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Publisher's Summary

Build a dungeon. Slay heroes. Survive finals. 

Wounded Army vet Logan Murray thought mimics were the stuff of board games and dungeon manuals...right up until one ate him. 

In a flash of snapping teeth, Logan suddenly finds himself on the doorstep to another world. He’s been unwittingly recruited into the Shadowcroft Academy for Dungeons - the most prestigious interdimensional school dedicated to training the monstrous guardians who protect the Tree of Souls from so-called heroes. Heroes who would destroy the universe if it meant a shot at advancement.

Unfortunately, as a bottom-tier cultivator with a laughably weak core, Logan’s dungeon options aren’t exactly stellar, and he finds himself reincarnated as a lowly fungaloid, a three-foot-tall mass of spongy mushroom with fewer skills than a typical sewer rat. If he’s going to survive the grueling challenges the academy has in store, he’ll need to ace the odd assortment of classes - Fiendish Fabrication, Dungeon Feng Shui, the Ethics of Murder 101 - and learn how to turn his unusual guardian form into an asset instead of a liability.

And that’s only if the gargoyle professor doesn’t demote him to a doomed wandering monster first....

From James A. Hunter - best-selling author of Rogue Dungeon, Bibliomancer (Completionist Chronicles Expanded Universe), and the LitRPG epic Viridian Gate Online - and Dragon Award-finalist Aaron Michael Ritchey comes a brand-new Dungeon Core novel, like nothing you've ever heard before. Funny, funky, and full of Gamelit goodness, this is one novel you won't want to put down.

©2021 Shadow Alley Press (P)2021 Shadow Alley Press

What listeners say about Shadowcroft Academy for Dungeons

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

I wish it were enjoyable

I will preface this review by stating that I love litrpg and dungeon core books. I have read many great series, and many terrible series, in the genre. So my review is based on that experience.

The good: Interesting premise- a hero that is extremely unique (build/monsterwise) to explore, an interesting take on a dungeon series in a direction that is usually only touched upon in the genre (how dungeons learn to do what they do, infrastructure of their species, ect) and some rather interesting beasties/paths for evolving.

The bad: this is long but going to be as full and honest as possible in an off chance the authors read this, because I would love a similar but better written book.
A. The character is the cliche good guy that is weak but, through always making the right choice constantly prevails and gets most to follow/accept him. He works through any hiccup, adapts to any situations (including his own reaping and being turned into a core) and is always completely supportive of his friends, all of the time. Yikes- its a common issue with the genre, so in my eyes more forgivable, but give the main character more depth.

B. Side character development- like the main, the characters were pretty flat. The headmaster was interesting and mysterious, some of the tertiary cores/people were interesting, but the main supporting characters were rather boring- you don't find out enough about them to care about them until the very end, and even then, though they change/grow, its extremely contrived/sudden, and all because of the main characters positivity and cheerleading.

C. The main character is middle age when he becomes a core. Many of the student cores are his age or older, and the teaching cores are centuries old. Yet there is no romance, no real drama. Its just clichéd high-school drama and half realized angst that is awkwardly explained by the narrator as it plays out. Show, dont tell, unless its fot effect. You made the school and its characters extremely juvenile, and it makes the work feel that way too. There are 4 clans that collect points for the end of the year, the dungeon that handles minions/scenery is their friend. Its like a more pg dungeon Harry Potter, with more pg characters.

D. The story skips large sections and feels disjointed. Much of the information is just recapping what happened in the last few months before a small scene that isnt significant. These scenes often don't build up or foreshadow anything.

E. The lore isn't expanded upon. Some series go on and on about character sheets and abilities and working towards xyz with the occasional twists. Some are very action oriented with the sheets being a background that pops up occasionally for story advancement. There was little action and instead of the story being pulled along occasionally by it, the characters abities magically grow at the perfect timing to fit the story.

F. The entire book I felt something was missing. The above caught my attention, and I thought that they were the biggest issue. However, after a while I realized that this story (learning magic at a school or academy) has already been done before, but as a backdrop to bigger stories. And that is thr biggest miss in this story. Imagine HP without Voldemort, or The Magician without going between worlds. This story has a cool initial premise, the potential for interesting characters and powers, world building, ect is there. But the book tries to hold itself up by explaining this basic, overdone plot, throwing a dungeon theme up and telling a awkward high-school story. I kept looking for some interesting place, or hidden motives, anything. unfortunately, there were none of note in the book, and while it seemed some might appear in a sequel if made(basic threads were left hanging) I can't recommend anyone read this to get there.

Take this review for what its worth- im just one reviewer. But as someone who desperately wanted to enjoy the work and recommend it, I cannot. This felt like a rough first draft, though I hope to see improvement in authors and if they ever right a different series, I'd considering giving it an attempt.


14 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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Story is good but performance lacks

Overall I enjoyed the story. My biggest gripe was with the narrator. Unless there were some commas in odd places, his reading had an effect. At times it seemed like a sentence had ended, only to keep going.

10 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Good start

I'll start off with saying you should listen to this book at ×0.9 speed. The narrator speaks a little fast for my taste. Other than that this book is pretty solid. Interesting characters, nice set up, and a good antagonist

5 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

Just please STOP.

