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Dreams of the Dying

(Enderal #1)

4.52  ·  Rating details ·  398 ratings  ·  158 reviews
If your mind is the enemy, where do you run?

Years after a harrowing war experience, ex-mercenary Jespar Dal'Varek has taken to drifting. It's a lonely existence, but, barring the occasional bout of melancholia, he has found the closest thing to peace a man like him deserves. Life is "all right."

Or so he believes. Hoping to turn the page, Jespar accepts a mysterious invitat
ebook, Revised Edition, 728 pages
Published October 20th 2020 by Nicolas Lietzau
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Nicolas Lietzau I'm aiming for a late 2021 release but my life is a little unpredictable at the moment, so it's hard to say. If not Q4 2021, then hopefully Q1 2022.…moreI'm aiming for a late 2021 release but my life is a little unpredictable at the moment, so it's hard to say. If not Q4 2021, then hopefully Q1 2022.(less)
Nicolas Lietzau Hi, at least three. I'm thinking about adding a fourth one if the overarching story necessitates it, but it's rather unlikely.…moreHi, at least three. I'm thinking about adding a fourth one if the overarching story necessitates it, but it's rather unlikely.(less)
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Feb 12, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Adult fantasy readers
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Review copy provided by the author in exchange for an honest review.

A new masterpiece is here. It is a cliché to say this, but Dreams of the Dying is seriously one of the best books I’ve ever read.

“The mind is a malleable thing. Soil, if you’re feeling poetic. Depending on the seed, anything will grow in it, from graceful gardens to idyllic meadows, from weedy forests to foggy swamps. Harmonious or chaotic,
Books with Brittany
fxcking yes. this is what I’m looking for.
god this was good.
Feb 24, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
*I was sent this free from the author in return for an honest review*

**Trigger warning: Suicide, Body horror**

This book, first off, I have to say has such a high quality production value for a self-published one. The hardback particularly is beautiful and so well out together. There's also a whole load of bonus material at the end of the story which includes incredible artwork, beasts, essays and more. All of this bonus content is really fun and makes the whole package worth spending more on.

Dannii Elle
Actual rating 4.5/5 stars. This is the first instalment in the Enderal series.

I started this 700+ page fantasy in December of 2020 but didn’t get further than 100 pages into it before the year ended. It's a testament to how vivid the storytelling is that not a single facet of the story has been lost to me, despite the three months it has taken me to read it. This time lapse is very much only a testament to how crazy the world has been, during this time, and how I have been entirely unable to tea
May 18, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Oh my goodness this was so good! Super interesting world, fleshed out characters, fascinating magic system; this book has just about everything a fantasy lover would want.

The production value of this self published book is also phenomenal. You can tell how much work the author put into this book and he should be very proud.

My only negative about this book is I felt the romance was a bit rushed but other than that 5/5 would recommend.
Sadrith Mora
Nov 05, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I'm terrible at reviews, I suck at giving praise and I'm even worse at not dropping books all the time.

Yet here I am at 3AM, having blazed through this book in a day and a half, telling whoever needs to hear that I want nothing more than to forget it all just so I can read it AGAIN. Yes, it's that good.
Lena (Sufficiently Advanced Lena)
Actual rating: 4.75 (honestly with time could be a full 5 star book)

TW: body horror, suicide, rape.

The mind is a malleable thing. Soil, if you're feeling poetic. Depending on the seed, anything will grow in it, from graceful to idyllic meadows, from weedy forests to foggy swamps.

Let me start by saying since the moment I heard about this book (thank you, Petrick!), I knew I was going to like it, so we can assume my expectations were astronomical and still, were met. Before we talk about the conte
The Grumpster
Dec 13, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy, favorites
"Monsters exist, and you’re one of them.

The girl had been wrong. He isn’t just a monster; he is the father of monsters, the architect of the arena, the god of suffering. The thought he had in the temple had been right after all: there were a million marks on his soul, and they had festered into a cancerous growth. Tears trail down his cheeks. He lets them come, wishing they were acid.


The forgiveness the priest offered was more than he deserved. There is no clearing his name; there
Jul 09, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Disclaimer: I was a beta reader so I didn't read the finished version yet, but will adjust my review accordingly once I've read the end result. Also, I haven't played Enderal. (But you don't need to play it to read the book since it's a prequel.)

Heck, I don't even know where to start--I'm gonna do my Liked/Didn't Like approach for this one.

