• Ball of Light: Evolution

  • By: A. R. Chen
  • Narrated by: Scott Ellis
  • Length: 8 hrs and 50 mins
  • 4.3 out of 5 stars (203 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

After waking up, Steve doesn't know where he is. Heck, he doesn't know what he is. Despite his spotty memory, he's pretty sure he didn't used to be a floating ball of light.

He's also certain that he's not originally from this dangerous fantasy world...maybe. Okay, fairly certain. To make things stranger, he seems to be involved in something big, something magical...a game.

Who was he before? Will his memories come back? Why does he have an assistant explaining the game's rules to him?

He can evolve? There's a countdown timer?

One thing Steve does know is that he needs to figure out what's going on fast, and if he is playing a game, even a deadly one, he plans to win.

©2019 Adom Publishing (P)2019 Adom Publishing

What listeners say about Ball of Light: Evolution

Average Customer Ratings
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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Not sure if I liked this story or not.

Let’s get this out-of-the-way first, the writing is very good and well put together. The story on the other hand is a little bit questionable. I was first introduced to the story as a litRPG and after reading it I might contest that, for there was very little RPG elements in it. Keeping track of an energy count and potential evolution path does not really make up an RPG game. Plus there’s the fact that I’m very disappointed in the ending of the story. Having the main character lose all of his abilities at the end and swapped out with some other minor ones is just a way of resetting things so that way you can reuse the same approach in the next story. This story trick is often used in stories where the main character gets too powerful throughout the course of the book and the author doesn’t know what to do with them and so has to reset them back to the beginning so that way he can reuse some of his story tropes in the next book. It is because of this fact that I gave this book only three stars on the storyline. If the writing wasn’t so good I may have given it less.

5 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Shine on!

Ball of light fights right in with this episode since it deals with another god not a god MC. AS in God of gnomes a ball of light, rather than a gem, comes into sapience and begins getting schooled by a mystical entity. Steven, the ball of light pretty much wakes up somewhere he’s not familiar with and wonders about how he’s a ball of light, because he has very little memory. He finds that he has an unseen helping guide who advises him on the do’s and don’ts of his new life. The entire point of what he is doing is to evolve. Evolution depends on points he earns, and his evolution choices are pretty varied, going from a turtle to a god.

There are a couple of questions that I have, because out of the choices, none really intrigued me. There were pros and cons to all of them, but it seemed to me that in the long run the Ball of Light was the best form to take and keep. Why would you opt to become something else? If you have to choose I understand, but honestly the other choices for what to become were kind of lame. Also, one drawback that sort of drove me a little crazy was that all of the evolution bits were repeated over and over, as in every time he looked to see what other options appeared we got to hear the same thing for the dozenth time. It has been over a week or more since I listened to this and I still can hear the vampire’s description when I close my eyes and strain to hear silence as I sleep. Only slightly kidding there.

The book does take its time to get going, almost light it was just searching for its footing, but once it does it is really good. The big battles were fun, and I liked the POV shifts during the fights, it reminded me of how Quentin Tarentino shoots his movies. That sort of back and forth time jumpy stuff without being really bad about it. Steve is an interesting MC, and I liked how he kind of cottoned onto being considered a god by the people he found. I could see myself doing that, but then I have delusions of grandeur. My best friend once made me a tee shirt that had the words God who walks as a mortal embroidered on it because that was my attitude in my twenties. I was too cool for school. Steve somehow touches on that kind of attitude but manages to quell it for the most part. He has a pretty good handle on who he is even if he doesn’t know himself all that well. Does that make sense? There are some clues as to what is going on, and I think it all comes down to what his father talked to him about keeping secret. Honestly, if you think about it that scene is one giant clue, so keep your ears open.

Scott Ellis not only narrates but he plays drums and lead bass in this orchestra of fun. Actually, I liked him and think he did a pretty decent job. I actually know him from a book called See you Later, Ralphie which helps kids deal with grief and grieving. I’ve got a ton of books on the subject and try to check out anything new, and something for kids is fantastic. So I was surprised that I had the same guy narrating this book as that one. I think a few more of these kinds of books and he’d be a great fit for the community.

Over all score: 7.9 The repetition really got to me after a while, and the story kind of wandered about in the first bit, but was good once it figured out what it was supposed to do. I think it is like this because it was a web serial, so I’m trying not to hold it against it.


3 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

interesting evolution book

i found this novel quite entertaining, it didnt rely on any common tropes poping up in the genre, the flow was well paced and had interesting characters.

3 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

I'm not sure.

