Sherwood, OR, United States | Member Since 2005
Both Bernard Lewis and Albert Hourani were recommended by my Arabic instructor as being reputable in both the Arab and Western Worlds. This book is brief in comparison to the works of Hourani. I would listen to this first. The narrator does a good job and the material is both interesting and relevant. This is good for both the casual and serious student of history. I’ve listened to all of the works available on Audible by this author and I would recommend them all.
Let me start by saying that Michael Kramer delivers an outstanding performance as a narrator. I love his other works and this one does not disappoint.
The story feels like an author's first book. Meaning that there are portions that are well written with a deep back story but at times the transitions are rough. There are several sections that you are just forced to plough through. With about four hours remaining I found myself wishing that he would just be done with it already.
Something strange happened as the story progressed - I found myself liking the characters less as the story unfolded. It wasn't a fatal flaw, just unfortunate. I think it came from every protagonist character being deeply conflicted. I don't think we really need to see inside the head of every protagonist. At some point you get tired of listening to them whine and you're just ready for them to start kicking some ass. You can go see your therapist later.
It feels like this story could have used some additional editing (you could say the same for Robert Jordan's later books though).
Overall the story was good. It isn't fair to compare Jacob to the masters of fantasy but I think for an early work this is a good book.
If you haven't already checked out the masters - Sanderson, Jordan, Rothfuss, Butcher - I'd recommend those first. If you've already gone through their works then this book would be a good addition to your library.
In this work Kevin returned to the formula that made his first book, Hounded, so entertaining. He also developed the overall story by fleshing out the tale by providing additional points of view. I found myself laughing heartily more times than I can count. Luke Daniels is amazing as always and the voices he develops for new characters contributed significantly to my overall enjoyment.
I think you'll enjoy this as much as I did. If you're a fan of the series this is a can't miss chapter.
I enjoyed the writing and the narration was good enough. After listening to the other works by Brandon Sanderson I'd become spoiled by both the writing and the narration.
When you're listening you can tell this an early work from Brandon. You can see how far he come as a writer and how much better his dialog has become. His core ability to tell a compelling story is clearly evident even in this, his first published book.
I do recommend this book but I recommend Brandon Sanderson's other books more.
I have to admit that my first exposure to Brandon Sanderson was not positive (initially). I encountered his writing when finishing Robert Jordan's The Wheel of Time series. I found the change in writing styles jarring at first but by the end I came to really appreciate Brandon's storytelling (and his succinctness in comparison to Robert Jordan). Since that time I've become a huge fan of his writing. His inventiveness when creating magic systems sets him apart from his contemporaries.
If you like epic fantasy, do yourself a favor and get this audio book. The story itself is good and the narrators are outstanding (Kate Reading & Michael Kramer are two of my favorite narrators).
I'd watched the HBO series "Band of Brothers" so I was already familiar Easy Company and Major Dick Winters. I'd recommend that you watch that first but even if you don't this is still a great book.
Major Winters was the rarest of men. He hails from a time where service to country was viewed differently. The book is worth listening to just to experience that different perspective but it is so much more than that.
This is one of my most often recommended audio books.
Do yourself a favor and pick this up, you'll enjoy it and be better for the experience.
I first read this book when it came out and put it on my list of favorite fantasy novels. I then took a 10 year break from fantasy and on a whim I picked up the audio book. I was so enthralled with the story that I couldn't wait to pick up the next audio book (though I'd read it when it was first published).
Narrators - This deserves its own section. Michael Kramer and Kate Reading are outstanding. I've come to view them as the best performers in the audio book arena today. I've gone so far as to search for other books by Michael Kramer because I know he always delivers an amazing performance.
I do want to warn you - this book is the beginning of a very long series and not all the books are as good as this one. That being said, you don't have to commit to the whole series. This book stands alone as a great story.
If you're a fan of fantasy you should absolutely pick this up. You won't be disappointed. I don't know any fantasy reader who hasn't been thrilled with this book.
I've been working in software for well over 15 years and this book contains so many fundamental principles in delivering a quality product that I recommended to my entire team. I'm a product manager in ecommerce at the number one sportswear company in the world and everyone I've convinced to read or listen to this book has had a similar reaction.
If you are involved with (or want to be) delivering software products you should make this an essential part of your business book library. I insist that all my direct reports listen or read this book.
Let's start with the narration. Michael Kramer is one of my all time favorite performers and one of the two narrators that I search for on Audible when looking for new titles. I have yet to listen to a novel that he's narrated that wasn't an outstanding performance. This is no exception.
I finished the other Mistborn books about a year ago and wasn't ready to start another story in that world. While I loved the series I needed a tale that took place in a world that wasn't so depressing. As it turns out I should have continued with this tale because it lacks that oppressiveness that I found so fatiguing in the first Mistborn books.
This is a good tale and I recommend it. The main characters are likable and I found myself laughing at the corny humor.
If you haven't listened to the other Mistborn books I urge you to take those up first. I think this story would be a bit flat without the background of the earlier works.
This could be the beginning of another series in the Mistborn world but even if another Mistborn book is never written this serves as a nice ending to the series.
I'd just completed "Fireblood: Whispers from Mirrowen" and had fairly low expectations when beginning this novel. I was pleasantly surprised. It is hard to believe that they are written by the same author. This story was so much better than Fireblood. The narrator was better as well.
I found I could empathize with the main character Lia. I celebrated her victories and lamented her defeats. It was such a stark contrast from Fireblood where I didn't really care if any of the main characters lived or died. They were all a rather unsavory bunch.
That being said you can tell that writing is not Jeff Wheeler's day job. That doesn't diminish from my enjoyment but you can tell his writing lacks the depth and polish you would find from a fantasy author who makes his living as a writer. I suspect Mr. Wheeler will get there someday if he keeps writing and I would encourage him to do just that.
If you're looking for something polished or an epic fantasy this isn't it. If you want a solid story with a likable main character I'd recommend you pick this up.
I originally read this book when I was in high school and found it just as enjoyable then. I liked the different magic system that L.E. Modesitt Jr. envisioned and worked out. The only thing that kept this from being a 5/5 performance was the very distracting sound effects the narrator produced. They could have been mitigated by good editing but when listening to this on my phone the effects were very loud and distracting. I came to dread them throughout the book.
All in all I enjoyed the experience and would recommend this as a good novel.
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