

Fantastic Voyage meets Dungeoncore!

My major in college was molecular biology, and so this book hit me from a whole new angle. Everything mentioned is accurate in how the miniature dungeon tries to keep poor Marston alive through his adventures. I wished I would have had this in college because immunology was a tough subject for me to wrap my mind around. Kudos to the authors for simplifying it and applying it in an enjoyable way.

Good balance of "dungeon world" vs outside world stories and how they interact. I'm hoping this isn't just a one-and-done story, I'd like to see more of the interaction and how the core could help Marston "level up."

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  • M & M Sharpening Svcs
  • 24-07-20

truly enjoyed

The Author's did a great job on this book. using the body as a dungeon was very fascinating.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Andrew
  • 19-07-20

Holy Pandemic Batman! What A Timely Story.

Let me put this upfront, this is a fantastic book and especially timely/worth the credit. Buy it. Now on to the review.

Bio Dungeon: Symbiote while descriptive is a title that could leave uninitiated wondering what is going on here. Heck even if you love dungeon core stories and know the genre you might think like I did initially "Ok this is little much". Wow was I wrong.

Imagine the Magic School Bus shrinking and moving through the body, the episode of Futurama where Fry gets parasites that make him smarter, or Pirate of the Pancreas from Rick and Morty. The dungeon in this story is similar to that. The execution is often on the cellular level but most of the fighting the dungeon does is alongside and in place of the immune system. In one word, brilliant. Sorry to get caught up on this but what a freaking cool idea. Our bodies are being constantly invaded by foreign bacteria and viruses and fighting them off just like a dungeon. Conceptually it is ingenious.

On to the execution, it is technically saavy and fast-paced. One of the best parts of the book was that the authors didn't go halfway on their incorporation/descriptions of the human body (speaking as a biologist). Don't get me wrong the book isn't overly technical, they make a specific effort to use nicknames over terminology, but the level of detail is impressive. A typical dungeon core story there are two parallel perspectives. Bio Dungeon however is an inversion of the trope 'adventurer exploring the dungeon'. It is more the dungeon trying to keep the adventurer alive.

Bio Dungeon suffers from the occasional pronunciation issue, is abrupt in parts of the plot, and has some character identity discordance but overall it is an interesting piece of writing. It doesn't directly relate to the pandemic so even if you are burned out I think this would be an worthwhile listen.

Very cool!

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  • Brian S.
  • 17-07-20

Awesome

This was a great story with a new refreshing twist being in the body. And I enjoyed how the authors used all the real medical terms of the cells encountered and how they are used, with the exception of antibodies. In real life they are not like projectiles shot out of cells like homing missiles until they rip through cells where they hit as was described even for the body’s own cells that weren’t controlled by the dungeon core. They float around until they latch on to a matching receptor protein on other cells membranes or viruses. I don’t know why but that bothered me when so much else was clearly defined as attempting to be real life accurate or a mana based fantasy. But other then that the 2 sided story, inside the body and of the character the dungeon core was in was great.

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  • Bruce Screws
  • 13-07-20

Inventive Dungeon Core Book

This is now one of my favorite dungeon core books. Treating the human body as a dungeon is such an innovative approach. The authors did a great amount of research into human anatomy and physiology. I learned so much from the book!

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  • Thom Fenix
  • 10-07-20

New to me genre, it is amazing!

This book is all about dungeon core. But the dungeon is a human body. This was my first dive into this genre and it was such a fun ride!

Great narrator, story is engaging and funny, many a laugh out loud moments in the whole thing. Definitely looking forward to more by these authors.

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  • Ian Weivoda
  • 09-07-20

A Wild Ride

I wasn't sure what to expect to be honest, but I was pleasantly surprised. This is a mix of dungeon core and an adventurer book. The mass of (as far as I can tell) accurate biology information is a bit intimidating at first, but overall it was a great read.

Just for transparency, I was given this book for free in exchange for an honest review.

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  • Austen
  • 08-07-20

A great medical book

I was trying to think about how to word this review without it coming off as me hating the book. I absolutely loved it but there were a few big things that made me not be able to give this a perfect score. TL;DR I give it about a 4.5 out of 5 but I can't give that in stars so overall it's 5/5.

The easiest thing to talk about is the cons or my personal dislikes about this book. Since there aren't many I will cover them first.

1. My biggest thing is that you kinda have to remember a lot. This is like going back to highschool biology and listening to your teachers talk about the human body. It's not a bad thing but feels more like school work than a fantasy book. I got lost a few times because I just couldn't remember EVERYTHING this book makes you feel like you gotta remember. This isn't a bad or good thing but something worth mentioning that could be a con and later a pro.

2. I feel like there should have been more story for the host. I felt like there just wasn't enough there to get you attached to the host body. In future books, which will be on my pre-order list when they come out, I would love to see more focus on the host body. I know this is about the dungeon core but with the setting I think it needs more world building on the outside.

3. This is on audible and not the book. I have this issue where books will cut out and skip 1 or 2 words while listening. It isn't the biggest deal but it is something. It was really bad with this book and I don't know if it was just me or if everyone has this issue. This probably has nothing to do with the book but it is something I felt needed mentioning.

Now the good! Oh and there is just so much to say about this. I will mostly talk about what I felt stood out most since I could probably write you a college thesis on this book and how good it is.

1. The setting: The setting is amazing and done really well. When inside the body the story is well explained and flushed out with SO MUCH detail and information. It makes you feel like you're there next to the dungeon core through it's whole experience. It's a unique idea that I just haven't seen before. It's almost crazy how well thought out this is. The reader did a good job with putting you inside the world. Captivating you with the descriptions and detail of this host. I am trying to make this spoiler free so I wont say much more.

2. The characters: For the most part every character is well designed and thought out. I would love to get to know each one more in future installments but for the starting book it was really well done. I have seen a lot of other books try and fail and bringing characters to life, but with the small cast of this book it was easy for the writer to do. I can't wait to experience this world further.

3. The knowledge: As mentioned before the writers and reader seem to know what they're talking about when explaining everything. It didn't seem like the reader had a problem pronouncing and describing everything perfectly. I am sure if I was reading this in book for I would probably had to look up a few of the words. Overall I was just baffled by the detail the author shoved into this book.

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  • Kalewe
  • 06-07-20

Its pretty good

I really liked the story, the whole premise is great. My only complaint is when they say the word Capillary. I have never heard it pronounced this way and I could be wrong on my end.

Don't let that stop you though it might even teach you a few things about your body.

1 person found this helpful