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Summoner #1


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Gryff never knew he was the most powerful summoner in the world until a rogue monster attacked his village.

Now he's been recruited into the top magical academy, beautiful women are breaking down his dorm room door, and the headmaster has big, big plans for him. Instead of summoners being maligned by society, Gryff is in a position to make them revered and honored.

There's just one problem: The most powerful fire mage in the academy wants to protect the status quo and will do anything to stop him.

This novel has harem elements.

250 pages, Kindle Edition

First published September 25, 2018

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About the author

Eric Vall

255 books583 followers
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5 stars
1,155 (43%)
4 stars
841 (31%)
3 stars
432 (16%)
2 stars
151 (5%)
1 star
72 (2%)
Displaying 1 - 30 of 160 reviews
132 reviews2 followers
January 15, 2019
It was not bad, but also nowhere near good. There are so many things I dislike about this book but I am amazed at the author. He was able to write a book from a really stupid idea. Summoners are useless except for being an unstable big gun that can only be used once per battle. Otherwise, Summoners are simply used for menial labour. And here comes our protagonist with amazing instincts on how to use many small weak monsters to provide amazing results.

The author literally stupefied the whole world to make that idea work. It's literally worse than zombies worlds oblivious about zombies. In those worlds, the idea of zombies was literally removed as if there are undeads, like vampires, skeleton warriors, or jiangshi, but no zombies. This book, literally, tossed out the idea of teamwork, pulling strengths together and covering each other's weaknesses.

Talk about Plot-Induced Stupidity (PIS), it's like the author cursed the whole world and stupefied everyone but the protagonist.

Harem seems to be the trend now, replacing polyamorous relationships. If you don't have harem, you're not targeting the guy audiences. And you need to couple it with sex scenes. This one mainly uses titillation, not to the point of explicit description of every act. I don't really understand why, or maybe the author is inexperienced. But titillation doesn't satisfy those who prefer the overt sex scenes and titillation already pushed those who don't like it over the edge.

To top it off, the core elements of this book is actually targeting children or young adults. Does going to a magic academy to learn magic sound familiar? Does throwing crystals to summon monsters that can't be killed and can be recalled at any moment sound familiar? Well, they can appeal to adults and definitely do. But it'll have a broader audience by throwing those adult elements out.

Depending on what the author's end goals are, it can be slow or just the way the story progress. There are no antagonists in this book. There are a couple major fights/battles in this book. But there's no climax, or a climatic finale fight/battle.

Lastly, I listened this as an audio book, so I did not read this book. I cannot comment on the grammar, spelling or proofreading. The narration was done well though.
Profile Image for DJay.
433 reviews65 followers
October 2, 2018
I can say that I'm at odds with the MC. He seems to have a bit of arrogance to him, but the one thing I did like about him was that he did realize that he can't judge people with the same filter he's use to. So there was definitely some character growth in the book. This is a SLOW book, but I feel that it's setting up for the rest of the series. This will be something that I eventually come back around to once the series gets a couple of more books under it. The book IMO literally stops once it finally starts to get its legs.
Profile Image for Iori.
589 reviews4 followers
September 30, 2018
Really nice young adult novel, the main character felt real to me. The girls he got to know are funny and engaging! The story so far is about enacting change in the magic profession called summoning. The elitist mages think they are hot shit compared to normal people, but everyone is equal in a fight and in death. I really liked this book.
Profile Image for Steve Naylor.
1,802 reviews99 followers
February 23, 2019
Rating 4.0 stars

This really wasn't what I thought it was going to be. Not bad, just a little misleading on the advertizing. This book kept coming up under the Harem category of books, and looking at the cover art for the book, that seemed to make sense. That really wasn't what this book was about though, not even a little bit. The main character Gryff had sex with 3 women in this book, but that seemed more like a friends with benefits sexual experience than an actual harem. The description of the sex lasted less than a page and most of that was spent on the buildup to the sex and then it was over.

