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Hero of Thera

Narrated by: Jeff Hays
Series: Hero of Thera Series, Book 1
Length: 11 hrs and 38 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (31 ratings)

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Summary

Be a hero in the ultimate game.

Are you a top-rated gamer?

Then you might have the skills to play the Game...where players are sponsored by actual demon lords, gods and goddesses, or Lovecraftian nightmares.

Enter Thera, a real kingdom at the crossroads of many other worlds, but with all the augmented-reality interfaces, character progression, and game mechanics that players know and love.

And the stakes of the Game?

Nothing less than Creation - every world in every universe and reality.

So...no pressure.

Thus Hector Savage, gamer extraordinaire, comes to Thera. Nothing can prepare him, though, for the schemes of Abyssal Lords, rampaging barbarian ghosts, and a host of nefarious forces who want him dead - before he can even make fifth level!

©2017 Eric Nylund (P)2017 Eric Nylund

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heroes of thera

another good LRT RPG novel looking forward to see what this offer has install for this book next a good read I very much enjoyed it give it a try

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Profile Image for Arthur
  • Arthur
  • 15-08-17

MORE!

Picked this up a but reluctantly and I am so happy I did!
Fantastic world and character building with a wonderful narrator. This title went by very fast and I am desperate to hear more. I greatly look forward to see where this author goes with this story.

I do not try to summarize the story or characters in a novel because I am terrible at it, this was a good LitRPG and if you enjoy the genre I believe you will enjoy this one too.

11 of 12 people found this review helpful

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Profile Image for Ray Johnson
  • Ray Johnson
  • 24-07-19

Whoa, I wasn't expecting something of this caliber

This is one of those books that I don’t understand how I hadn’t gotten to it earlier, then I thank the gods that I just tumbled it, because book two only just recently came out. If I didn’t have a back up to fall back upon I can see that I would have been extremely disappointed. I am really excited to have this as my soundbooth spotlight, just because this book stands out so very well.

First of all, the book starts off like every other Litrpg novel you’ve ever read. Guy gets into a life and death game working for a faction he has no desire too because he has no choice. OK, so it isn’t exactly like every other lit book out there, but it does carry strong vibes of familiarity. What the book does right is to differentiate itself early on so that it loses the “I’ve seen this before vibe” and accelerates into holy cow, where are we going.

The premise is pretty simple, a dude who is framed for a terrorist action is approached by evil forces tht offer him a chance to continue living(he’s scheduled for execution) so long as he plays for them. Seems that the old so it is on earth shall it be in heaven because even though the cat is innocent of the charges his guilty verdict carries over and his soul is damned. So he runs a trial version of “the game”, which is the only thing that is keeping humanity and all the various universes from destroying each other in a bid for ultimate power. It is right after the free trial version ends that things get really interesting. Th story flies ahead at light speed introducing us to a great roster of characters, interesting scenarios, and a cool MC whose Soul Warrior is exactly what you want to be reading about if you grew up on chop-socky films, like me. I think this is why wuxia and cultivation books appeal to me so much.

Hektor St Savage is a likable character most importantly. He doesn’t whine or bemoan his lot in life and he is only ever thinking of how to outwit his opponents or improve himself. The only dark mark, in my opinion, is that it telegraphs what is going to happen at the end if you pay close attention to what is said and done, and really think about the circumstances around what happens to Hector. That said, it really isn’t even all that big a deal, and I doubt that everyone will cotton on to what is going to occur. BTW, this complaint isn’t really even a consideration so much as an observation because as telegraphed as it was I still relished every second of the book, and wanted the next book as soon as I put this one down.

The narration here is handled completely by Jeff Hays, and for me, it was a grand thing to be able to just sit back and listen to Jeff do his thing without farming out parts to other SBT players. Again, I love it when the gang does a production together, but there is something about having a solitary narrator deliver you the tale, especially one as talented as Jeff Hays. He made every second of this book fun, exciting, humorous, and heartfelt. I love solo Hays books.

Final score 8.3 stars.