Things I Liked

* LGBT+ main characters! This is still always a plus for me.
* Oonai as a character and the way he was written. Apparently, he seems to be a very
Nov 23, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I'm seeing a lot of 5 star reviews and they ain't lying. This book was absolutely amazing.

I'll admit, the +700 pages had me shaking in my boots but I'm happy to say that I finished this beast in about 3 days...all thanks to a mesmerizing storyline.

The storyline kinda reminded me of that Leo Dicaprio movie "Inception". The reader is introduced to a world where things like necromancy and dream walking are possible, but only for a talented few.

The main character, Jespar, is not one of the talent
Oct 16, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: lgbtq
I debated for some time what rating to give Dreams of the Dying.
I love Enderal and admire the work the team at SureAI did there. I especially love Jespar Dal'Varek. Getting more of his backstory, in a book, is obviously something I couldn't resist, and I like the work it did on Jespar.
On the other hand, there were parts of the plot that, though interesting, just weren't written that well. The climax of the mission felt too fast, too rushed, and most of it felt like a filler anyway. It didn't get
Jake Howsam Lowe
Dreams Of The Dying is a beautifully written exploration of mental illness, inequality, oppression, abuse and trauma. Not the lightest of themes but handled with a deft touch and a high level of care.

The book is a prequel to the award winning game Enderal but it doesn’t feel like an arbitrary story set in a game world like lots of game adaption stories do. The story is not dictated by game mechanics and the world feels deep, realistic and lived in.

This is most definitely an epic fantasy book but
Mad Moon's Ink
Aug 05, 2020 rated it it was amazing
First of, I didn't play Enderal (it's a prequel) but the game isn't needed to understand the story.
Second, I didn't read the finished version - I did a beta version.

I'd love to give it 4,5 stars, but I can't, so I'm gonna go with 5 because the issues that came up are by now probably taken good care of by Nicolas Lietzau.

- the combination of Fantasy and Crime which I hadn't seen done this way before
- Kawu and Agaam (I would probably read books centered on them)
- the dreams and horror aspect
Nov 26, 2020 rated it it was amazing
The author provided me with an ARC of the eBook in exchange for an honest review.

Formal things first: CW for discussions of depression and graphic displays of suicidal ideation, body horror, gore

5/5 Stars

All I’ve written for this review sounds really, really fake, but to tell the truth, I am just bad at talking about things I love. So when all I talk about now is positive, that’s not because I am not honest, I just adore this book through and through.

Ex-mercenary Jespar Dal’Varek is a drifter. A
Aug 23, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: horror-fiction
Boy, what a ride. My head is still spinning, so I'll make a pro/con list for now and update this later.


- The mix. This is a fantasy story, but the story isn't your usual one, for better or for worse. There is a lot of politics and intrigue and even magic (dimensionism) but the focus is on the characters and their struggles
- The setting. I've read a lot of fantasy, and always wished for less Middle European settings. I thought the tropical islands setting was a breath of fresh air
- The chara
✨🌟 8.5 out of 10 🌟✨
I like the themes that this book explored, but I don't like many aspects of the book. I received an arc from Netgalley in an exchange of honest review.

Keywords: high fantasy, murder mystery, horror, dream world, mental illness (depression), LGBT, indie game adaptation, self pub
Trigger & content warning: suicide, suicide loss survivor, vivid description of depression, rape, murder, gore
Representation: bisexual man, lesbian side character

Dreams of the Dying is a
Milsi ✨ I cast FIREBALL! ✨

This is more than just another fantasy novel - it's a deep and thoughtful exploration of morality, determinism, mental illness and how generally fucked up humanity can be, with intrigue and magic thrown in.

CW for: gore, depression, body horror and suicidal crisis, the latter raw, descriptive and very alive.

I strongly recommend reading both foreword and afterword, especially if you've played Enderal: Forgotten Stories.
Jan 26, 2021 is currently reading it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
Of all the books I hope to find the time to read this year, this is #1 in terms of anticipation level. Enderal is the best video game mod of all time, comparable in quality to its 'mother' game Skyrim, presented a story that was somehow basically "Mass Effect as it should have been", and included one of the most hauntingly brilliant characters in the history of fantasy gaming. Seriously, if you've ever enjoyed Skyrim (and what kind of twisted mind wouldn't?), go play Enderal before the cleansing ...more
Jun 08, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites, 2021
This was really fantastic! The praise I've seen for this book is well-deserved.