This isn't a bad thing though since I still really liked the book but based on what I just wrote above I was expecting more. The story follows Gryff, a young summoner working in the wilds. Summoner's have magic powers that revolved around being able to summon creatures to help them do work. In the magical community, they are looked down upon as mainly laborers and not thought of as being fit for combat. About a 100 years ago, portals opened up to another plane where monsters come from. Since then there has been a war between humanity and these monsters. A portal opens up near Gryff and the town he is currently working and he goes out to help. He ends up single handedly taking down the entire invasion by himself. As I mentioned before, most summoners are not used in combat except for a few that use very powerful creatures for a "one shot" attack. Gryff uses his much weaker and less powerful creatures to enhance each other, thus allowing him to use less mana and get off more attacks. After he is done the headmaster of the local school finds out and wants him to come back to the university with him. He had never dreamed that a summoner could be used in such a way.

Gryff ends up going to the school and knows that the headmaster wants him to prove himself so that others will start to see that there are more to summoners than just doing grunt work. This is going to be a challenge though because Gryff isn't someone that comes from money, not to mention he is in a class that most people don't respect. I didn't like Gryff's attitude at the school. He knew people would look down on him for his class and his status, and yet he didn't really try to win people over but tried to bully them. He gave them shit because he thought they were lazy and never worked a day in their lives and had everything handed to them on a silver platter. He didn't just think he was their equal but he thought he was better than them. He got upset whenever he learned something in class that he already knew, and he got pissed off at his summoner teacher because he wasn't teaching combat but labor skills. His tact was terrible. Of course there was a noble bully who looked down on his and his friends but besides a couple of comments made to Gryff, the bully really didn't do anything to him. It seemed like Gryff and his friends were the actual bullies as they pulled pranks on the guy 2-3 times. I don't really think he did anything that bad to deserve what they did to him, then they felt justified? Gryff did lighten up towards the end and realized he was doing the same thing to the nobles that they were doing to him. ( He was surprised after he slept in on a saturday that all the other rich noble students were all working hard and training while he was sleeping).

Overall, the story was a little slow without that much action, but I did enjoy the world building and the school setting. There were some obvious story points for the next book, but I did think it was enjoyable.
Profile Image for Shu Viole.
14 reviews2 followers
September 30, 2018
Great read but the relationship part needs fixing.

It looks like everyone that the protagonist sleeps with a friend with benefits. There is literally no romantic connection between the protagonist the girls he sleeps with, making the relationships seem empty. If this book is supposed to have romance then it failed miserably, all I see are part-time whores who will sleep with anyone as long as they have an itch. Are you going to do the same with Kenefick? Is she just piece of meat? This isn't harem, just a gathering of horney girls.
29 reviews
June 20, 2021
This may be a bit of a review of the series in general rather than just the first book as I read through all of them (that were out of the time) then sat down to write this.

Summoner is decently written and despite it's problems managed to keep me engaged throughout the book and through the second and halfway through the third. Unfortunately after that point the downsides to the series just reached a tipping point.

Reading the summary you are given the impression that there is something special about Gryff as the description calls him the most powerful summoner. This is not the case. Or at the very lease it is never said in the book or the series. I would perhaps describe him as the only competent summoner. He uses a collection of lower tier monsters and combines their abilities to take on various threats. Numerous people react with absolute shock at this, but it is never really presented impressively. And what exactly it is that is so impressive is never actually said. I suspect because it would make everyone involved look like an idiot.

The main special quality Gryff has is an apparent ability to instantly woo most women he is put in front of. The primary romantic interest is only slightly resistant to this. I don't know if there is a female besides her that reacts negatively to Gryff in the book. I can only really think of one in the series. Anyway, this results in numerous sex scenes. They're not terribly explicit, but still enough to push it out of the young adult range.

The main thing this book has going for it is that it's not really bad. It's just bland. A lot of the fighting is fairly straightforward. Looking at the series as a whole there are numerous fights that we are told were impressive, but didn't really evoke any sense of awe. Plus Gryff sticks with the low tier monsters for the most part, despite having several crystals of more impressive creatures. I really would have liked to see him actually summon something impressive, or do something with his monsters that actually sounded impressive rather than hear about how impressive it was after the fact.
Profile Image for Luiz.
118 reviews8 followers
October 5, 2018
Harry Pokkermon.

The premise is unbelievable. No one tried using pokemons the way Harry did? Not buying that, but okay, suppose everyone else was completely daft, and move on. The academy bit was a bit of a turn off. JKR has come and gone, is there nothing else you want to show us except the magic school?
Profile Image for James .
1,335 reviews15 followers
September 29, 2018
A fun and entertaining book.

