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Reviewed by Kim Anisi for Readers' Favorite
Keith, the main character of The Cursed Codex by Matthew S Cox, is more or less invisible to others, apart from his few friends and his family. One day, he takes a detour on his way back home and drives past a yard sale where an older woman is trying to sell the belongings of her granddaughter who had gone missing many years ago. One of the items catches his eyes: a book for Crypts & Creepers, a role-playing game for which you did not need an electronic gaming system. It’s something the boy has never seen before, and it intrigues him. He buys the book and a few other items. Then he convinces his friends to play the game with him. What Keith did not expect was that the book is a magic gateway, and that the missing girl is closer than he would have thought.
I usually go by the plot description when picking up a book, which also was the case here. But when I saw that The Cursed Codex was written by Matthew S Cox, I wondered why the name sounded familiar, so I checked what else he had written. And then realized that I had already read a few of his books in the past. Each of them was very different from each other, but I guess the author seems to always write about topics that interest me. The problem now was that I had high expectations of this book. Not only did it come from an author whose books all seem to be good (at least the ones I read), but it also was on a topic I care about: fantasy role-playing!
To my relief and reading joy, this was a very entertaining and interesting read. It was exciting and clearly paid respect to the classic pen and paper role-playing games. As someone who took part in these, I really enjoyed how the topic was used in a book, and it made me think whether I’d actually have a chance if I got caught in one of the games I played. The characters were funny, and if you know a little about class systems in RPGs, you’ll also find that the characters were just hilarious and well written, in addition to that. I’d recommend this book to any fan of fantasy worlds and adventure novels. It’s a lot of fun to follow Keith on his adventure.