First let me point out that I was completely unprepared for such an outstanding production from an audiobook. My typical read/listen is more of a Michael Crichton or J.R.R. Tolkien book which is usually simply read aloud and I had not expected the accompanying sound effects, music, or voice narration to all come together and blow me away. I lost track of the hours just waiting for a chance to continue listening to the story.
Marc Thompson is by far the best narrator I have ever had the pleasure of listening to. While the production team may or may not have enhanced the voice for certain characters, Marc's pace and even narration will make you forget that you are in fact listening to a person reading a story, something that some other narrators make you only painfully too aware of (odd sounds, limited tone for multiple characters, annoying voice, etc.)
As for the story, if you have seen other comments about the story being average or anything short of excellent, ignore them. Take the story for what it's meant to be, an action-packed adventure by a highly adept intelligence agent set in a galactic universe. If you want to be entertained then this story more than just does the trick.
To address the Star Wars specifics about this book, it was interesting to hear about a non-Jedi as the main character since sometimes reading / hearing every other word be the "Force" gets repetitive... not that I mind because I love hearing that!!! This book focuses more on the supporting elements / figures of the Republics infrastructure with just enough Jedi / Sith involvement to make you realize that the force is very strong with this book!!
Since my discovery of this book I have worked back through all the Old Republic books and am now listening to the Thrawn Trilogy; the one constant I appreciate aside from the excellent story line is of course Marc Thompson narrations.
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