Really can't comment on the story, I just downloaded for kindle with the audible version for whispersync. Hoping for a little light entertainment this evening--sort of a bedtime story. Very disappointed with narration.
No comment as yet.
Strident, grating, and annoying. Ruining this as an evening's quiet entertainment. Guess I'll haul out the reading glasses and read myself to sleep. Waste of the extra 3.99.
Suffice it to say that I am committed to finishing GRRM's Songs of Ice and Fire series, so there was no question of me spending time with the narrative. This is book 5 in the series. If you haven't been reading it, start at book one. If you've read the previous four books, you are already hooked, and don't need a review of the "story." I'm here to fuss about the performance.
On the plus side, I found Roy Dotrice's basic reading voice pleasant enough. I was actually grateful that this book wasn't narrated by the high-voiced-guy-belting-from-his-diaphragm, as in some other recordings I've purchased here. (Note to diaphragm guy: You are not on stage now--we're all right here....often with ear buds in. All that screaming makes me feel like I've died and gone to Chucky Cheese.)But, when Dotrice tries to do Danerys Targaryen, he channels the Wicked Witch of the West doing Mickey Mouse, with an Irish brogue that slips in 50% of the time, just to keep you wondering. Not quite the beautiful young dragon queen with silver blonde hair and lavender eyes.As we go deeper into the text, he can also be a tad imprecise about where to stop and start his characterizations (its a long read, after all). Sometimes the character gives us the tag, or some exposition, sometimes the character doesn't kick in for the first sentence of the dialogue. Communication is always a collaborative event, but occasionally one's own talent for sorting things out, while keeping up with the narrative, is showcased more than the modest listener may desire.Really, none of the characterizations are good. But this isn't a problem for Dotrice, alone. We aren't children being entertained by dad making funny voices. How about this for a change: A narrator with a pleasant voice who. just. reads. Again for emphasis: stop doing these silly characterizations, and just read.Read with nuance, with inflection, with passion, even. But. just. read.I also get the feeling whoever casts these things thinks they are supposed to mimic the author--as if that person were also the story teller. Here's a clue: that's not what they mean by "authorial voice."While Dotrice's voice is better than some, it's a quite rough and garbled for a narrative about young sexy characters.A smoother voice would have been my preference.(Alistair Cooke, where are you when we need you? ) The prerequisites for narrators should be: 1) a voice that is delightful to listen to, no matter what it is saying; 2) the ability to read with inflection and nuance; 3) the right (as an employee) and good judgment (as an adult reader) to eschew characterization. If you'd like me to handle future auditions, just let me know.
I'm sure it will be better than nothing on a long trip when reading a book isn't possible or convenient. Thankfully, I'll have the actual book for all other purposes.
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