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James S

MN | Member Since 2009

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  • The Pride of Chanur: Chanur, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 18 mins)
    • By C. J. Cherryh
    • Narrated By Dina Pearlman
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (202)
    Performance
    (182)
    Story
    (181)

    No one at Meetpoint Station had ever seen a creature like the Outsider. Naked-hided, blunt toothed and blunt-fingered, Tully was the sole surviving member of his company -- a communicative, spacefaring species hitherto unknown -- and he was a prisoner of his discoverer/captors the sadistic, treacherous kif, until his escape onto the hani ship The Pride of Chanur.

    Ellen says: "A whirl of worlds."
    "Wonderful intro to the Compact, Hani, Kif, etc."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you listen to The Pride of Chanur again? Why?

    Yes, definitely. I read this back in the 80's after I was intrigued by the cover. Seeing human Tully looking out from behind the feline Hani captured my imagination and Cherryh's storytelling surprised and captivated me. Having the story from Pyanfar's perspective as she figures out just what escaped on Meetpoint, and all that leads to, is great.Cherryh's ability to tell a story from an alien's perspective is to me, unequaled.The reader does a fine job too, capturing Pyanfar's attitude quite well.


    What did you like best about this story?

    The entire premise and introduction of the races of the Compact. Much of the experience thus far from this first book is superficial except for the Hani, but the foundation is there and I remember how Cherryh builds on it in later books, where we even get to think like a Kif. The unfathomable methane breathers who perplex and surprise us and the oxygen breathers alike. She did a fabulous job having distinctive alien races that aren't just sterotypes.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    Tough to say because many are memorable and I don't want to give anything important away, but one sequence stands out and can be kept sort of generic. I liked the tension when the Pride was trying to stay silent as the Kif searched for them, then Pyanfar's surprise for them with the food, and the description of the breakfast the crew shared after they finished preparing the "surprise." It was enjoyable to hear what Pyanfar thought about through the entire sequence, and how the crew conducted itself.The other was a very simple answer Tully gave Pyanfar that said so much in a few words, "Your crew laughed." That probably makes no sense out of context, but it captured so much of his experience on the station, and also gave me a great mental image of how the Pride crew acted before everything goes crazy and the story takes off.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    Laugh. There was plenty of tension but there was gallow's humor at times (including when I realized what Pyanfar was doing with the "surprise" mentioned above) or the behavior of the Kynnn's "trades" that made me laugh a couple times and smile a few others.


    Any additional comments?

    This is the first of five "Chanur" books. It is a standalone book and is wonderful by itself. I recall enjoying the trilogy (books 2-4) even more back in the 80's, but it is very important listeners realize that the next books are a trilogy. I remember reading the first or second of the trilogy and it was just such a hanging ending that my reaction was, "Oh no!" with the realization that I'd have to wait a while for the next book.I remember author C.J.Cherryh had an afterword (or maybe introduction?) thanking the publisher for allowing her to do that as she feared they would insist on her making it two books (and leaving out some parts of the story) or introducing/adding an artificial end to that book. Although it was tough on the reader, it allowed her to tell the story as she thought it should be told. Remembering that, I will purchase and download books 2, 3, and 4 all together when I have 3 credits saved up. For listeners of book 1 who like it, keep that in mind if/when you get book 2. The trilogy is one big story. Hey Audible, how about giving us the option to get the Chanur trilogy for one or two credits?

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