What to listen to this review instead of reading? Hit the play button below.
(Removed for Audible.)

Narration
Scott Ellis didn’t do a bad job. That said, he didn’t do a good job narrating this book either. The narration was slow and he clearly isn’t a, (man of many voices), also the tone he used for some characters just didn’t fit. I looked up other books he has narrated and this clearly isn’t his genre.

Basic Summary
Steve wakes up in a forest as a ball of light and no memories. There is a voice in his head (Bonnie) and a counter of five days before he has to evolve. He must also follow a few rules until the counter runs out. Don’t evolve, don’t de-evolve, don’t kill, don’t die, and don’t leave a 10 mile radius from his starting point. On a specific interval of time, he receives a feeling or a memory which may or may not be his. Also, there are apparently others in the same situation.

Steve is brought to a village by some kids. Most people think he is a god or some other type of powerful being. He grinds his skill, tries to figure out what the best evolution is, struggles with who he is, and deals with the villagers. Steve helps defend the village from a rival attacking village and that’s pretty much the whole of it. This book is clearly meant to be the start of a much broader story.

The Good
The writing isn’t bad. The overall concept is interesting and the author’s spin on the whole isekai/litRPG/dungen core thing is rather interesting. I honestly have nothing to compare this book to. It is a unique addition to its genre. I guess the closest thing I can think of is the anime (That time I got reincarnated as a slime.), though the similarities are rather vague.

The Bad
As this book is more or less the start of a larger linear adventure, it suffers from a lack of obvious direction. Steve’s whole goal throughout the book is “gain in power and unlock the mystery evolutions”. I think if the author had put some more thought into the main characters' interactions with the world around him, it might have turned out a little better. The side characters are almost more interesting and there really isn't much to make the reader care about Steve. Bonnie is almost pointless in the book, though I do feel like that may change in further in the adventure. If you want a story about the main character overcoming difficult obstacles and growing a person, or in this case a ball of light, this is not the book for you.

The Interesting
The world isn’t terribly imaginative, it’s basically a video game, but the author does a great job of not info dumping. Mostly, we learn about the world Steve finds himself in as Steve himself learns about it, along with a few bits and pieces mentioned during other characters’ scenes. There is an overarching mystery to why Steve and the others are trapped here. The author gives us enough information for speculation, but not enough to come to any sort of conclusion.

Final Thoughts
This is a unique story. While it does combine several elements of other things I’ve read, I’ve never seen anything quite like it. As Ball of Light: Evolution is just the beginning of a much larger story, I'll be interested to see where it goes, and will likely pick up the sequel. I do think a different narrator might help, but if your reading the book instead of listening, that’s not really an issue.

Review by rcdaviswrites, 11/21/2019

1 person found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Ball of Fun: series opener

I had a lotta fun with this book! I found it well-written, intriguing, and with enjoyable characters. In some ways it felt like an introduction, but it still managed a full and well-executed story arc. It’s not dungeoncore, but for some reason reminded me of it, in a good way. I’m really looking forward to the next book and hope it drops soon. It’ll be great to find out more about the backstory of the main character and about the structure of the world and it’s magic.

1 person found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Just buy this book you will absolutely love it!

The book is absolutely amazing it truly is one of the most unique books in every way it was an absolute pleasure to listen to this book. The book starts you off with a lot of mystery and intrigue you will not be able to guess easily what's going to happen in the next chapter you truly do only know what the main character knows which is not a lot at all. As the book progresses you start to get a little bit more of a picture of what's going on or think you know what's going on and then it throws you for a loop and your back to scratching your head. At least for me, I definitely was right there with the MC in the sense I was going just a little bit crazy with wanting to know what was going on all in a good way of course. The author does an amazing job with the bits of comedy in the right areas and sarcastic flair you definitely can tell that he has a friend or someone close to him that he modeled the portrayed interactions between Steve and Zander. Overall this was absolutely an amazing story and I can't wait for the second one.

1 person found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

an excellent new addition to the gamelit genre.

This came with all the most important elements of a good gamelit book, along with many of the authors own unique twists. The ending has me completely hooked, scratching at the surface of what is clearly a greater mystery. Kinda like the earliest seasons of LOST (in the teasing greater mystery sense), except this author clearly plans to actually deliver on those expectations in the future.

1 person found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Great

It was great. The flow and pace were good. The narration was well done.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Great Story

Loved this story. It was a good listen, made my day at work progress pretty fast. The mystery of the mc's origins helped keep me pulled into the story.

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

Didn't hold my attention.

Just not for me. I might have liked it more but it felt a bit slow and I would have like more details then what was given.