As seen on theLitrpg audiobook podcast


3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Erik daguerre
  • 29-05-19

a must listen

wow, just wow.. the character building and the story development took me for a ride that was wonderful and left me wanting more and ready to jump into the next adventure

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Ian Mitchell
  • 20-08-17

litRPG with a great story and masterful narration

The story itself is well crafted. Interesting game elements. Fantasy based instead of VRMMO. I'd put this somewhere between Bill the Vampire and Harry Potter. The narration is by Jeff Hays. He's why I bought this audio book. Jeff does wonderful character voices and has an easy to listen to narrator voice.
I thought the author's note at the end of the story, read by the author, was a nice touch. A little bit of dessert after an excellent meal.

6 of 7 people found this review helpful

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  • kendall davis
  • 10-08-17

Wonderful in book and audio formats!

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

If your a fan of fantasy and video games you can not go wrong listening to this wonderful audio book. Hero of Thera is the type of book/audio book that you just want to keep reading/listening to to the very end, then start it up again. The characters are well written and like-able allowing you to enjoy the journey along with them.

What did you like best about this story?

I enjoy following Hector on his journey and seeing how he reacted to the world around him.

What does Jeff Hays bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

Jeff Hays narrates Eric Nylunds wonderful story perfectly. Engaging from the first moment to the very end. His voices he used were spot on for the characters and made the story even better.

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

I just really enjoyed it. As a game and avid reader of fantasy / sci-fi it hit the spot!

Any additional comments?

If you have enjoyed any of Eric Nylunds other titles like the mortal coils series this is a must read/listen.

I received a copy of the audio title for free in exchange for an unbiased review.

9 of 12 people found this review helpful

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  • Midwestbonsai
  • 12-09-17

you will have a load of fun

If you are looking for a Literary Role Playing Game (LitRPG) that is not only immersive but also tells a great story, look no farther that “Hero of Thera”.  The book is wonderfully written by Eric Nylund and narrated by none other than the expert voice of the genre; Jeff Hays.  What events occur when a condemned man on death row is given the chance to engage in a game that is not your run of the mill, “I’m stuck in a virtual world story.”  Not at all, this story is also not simply involving the life or death of a single person, but instead, the outcome determines the fate of everyone because the makers of the game are actual demons, gods, and other nightmarish creatures.  For almost any person faced with these events would be driven insane, can our main character survive and save all creation? If any of this sounds remotely interesting, I recommend you pick up a copy and have a listen.

The game our main character joins is not one where you simply die and come back to life at a specified location.  This game is instead played in “Hard Core” mode, meaning that if you die in the game, you die physically.  No pressure here.  The story itself is quite weighty and involved, yet at the same time, the author uses humor at appropriate times, and not excessively.  Even on a plane while traveling I laughed out loud as the main character faced the dreaded End User License Agreement (EULA).  Should you read all the terms and conditions fully before clicking “I Agree”, or do you simply click and get on with the game?  After selecting that you agree to the terms, what choice did he have, and clicking on the “OK” button, our character is forced to watch the initial game title screen.  Once again, this brings me back to my gaming days when it was nearly impossible to skip these opening sequences.

On the surface, the book seems like a standard LitRPG story.  But, it goes much deeper and wider the more you dive into it.  There is mystery and suspense that will raise your blood pressure along with some humorous wit.  Sometimes it is the little subtle things that keep you laughing such as a few of the quest names or story events.  There are many of the standard character types one would expect to find in an RPG story such as skeletons, ghosts, gnomes, and elves.  However, you are also introduced to “Mr. Pinchy” one of the childhood pets of our main character.  So, what about our main character?  Who is he?  He was raised a gypsy elf who was trained in the skill of martial arts from birth, but he still does not know how to fully utilize his powers.   He struggles when he is drafted into the world of evil.  What I enjoyed was the main character was not invincible and instead required assistance from many of the friends he picked up along the way.  There are friendships, relationships, and a few shocking and unsuspected events along the journey.  I found the story to be enjoyable and inspirational.

