The in depth pervasive environment, history, well fleshed out characters. It's an epic fantasy realm unlike any other.
The kick-off to a great series!
He is probably one of the better readers I've listened to, perhaps the best. The Malazan books are full of different cultures, characters, languages, etc. and I think the reader does a great job at trying to create different accents, styles of speach, and attitudes for each character.
The first 30+ hour movie!
Why did he give Khalam a nasaly voice?! I am seriously holding this against the reader. I imagine Khalam as almost Khal Drogo-ish type of character and the reader makes him sound like British Milhouse from the simpsons.
The story is second to none but the narrator misses the mark on several characters.
Quick Ben. Because he and his ilk are the reason I like fantasy.
His voice for Fiddler was a travesty. Really detracted from the experience having one of my favorite characters sounding like a crackhead. Quick Ben's and Kalam's voices were likewise bad.
Had to pee a couple times.
The Malazan Book of the Fallen is, in my opinion, the greatest epic fantasy to date and anyone that loves fantasy is sure to thoroughly enjoy this/these book(s).
Steven Erikson has written a story that is very original and relies very little on Fantasy genre tropes. I can honestly say that throughout the reading, I very rarely predicted what would happen next, and had a genuine investment in the outcome, and that isn't meant as faint praise. This was aided by a fine reading from Lister, who excels at both drama and at a variety of character voices (even if a couple weren't as pleasant to listen to as one might wish).
So, I can say that I enjoyed listening to Gardens of the Moon in its entirety. I won't, however, be listening to the next installment, thanks to a number of aspects that had me rolling my eyes. It often seems as if characters are all teetering on nervous breakdown. Even the hardest, most stoic of these will suddenly appear to be fighting off the loss of their soul and on the verge of crying as soon as they're given a POV passage. Further, a major part in this story is played by a character named Anomander Rake, whom the author goes to so much effort to make out as a strong but silent badass that I was constantly rooting for him to die a gruesome death. The author also has a penchant for flowery prose, which can sometimes border on the absurd 'the must of rotting ice?' and the less spoken of his brief passages of poetry, the better.
I'd say by all means give Gardens of the Moon a shot if you're interested in a sweeping high-magic fantasy setting. Even if you find yourself agreeing that it isn't worth carrying on through the rest of the series, I doubt you'll feel you wasted your time.
I don't always listen to my books, but when I do.. I listen to Audible.
I really enjoyed this book. I am fairly new to audiobooks, and completely new to Erikson. I must say I was more than pleasantly surprised. An interesting world, it takes some getting used too but once your are IN, well, it's hard to get out. The world is hard, gritty and tumultous. The narrator gives a good performance, distinct voices for most major characters. This is the first performance I have been graced with by Lister, and outside of minor quibbles with some pronunciation (likely due to different nationalities) I truly enjoyed his reading. The biggest problem is that there is NOT MORE!! This is the first of many books in a series, and unfortunately the only one on audible.
I have seen this series recommended everywhere and so i thought I might give it a shot.
I completely regret that. I have forced myself through it, because some people have said it gets better, but it really doesn't.
Maybe i'm too used to people like brandon sanderson who build internally consistent worlds and don't rely on the Tolkienesque deus ex-machina school of world building. In this book, everything can happen, everybody is a god, people randomly "shift souls", there are a ton of beings that are multiple millenia old.
The whole world makes no sense, the motivation of the people is completely nonsensical, everybody is magic, but it devolves into a dragon ball z type contest, where the next confrontation is even MORE MAGIC! rinse and repeat.
I'm used to complicated books, I read a ton of fantasy, maybe this isn't a good book as an audiobook (because the narrator constantly sounds out of breath and his constant super emphatic style where everything is super important makes you just annoyed), but I have devoured Anathem by Neal Stephenson as an audiobook and that was far more complex in the topics discussed.
This book on the other hand was basically just magical word salad. And if the character was needed as a plot device in the next chapter a thingamajig kept him alive or not. and then he used a god as a pawn, or not. and then the gods use the mortals as chess pieces except when they don't.
The book is especially bad because I listened to it after words of radiance, which is an absolutely fantastic book.
Fifty something, small business owner, married, no children. Love travel, beaches, tropical isles, classic cars and listening!
I tried, I really did, I'm 4 hours in and have absolutely no clue, I don't know, maybe it's my listening style but I continually reset and listened again. Perhaps it is the narration or my habit of listening in short bursts, I'm totally lost, after 7 days of trying, many resets and no idea of the plot or ability to follow the characters, I finally gave up.
Of course, "your mileage may vary"
I want more from this author and this series available on audible. I have to drive/travel a lot for my job, hours at a time and I love to listen to entertaining books that are over 20 hrs. Please add the rest of the series.
If I recommended this book to a friend, I would warn them of its complexity and uneven writing. The world building is impressive, but there are too many view points that are confusing. The plot wanders.
Ralph Lister did an outstanding job reading this book.
I have heard the books get better.
I have read the Malazan Book of the Fallen series in paperback. I enjoyed them so much that I plan to listen to each of the audio books as they are made available.
Thank you so much Audible.com for making Erikson part of my audio library.