Sean Kottke's Reviews > The Elfish Gene: Dungeons, Dragons And Growing Up Strange

The Elfish Gene by Mark Barrowcliffe
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's review
Oct 30, 2012

really liked it
bookshelves: adult-recreational, 2012
Read from January 25, 2010 to October 30, 2012

4.9 stars! A laugh out loud coming of age memoir that comes packed with insights into a certain strain of socially awkward adolescence, this really speaks volumes about my own experiences between (approximately) fifth through eighth grades. The appeal of role playing games, transmediation in fantasy and science fiction universes and heavy metal music in the golden age of D&D (c. mid 70s through early 80s) are delightfully explicated through Barrowcliffe's experiences. The only thing keeping it just shy of my top shelf of 5-star books is that portions of it are a bit of a slog, with extended gaming anecdotes that go on a bit too long and heavy doses of British culture that are alien even to me, a confessed Angliophile. Nevertheless, there is great wisdom to be found here ... and quite a few laughs.

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