Find this review at Forever Lost in Literature!

A few months ago I noticed Petriko Leo of Novel Notions raving about a self-published book called Dreams of the Dying, and when Petrik absolutely raves about a book, I know it's something I need to pick up. And to no one's surprise, this book was incredible. I also splurged and picked up the hardcover, which includes an extensive array of bonus content in the back, inclu
Aug 07, 2020 rated it really liked it
(I'll try to recreate my review of this book from memory since it was first posted on a page that doesn't exist anymore)

First, I'd like to say a big THANK YOU to Nicolas Lietzau for this literal gift.
I've played Enderal, fell in love with it, and then found out that there is a book! With my boy Jespar as a main character! And it's FREE?! GODSEND

It was nice to go back to the world of Enderal and explore a new corner of it. New place, new politics, new magic. And that alone would've been enough
Renua D'Savie
Nov 19, 2020 rated it it was amazing
To begin with, I'm definitely a fan of the whole Vyn world. This book is a prequel to the game Enderal, which, despite being based on Skyrim, but this is a completely individual work. And it's gorgeous. But, the book can be read without being familiar with the game. This is a completely separate piece that captures from the first lines. I started reading Dreams of the Dying demo version and now, when I reading final version of this book I fulfilled with emotions. So hard and great work were made ...more
Nov 19, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favourites

I was given an advance reading copy in exchange for an honest review. So here we go.

I have to acknowledge that I have started this book as a big fan of the Enderal game (200+ hrs played) so I already had a formed opinion on the main character, Jespar. My favourite character in the game, I could argue with him about the human nature all day and all night. My knowledge of the game did slightly affect how I perceived the world and the characters at the beginning, but the further I got into the
May 28, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2021-faves, 2021-read
not a fun time. at all.
May 25, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Protect Jespar Dal'Varek at all costs.(kinda wanted to slap and hug him at the same time not gonna lie)

This book upsets me but in a good way. I feel drained and lost after finishing it and I am a grumpy mess. It's been a while a book has left me this conflicted with my own emotions and yet I needed it. I had a lot of expectations in a certain way and they were entirely different from what I got and it all still blew me off my socks. There's a solid world building, character development, feel of
helen k.
"I'm sorry you have to put up with me."

I've spent my whole life feeling like this, a burden, in the way, destructive; and having it portrayed on-page was An Experience, to say the least. This book is so precious to me.
Nov 15, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Sarah Fritz
Nov 19, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I truly loved this book. The setting is described in a very immersive way, the characters are hopeless, but fleshed out and feel very real. It keeps you on the edge of your seat. The fights are fast paced and realistic, even when magic is being used, and the symbolism in dreams is to die for.
All in all, its a favorite of mine!
Oct 20, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I've read the Web Edition, and now I'm struggling with writing this review, because it's always hard for me to speak about the things I love. But it surely has all the things that I'd want to find in a book to call it great:
1) Story. I was intrigued. I wanted to keep reading. I was with it and in it till thefinal chapter, and after that it was this feeling that only a really good book can give you - "what, the end? wait, I need more of it!".
2) Author's style. Choice of words, sentence structure,
Jenny Ontheroad
Nov 14, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Brilliant, absolutely brilliant!
I am about 40% into the eBook and it is everything I anticipated and more.

The world feels alive and brutally realistic, the characters are very interesting and threedimensional and the story keeps taking wonderfully unexpected turns. It keeps you absolutely hooked, always anticipating something new and exciting. I also really appreciate all the quieter, calmer moments of reflection, philosophical conversation or just playful joking around.

Jespar is a great char
HY Yap
Oct 15, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This book has kept me hooked from the start to finish and it has been years since I have read hundreds of pages in one sitting but this book has done it. The only thing that stopped me from finishing it in one day is sleep and assignments. You don't need to have played the game to understand it as certain terms or events from the game are explained and you'll never be left confused. The twists and turns kept me from putting it down and they kept this book vivid. Reading this book is truly an ama ...more
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I’m an independent German author best known for my writing for the award-winning indie videogame Enderal, which grew from niche favorite to cult hit.

Growing up in both the heart of Munich and a bucolic Bavarian farmhouse, my love for stories began by reading German fairytales in the attic and was nurtured by copious amounts of fiction, ranging from fantasy to horror to historical to literary.


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