this is what lord of the rings could have been. i personally didn't like LOTR (though i adore the movies).
the only problem with the narration for me is that the two narrators seem to have never gotten together to decide how to pronounce some of the proper nouns. they even change their own minds from book to book. a bit humorous to me actually. but you have to listen to the whole saga to hear the 20 odd discrepencies. apart from that i find their pacing to be very good. i have no trouble telling one character from another, and i'm tone deaf! and hearing the spin the two different narrators give to a particular character really helps to show how robert jordan understood people so well, and was able to put that into the story to make it feel so real.
this book is the begining of a huge saga. this particular book's only drawback is that the author had to take some editing decisions to make the book stand on it's own since the publishers didn't know if it would sell. book two also has some of these imperfections. but by book three, the saga had legs and the author was able to set his own pace and the story really began to shine. i suggest you listen to the prequil, "a new spring" to really get ahandle on what's coming, and get a feel for the world robert jordan created.
to put it metaphorically, this saga is like a locomotive... a bit ungamely as it gets rolling. but once it's up to speed it's elegant, majestic, and unforgetable. the books are long, but like a train ride, once your out of the city and rolling through the countryside, you realize you never want the journy to end!
I still pick up new tidbits, foreshadowing, and nuances every time I hear this book. Over the years I've read most books in this series twice and have listened to them on CD twice more. The audio format further highlights Jordan's genius and the fan's enjoyment.
A outstanding writer with a wonderful story to tell. I only wish he had lived to finish his final book.
If you enjoy epic tales, then I highly recommend this whole series. He brings together, truly, a whole world. By the middle of the series it might as well be a soap opera because there are so many story lines and each character has their own motives.
You can't wait to find out more with each line. Again, I highly recommend this whole series.
Fanatical Endurance Athlete, who listens to a lot of books while training.
Jordan's, 'The eye of the world' is the first in a classic series of the Wheel of Time. This was Jordan's first in the series and a great story in its own right, but as the series goes on Jordan's writing gets better and better.
The first is brilliant the rest get better in a well thought out plot.
This intro may seem slow to some, but it really is a great beginning to an amazing adventure. Not the best book in the series but it's one that will always be special to me simply because of the world that introduced me to.
If you want to spend 6 months of commuting wishing that your drive was longer so that you could listen to more.... This is your series.
My kids and I love fantasy books and were excited about starting a long series that we had heard a lot about. I'm not really sure where everyone gets that Michael Kramer is a great narrator unless they have stuck it out and listened to more books in this series. Frankly, he starts out AWFUL. We almost stopped listening just because of him. His cadence is so predictable and completely got on my nerves for the first 2/3 of the book. The first part that Kate Reading read seriously saved this book for us and we kept listening.
... and then about 2/3 of the way through it get SO much better. We are now almost finished with the 2nd book in the series and it is wonderful. Yes, this book has a slow start. But as you continue with the story you understand why - it NEEDS a slow start. I'm rating it pretty high even though I never thought I would get through it. Give it a chance and you will have a great start on an epic series.
This book is a great fantasy adventure, but be prepared to have a desire to listen to them all. I started out by reading my son's copy of volume two and was so intrigued I decided to listen to volume one while I read volume three (confusing, but worth it to catch up).
I have to say that I really enjoyed the narrator's voice characterizations. The range and diversity of voices for the various characters helped pull me into the story. I found it difficult to put away my Otis audio player after transits to/from work.
The story itself is very richly detailed. It is not difficult to imagine yourself being there and seeing the grandeur of the country, the hustle and bustle of towns and cities, the customs of differing contries or even towns, hearing histories of people and places, the shock and sometimes fear of seeing different races for the first time, and the tension of living during hard times.
The only detraction I fealt was the occaisional parallel references I would draw to other SciFi works such as Dune, Lord of the Rings, and Star Wars. These didn't occur often, but when they did, it was like ripping you out of one world and into another (particularly the Dune / Star Wars parallels). Usually, it was just when encountering, for the first time, names of people or places that sounded familiar.
All in all, it's a good book almost on par with Tolkein.
I was a little apprehensive at first. I tried to block out of my mind the Tolkien comparisons and that was hard at first. The beginning was very rough for me, as the narrator takes time getting used to. He is very bland and monotone at first (at first I stress). But, by the middle, you can feel the characters being fleshed out. And, as the book moved along and more characters started getting developed, I really started to enjoy it. The well written book has details in spades to its characters and landscape. Some might think it's too much, but I think exactly the opposite. The way the story is told really draws you in and makes you feel as if you were there (that's nerdy, but true). All in all, very well done, however the climax was a little meh for me.
*** for the first 1/3
***** for the last 2/3
Bottom line, give this book a chance and don't judge it by the first couple chapters. You won't regret it!
The book did a pretty good job of introducing a long story, while at the same time keeping it moving.
When I got to the end and decided it was worth going on to all of the rest.
Good story but VERY slow as the author found it necessary to describe everyones wardrobe down to the color of every tassle (and there are a lot of tassles) in the room whenever anyone interacts with a main character.
Michael Kramer sounds like his niche would have been reading the 1930s news to a captivating audience sitting around there home radios'. Kate is above average.
I have read reviews that the narrators get better...I truly hope.