Guild of Tokens by Jon Auerbach
Jon Auerbach treats us to a rousing litRPG-like adventure through Manhattan. Guild of Tokens is a unique blend of genres, one-part urban fantasy, one-part litRPG, and one-part mystery. There’s a lot to like in Auerbach’s first novel.
Guild of Tokens has one of the most unique and interesting concepts I’ve ever encountered. Our main character, Jen Jacobs, discovers what is essentially a Craigslist for weird quests in New York City. Of course, there is something deeper going on, and Jen discovers secrets about herself and the world and the way the world works that are absolutely mind boggling. I was immediately drawn into this world and while the ideas here are absolutely fantastical the entire concept also seems incredibly believable. That may be, at least partially, down to the relatable main character Auerbach gives us in Jen Jacobs. You care about her immediately, and find many of your own thoughts echoed in her viewpoint as she is discovering this hidden world. Her emotions as she uncovers mystery upon mystery also seem very authentic and real-to-life. Yet it’s not only the world that shines here, but Jen as a character. She’s hurting and broken in some ways, just trying to get by. As readers, we can empathize with her. She’s obviously trying to work through things. It’s very fun to read about, but there are also moments of pain because we see her making poor decisions, or at least decisions we know will end up bringing her more pain. The book, without being at all preachy, feels at times as if it’s a warning about the dangers of addiction. With both the MC and several of the side characters, Auerbach has given us textured, deep, morally grey characters that are excellent fun. It’s impressive to find characters that are so morally gray and yet feel so relatable.
One of the weaknesses for the book, from my perspective anyway, was a tendency to begin chapters by jumping forward in time from the end of the last chapter and then having a flashback to fill in the missing time. A few times, instead of a flashback, we simply have the character thinking about what happened. For me, this absolutely destroyed the tension inherent in the ending of some chapters. I wanted to know what happened next, and instead jumped forward several hours, days, or even weeks, and then had to have all the rest backfilled. It’s a method I’m never thrilled with and I don’t think it worked at all for the pacing of the novel. There are also a couple moments that strain credulity in terms of some of the characters and their ability to sort of just ignore friends, family, or jobs in order to give themselves fully to quests. Yes, I know, I’m willing to believe magic exists in a novel, but I’m picking on the believability of someone ignoring a job? It does seem a bit hypocritical, but for me some of that just didn’t seem to fit.
Guild of Tokens is a fun read that keeps you engaged. The sense of mystery and discovery is second to none and the main character is highly relatable. If you enjoy urban fantasy and morally grey characters this is the one for you.
This Guild of Tokens book review was written by Calvin Park
Have you read Guild of Tokens?
We've found that while readers like to know what we think of a book they find additional reader reviews a massive help in deciding if it is the right book for them. So if you have a spare moment, please tell us your thoughts by writing a reader's review. Thank you.
Guild of Tokens reader reviews
7/10 from 1 reviews
There are currently no reader reviews for this book. Why not be the first?
Write a reader review
Thank you for taking the time to write a review on this book, it really makes a difference and helps readers to find their perfect book.
More recommended reading in this genre
Galaxy 'Alex' Stern is the most unlikely member of Yale's freshman class. Raised in the Los Angeles hinterlands by a hippie mom, Alex dropped out of school earl...
The Grimnoir Chronicles
Jake Sullivan is a war hero, a private eye—and an ex-con. He’s free because he has a magical talent, being able to alter the force of gravity in himself and obj...
Three Parts Dead
A god has died, and it's up to Tara, first-year associate in the international necromantic firm of Kelethres, Albrecht, and Ao, to bring Him back to life before His cit...
A storm is coming... Locked behind bars for three years, Shadow did his time, quietly waiting for the magic day when he could return to Eagle Point, Indiana. A man no longe...
Deep in the research wing of the Natural History Museum is a prize specimen, something that comes along much less often than once in a lifetime: a perfect, and perfectly pr...
The City of Lost Fortunes
Post–Katrina New Orleans is a place haunted by its history and by the hurricane’s destruction. Street magician Jude Dubuisson is likewise burdened by his past a...
Rosemary and Rue
The world of Faerie never disappeared; it merely went into hiding, continuing to exist parallel to our own. Secrecy is the key to Faerie's survival: but no secret can b...
Simon Burns is fired from his job without warning. Reluctantly, he takes on the role of stay-at-home dad for his three-year-old son but this pushes his already strained mar...
Jack Bloodfist: Fixer
Jack Bloodfist fixes things. That's what his card says, anyway. When the orcs and goblins of Summervale, Virginia need something done they call Jack. He's the one w...
Great fantasy books published in 2019
A Brightness Long Ago
Guy Gavriel Kay
International bestselling author Guy Gavriel Kay's latest work is set in a world evoking early Renaissance Italy and offers an extraordinary cast of characters whose li...
The Raven Tower
For centuries the kingdom of Iraden has been protected by a god known as the Raven. But in their hour of need, the Raven speaks nothing to its people. It is into this unres...
The 10,000 Doors of January
Alix E Harrow
In the early 1900s, a young woman embarks on a fantastical journey of self-discovery after finding a mysterious book in this captivating and lyrical debut....
The Priory of the Orange Tree
A world divided.A queendom without an heir.An ancient enemy awakens.The House of Berethnet has ruled Inys for a thousand years. Still unwed, Queen S...
Meet Roger. Skilled with words, languages come easily to him. He instinctively understands how the world works through the power of story.Meet Dodger, his twin. Numb...
The epic conclusion of the internationally bestselling Nevernight Chronicle from New York Times bestselling author Jay Kristoff.The greate...
The Hod King
Thomas Senlin and his crew of outcasts have been separated, and now they must face the dangers of the labyrinthine tower on their own in this third book in the word...
Nona Grey’s story reaches its shattering conclusion in the third instalment of Book of the Ancestor.THEY CAME AGAINST HER AS A CHILD. NOW THEY FACE THE WOMAN....
A Little Hatred
War. Politics. Revolution. The Age of Madness has arrived... The chimneys of industry rise over Adua and the world seethes with new opportunities. But old scores run deep a...
Looking for more suggestions? Try these pages: