Robin’s Review of Awakening Horde

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Awakening Horde: A LitRPG Academy Adventure (Shieldwall Academy)


by M Zaugg

Rating: 5 out of 5.
Awakening Horde: A LitRPG Academy Adventure (Shieldwall Academy)
by M Zaugg

Pax, a cunning street rat without a class, navigates life in a city constantly threatened by monstrous beast waves.
 He's dedicated to keeping his crew safe and fed, especially after his family vanished without a trace. But when his best friend is captured, Pax risks it all—even his freedom—on the eve of the Awakening.

Caught and thrust into the Astan Empire's war machine, Pax must adapt to survive the perils of the empire's elite mage academy. While struggling to harness the forbidden magic surging within him, he must avoid the attention of corrupt leaders determined to snuff out any hint of rebellion and maintain their iron grip on power.

With ancient secrets, and long-lost spells at stake, can Pax triumph against his foes, defeat fearsome monsters and secure a future for himself and his crew?
Robin's Review: The number rule on the streets is survival.

Just in the Prologue Pax, a street rat, risks everything to save his best friend from the ruthless Astan Empire. He must navigate the perils of their elite mage academy and avoid corrupt leaders while harnessing forbidden magic. Can he triumph and secure a future for himself and his crew?

Then we move into the book.
Pax is a "street rat" or "shirker," but he is so much more. He leads a group of stray children called the Vipers In one of the cities called Thanhil in the Astan Empire.
On the day of Awakenings, Pax put a plan into action to free his brother, Titus. So with his fellow Vipers, Tomis, and Jules, they come up with a plan to free his brother on the day of the Awakening when he knew he would be brought out for the Awakening, and it would be a way to find out where they are keeping Amil so that they may rescue him.
All children, regardless of their wealth or status, were gathered from their respective classes to attend the Awakening ceremony.

Everyone comes together one day of the year to celebrate the "Awakening," where the wealthy celebrate with an elaborate festival. Full of vendors, crafters, the Governor, and the visiting Mages.
There were capital mages, one of each element, with the power to use an ancient artifact to permanently awaken the youth of the Astan Empire's cities called the Awakening.
"You see, more bodies were needed to replenish the ranks to fight the ever-growing attacks of the monster horde."
"Each recruit was valuable, whether a willing citizen or one of the coerced shirkers who survived the process."
The Guardsmen collect street rats, catch the older ones at least, and then they are rewarded like a bounty hunter.
"There is a celebration for all children of mages who forged children into adults and began one's service to the community. At least if you weren't a shirking street rat, most rats Pax knew would rather starve, alive and free. Though, for a brief flash, Pax couldn't help wondering what it would be like—a full menu. It was completely unlocked instead of the bare juvenile version he had. The possibility of crafting, merchant and martial skills, or even the rare ability to use magic had appeal."
The world-building in this novel is fantastic, with well-crafted characters and an exciting story that keeps readers engaged. The Void Matriarch and its spawns, along with other creatures, add an element of danger and suspense. The story is set in the Astan Empire, where the formidable Salman's Wall and the Mage Academy are located.

How do  I convince you to read this book without giving away any spoilers? "Awakening Horde: A LitRPG Academy Adventure" by M Zaugg is Book 1 of the Shieldwall Academy series, and it's a young adult novel that captures the essence of popular works like "Game of Thrones," "Harry Potter," and "The Hunger Games." The story starts with an epic battle scene, introducing readers to the world of Turgan, where a young dwarf warrior named Turgan studies at the Mage Academy. The book seamlessly combines multiple genres, including science fiction, fantasy, coming of age, academy, and dystopian.

This story is expertly crafted, full of thrilling action and unexpected plot twists. The world-building is fantastic, and including eerie creatures adds to the overall atmosphere. Finally, the ending is exciting and will leave a lasting impression on you.

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