Crafting And Building: Rebirth of an Empire, by Steve Berry (Crown imprint) is the first in a series of books detailing the history of the ancient game of chess. As mentioned in the blurb, the story is based on actual events from our current period, so the setting and the period are as accurate as can be. And despite the subject matter, the story is lighthearted and entertaining, with lots of humor and enjoyable character traits presented by the main characters. There are humorous moments, as well as serious ones, and plenty of both in this enjoyable tale of crafting and building. The characters are lively and fun to watch, and it is easy to lose yourself in the story, as you slip into your role and play along with the crazy decisions that each of the main characters make along the way.
Crafting And Building: Rebirth of an Empire starts off as a humorous piece about a young woman who gets so excited about starting her new job as a Crafter that she starts a construction company, complete with a purple and golden mobile for her crafters to work from! Her two best friends, however, soon begin to doubt her motives, since they are suspicious of someone she calls "P. O." The two women help her gather materials for her craft shop but find out too late that she has purchased an addictive game called MCMap which can map any location on the screen for free, including the MCGroup itself! They scramble to stop her, but she's already pulled in a string and they are about to learn the hard way that crafting and building isn't always as innocent and fun as it seems.
As with most of Steve Berry's previous novels, crafting and building looks great on paper, but the execution doesn't match up to the design vision. However, crafting isn't the fault of this book, as the writing style sometimes feels a little bit random and the plot elements lack strong character development. Overall, though, I'm a big fan of the MCamily and am looking forward to the rest of their adventures. If you're an avid gamer and want to see your favorite characters in your favorite online role-playing game, you should definitely check out Crafting and Building In Session 2: Rebirth of an Empire by Stacey Young. You'll probably enjoy the story more than the actual crafting and building, though, so keep reading.