Hello people! I hope you are doing good and reading great books! I can’t complain, this new week is being good so far, even if it has just started! Anyway, today I am back with a review, even if it is an unplanned one. I was thinking about the reviews for other books, but then… well, here we are!
Series: The Dark Profit Saga #1
Author: J. Zachary Pike
Page count: 340
Brimming with swords, sorcery, and wit, Orconomics: A Satire introduces Arth, a world much like our own but with more magic and fewer vowels. For the licensed wizards and warriors of Arth, slaying and looting the forces of evil is just a job. The Heroes’ Guild has turned adventuring into a career, selling the rights to monsters’ hoards of treasure as investment opportunities. Corporations spend immense sums sponsoring heroes to undertake quests, betting they’ll reap the profits in plunder funds when the loot is divvied up.
Questing was all business for famous Dwarven berserker Gorm Ingerson, until a botched expedition wiped out his party, disgraced his name, and reduced him to a thieving vagabond. Twenty years later, a chance encounter sees Gorm forcibly recruited by a priest of a mad goddess to undertake a quest that has a reputation for getting heroes killed. But there’s more to Gorm’s new job than an insane prophecy; powerful corporations and governments have shown an unusual interest in the job. Gorm might be able to turn a bad deal into a golden opportunity and win back the fame and fortune he lost so long ago.
Promising fun, fantasy, and financial calamity, Orconomics: A Satire is the first book in The Dark Profit Saga, an economically epic trilogy.
As I was saying before, this was an unplanned reading. I have finished (almost, but I am missing the physical book, so I am at liberty to read as many ebooks I want without any guilt, thank you) my TBR for Self Published Fantasy Month, and so I decided to try this one, since I spoke about it in another post, in which I spoke about some indie books I really want to read. And so here we are!
I have to confess that I have mixed feelings for this book. On one hand, I adored the idea behind this series. I mean, fantasy with an economic base to it. All is for the profit, even the Heores Guild is a business, and all is moved by money. It is fantastic. It is pure genius! How can you not love this?
And I loved it, in a way. But I have to say that I was hoping for more. Not from the idea (it is brilliant, how can I want more??) but from the humor, because this is quite a funny book. Or, to be more precise, this is a satire, and it is well done. But… but, I don’t really know what went wrong with us, in part it could be that I had really high expectations, because this is true, in part it was like the author was trying too hard, I think.
In any case, I wasn’t so captivated by the story and the characters as much as I was hoping.
I cannot say that they were bad. I appreciated them, both as single characters and as a team. Some of them were good, but some of them were almost great! Gle’beek (I can’t remember how it is written, argh!) and Gorm were my absolute favorite of the lot, but all our reluctant heroes are interesting. And have a personality. And yet I couldn’t find in myself to really care. I mean, I enjoyed the company, I enjoyed their adventure, I enjoyed the time I spent reading, but something was lacking. I couldn’t really find myself into the story, besides the characters. I couldn’t be enraptured by this tale. And I was disappointed. I couldn’t say it was bad, really, but neither I could say that it was great. It was… mediocre.
And then we reach the last part of our story. And things changed completely! Nothing was lacking anymore. I was right there, with Gorm. With all the others. And suddenly I could really feel them. It was epic. Usually, I am quite strict: if I don’t like a book the ending won’t change my overall opinion of it. I mean, it is not enough and I won’t let myself be swayed by it. The ending is not enough to make a good book. But I think this book is my exception. Because suddenly all was more real to me, and I could empathize with them all. They became real to me. And that changed everything!
But even before my change of heart, there were some things that were quite good in the book. And ok, I have talked about the idea, but I have to say something on the general atmosphere of the book, that reminded me a bit of Pratchett (even if he is on another level altogether, but come on! Pratchett is Pratchett!) and a bit about Rogues of the republic series by Patrick Weeks. And Gorm reminded me a bit of Logen Ninefinger from The First Law Trilogy by Joe Abercrombie. He has not the depths that Logen has, but he reminds me of him quite a lot. And Gaist has something of Sturm from The Dragonlance series. And I am not saying this in a bad way, it was really pleasant to find something familiar, something that reminded me of other stories and characters I loved.
And even if he was not my favorite character, I have to spend a couple of words on Gaist. He is one of our reluctant heroes, and he is quite the good character. And he doesnt’ speak. At all. I loved him!
But the best thing about this book was his heart, if I can say so. It was just so good to see this dwarf, old and cynic, disillusioned from the world take pity on a shadowkin. And if it is true that no good deed goes unpunished, it is also true that a good deed could go a long long way. And this is valid for the shadowing angle and for the misfit heroes both. And it was just so so good!
So.,. this book was better once I finished it. And more I think about it, more I like it. It is strange. But now I want the sequel!
And what about you? Have you read this book? Or are you curious about it? Let me know!