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The Steel Hounds

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For those who hunt for the very best of the LitRPG genre, an impossible to miss new explosive release sure to catch the eye of all the fans of The Land and Awaken Online! Stan, also known as Mongoose, is an extreme traceur and a freerunner, whose real-life talents attracted the attention of The Steel Hounds, the most notorious and private clan of the virtual world of Arta For those who hunt for the very best of the LitRPG genre, an impossible to miss new explosive release sure to catch the eye of all the fans of The Land and Awaken Online! Stan, also known as Mongoose, is an extreme traceur and a freerunner, whose real-life talents attracted the attention of The Steel Hounds, the most notorious and private clan of the virtual world of Artar, famous for serving the grey cardinal. While the political landscape for this new world is yet to form, intrigues, conspiracy, daring raids, and sabotage are the main weapons of the Hounds, and his evaluation has just begun. To complete it successfully and become a full-fledged member of the clan, Stan will have to adapt to working side-by-side with the most unique people with shady backgrounds — even if he is not a team player by nature and has already failed at the very beginning by choosing the least suitable class for teamwork: Battle Monk. Stan is rebellious, free-spirited, and daring. He risks his life every day just to avoid getting bored of the daily grind. Normally, an expelled student has no hope of entering the virtual world of Artar, an expensive online VR project, but when a suspicious organization offers to pay all expenses to let Stan in for a special purpose, Mongoose gets his chance to become one of the select few. However, to successfully complete his trial, Stan will have to face his main enemy — himself, while finding peace and mastering all five styles of the Battle Monks of Artar. *** The Steel Hounds is the first book of the highly popular Russian LitRPG series The Chronicles of Artar by Vladimir Vasilenko. The brightest representative of a new wave of gamelit writers, Vladimir has created the story of Mongoose, a reckless teenager kicked out of college, who has to struggle with following strict discipline and finding inner harmony while traversing the difficult path of a Battle Monk.


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For those who hunt for the very best of the LitRPG genre, an impossible to miss new explosive release sure to catch the eye of all the fans of The Land and Awaken Online! Stan, also known as Mongoose, is an extreme traceur and a freerunner, whose real-life talents attracted the attention of The Steel Hounds, the most notorious and private clan of the virtual world of Arta For those who hunt for the very best of the LitRPG genre, an impossible to miss new explosive release sure to catch the eye of all the fans of The Land and Awaken Online! Stan, also known as Mongoose, is an extreme traceur and a freerunner, whose real-life talents attracted the attention of The Steel Hounds, the most notorious and private clan of the virtual world of Artar, famous for serving the grey cardinal. While the political landscape for this new world is yet to form, intrigues, conspiracy, daring raids, and sabotage are the main weapons of the Hounds, and his evaluation has just begun. To complete it successfully and become a full-fledged member of the clan, Stan will have to adapt to working side-by-side with the most unique people with shady backgrounds — even if he is not a team player by nature and has already failed at the very beginning by choosing the least suitable class for teamwork: Battle Monk. Stan is rebellious, free-spirited, and daring. He risks his life every day just to avoid getting bored of the daily grind. Normally, an expelled student has no hope of entering the virtual world of Artar, an expensive online VR project, but when a suspicious organization offers to pay all expenses to let Stan in for a special purpose, Mongoose gets his chance to become one of the select few. However, to successfully complete his trial, Stan will have to face his main enemy — himself, while finding peace and mastering all five styles of the Battle Monks of Artar. *** The Steel Hounds is the first book of the highly popular Russian LitRPG series The Chronicles of Artar by Vladimir Vasilenko. The brightest representative of a new wave of gamelit writers, Vladimir has created the story of Mongoose, a reckless teenager kicked out of college, who has to struggle with following strict discipline and finding inner harmony while traversing the difficult path of a Battle Monk.

