I'm committed to finishing the series, but I almost switched to print due to the poor voice performance. The narrator is not the worst I have ever heard, but she is not far from it. Definitely preview before you buy.
Here in Paksenarrion's world many story lines continue their development. All worthwhile. All engrossing. As usual, Elizabeth Moon thrills and rewards her readers with excellence and humanity (even for Elvenkind, Kapristi, and Dragon.)
Despite the quality of the writing this was a difficult "listen". The reader's voice is grating and whiney, the characterizations unconvincing, and the cadence identical, over and over and over and over, the exact same rhythm. Dying, loving, learning, speaking, doesn't make any difference. I could only listen in short increments before the sameness of the raspy voice and the bizarre pronunciations would exceed my tolerance. Please do not use this reader for any more of Moon's wonderful work.
Kieri's sojourn in the glade. Arvid's acceptance of his inner "voice." Stammel's protection of the villagers.
We hear that the 5th volume will complete the tale (at least for now). I can hardly wait. Surely with a different reader.
Thank you, Ms. Moon, for writing for us!
For those of us who listen in order and know the proper pronunciations, listening was a bit painful. The story was very good, but the constant mispronunciations of names and places were off putting.
I will have trouble ever listening to this books again. I've un-recommended the series just because of this one reader.
Elizabeth Moon's imagination and story telling is as enjoyable as any Anne McCaffrey or David Weber stories
For an 8-book series, it would've been nice to have Jennifer Van Dyke read the entire series, even though there was decades between the start & finish.
Stammel's heroics brought tears to my eyes
When listening to any performance, there is a rhythm and flow to the story -whether book, opera, song, play. Every time Angela Dawe pronounced a town, country, character wrong it jarred the story. And she seemed to pronounce about 75% of the words wrong. Angela Dawe was very good in "Maybe This Time" by Jennifer Cruisie, but 3 years between books should've left her enough time to at least listen to ONE book if you're going to take on the 7th of 8 books, and she didn't. I kept thinking she was going to call one of the characters "Southy" since this performance had all the same "voices".
Listening to Angela tell this story was as difficult as listening to a 7 yr old take on the reading of Macbeth. Same level of pronunciation and story understanding. She almost ruined this book, it's only Elizabeth Moon's amazing storytelling skill that saved it at all.
Game Store Owner
Elizabeth Moon is an amazing writer. Too bad they hired such a terrible reader for this novel. The first three in the series were well read but this one sounds like the reader is trying to force a frog out of her throat every time she speaks for a man. And her pronunciations? Blech!
Never if I could get another version of the rest of the series.
The story line and characters.
Continuity of the story line and characters. E. Moon always tells an enjoyable tale for me.
I have thoroughly enjoyed this series, and have always liked E.Moon. This was the first audio book I have bought that was difficult for me to complete listening to the end. I had read a previous review that said "read the book", and I now know why. The story is great, but it was a very difficult listen. The voices kept changing, and not always the same voice with the same character. It got a little better toward the end. The pronunciation of some of the characters and places took me awhile to connect with the other 3 books.
I am an infomaniac...seeking insight, clarity & understanding...
all books till now have captivated me... I am extremely upset at the narration change...it is horrible...characters carefully crafted over 6 long books are totally warped and NO attempt was made to harmonize The sounds of all previous books. i have only once requested a refund out of nearly a hundred books. i will on this...it is work to slog thru
it is inexcusable to do this to loyal fans of The series who've spent huge amounts of time AND. money following this series...
it should be redone with one of the two other narrators who worked well together and retained the continuity.. this book it's a tragic disappointment and following/meeting Babcock into The story is extremely difficult... the whole way this person traps is devoid of The pace and pentameter of The rest of the series
I am sooooo pissed off! Shame!
I am a 40ish woman with more interests than time but some of my favorite things are books, audio books and e-books. I have over 325 audio titles and have already listened to about 2/3rds of them. I drive over 25000 miles a year and my listening keeps me sane on the road.
First off this was a horrible narration. She didn't even verify the pronunciation of names and places from previous recordings which only tells me she was not very professional or prepared. Her acting was terrible and it made this a struggle to get through. Beyond that the story was not quite the quality I expect from Ms. Moon.
Some of the plot devices were clever and I like the overall direction that the tale seems to be moving toward, but I was unhappy with the Stammil (sp?) story line. It should have been handled with more care and in a less hurried manner. It felt like a hasty choice to close a quick storyline and that cheapened what could have been very moving.
I was irritated with some of the elven plot twists as well. Who is this new King and why should we care? I didn't feel much interest for him and what he stood for.
I also felt like the bastard son of royalty theme has run its course and should be retired. The "how many former soldiers can become royalty?" game is getting a little stale at this point.
I love the Arcolin direction. His story is my favorite beyond Paks. I love his interactions with the stone folk. He is such an interesting and charming character. I also love the Dragon, but then again doesn't everyone love dragons?
I still enjoy the series overall and will keep going to the conclusion. I am giving this one 2.5 stars because the story should weigh heavier than the actor.
I do not understand why this narrator was chosen. She is misspelling everything. The voices are different than the rest of the series. I can't believe no one made sure she knew how to pronounce words. Disappointed to spend $17.00 to hear her.
I know I'm repeating sentiments already expressed, but the production of this audiobook leaves a lot to be desired. First of all, the constant changing of narrators is poor planning. It is distracting and annoying to find that the names are pronounced so very differently from narrator to narrator
In the end, I had to buy a written copy in order to continue to enjoy the series. The biggest sin? Pronouncing Paks as Packs instead of Pox, followed closely by the TIge instead of Tage, Almost as irritating was Mike-eli instead of Ma-Kel-e, Chi-a and Si-a instead of Chay-a and Say-a. It was like nails on a chalkboard.