First, I just wanted to say that I have listened to several different audio books before. Second, my review mainly concerns the performance of the reading, rather than the material itself, although AFFC does leave something to be lacking in my opinion.
Roy Dotrice, although gave a decent performance in the first two books of the series has since then completely fell off the cliff. I mean to say that his performance is inconsistent in terms of character accents, as well as tone infliction.
For the first three books Jamie Lannister’s voice is one of a Scottish mix, however in this book Roy saw fit to change the accent to more of a southern English accent. He changes Arya’s voice in this book from other books into that of a gremlin, basically the same one he used for the magi in the first book. At one point he speaks as though he is Lord Eddard Stark and takes on the tone of an elderly man (think almost Aemon T), Eddard was thirty-five when he was beheaded. Furthermore, halfway through the book he changes the accent he had used for Little Finger previously in this book as well as others! Also, at times you can hear Roy breath and the echo as if he is speaking into a tin can, which he probably is. Furthermore, at times you can tell where the recording must have halted for the evening or lunch because mid sentence the infliction, and if your especially unlucky, the volume of the voice is completely different.
I'm sorry but for the life of me I do not know why he is hired to do anymore of these books, maybe he wasn't I haven't purchased ADWD. However, I would be truly ashamed of this work. Yes, it is long and tedious (TWSS)to read a forty something hour book, but that is the nature of the position and the listener should be the one to suffer. I know individuals will say “oh, the story is so good why is it even an issue?” It is an issue because it takes you completely out of the story if a different accent is used to represent a different character when all you have to go off of is the accent of their voice.
It is time us audio book lovers started to demand superior performances. If you purchased this audio book outright it would cost the same price as purchasing the entire series in print. We pay, however for the convenience of having it read with accents to help us add imagination were focusing on travel or other tasks may limit our mental imaginary process. For this reason I give the performance one star.
I like the books, not this one particularly, but I feel that a different voice actor should be selected for future performances. I find it surprising that Rob Inglis and Stephen Fry can keep the same accents per charter for 3+ books in a series (LOTR & HP) but Roy Dotrice can not. I would also like to add that at points he mispronounces Braavos , Catelyn (and Cate), and various other words. Occasionally he will pronouns the words correct, only to go back and mispronounce them in other sections.
I know I am going to catch a lot of heat for this review but I am not over the top happy about the book.
Audio Performance - One of the best parts of this book. This speech performance is truly excellent because the narrator's voice is so soothing and calming, but at the same time brings to mind every western I watched as a child. The recording of the book was excellent as well, as only one or two times I noticed a difference in pitch, representing a stop in recording or redo or whatever. The only down side is that combined with Stephen Kings' over descriptive style of writing it is like listing to your grandfather tell the never ending tale, which results sleep. Otherwise, and for the most part, the audio performance was excellent.
Book - I love westerns, love 'em. This is not really a western other than it involves gunslingers and the desert. Yeah, the dialog is spot on at points, although the excessive use of "Yar" is a tad odd. My main complaint is that it includes elements from so many other genres'. In the end, it was too much for me, although I do appreciate the effort to combine it all. I do like the majority of surroundings and dialog, but the excessive use of certain words and concepts really took me out of the book. (i.e. references to things/songs/places in our world that happened prior to America's wild west time period).
Advice - If you plan on listening to this book don't listen thinking "typical western," it's not. Don't get comfortable in the surroundings thinking, okay this is a "typical western," it's not. For somebody like me that was hard to do because that is what I expected, given the title, names places and majority of events. I think you would have to be a person who is obsessed with King's writing or somebody who didn't know about certain references made within the book to really appreciate it.
In Short - I really appreciated and enjoyed the western parts and I may listen more into the series now that I can come at the book not expecting a true western. It's like craving a steak and getting a cheese burger, yeah you can enjoy it but it's not quite what you had expect.
This story is truly amazing and involved. Even the chapters that I wasn't too crazy about, which happen within every book, still had me interested and entertained.
I am a fantasy fan through and through, magic, dragons, swords, sign me up.
Yes, the tone of his voice requires that you pay attention and enjoy every word.
Either one of the various imp chapters or Jon, as everyone I am sure.
My only complaint is one mirrored by others, the narrator creates several inconsistencies in pronunciation, and keeping with charter dialects. Also, I noticed at certain times it sounded like he was speaking into a tin can, there was an echo. Granted I listen for the majority by headphones so maybe my clarity in noticing the tin can effect is more noticeable than others, but that does not excuse simple character dialect consistency issues. Every time he speaks as either Theon Greyjoy or Gendry he uses a different accent. Now that I have listened to part of sea of swords I can tell future listeners that it only gets worse. If Stephen Fry can hit a home run with the harry potter series Roy Dotrice has no excuse.
Report Inappropriate Content