30 review for The Steel Hounds

  1. 5 out of 5

    Lyndon

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. I'm seeing more and more authors forge ahead into new forms of LitRPG and this book was definitely unique. The LitRPG elements were minimal, it was very stat light. Also no levels, which I found both interesting and annoying.. Story wise this was a great book, with an interesting array of characters. And I'm quite looking forward to the next. Downsides: This is a Russian translation and while I was expecting a MagicDome level of editing, there were lots of spelling mistakes and grammatical error I'm seeing more and more authors forge ahead into new forms of LitRPG and this book was definitely unique. The LitRPG elements were minimal, it was very stat light. Also no levels, which I found both interesting and annoying.. Story wise this was a great book, with an interesting array of characters. And I'm quite looking forward to the next. Downsides: This is a Russian translation and while I was expecting a MagicDome level of editing, there were lots of spelling mistakes and grammatical errors throughout the book.. Nothing too glaring but enough to trip me up during the read.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Jeff Nason

    Excellent story with interesting characters Although there are some minor editing errors, they did not interrupt the flow of reading and frankly I cut more slack with translations. I enjoyed the MC immensely. He was not completely self -absorbed or whiny, and faced moral challenges head-on. The character development both in-game and in wisdom was extremely enjoyable.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Kestas

    Lit-rpg novel discussing problems of too realistic VR elements. The main character playing as a monk. Very little lit-rpg elements are involved. MC is more shown as a addict of the game he played for like less than a week.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Valery Starsky

    Intriguing! The story line keeps moving and gives glimpses about the unusual game world. For me the real meat of the book is the way people interact with each other and how and why they use technology to influence those interactions. For me the message of the story was one of ethics and motivation. It made me question these areas of my own life as well as those of the people I deal with. Overall this book has not only been entertaining but a worthwhile read. I highly recommend it.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Stephen

    It’s a start The story is great. But whatever translation software is being used SUCKS!!! There are some minor issues of continuity I.e. where a hell hound becomes a hobgoblin in the story. Saying that, “If you need the services of an amateur beta reader I humbly ask that you send me your initial translations and I’ll send you my notes. Other than that I believe the story has great promise. Keep writing and I’ll keep reading!!!

  6. 5 out of 5

    Johnny

    Book one Mistakes: I found only three, so this was a good translation. Plot: Basically it boils down to what would you do and what kind of people would you get into bed with just to play a game? Characters: I don't really like any of them. The MC could be a good person, but he makes some very questionable decisions in order to play a game and once in game ties himself to some shady people. 7.5/10 Book one Mistakes: I found only three, so this was a good translation. Plot: Basically it boils down to what would you do and what kind of people would you get into bed with just to play a game? Characters: I don't really like any of them. The MC could be a good person, but he makes some very questionable decisions in order to play a game and once in game ties himself to some shady people. 7.5/10

  7. 4 out of 5

    Lewis Clymore

    Worth your time... and then some Very enjoyable series! Never thought I'd gravitate to the Monk class but I've really enjoyed these books. Lots of action and interestingly different character build with intriguing morality concerns for the protagonist. Really looking forward to the next one in the series. Worth your time... and then some Very enjoyable series! Never thought I'd gravitate to the Monk class but I've really enjoyed these books. Lots of action and interestingly different character build with intriguing morality concerns for the protagonist. Really looking forward to the next one in the series.

  8. 5 out of 5

    JB25

    Good book Enjoyed the book and will read the next one. Story took a while to get going and MC is pretty weak for most of it. Picked up nicely in last third so looking forward to see where story goes.

  9. 5 out of 5

    gordon musgrave

    Not good Could not get past the style of writing,it did not flow together...Something felt off about it.. This supposed to be the very best of this type of book ? If it is this games will not be around much longer!!

  10. 5 out of 5

    Ty

    Very good work! I enjoyed this book very much! The characters within are satisfying and well thought out. There are some grammar issues, but it causes little issue. The rpg lit is on par, plenty of leveling and etc. If you enjoy rpg lit or even just fiction... Read this!

  11. 4 out of 5

    laeaurra flamehawk-mitchell

    Interesting character I thought the beginning was a bit awkward and explainy. Once things got going in the game, the story flowed well and left me wanting more.

  12. 5 out of 5

    E.P.

