I've always been a Guy Gavriel Kay fan, but this is by far his best work yet. And the narrator was perfect. This was one of those books I didn't want to end.
It took me a bit of time to get into this book. There isn't sweeping action and the number of characters & cultures introduced can be confusing. But, as I let go and let the story roll over me, I understood the beauty of the words, the subtle strength of the story and the delightful interpretation of Simon Vance. As I told my brother, realize the story is based on Asian culture and view it through that lens and you'll see the story as a lotus flower slowly unfolding into something wonderful. Might not be your cup of tea, but it certainly has become one of my favorite books.
This was my first GGK novel and I absolutely loved it. Those reviewers who said nothing happened must have been listening to a different book. It held my interest from start to finish. It is well worth the credit.
I'm a big fan of Kay's. He peoples his worlds with some of the most fully human characters in the fantasy field. There's not much action but a great deal of tension and subtlety, which is a rare and enjoyable thing. The world is fully realized and believable as are the motivations of the characters.
The reader is both brilliant and a bit off. The narration is beautiful holding a consistent and appropriate melancholy throughout. Where he's a bit off is in attempting to give some of the characters Chinese accents. Those don't quite work. That's a minor niggle, though. I very much enjoyed the story.
I'm a huge fan of both Guy Gavriel Kay and Simon Vance so this audio book was a treat! I wish Vance would read more of Key's books. If you like historic fantasy (light on the fantasy) these books are amazing.
This whole novel feels as if it was a poem, and every word of it is in its place. If the author had a mind to write a phone book, I can easily imagine enjoying every page even irrespective of the story itself.
I loved the book and this narration brought it to life. A great story of intertwined lives and political intrigue. The addition of subtle humor here and there gives a respite to the tense and sorrowful nature of most war-themed books.