First the good. The main character seems to be a all around good guy. a little plain and generic but a good guy. The story has a slightly different concept than the usual cultivation lines.....That's it all the good.

The bad
Kramer is the second worst narrator i have encountered. Out of a current selection of over 400 audio books that is saying something. His jerky mode of reading actively prevents the listener from getting into the story. He uses the exact same inflection of every line of the story no matter what the situation is or who is talking. My phone has more variety of tones in giving directions than this guy does reading a fight scene.

The author must have really loved Harry Potter, That's all this book really is, only with badly written characters, poorly described scenes and senseless dialog that goes nowhere.

overall the worst failure in the book is probably the narrator. the story could be salvaged by someone else... maybe. If you are looking for an engaging book look elsewhere.

4 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

novel crafted by a novice with a horrible narrator

Good for a book written by a cultivation fan who either has no experience writing or never taken a writing course.

That being said i am impressed by the attempt to make a cultivation series about a toadstool and although very cringy at times the story works and is much better than other novels in the same space that end up being harems or worse.

The worst part of this audiobook is the narrator....he speaks as though every phrase... withen a sentance is a separate sentance.

The story outline makes no sense and is kindve creepy. Going back to high school as a full adult and having a love interest be an owl is a very odd fantasy imo. Refering to yggdrasil as the "tree of souls" every time and repeating plot points to the listener in a subsequent a paragraph is very annoying.

Cultivation wise i still dont understand the system or powers available after 10 + hours of listening, i suggest that the author stick to a system such as the completionist or cradle series not just make new things up to fit a situation.

Please keep writing and getting better.

4 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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whoever gives this book less than 4 🌟 is wrong

This book is good. Its fun and unique, I can see a few people not enjoying, but overall very fun and I am looking forward to book 2.

I have seen some weird negative reviews, don't trust them.
one person claimed this is a clear Harry Potter rip-off, because in case you didn't realize Harry Potter is also about a mushroom man training to have his own dungeon. like I said. don't trust them.

3 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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Harry Potter rip-off

if there isn't a lawsuit about this books similarity to Harry Potter I'd be surprised. this book has alot of potential and kinda makes you want to stay listening to it to find it but doesn't really deliver. the main character is apparently a veteran but any reference to it is lost past the beginning of the book. in my opinion the author should join the Army for a couple years get injured and then write about the main character. I highly doubt he understands anything about it based upon how he wrote the book. or at least going to talk to a veteran and get some personal opinions or something. other than that character development is very shallow and I stopped listing 4/5ths through the book

3 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

I really liked the premise

this series was really good. I really liked the premise of this book, the Mc dies and gets transported to another world and has to fight for power. it's nice to see the version of a villain mc. not really a villain but the heros are necromancers in stuff. the thing i don't like is they killed him, he didn't die on his own. he was living and they killed him then they made him a mushroom while having him fight to stay alive. I like the mushroom tho, I was looking for a book where the Mc was a panda or a weird race instead of being human.

The cons. This books narrator is weird. having the speed at 1x is to slow having it any higher is to fast. I also would like some more exploration in the story too. I think sages of the underpass was better than this story just because it was a little bit more serious.

The pros. What I said about how I think sages of the underpass was better because it was more serious is actually a double edged sword. The thing that made this book so good is its humor. The character progression is also really good. I would've liked more world building and a better performance of the plot. but other than that this book is really good.

if you like a serious humor type book where there's alot of detailed and good fighting this book is for you

2 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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A Poor Quality Story

Imagine Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's/Philosopher's Stone. Now, replace Harry with Toad from Mario Brothers. Also, replace magic with dungeon creation. Finally, replace the charm with a flat delivery. You have this book.

Shadowcraft is absolutely a blatant Harry Potter rip-off with no subtlety. It genuinely feels like a bootleg copy of the Sorcerers Stone.

The writing is fairly poor and amateurish. I am not sure if the author is a new writer, and I could normally handle the weak writing style, but combining it with the stolen story compounds to my dislike of the book.

It does feel like the narrator is trying his hardest with what he is given. The performance is fairly good considering the poor source material.

All in all, I would not recommend.

2 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

narration is horrible

This is the 2nd book by this narrator that I have had to return. His reading is so choppy that it ruins the story. I will have to try reading this story to see if it is any good.

1 person found this helpful

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  • andrew
  • 09-20-21

An enjoyable listen

I'm surprised there there isn't more reviews for this book, it's a perfectly serviceable book that tickles all the right places if your a fan of the genre i.e fantasy / lit-rpg / dungeony core ect ect.
I will definitely be purchasing the the next installment which I hope will be coming along soon.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Alial1
  • 05-04-21

How to train your Dungeon

The narrator does pause after 3-5 words which initially too some getting used to, but I soon lost myself in the story and then rarely noticed, then found myself actually missing it - go figure - lol
The story is very good and gets an insight into how they become dungeons cores if they trained - great concept and it translates well.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 04-12-21

Hogwarts for monsters

It’s Hogwarts for monster with some stat sheets here and there but it’s pretty good with some good characters and overall story. The voices are pretty good but at the beginning of the book he’s speaking way to fast but that stops around chapter 3. Overall its ok but could be better 12/15

1 person found this helpful