This book was fun to read. It takes a lot of things I enjoyed watching in anime series and put it in a fun book to read.
Profile Image for Wing Kee.
2,091 reviews29 followers
April 14, 2020

Harry Potter x Elder Scrolls x Male Wish Fulfilment
Profile Image for Jay Collins.
1,533 reviews11 followers
March 29, 2019
3, maybe 3.5 stars, this book is a lot like The Novice (Summoner #1) by Taran Matharu. The novice is better but this one was not bad but not sure how much the author took from Taran. I think I will continue with this series as I do like these type of books.
426 reviews3 followers
December 18, 2018

Admittedly I was not expecting much with the word harem in the description but the story is well done and the magic interesting
Profile Image for Dave Stone.
1,063 reviews41 followers
January 10, 2019
An Adequate fish out of water in a magic school story
Not bad and fairly standard magical academy book. very little new here.
wile the Main Character does have sexual relations with classmates and one staff member there are no actual sex scenes. The sexual element feels shoehorned in and adds nothing to the plot wile providing little in the way of titillation.
wile this is mostly a retread of Harry Potter, there is a flavor of Looking for Alaska (John Green) also a story about boarding school.
If you just can't get enough of magical academy books, and you've read all the rest, and you think the MC should get a little nookie now and then I suppose you could do worse.
Profile Image for Tristan.
1,113 reviews14 followers
December 27, 2019
This is a Harry Potter / Pokemon crossover with a bit of soft porn thrown in. It’s actually not too badly written despite a number of malapropisms, and the magic system has some promise and internal logic. However, the plot is very linear, simplistic to the extreme, and based entirely on the easy gratification of always winning and always being praised by all and sundry. Hence it’s boring, even as a potted ego-trip. The sexual elements are irrelevant to the plot, mere attention-seeking gimmicks, and about as titillating as a plate of cold, over-boiled sprouts. Brainless stuff. Not much incentive to read the rest of the series.
Profile Image for Jacob.
54 reviews
November 14, 2018
This book has major plot and pacing issues. The MC has no depth other than his small backstory, his impossible magic skills, and the ability of any female around him to instantly want him within one or two encounters.

His summoning abilities and combinations are interesting. I wish the author would have taken the time to build out the foundations for the big events and side characters by planning a story arc for 3 or 4 books. The book ends with a lot of questions and a plea to rate this book well in order to get a second one.
Profile Image for Niels Baumgartner.
257 reviews1 follower
October 20, 2018
Uniquely fun

Simple, but good. Kind of mindless light reading that leaves you feeling good at the end... like a good action flick. Enjoyed this one a lot. Will be following this author.
Profile Image for Bigmohunter.
8 reviews
November 7, 2018
Fantastic book.

This book does have some of the cliches you'd expect from a book of this type. All in all fantastic start to a series. Very excited for Eric to put out the next one.
Profile Image for Sam Koumi.
63 reviews10 followers
October 15, 2020
Eric Vall's Summoner is, quite honestly, a typical Eric Vall book, to paraphrase a review I read before buying this audiobook, narrated by Joshua Story.

There's harems, power fantasies, magic, and every woman the MC meets is "the most beautiful woman I've met".

There's sex, action, and a typical "power that is typically seen as worthless is actually very powerful if used correctly/the MC has a way to make it stronger" kinda plot.

The MC is looked down upon, until he defeats one of the strongest students at school easily, and he's a cocky dude that every woman fall in love with (for whatever reason).

Now, if I haven't deterred you with all that, back to the review.

While everything I've said is true, the book was actually an enjoyable listen. The love interests are cute, and Vall at least try to make them larger than their tropes, unlike many harem animes he's definitely basing this book on.

In general, Eric Vall is a hit or miss kinda author. If you either have read Eric Vall before, or enjoy the magic high school harem trope from anime, then you'll most likely enjoy this. If you haven't read Vall's works or watch anime, then read through the first part of my review, if any of that puts you off, don't buy this book.

Overall, I'd like to give the book a 5/10, since it's not necessarily bad, but it's not great either.
Profile Image for Rayzawn.
17 reviews
February 27, 2021
What I liked-
Tbh I was initially turned off by the dubious premise of the MC being the only intelligent summoner in existence and his shallow just coz the plot says so ‘save the world’ hero attitude (had this same issue in Dragon Emperor). But midway through, the unexpected depth in his interactions with other characters esp. Nia finally caught my attention. Nothing special yet it did feel genuine and ‘normal’.
And for a long series with 20 novels as of now, those small connections I felt are enough for me to continue further.
The MC is also rather levelheaded.

