As a Fan of J.R.R. Tolkien. I really like this book. This audio however, at times can barely be heard. (With the admittance that these are stock ear buds that come with certain RCA media players.) Will be sending an email to RCA as well, advising them of the problem.
I listen to books when I'm at work or doing chores. I prefer history and fantasy. My favorite audio book is Going Postal by Terry Pratchett.
When this book first came out I didn't buy it because I thought it would just be a retelling of the version of the story that appeared in The Silmarillion but that's not the case, this version is actually expanded. Now my only wish is that a similar expanded novelization of the story of Beren and Luthien would come out and also one about Tuor and Earendil since these three tales really need to be told together. I have the Lays of Beleriand from the Lost Tales series but those are too heavily annotated with different versions from widely varying drafts mixed together to be read as a novel.
Christopher Lee does a superb job. Like many other listeners have commented, this book requires one to know some of the major lore associated with the Silmarillion to grasp the terminology used in this book. Furthermore, this is a dark tragedy in the fullest traditions of ancient mythology, loaded with hubris, which many casual fans may find off-putting.
am not done with the book yet, but it gets better after chapter 4, the first 3 chapters are a bit boring, and it takes time to get used to the narrator.
Lots of wired words and namings, which makes it difficult to memories and stay connected to the story.
a bit difficult to imagine the scenes.
but over all i find it a nice book and a good experience.
While a great fan of JRR Tolkien I found the recording quality to be poor, this does not help given the already difficult linguistics Tolkien employs. Not for the casual listener.
Christopher Lee may be fun to watch as a vampire, but his narration literally sucks. It totally ruined the book for me. It was very difficult to concentrate on the story while he was putting me to sleep.
First let me say I could not wait to listen to this book, but now I will need to read it to understand what it was about. The narration by the reader sounded as though he was tired. He must have gotten a B12 shot toward the end of the book because he became more animated, but still every character sounded like an old grumpy dwarf. I do agree with putting more Tolkien's books on Audio, but not by this reader. There are many very good readers out there that could have been used, and not one that sounded as though they woke him to read. It did not do Tolkien justice to his book. Now that Robert Jordan's series is ending grab that reader for Tolkien's books.
Sadly, this book sounds more like the notes that Tolkien was making for the book, more than a story itself.
Christopher Lee's performance is excellent, but the telling of the story is far from the polished prose of The Lord of the Rings. I wouldn't recommend this book.
I am 2 hours into this book and can't listen anymore. I can't understand the narration (my bass is fully off now). There isn't any story or characters that are distinguishable. I wouldn't suggest this book if you are looking for an entertaining story.