This felt like a return to the first books in the series. While the whole thing with Cyb3Ru5 was good, the charm of this story was in the world-building and the characters inside the dungeon. With this book, we get to return to the roots where our hero dungeon core, James, gets to work designing and, more importantly, gets to run the dungeon himself.
Along with his trusty “dungeon fairy”, Rue, the developers are finally giving the dungeon cores the ability to participate in the fun rather than just living vicariously through the players.
There’s still a bigger plot in play, and we’re teased with hints of what might be coming. At the end (no spoilers) in the epilogue, the author notes that book five will wrap up the series. That’s actually comforting to know. Quite a few series out there have had me wondering if the author has an endgame in mind or if they’re just going to keep writing while people are buying.
So if I were to sum it up, this is the calm-before-the-storm book. After everything that happened previously, a little breather before everything gets kicked up a notch is nice. Plus, as I said up top, it’s good to get back to the core roots of the book.
Bring on book five!