What I didn’t-
The nonsensical premise and the hero mentality. I have a hard time not rolling my eyes everytime I see such MCs even those that have very good reasons for being so. In this case though there’s not even a basis for that. What’s worse is, it wasn’t his own idea either but his foster father’s.
The novel is full of overused cliches and archetypes. Not a single interesting character with the MC being among the most bland.

Overall 6/10 Decent and worth a try esp. for those that like Pokemon style settings. Plus considering its popularity this probably gets better in time.
Profile Image for Tiago Sampaio.
35 reviews
July 21, 2023
Review up to book 6.

Summoner is a nice little story of adventure around magic and summoning particularly.. The story is simple but enjoyable, just a normal adult storytelling of fantasy adventure and creating an harem. There are some plot holes specially after book 4 when the plot thickens it seems to forget some events and gloss over important information in the interactions between the characters but its overall enjoyable and a light listen that doesn't take itself too serious (I listened to the audiobook version).
The narration is good, easy to understand, and enjoyable multiple voice actors for the different characters.
It could be a gem if it solved some incongruencies, the big fights could have had a bigger impact, and there's plenty of moments that could have been badass but it just glosses over and many comedy opportunities missed but overall its a pretty decent book, Id give it 4 starts if the plot holes were fixed and maybe 5 stars if the fights and comedy moments were a bit more intense. At least its refreshing to see an harem of girls sharing the MC without drama and competition.
Profile Image for Jeff R Hawkins.
86 reviews3 followers
October 8, 2018
Promising author

This book has overt sex scenes - not for children.
I enjoyed this book, but was also frustrated with it. If it wasn't for the sex, it would be a good book for seven to ten year olds. World building gets a C plus. Character motivation and development also gets a C plus. Interesting situations and story line gets an A minus. On the one hand, there's too much description in some places, but on the other hand we are often just told -rather than shown- about important plot elements.
The author has a good vocabulary, but at times writes some colloquial turns of phrase that would never make it past an editor. Very few proofreading errors, though, which I appreciate. About halfway through the book, I decided that the author is probably about 15 years old. This would explain much of the above, and also the rather shallow-seeming actions and words of some of the adult characters at times.
The story is engaging, has a nice amount of action and some surprising and interesting developments.
213 reviews1 follower
February 21, 2023
An interesting idea poorly flushed out.
Regular inconsistencies. Huge fluctuations in the power and skill of characters.
Confusing fight scenes that do not let you "see" whats going on. (This extends to other scenes)
Examples. In one fight scene someone got blind side tackled but was able to get their legs up and planted on the tackler's chest. how... In another scene a girl pressed her body against the back of someone and kissed them deeply. huh? These are numerous and leave you feeling disconnected.
Terrible monster descriptions like a huge rhinoceros thing with arms.
Lastly everything involving the sexes is a little off. I can't tell if the author is trying for a pseudo gender swap story or just hates women or maybe has some kind of dom fetish.
The girls are agressive and borish while the boys are mostly timid and weak. All intimacies are always initiated by the girls where they roughly man handle the MC. The MC is frequently thrown against something and ravished. lol
I gave it 2 stars since I was able to finish it but it has little to redeem it.
7 reviews
October 5, 2021
(This book contains adult themes, gore, drugs, and graphic sex)

A great series focusing on a war between good and evil with some amazing characters and did I mention Summoned monsters! You get to start with someone that is good at what they do but when they decide they just wont stand around as people are killed resulting in them getting grabbed and thrown into the middle of this war with political in fighting and love all mixed together. The series so far has only gotten better as I have read developing all the characters further, expanding the world they live in, and at times launching you by the seat of your pants into a reading frenzy as you try and find out whats happening next.

♥ excellent character building
♥ Great environmental building
♥ Great Story Building

♠ It is that kind of book but can be frustrating on the timing of events as you read as fast as possible to see whats happening in the rest of the world.
Profile Image for Michelle.
327 reviews12 followers
August 31, 2022
This book is just so boring.

