This is it! Lord of Chaos is finally out in Unabridged format!
Jordan/WoT literati argue about their favorite scene or the best part of the series. Ever since this book was published the battle at the wells has ranked near the top. This book and the two before it are Jordan at his best, his most innovative and balanced. I highly recommend the series (make sure you start with book one).
As for the audiobook... Michael Kramer and Kate Reading have been doing the narration for all 8 unabridged editions so far and they do a very good job of it. The only part of the narrations that bugs me in the slightest is Kramer's portrayal of Gawyn. How come Gawyn has a Brit accent and Elayne and the Emond's Fielders have normal accents? They're all from Andor... Anyway, very good production quality; engrossing story; able to fit on an iPod. What more could you ask for?
First off, let me say that I personally love Roy Dotrice. There were rumors that he was to play Maester Pycelle in the HBO Series. If he had to give that up to do the audio for book 5, I'd say that's a slim trade. Thankfully, they got Julian Glover to do Pycelle in the series so the role doesn't go flat. Book four with John Lee was a little jarring. The book was not up to the same standard as the first three and the voice was different so the two togethermade for a weird combination. I will say this for John Lee. I have a few of his other books and I can honestly say that I like him for Dumas. (3Musketeers, Monte Cristo, etc.)
Dotrice has a voice that's so full of character that it feels like my grandfather is reading to me again. After so many hours listening to him it's comforting.
Regarding the book... It's been a long time coming and there's been a lot of housekeeping done; there always is in a story of this magnitude.
A little trivia: George R. R. Martin used to write & produce tv episodes of Beauty and the Beast (Linda Hamilton, Ron Perlman - 1987). Roy Dotrice co-starred and played the role of Father in the tv series. Pretty interesting, huh?
A lot of people are angry about the loss of Roy Dotrice and have posted about it. Others are apparently automatons and complain about the complaining being done by the complainers. Ugh...
About a month before the fourth book came out I went ahead and re-listened to the entire series. Very enjoyable and well-written. Roy Dotrice is a favorite of mine because I went to his One Man Show a long time ago. It's still the longest running one-man stage show. Anyway, when I got Feast for Crows I couldn't help but be distracted. Don't listen to the other books right before you listen to these. Nothing sounded right because I was so used to Roy's gruff voice and different accents. (I loved the way he did Dolorous Edd, eh?) Everybody except for Pod and Arya sound like they're barrel chested in this one. Even Pycelle sounds a little spry. ::shrug:: My advice? Just get used to it.
The story in this one is two books worth of material for only half of the characters. The other half is coming. For more info: www.georgerrmartin.com. That was a little aggravating because I love the Tyrion story most but at least Jaime was there. Cersei's story ends very satisfactorily. ::grin:: Sam's encounter in Braavos didn't pan out but "training comes first" I guess. Brienne sees action with Pod. Sansa's marital status seems unimportant to anyone yet again and there's massive rumblings in Dorne, but that may be due to the spicy food.
Everybody hold on... There is so much confusion in all these reviews as to the state of the Robert Jordan audiobooks. Let me just clear it all up. First, Yes there are two versions of Lord of Chaos. Abridged and Unabridged. Second, Yes audible will most probably carry the Unabridged version when it is published. It's a cash cow for them.
When the series first came out TOR gave the audiobooks job to Publishing Mills. PM started making 3 hour abridged versions of each book with Mark Rolston reading. When the 9th book, Winter's Heart, came out in 2000 TOR switched over to Unabridged versions from Audio Renaissance with Kramer and Reading. After book 10 came out Audio Renaissance began remaking the audio versions of the first eight books in Unabridged format. They've done 1-5. Lord of Chaos is set to be released on August 1, 2005. It's taking a while because they've also got book 11 in the works. #11, Knife of Dreams is set to be published in October of 2005. (see audiorenaissance.com)
Hope this helps!
This series is a cornerstone of the bookstore fantasy genre. By that I mean that the first 6 books were amazing and you couldn't put them down. The rest were good enough to include but they were only BESTSELLERS because of the acclaim generated by the preceding volumes.
As for the audiobooks, let me say this. A long time ago the publishers made an audio series for these books. They were abridged but they had a great narrator. When the 9th book was first published they decided to start making the entire series Unabridged. This was a very important decision. The fantasy genre by its nature builds its own mythology along the way. Whittling a 25-36 hour book down to 3 hours requires a lot of cutting and what you lose along the way is a lot of the most charming back story and history.
As far as the narrators... Let's just say they aren't Scott Brick (check out his books) and leave it at that. If you're really interested in the story you won't be bothered by the reading. It's actually pretty decent.
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