Posts Tagged ‘Austin Grossman’


by austin grossman

To start off, I must admit that I didn’t even finish the novel. I left the treacherous journey with 20 pages left. I just didn’t care anymore.

To be fair I am not much of a gamer, my interest in gaming goes as far as Mario Kart and 5 hour binges of Tetris for the Nintendo DS. I am not a gamer but I appreciate games, and I appreciate what they’ve done and what could do with story telling. In that sense, I was excited to read this book. Austin Grossman is also the author of Soon I will be in Invincible

The protagonist is named Russel… RUSSEL! Russel is a law school drop out who finds a job at a gaming company called Black Arts that’s founded by his best friends from high school. He took the job because he didn’t have a lot of options left. He took the job even though he did’t know all that much about video games or the process of making video games.

The company that Russel works at is founded by his friends Simon, Darren and Lisa. Sadly Simon died and the company slowly falls apart. Russel goes into the job with bare minimum knowledge and slowly returns to his childhood of video games and video game creation with his friends.

The protagonist is not likable at all and he seems like the type of person that would back stab his friends to get ahead or something. So, it’s pretty hard to like Russel even though the novel tried so hard to portray him as a passionate character. But it’s all fluff and fizz, he didn’t seem to really care and I didn’t care. It seems like the character was trying to find meaning for his own life through the death of his friend and the so called creation of this video game.

So, once that’s on the table it’s pretty hard to go on… I think this could also work in favor of the novel if you made the characters so gross and unlikable that you want to see what happens to them. Russel barely registers even though he’s the narrator. I’m just like, okay whatever, I’m more interested in those tent-like t-shirts that you talked about…

The story chugs along slowly while they decide to continue the franchise that their founder Simon created, but not all goes well obviously.

There’s a lot of details about video game making that the author is well versed with but while it was interesting to learn it was also annoying to read about.

I think the biggest flaw about this book is just that every character is annoying and worse than that, you just don’t care about any of them. I don’t care what happens to Russel, I even find it hard to believe that he’s named Russel.

kind of disappointing.

Posted: May 28th, 2013
Categories: BOOKS
Tags: ,
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17: Soon I will be Invincible

by Austin Grossman

A super hero book!
A super hero novel!

Austin Grossman is the twin brother of Lev Grossman. I wish I had a twin, maybe one of us would have had an aptitude for science.

Don’t you have a bachelors IN science? yes i do..have..a bachelors in science, if one of us had an aptitude for science then maybe it would’ve been a less hellish four years.


perhaps its because they are brothers but there are a lot of underlying themes that are running through this novel that’s similar to The Magicians….

I enjoyed it more than I thought because I often cannot understand the descriptors of action. It’s like, a hammer hit his head, well in this case the hammer of RA, but it’s like alright I get it but I don’t feel it. But from that point of view it was well done…

the characters are interesting
and there was an actual plot twist near the end! there are certain books that have become too predictable for me and it’s boring when you can sort of see what’s going to happen near the end.

i didn’t really feel it with this one only because super heroes are not my field at all, which keeps things interesting i guess :D :D

a few quotable quotes…

page 5:

I’m the smartest man in the world. Once I wore a cape in public, and fought battles against men who could fly, who had metal skin, who could kill you with their eyes. I found CoreFire to a standstill, and the Super Squadron, and the Champions. Now I have to shuffle through a cafeteria line with men who tried to pass bad checks. Now I have to wonder if there will be chocolate milk in the dispenser. And whether the smartest man in the world has done the smartest thing he could with his life.

page 11

I didn’t cultivate friendships, just a nerdy camaraderie with the top few science students. but i was the usual combination of petty arrogance and abject loneliness. i was ashamed of my desperate eagerness to please, and unable to control it. why should i be singled out from other people as uniquely gifted, and uniquely worthless? I ate my lunches alone, and it’s a small blessing my diaries were destroyed.

page 74

It wouldn’t make me one of them. I knew that when I got my powers, but really I knew it before then. I learned it as a child on my first day of school, on the warm rainy streets of Bangkok, and in college. If you’re different you always know it, and you can’t fix it even if you want to. What do you do when you find out your heart is the wrong kind? You take what you’re given, and be the hero you can be. Hero to your own cold, inverted heart.

There are a lot of similarities between Doctor Impossible (the bad guy that I am rooting for) and Quentin Coldwater (From the Magicians). For one thing, they are smart and lonely. But quentin ultimately wants to be the hero while the Doc roots for the other side. Good and evil are blurred lines of a reality that we’ve created to want to be inside or outside the box. I root for evil for the doc, and i root for good for Quentin.

But the both of them knew that they weren’t meant to be anybodies, even for the doc, even with his power, he knew that he wouldn’t be a regular super-person, he had to be a super villain. For quentin, he knew that just getting into an ivy league school wasn’t going to be the lettuce of the salad (I don’t really get this expression but it’s suppose to be like the cream of the crop right?) that he was meant for greater things.

we all think that
i know i think that at least

i know im meant for greater things
but right now i’m willing to settle for anything…

oh the life of a super hero
oh the life of a super villain
oh the life of someone that has the ability to make magic
oh the life of someone like me

but in The Magician King, we realized that dammit we could be whatever we want to be, like Julia.

They told me I could be anything that I wanted, so I became a table

You could too, if you truly wanted…

Posted: November 23rd, 2011
Categories: 52 weeks, BOOKS
Tags: , , , ,
Comments: 1 Comment.