The Great Cleric

“Idiot! I said summon a CLERK, not a cleric!”

A book in which very little happens, yet I didn’t find it boring. Yet another isekai, an unfortunate salaryman dies in a shooting, and is reborn into a world of magic, monsters, and demons (but at least those are safely locked away). Somewhat annoyed at dying unexpectedly, he goes through the usual meeting with God (who is a bit cranky), and gets to pick new skills to start with. Taking the name Luciel, he resolves to live a long life, die in bed, and thus picks a healing class. Thanks to a bonus from said deity, he starts with a nice set of skills, but he is in no way overpowered.

More below the fold. Continue reading

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Book Review I, May 2021

How about “Demon Lord Repeat” instead?

Stop me if you’ve heard this before:

  • Isekai.
  • Game designer watches as his game get shut down.
  • Suddenly finds himself in a game world.
  • As the Demon Lord he designed/played.
  • No social skills; he can’t deal with people.
  • So he roleplays the demon lord.
  • Of course he’s completely OP.


, it’s a complete re-hash of How Not To Summon A Demon Lord. While there’s a few different twists, it’s largely the same formula all over again. Summoned into a fantasy world not of his own making

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, he quickly ends up responsible for a pre-teen girl, allied with one-third of the ruling triumvirate of beautiful priestesses, the love object of another, and at war with a bunch of Satanists, while demi-humans, dragons, and other countries are wild-cards in the mix. Other than its similarity to the other books/anime, it’s not terrible by any means, though I do get annoyed at the transparent foreshadowing. It kept me entertained for one book, but I’ve no great urge to read further into the series.

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Yay, Boredom

As I may or may not have mentioned before, I retired at the end of last year. It was earlier than I expected to, but it was time. All I ever wanted was to be respected for my work, but that wasn’t in the offing — and I certainly did nothing to help the situation in the last year or two. Things spiraled downward out of control as I had more and more trouble sleeping, getting to work on time, and even caring about the latest insults/rants from my boss. So when the choice came to “get up, or get out,” I chose get out.

Of course, this was in the middle of the WuFlu epidemic

, and so any plans to travel and enjoy myself got put on hold. Not only that, in the first week after retirement, I actually came down with the Chinese virus, and it took me over two months to shake it. How bad was it? I drove to the ER to find that I had a 103.8 fever…and they couldn’t admit me. I spent several hours in the ER because they got interrupted by a “Code Blue.” I suspect it involved the elderly lady (quite deceased) in the hallway that I passed on the way out. I wish I was making that up. She was not breathing

, on a gurney, with oxygen tubing coiled up, attached to nothing. Two attendants (looked like EMTs) were standing nearby, talking quietly. I assume they were waiting on clearance to take her to the morgue.

The ER’s waiting room was full on the way out; I’d made it a point to come in very early, so I didn’t have much of a wait, but obviously, if dead people are being left in the hallway, things were difficult at that time (end of January). Things have changed a lot since then; there’s way fewer new cases

, and we’re starting to see an end to the mask mandates. Private businesses can still mandate them, and many still do. And I’m over my case, though I’m still having issues, some of which may be related to two+ months of forced inactivity, and others to the activities I could do…mostly computer gaming. I’m now having serious arthritis problems in my right hip, shoulder, and index finger. Especially the index finger. That leads to my subjects du jour: reading and blogging.

In short, I’m bored to tears and the arthritis leaves me those to occupy my time. (Yes, it’s hard to type with the arthritis, but ten fingers in use is better than one, clicking over and over.) So I shall return to the blogging fold (for now?) with reviews of light novels. Maybe some anime. Who knows? Check back tomorrow morning for a new post.

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Always Good Advice

From I’ve Been Killing Slimes For 300 Years And Maxed Out My Level Episode 4

That’s one drunk elf.

This is a cute show about cute girls doing cute things. It doesn’t take itself seriously – the opening episode has a 300-year time skip. Hope I look that good in 300 years. (Wish I looked that good now.) Any ennui from watching generations born and dying is studiously ignored. As is any game where XP is reduced to 0 for farming low levels. But really

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, the dig at blue-state taxes was highly gratuitous. And thoroughly enjoyed by yours truly.

Special for Wonderduck…

Quac– er, ROAR!

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A Rough Couple of Months

So, I haven’t quite shaken the aftereffects of Winnie the Flu; possibly not even WuFlu itself. I tested at the beginning of the month, expecting to be cleared, but no. I was still positive. Extremely tired; no energy, slightest effort left me gasping for breath and my chest hurting. But everything was looking up by the weekend…

Then the cold snap from hell hit. Let me make this perfectly clear: the problem is ERCOT, the Electricity (UN)Reliability Council Of Texas. It’s an association of producers, consumers, and others (mostly producers) that manages the state power grid. Unlike the other 47 lower states, Texas has kept it’s grid free from Federal regulation by making it Texas-only. Which

, thanks to the issues of regulatory capture, means that the LAST time this happened, ten years ago, the state legislature declined to make any requirements for winterizing the plants mandatory. ERCOT make big balley-hoo over their recommended changes…which weren’t implemented. And over-reliance on green energy meant the wind turbines in west Texas froze up. Meanwhile, plants that were designed for use during summer demand were not prepped; sitting there in cold oil and with frozen cooling pipes.

