This first installment of the "Song of Ice and Fire" series is one of the best listens I've had the pleasure of enjoying since I started with Audible. The characters are aptly described without going into such minute detail as to become boring. The storyline is completely unpredictable and keeps you on the edge of your seat wondering what will transpire next! I absolutely love the narrator of the story! His change of accents and tones gives the story an added flair that only enhances the experiance.
Now starting into my 3rd volume, I am saddened and dissappointed to learn Mr. Dotrice will not narrate all of the series but rest assurred the story will be worth the listen even if the narrator changes (no offense to Mr. Dotrice!)
The story could have been interesting, but after only 1 hour, I had to stop! The narrator has such a dreary, slow, and monotone voice that the book was no longer worth listening to.
Loved it, longed for it, was dissapointed at the end. There was no closure!! I don't want to have to wait for the next book to be published. It's just not fair!!!
It is a fast going story, filled with vivid images. I am so glad there is another book to pick up right away to keep the story going. The reader is excellant.
I was amazed when listening to this book that it started off so slow! I listened for hours and NOTHING important had happened. I could not tell you the first thing about the story and what was going on. I guess it gets better, based on the other reviews, but I'll never know.
This book and its two sequels, A Clash of Kings and A Storm of Swords, were simply the best audio books I have heard in three years as an Audible member. The writing is incredible, the characters real and well-realized, the narration brilliant. At over 36 hours a book unabridged, they were a feast for the ears and the imagination. It is not too much to say that George R.R. Martin could teach J.R.R. Tolkein a thing or two about epic fantasy.
The books are so good I went out and bought them in large-format paperback just to own them, because I wanted the author to have more of my money. I will listen to these again.
This is one of the best series of the genre. I have been in this world of kings, knights, treachery, intrigue and suspense for months! The person who said that Roy Dotrice's vocal stylings were hard to get used to must have been listening to something else. The man has to voice dozens of different people, and he does so in a way that makes each character instantly recognizable, and fits the books atmosphere perfectly. I find it difficult now to listen to anything without his reading. I'm not usually a fawner, but these books are what happens when you get an expert writer together with an expert reader. I can't say enough good things about the author, narrator and story. The only thing I'm bummed about is that the next book in the series wont be released until August. If you like the genre, you'll love these books, and the books lengths are well worth the points/money. This is truly what fantasy should be. (Start with A Game of Thrones, then A Clash of Kings, then A Storm of Swords, then eventually, when it comes out.....A Feast for Crows)
I really enjoyed this series. I have all three books and I just finished listening to the entire series for a third time as a refresher in anticipation of the fourth books release (November '05). It's mostly swords, with just enough sorcery to plant is squarely in the fantasy realm.
The settings and lives of the common folk are dark and squalid, which gives it a particularly historic and believable feeling, unlike so many fantasy novels that are apparently set in Southern California. Another aspect of uniqueness and believability is in the fact that, without giving too much away, so many of the main characters are killed off over the course of the series. The good guys don't always come out on top - and may not have been all that good to start with - and while some villains are truly evil, others just have motivations that are at odds with the protagonists. All of this lends to rich believable character development (while they live).
The narrator does a tremendous job of giving unique voices to individual characters. Several of the major characters have unique tonal qualities and speech patterns that allow the listener to readily distinguish one character from another just by the sound of their "voice". Most narrators attempt to do this, but this guy is good!.
I have been a fan of George R. R. Martin's "Song of ice and Fire" series since day one. I've read all three of the books so far and very much enjoyed this audio version. I will admit that when I saw the publisher had chosen Roy Dotrice at the narrator I wasn't all that thrilled, and the adio sample I heard did not change that opinion, but decided to give it a try. I have to say that Dotrice turned out to be a great narrator. He's not perfect, but he has a large cast of characters to deal with and does as best a job as possible with giving each charcter a voice and sound all their own -- even making members of the same family sound similar in their accents, and remembering them all! As I wait for Martin to get it together and release the next book in the series, I will enjoy listening to Dotrice's narration on books 2 and 3.
I have never penned a review before but now I must. Although the story line is thick with the names of people and places, give this series (Song of Ice and Fire) a chance. Together, the author and the narrator have created a wonderful, yet harsh, world that will take on life in your imagination. The narrator's acting is the best that I have heard on audible; he adds rich depth to the characters. I found myself jeering the villains and cheering the heroes! For me, this audio series (still uncomplete) is addictive escapism at its best. P.S. I am not related to, or employed by, George R.R. Martin. :)