Buffy’s your typical cosplaying, retro-gaming, con-going geek girl, but as her high school graduation approaches, she finds she has an unwelcome guest in her mind: the text parser.
Narrating her life like it’s a classic adventure game (cough Zork cough), the text parser forces her to interact with the world through a series of a typewritten commands:
Go to party.
Fall in love.
At first it’s pretty cool. It’s not easy making the transition from high school to college. It’s not easy dealing with roommates. It’s not easy being in a new relationship with her lifelong crush. Buffy makes some huge mistakes along the way, but the text-parser lets her fix all of them.
It’s like having superpowers…until the text parser won’t shut up.
Buffy is desperate to get rid of it, but no matter how many times she tries to restart or reset, the text parser won’t go away. Before long, her life starts to crumble: her friends grow apart, her roommates turn against her, and her boyfriend falls into a deep depression. Buffy’s life has become a game, but how can you win when there’s no final boss?
Narrated in the style of classic adventure games, Post–High School Reality Quest is is a captivating coming-of-age story that T. E. Carter calls a “must read” for all gamers and YA fans.
Praise for POST-HIGH SCHOOL REALITY QUEST
“Right from page one, Post High-School Reality Quest grabbed me, and I just couldn’t put it down. Inside these pages is a complicated and haunting story of love and loss, written in a unique and compelling style that pulls us right into Buffy’s world―and makes sure we can’t get out. Meg Eden handles the topic of mental illness with sensitivity and skill, while also showing just how confusing and scary these experiences are, at times, for her main character, as even the reader begins to question what’s real and what’s not. Highly recommended.”
―Madeline Dyer, author of the Untamed series.
“This may be one of the most wildly original YA entries for 2017—the only book I can think to compare it to (for sheer originality, outrageous & clever humor, and sly irreverence) is The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy (it’s that good—it’s worthy of the comparison). Our MC, Buffy, finds herself navigating post-high school life & love while stuck inside a text-adventure video game. I am not a gamer, but you don’t have to be to quickly catch on to the format (with saved lives/do-overs, etc.) and to rapidly become hooked and thoroughly strapped into this roller-coaster of a novel. I found myself laughing out loud many, many times while reading this (while shaking my head in awe “Meg Eden did NOT just pull that off…”). READ THIS BOOK. #TeamNarwhal”
—Laurie Forest, author of The Black Witch
“There’s so much emotion in these pages and, amazingly, none of it overwhelms the reader. Pain is countered by joy, grief with understanding, the loss of innocence with the mixed gift of knowledge. Meg Eden has written a novel that’s both captivating and funny, one that follows a beautifully-flawed young woman and her friends as they try to understand the complexities of a confusing age. But Post High School Reality Quest is more than a lovely and unsentimental coming-of-age story; it’s the kind of book that’s destined to stand out in your memory, one you quietly, lovingly, think about long after it’s finished.”
—E. A. Aymar, author of You’re As Good As Dead
“Entertaining yet thoughtful look at figuring out who you are. The format and concept behind this book is refreshingly unique. It’s told as a command-based video game, but the story is a contemporary coming of age tale. Definitely a must-read for gamers and really for YA readers in general!”
—T. E. Carter, author of I Stop Somewhere
“Post–High School Reality Quest will no doubt be one of the science fiction highlights of the year.”
―Hannah Scorfield, NeonBooks.org.uk
Author: Meg Eden
Meg Eden’s work is published or forthcoming in magazines including Prairie Schooner, Poetry Northwest, Crab Orchard Reivew, RHINO and CV2. She teaches creative writing at Anne Arundel Community College. She has five poetry chapbooks. Find her online at megedenbooks.com or on Twitter at @ConfusedNarwhal.