But hey, global warming is going to take care of all that, right? Assuming the Maunder Minimum doesn’t get us with the glaciers I was assured (as a kid) that would cover the US down to Missouri.

I may have to take up politics again. Dammit. Oh, and I seem to be relapsing from the lack of power (temporarily alleviated), stress, and work to deal with frozen pipes

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, no water, etc.

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About that WuFlu

So, by “survive the WuFlu”, which I was talking about in June. I was a bit inaccurate. You see, it wasn’t that I had it, and was celebrating surviving. It was that I was cheering not getting it.

Fool, me.

So I retired from work on Dec.30, and spent a day the next week with Redneck Guy and Redneck Boy (who needs a new name, having long since become a productive member of society). And we all promptly came down with Winnie the Flu. And Redneck’s wife. And probably Boy’s girlfriend. I’ve been feeling just a tad… awful. This last weekend was the worst, but I’m finally starting to feel alive, although slow.

Could have been worse I suppose. Dr. Heinous went out for supper a couple of nights ago, and an idiot turned right in front of him. Fortunately

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, no injuries, and a cop saw the whole thing. Me, I’m ordering in from Krogers.

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Excess Weight of Light Novels

So, as I said, I’ve been reading a lot to pass the time. Sadly, not all of it is good writing. Actually, a lot of it isn’t. So, in the vein of “I read this crap so you don’t have to,” I thought I’d warn you about the dreck out there in my usual snarky fashion. One thing about the Japanese invasion of light novels, now we’ve got Western authors imitating the genre, and some of it’s just as bad. I shouldn’t insult the writers; I did read (sometimes multiple releases) of these series…

So, without further ado, the list of books I shouldn’t admit to reading, and why:

I’m a Behemoth, and S-Ranked Monster But Mistaken For a Cat – our first entry in the “books with titles that are too long” is pretty much the bottom of the heap. Accomplished Knight is reborn as a tiny, but powerful cat. He’s adopted by a busty hawt elf adventurer babe who has a bestiality fetish and can’t wait for him to grow up. The book drops hints a light as 16-ton blocks of steel about them eventually producing cross-breeds. Beginnings of a harem forming. Aside from that, it’s all sunbeams and lots of ecchi. Not bothering with book 2.

A Most Unlikely Hero – by one of the American imitators, Brandon Varnell. Blatant rip-off of To Love-Ru (which he admits as much), only with a bit more active and powerful MC. Same set-up (galactic empire princess runaway/marriage candidate), though it’s set 200 years in the future on Mars He’s still dense, but doesn’t quite have Rikko’s powers of lucky accidents. However, he shares the princess’ power to make disastrous inventions that go awry. With two of them at work… boom. A lot of booms.

The World’s Strongest Rearguard – I’m isekai, you’re isekai, everybody’s isekai! Corporate wage-slave from modern-day Japan ends up in an alternate LitRPG world with his cute former boss. Lots of people from Earth are reborn here, and for some odd reason have to explore dungeons in this city. Rife with stats and game mechanics; too many of them, in fact. Due to a misunderstanding, he selects a broken cheat class with unusual powers, resulting in his collecting a party of teenage to mature girls. Did I say party? I meant harem, of course.

Mapping: The Trash-Tier Skill That Got Me Into A Top-Tier Party – Another entry in the “books with titles that are too long” list. Fortunately, it’s a little better than the first entry in this list. I actually liked this one, though the world-building needs a bit more work. Failed adventurer gets scouted for the top guild when its leader actually reads the job description. While it’s not great art, the high point of the books are the female characterizations. One’s a throwaway character, another is undeveloped (as yet), but the other two and their (eventual) attraction to the MC (and rivalry) happen organically in the story and are well done. Decent humor too.

Wiedergeburt: Legend of the Reincarnated Warrior – another Brandon Varnell story, and probably his best. Written in a semi-Wuxia style, it splits narratives between the original life, and the second life of a hero. A freak circumstance sends the MC back to the very beginning of his story, with some of his powers and all of his knowledge intact. He sets out to re-win his wife-to-be and save his country and family from the fate that awaits them. Only he seems to end up collecting extra girls during the process…and attracting the attention of the foe who killed them all. It’s kind of obvious who the snake girl is though.

Why Shouldn’t a Detestable Demon Lord Fall in Love? Another entry in the “maous are just misunderstood” category. The Demon lord gets transferred into the far future of the world

, and falls in love with the first woman he sees. He marries her and moves in with their daughter. They finally share a kiss in the second book. One word summary: boring.

A Fox’s Love – First in the American Kitsune series. Another Brandon Varnell series? His longest, and frankly, worst. I’m almost ashamed to admit I read ten of these before finally giving up. I can barely buy that a normal teenage boy wouldn’t immediately jump in bed with a willing, drop-dead gorgeous foxgirl in the first novel, but after TEN they’re just into heavy petting? Despite that, what it finally took to blow me out was that the author didn’t know the difference between an assault rifle and a machine gun. Yeah

, I’m embarrassed.

The Greatest Demon Lord is Reborn as a Typical Nobody – Another misunderstood, reincarnated maou. OP protagonist, cute elf childhood friend. I confess I remember next to nothing about this novel, which suggests another one-word summary is in order: forgettable.

Well, until I get in the mood to write again. Hopefully sooner than six months, this time.

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