    Even though LitRPG is not my genre, obviously I had to check out something that is apparently a big hit in Russia. Curiosity if nothing else compelled me. Fans of the genre, or of gaming, are probably going to enjoy "The Steel Hounds." It's got a compelling premise and the plot and the action sequences pull the reader forward. In fact, the action sequences are probably the best part of the book, and there are plenty of them without overwhelming everything else, as some authors tend to do. The mai Even though LitRPG is not my genre, obviously I had to check out something that is apparently a big hit in Russia. Curiosity if nothing else compelled me. Fans of the genre, or of gaming, are probably going to enjoy "The Steel Hounds." It's got a compelling premise and the plot and the action sequences pull the reader forward. In fact, the action sequences are probably the best part of the book, and there are plenty of them without overwhelming everything else, as some authors tend to do. The main character, Mongoose, is your fairly straightforward brash young man who needs to get some maturity and some enlightenment, but his status as a YouTube parkour star is a nice twist, and the meditation and martial arts part of his development is appealing. The secondary characters, especially the female ones, are 1-dimensional projections of the hero's own feelings and insecurities, but maybe that's just gaming. Western readers may find the Russian element exotic or off-putting, but it's certainly nice to see a Russian book written by an actual Russian, aimed at a Russian audience, instead of the weirdly fetishized, cliched stuff that keeps coming out of the West. The translation preserves a lot of the original Russian syntax, which is kind of fun, but may throw some readers for a loop. Those weirdly-placed commas? That's correct in Russian. The roughness of the translation does give the English version a kind of rough-and-ready, samizdat flavor, but it would be nice to see Russian works, even low-prestige genre works, given high-quality translations. Anyway, all and all "The Steel Hounds" is a compelling read that will likely appeal to gamers, and has an authentic Russian flavor to it that makes it stand out from the crowd.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Elaina Myers

    Interesting story This new fully immersive virtual reality game world is interesting. I enjoy LitRPG stories where game mechanics are discussed, but I also find it just as interesting when they are more of a sidebar, as in this book. And, I definitely am finding Mongoose’s learning about Qi, with his monk character, and how it is represented in the game world to be fascinating; kind of like some anime monk abilities have been merged with AD&D. I hope Mongoose figures out how to dig himself out of Interesting story This new fully immersive virtual reality game world is interesting. I enjoy LitRPG stories where game mechanics are discussed, but I also find it just as interesting when they are more of a sidebar, as in this book. And, I definitely am finding Mongoose’s learning about Qi, with his monk character, and how it is represented in the game world to be fascinating; kind of like some anime monk abilities have been merged with AD&D. I hope Mongoose figures out how to dig himself out of the debt he voluntarily took on, and without compromising his morals and values too much!

  14. 5 out of 5

    Tony Hinde

    DNF 77% - Meh Characters I didn't care about, doing things I wasn't particularly interested in. There is some foreshadowing that is of interest... Can a Monk-build become epic? Are some NPCs sapient? Who is pulling the Steel Hounds' strings? But by 77% there is still no meat on the bones, so... I'm out. DNF 77% - Meh Characters I didn't care about, doing things I wasn't particularly interested in. There is some foreshadowing that is of interest... Can a Monk-build become epic? Are some NPCs sapient? Who is pulling the Steel Hounds' strings? But by 77% there is still no meat on the bones, so... I'm out.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Dantegideon

    I found the writing extremely dry.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Roberto Flores

    A good read. Adds a simplicity to litgaming novels that allow for more complex characters and actions. This series can either succeed or fail on how it develops this.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Kazeneko Kujiken

    Loved it! Looking forward to continuing this series! The progression of the protagonist from undisciplined to trained monk is well written, and I can't wait to see how it unfolds. Loved it! Looking forward to continuing this series! The progression of the protagonist from undisciplined to trained monk is well written, and I can't wait to see how it unfolds.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Amardeep

    Boring The story is very boring and keeps dragging on. The author tried to reinvent the litrpg concept and did not quite make it.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Mike Goodman

    Punk Mc I didn’t expect such a parkour selfish main character to be a monk. The Steel Hounds guild mates so out crazy him into turning into a decent person by the end.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Davidl Campbell'Sr

    Okay I wanted more from this story at first it started great then turn into the main character having a conscious toward bad violence

  21. 4 out of 5

    Ron Sturm

  22. 4 out of 5

    Robert

  23. 4 out of 5

    Erik

  24. 4 out of 5

    Cordyn

  25. 4 out of 5

    Gerard

  26. 4 out of 5

    Jobey

  27. 4 out of 5

    Nicholas Pennington

  28. 4 out of 5

    Chris

  29. 4 out of 5

    Bill Stearman

  30. 5 out of 5

    Adam

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