If the author would have left out the multitude of swear words. It could have been much better.
I would have kept most of the scenes, rather I would have made it a cleaner read. I was not expecting the vulgarity in this book.
I won't be reading or listening to any more of the series because of this.
This story is like your most disappointing and frustrating sexual experience.
Several times in the narrative it promised pleasure and each time it just turned into self-conscious bumbling.
The dialogue is forced and
Uncomfortable, the vulgarity is juvenile.
The experience completely forgettable.
> When I listened to this it was hard to grasp who is the protagonist, who is the good guy who is the bad, what are the character's motives, where the story is taking place.
> The writer has poor naming sense.
> Although the book is dark it isn't depressing.
> Death in the story has meaning to it
> Lots of cliches
> An excellent read for those in middleschool or highschool
> Not as good as Patrick Rothfuss's King Killer Chronicles.
The good news is that the story line is interesting and cohesive. The bad news is, unfortunately, everything else. The characters are idealized stereotypes. Their reactions to people and situations bear no relationship to real people and real situations. It's as though a 14 year old wrote the dialogue. Which brings us to the narration. Mr. Boehmer has three modes of reading: (i) evangelical descriptions of the characters emotional reactions; very breathy, very long winded, very unnecessary; (ii) descriptions of places and events; monotone like reading the instruction manual for a video player; and (iii) long transitions; monotone, slowly read regardless of the pace of the story. None are pleasant. All are drawn out. On balance, I don't believe the story line is so good that it is worth what you have to go through.
The story was what I expected, and very reminiscent of the genre 30 years ago. The story and action are fun! A gamer can almost hear the dice rolls as the characters enter confrontations. (Not saying it was based on a game, just that it had the action and tension.)
As others have mentioned, the characters are a little flat. The female characters stood like cardboard cutouts propped up in an otherwise 3D world. But hey, some folks see the world that way, and perhaps it's good to be reminded of this fact. This book is mostly about the world and story, which had enjoyable substance.
While some reviewers found this book to be gory, it could readily be deemed realistic. When people are stabbed, there is blood. Death is messy, and death by blades is bloody. In a story about assassins, realism demands some gore. Compared to the movies, no, this is not a G-rated story about killers. It seems likely that a movie of this book would have much more gore than this book.
Judging by the narration, it's hard to tell anything about Weeks writing. The story was read with a choppy, intense cadence that flowed well with the action scenes, but felt relentless and harsh in its pervasiveness. The only exception was the occasional character dialog which, thankfully, sounded natural. This odd cadence was fine for one book, especially when expected after reading reviews; however, it is too pronounced and uncomfortable for this listener to move on to the next book.
The story of our main character's ascent from street urchin to the most formidable assassin is truly gripping.
Nobody's hands are absolutely clean in this. It's a brutal world and all of the characters in it are doing what they have to do to survive and occasionally, thrive. There is no squeaky clean good guy, and even the vilest of the villains have more depth than just cardboard cut outs. There is a brooding pessimism hanging around this story. The worst in human nature is so openly displayed, that the shining moments really shine.
I'm not really crazy about this narrator. I don't like his voice or the way he reads for this. Try as he might, He comes off sort of flat. It's not that he's a bad narrator, but I think this was an ill suited book for him.
This book kept me in very good company for a long trip.
Audiobooks are my workaround to the pesky laws forbidding reading while driving. And I'm pretty sure my dog likes them too.
I have to start with the worst part about this book: The narrator. I usually can be pretty forgiving of a narrator's quirks in intonation, pronunciation, or accent, especially after listening for a few hours and growing accustomed to his or her unique approach to reading. Not so with Paul Boehmer. It sounded like he was reading to a child, stressing every word, or the wrong words, as though every thought, idea, or utterance was some grand revelation that required special emphasis. I thought this might fade as the book went on, or that I would at least grow used to it, but it distracted so severely from the story, that I'm not sure if the novel would have been so bad if I had just read it myself. I often did not know how a character was really feeling, and had to frequently guess at the intentions of a character because of the reading that was so over-emphasized that it became bland and oddly monotone. When everything is important, nothing is.
As to the story: it was a cliche tale of a young boy striving to emulate the rogue hero, a man who deserves no admiration, yet receives the undying devotion of our young protagonist. Kylar (as he is ultimately called) is convinced that there must be a softer side to his master's sharp edges, and naturally he is right, as there is no rugged hero without a deep, emotional self hidden beneath the rough exterior. Blah, blah, blah. "Never fall in love" was a phrase too oft repeated to have any meaning - and it soon assumed the opposite effect making it painfully clear to the reader that the whole point was for our protagonist to fall in love (and with a young woman whom he had saved as a young child). Very little was original about this story. Brent Weeks has demonstrated wit in various writings I've seen (I actually sought out his books based on a review he wrote...), but I saw none of this in this novel.
I won't be picking up the follow-up to this slop. I could not care less about the fate of these characters. And I certainly cannot listen to a single moment more of this narrator's awful interpretation of the text.
I'll try another Brent Weeks novel ... I still have some hopes. Just with a different storyline and a different narrator.
The characters seemed one sided in the beginning but that all changed by the end
Emotion and name pronunciation
Started slow but then it reached a point where I would sit in my car for 15-20 minutes just to see where the story was going