My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Critical Failures by Robert Bevan is a humorous novel about four friends who are getting together to play a game of “Caverns and Creatures” or C&C (a.k.a. Dungeons and Dragons) with a new Cavern Master who they found online and never met before.
In no time the group gets on the bad side of the Cavern Master and as punishment he traps them inside the world of C&C as their characters. Soon they discover that their actions and choices have consequences and adventure ensues.
While the concept behind this story is nothing new—even the rules and concepts in the game seem an exact copy of D&D—I found myself unable to put this book down. The story is a good blend of mystery, adventure and humor. I probably woke my wife up on more than one occasion literally laughing out loud several times.
I would readily recommend this book to anyone who enjoys fantasy and/or role-playing games. While it helps to be familiar with the general rules of role-playing games, Bevan does a decent job at explaining it without over-explaining.
Critical Failures is the first book in a trilogy, and I will definitely be picking up the other books.