I would have liked to have had more time and action during the many battle scenes because they seemed to start and finish rather quickly.  The story appeared to lack some of the more intense or graphic aspects, but this may have been intentional to keep the book available to younger audiences.  On that note, I do not remember any use of vulgar language, nor were there any sexual subject matter that I recall while listening.

Let me turn to the book’s audio narration by Jeff Hays.  It is no surprise, and I would expect nothing less from one of his narrations, the audio is expertly and professionally done.  Jeff continues to amaze me with his ability to voice multiple characters while giving them all unique personalities.  I am able to quickly get a picture in my head of the character simply by listening to their accents.  Jeff always includes that extra effort by adding some special audio effects to so of the characters and he never over uses them.  It can often be a fine line, and Jeff knows when to quit.  There were no noticeable audio artifacts such as swallows, page turns, or other distractions.

In summary, if you want to hear a high-elf speaking to the main character about the unified theory of the universe, or if you are in the mood for a town that serves bacon and eggs with cheddar cheese as one of their staples, or a cola beverage that not only allows you to see in the dark but comes with an interesting side-effect, I think you will not be disappointed by picking up and listening to “Hero of Thera”.  You will laugh, you may cry, but you will have a load of fun along the way.

Audiobook was provided for review by the author.

Please find this complete review and many others at my review blog

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11 of 15 people found this review helpful

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  • EMPIREriot
  • 09-06-19

My favorite of the genre

Some of the story elements are a little convenient but I loved it in the end. What really did it for me was the supporting characters. Each of them felt unique and interesting. Though, that's not to say that the main character wasn't great too. I personally loved the choices he makes in creating a character that stood out in the genre as something different. I'll take a six-fingered elf any day over a sneaky archer anyday. Narration is excellent, as I have come to expect from Jeff. Overall a great listen.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Kindle Customer
  • 24-05-19

a fantastic tale of Adventure

hero of Thera by Eric nylund and Jeff Hayes what's a truly fantastic audiobook to listen to. the narration was fantastic, Jeff did an amazing job giving every character a unique and personal voice and really delivered on the emotion.

story was action-packed and constantly moving forward. The pacing was also incredible with just enough downtime in between different sections to take a breather and get stock of what's going on before launching into the next adventure. the action scenes were intense the characters were likeable,. I love the plot, and there was some twists in there that I really appreciated. overall I give it a 10 out of 10 and will absolutely be picking the second one up

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Utilisateur anonyme
  • 20-05-19

Please sir can I have more!!

one of the best, if not the best book series I've had the pleasure of Listening to. The voice of Jeff Hays brings the characters alive along with the words of Eric Nylund had me sad the book was over. Then a moment later I was in the second books clutches an enjoying it all over again. I wish I could give more stars because I would.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Sailfish
  • 16-05-19

What is evil or even good for that matter?

First, it was a joy to see Eric Nylund come out with another novel and narrated by one of the top-tier performance narrators, Jeff Hays. A little personal backstory is due. I lay my re-found journey of exploring the SciFi genre of novels directly on Eric Nylund's doorsteps; specifically to his excellent creation of the Halo lore which expanded my interest from an above-average FPS game to that of an avid follower of the very successful novel series. I rate his Halo: First Strike as one of my most favorite Military-SciFi novels and often find myself re-listening to it when I'm between books or venturing on a long road trip.

So, Hero of Thera falls comfortably into the more recent sub-genre referred to as LitRPG where the protagonist(s) are humans who find themselves locked into a virtual realm and pursuing quests that, the successful completion of which, will gain them experience points and loot that will enhance their abilities and kit to allow them to take on more challenging quest later. The interesting part of this is that we are informed that our protagonist, while basically considering himself on the side of good, has a checkered past where he had strayed into the dark side in real life. It is these past baleful incidents that act as a corruptive influence as he attempts to work his way through this set of virtual realms.

While there is some of the story-stalling leveling-up sections that is required with LitRPG, Eric uses it sparingly so as not to make it too distracting. There is also an ample amount of sarcasm and humor that adds to the enjoyment of the novel and, to which, Jeff Hays, performs so fluidly that it never disappoints.

Onto A Thousand Drunken Monkeys

1 of 1 people found this review helpful