Look, I knew very well it's tagged as "harem" and "erotica" and catered to a male audience. I am obviously female. But I get super bored reading most female-targeted erotica, too, so I just wondered if the male equivalent would do it for me. It doesn't.
I realise I shouldn't judge the entire genre on one book, though. But I definitely regret picking it up.

It feels incredibly empty. I feel like I read garbage. Waste of time, if anything. The world is bland, the love-interests are bland, the magic is bland, and the "sex scenes" are 2 sentences.

It's literally like "oh look at this hot woman who is totally into me. She has this type of figure. Now we lay down and go to town for x amount of time." That's it. It literally couldn't get any more BORING.

Tell me, does this series pick up at all or does it stay so bland because until someone convinces me that the first book was just a fluke and I definitely need to read the rest I am dropping the series.
1 review
August 28, 2019
What do you get when a Yes boy, Fuck boy, Pokemon, Highschool students, and cringe like description of monsters get rolled up into a single MC and book? Oh, and shitty character growth (besides the support characters) to boot?


I bought the first 4 books in one go randomly about a month back and I regret it. I couldn't even force myself to finish the 3rd book in the series because of how much it made me seethe. For amusement purposes it will do its job but that's it, maybe. Sometimes. I struggled to finish the second and only manged to enjoy the first because, like a new vehicle, it still had that shiny glow to it!


I was so irritated with this series that I made a goodreads account just to complain about it! Thats how obnoxious it, and perhaps I as well, is!
Profile Image for Nicolai.
11 reviews3 followers
June 8, 2021
I picked this up as a means of empty calorie reading, so It isn’t because I had high hopes. But come on!

You’d think the author has never flirted with a girl considering the exceptionally bad lines required for the female characters to throw themselves at the protagonist -_- Minor spoiler alert. One scene he looks out a train window and describes the landscape as beautiful, but not as beautiful as the view inside the cabin and apparently this charms his teacher so much she brings him in for “private lessons” the next day -_-

But that isn’t even what earns it this rating. The writing is, to be blunt, sloppy.

This is an example from book two just before I stopped reading:
“The snake monster was smart, very smart.”
fast forward 1/2 page ahead:
“It was said that the basilisk weren’t exceptionally smart for monsters, so it was confused by [...]”

I mean come on -_-

Profile Image for Jordan.
576 reviews10 followers
January 20, 2019
Overall pretty good. The magic system is descent and the author is pretty good in his descriptions of places and creatures and is very visual, pacing and grammar is pretty damn up there for these harem style books that are flooding amazon the last couple of years.

Would have been rated much higher but my two main sticking points are that the MC is very arrogant despite accusing every other character of being the same, its not as negative as I make it sound because I think he's supposed to come off as charming but it doesn't read that way at all. My biggest problem though is the dialogue, its cringe-worthy in places and can really pull the reader from the story.

Profile Image for Marat Beiner.
230 reviews2 followers
May 23, 2019
Nice short read.
I have a few problems with the book though...
1. It was too short, and had not enough world-building.
2. Because there was not enough world-building I could not understand properly how the world looks like. The best example is multiple mention of fire-arms, when I portrayed the world as a medieval (as swords and crossbows are used as well).
3. The book categorized as Harem/Erotica but there were like 3 scenes, and each was for 10-15 seconds. I don't have a problem with that, as I've used to read books with no sex at all, but why it categorized as something which is not.

I'll continue with the series, and will see where it's going.
Profile Image for Rob Enderle.
196 reviews2 followers
October 7, 2018
This was a fun read and could easily be a series though it closes off reasonably enough, no cliff hanger. It says it has harem elements but they are slight, the hero basically has two girl friends and a third girl he'll likely end up with but never really even kisses. So less harem, more no steady girl friend which I was fine with (the harem crap gets old for me quick). Easy and quick read, be a good travel book. Under estimated Bugs Bunny type hero who regularly kicks butt but doesn't struggle with a lot of angst or drama, in short, my kind of book. Loved it!
December 18, 2018
I love these kind of books

Books of where the MC is OP with insane powers or just creative with his somewhat weak power to over come a naturally powerful foe. I love these kind of books because there is a lot of drama with having to beat the bully and earn the respect of everyone around. I’ve read books where the MC is not op or creative and I find them somewhat boring because there is no drama that make me lose myself in reading. This book has it all, it’s similar to anime and anyone who loves that type of anime. This is the book for you.
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