"What would I do if my favorite fantasy world came to life? It’s a question every nerd has asked him or herself, and Dave Barrett answers it in a tremendously fun, well-written story of swords, sorcery, and survival." Dan Casey, Senior Editor of Nerdist
In Book One of the Fun and Games series, when Allison’s best friend, TJ, convinces her to come along for an epic game of LARP (live-action roleplaying), she reluctantly agrees despite her reservations about the geeky pastime. TJ’s weekends are filled with powerful wizardry, mystical creatures, and intense battles with his LARP group. Each adventure is full of surprises, but the goal is always the sameto defeat the monsters and find the treasure.
Not long after their quest begins, the friends discover that something has gone wrong. The fantasy world they’ve built has transformed, and the battle they’re in the midst of is no longer make-believe.
Now they must fight for survival against brigands, kobolds, and other deadly mythical creatures that come to life. Fortunately, the group’s once-fictional magical powers have also become realincluding Allison’s newly acquired gifts as a healer. They’ll need everything in their arsenal if they hope to make it home alive.
About the Author
Dave Barrett lives with his wife, three children, and an active imagination in Hampden, Maine, where he teaches financial accounting at the University of Maine. It’s All Fun and Games is the first in his series of Young Adult novels and was selected as a winner of the inaugural Nerdist Collection Contest.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
I still remember when I came across the giveaway for this book on goodreads. I read the description and knew I wanted to read it, because it reminded me a lot of the movie Knights of Badassdom. The book didn’t blow me away, but, like Knights of Badassdom, it was a fun read. I was a little annoyed by the main (and only, I think) female character–Allison–being a newbie to all the LARPing stuff (and by the thing that finally persuaded her to go with TJ), because it felt so cliche, but honestly it could have been much worse. Allison, in the beginning, kind of served as a way for those of us who haven’t participated in stuff like this to get a quick breakdown of how it works and what the rules are, as things happened, without it being overwhelming or boring. She was pretty smart, caught on to things quickly, and the boys in her group didn’t treat her very different from each other just because she was a girl. At first things are just a pretty normal LARPing experience. Then, all hell breaks loose. The shift from our world to the game world was not my favorite transition. It was so sudden and jarring that it broke my immersion in the story and it took a few pages for me to get back into it. Once I did, it was pretty much smooth sailing for the rest of the book. I ended up finishing this in a day. I don’t want to talk much about what happens with the characters, and their LARP characters, because ~spoilers~ and all that, but I thought it was an interesting idea. What I did not know, going into this book, is that it was meant to be the first in a series. I have no idea if there ever will be a sequel or not (I hope so), but I haven’t been able to find any info about it if it’s in the works. This was a fun, quick, action-packed read. But, I never got very attached to any of the characters, and I think that lessened the impact of the potential danger. I would definitely read the sequel, if it came out before I’d completely forgotten this first book. I won a copy from a giveaway on goodreads, but I planned to buy it myself if I didn't. Now I'm thinking about purchasing a copy as a gift for someone because I liked it enough to want to hold on to my copy.
Thanks to NetGalley and Inkshares for the opportunity to read and review It's All Fun and Games by Dave Barrett. The prologue reveals an archer shooting at a group of friends. At first, it seems like a prank until they see that their friend is badly injured. Chapter One opens with teenagers planning a weekend trip to the woods for some LARPing- live action role-playing- and when they arrive in the woods, their roles are set out for them. They head out for their adventure and everything seems as it should be, for a while. The group meets other players at set stations and are given points, powers, caution and advice. Eventually, their roles, powers and enemies become real and they fall into danger. The commoners, thieves and creatures are real and so is the danger and violence. They have to rely on each other to survive. This unique book with a LARPing concept is fun, creative and original; 4 stars for a survival adventure wrapped up in a fantasy setting!