I love Arthurian literature and history. I also really like Sean Bean, so this was a real treat. Someone once said that 'if a story is worth hearing, it is worth hearing again and again'. That's why these tales are still with us and this is a very good way to hear them as often as you want. There are many Arthurian tales out there. This is the classic sword in the stone version, and suitable for the whole family.
After some previous comments regarding the narrative abilities of Ron Keith, I feel the need to stick up for the man a bit. It is true that his accent is pretty much a one noter, even Canadians and Americans sound like they're from Yorkshire. And most of his women, not all, tend to sound a little Pythonesque. I find that amusing more than annoying though. He does do justice to the story, he doesn't rush, he sounds as though he is really enjoying himself, I feel that the main characters gain personality through Mr. Keith. I have a distinct image and flavor now of Alan Banks and Annie Cabbot. So while he does not dramatize the reading, he lends it a lot of character. Aftermath is as good as any Peter Robinson book, if you like P.D. James and Elizabeth George, you will appreciate Peter Robinson.
As a big fan of P.D. James, I was quite pleased to discover Peter Robinson. I have listened to two other Peter Robinson books besides Cold is the Grave and found them all quite satisfying and enjoyable. Robinson is all about character development, each one is really fleshed out psychologically and then he tells you what each character is thinking, feeling, wearing, listening to, eating and so on at any given moment. Obviously this kind of detail can drive some people crazy, especially if a lot of action is what they are looking for, but I really like that kind of detail, and Robinson does do it well. The narrator may take a little getting used to, he tends to sort of "chortle out" his female voices sometimes, but really he is quite good. Cold Is the Grave was a good story and Robinson leaves you wondering who did it till the last, but that is not even why I like his books. It's more the journey there rather than the destination that makes it a good listen.
This was my first Nevada Barr mystery. I may give her one more chance, but I was not overly impressed with this one. Most of the characters were walking sterotypes. Big fat stupid white lawman. Big fat heart'o' gold African American lawman. Completely crazy southern white racists. Savvy and wise 16 year old African American teenage girl. Foul mouthed young black football star who appears to seriously disrespect women. The really hot and available Sheriff is just too typical. It goes on, I won't even mention what's up with the Southern Baptist minister. I have to take issue too with Annas treatment of her dog. I won't give out any real spoilers, but I have to wonder if Ms. Barr has ever had a dog, and worry if she has. It was also my first listen to this narrator. While I think she is really pretty good, I could hear her intake of breath before every sentence. At times, especially when listening on headphones, it became distracting. Instead listening to the story, I found myself listening for that next intake of breath.
Publishers these days seem to be vying with each other to find the youngest writer possible. It's the publicity gimmick du jour. Well, sure, young Mr. Paolini is talented, perhaps one day he will be a good writer. This story however sounds/reads exactly like what it is. A highly derivative and extremely simple over long dragon tale written by a teenage boy.
I was already familiar with the book, and was delighted to find it on Audible complete and unabridged. Whoo Hoo! I think Roy Dotrice does an admirable job with the narration. A formidable task with Martin's complex story and myriad characters. For those of you who are not familiar with the next two volumes in the Song of Ice and Fire series, you are in for a treat, it just gets better and better. Martin keeps you on your toes, if you think you know who you can trust, just wait.
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