Though I'm a big fan of the vampire genre, and I really like a number of authors who contributed to this audiobook, and a couple of the narrators as well, I just couldn't get into it. I don't feel like the world ever really came together. There weren't many likable or even approachable characters in my view though others might enjoy it more, it wasn't the quality that was lacking but rather it didn't appeal to me personally.
Perhaps this would be different for readers of the Coldfire trilogy but there was nothing in this story that made me want to look into it.
The final chapter in the Lord of the Rings saga has a great ending, actually quite a few of them because unlike many books and movies, it goes through each of the characters and story arcs to let you know what has happened and what direction they're not heading. Not overly saccharine but not a big downer either (unless you then go and read what happens to Arwen).
'It' is a Stephen King classic with some significant connections to his Dark Tower saga and often referenced (even if obliquely) in his other works. This is one of the most terrifying books I've ever read though it didn't have the same impact on audio, despite the admirable performance of Steven Weber - a story made up of significant sections of either quiet thought or screaming can't be easy to narrate.
Though not an 'epic', it's a wide-reaching tale covering so many themes including domestic violence/sexual assault, bullying, the nature of fear, manifestations of psychopathy, guilt vs responsibility, the bystander effect on an individual and community scale, and the changing attitude to all of the above within a single generation. As usual for King, not a fun ending but feels more real for all of that, a happy and utterly resolved ending would be out of place in this sort of story.
One of the best, in my top five.
Sam, he's funny, humble, loyal to a fault.
Making fun of the healers in Gondor for not knowing about Althalas.
Not so much moved, but the scene where Gandalf convinces the armies to march on Mordor essentially to distract them from Frodo. This has been copied in so many books, movies and other stories it's hard to count.
I appreciate the convenience of audiobooks and the many advantages (mostly that you can continue reading while doing other activities) and in the case of Lord of the Rings in particular having a suitable narrator such as Rob Inglis brings things like the songs alive, but in the end nothing beats a real book.
Faramir living up to his name and history by being one of the only beings in all Middle Earth able to resist the call of the Ring. Other than that this feels like a space saver between the real action in the book. Frodo and Sam seems to be pulled, pushed, led and tricked one way and another without ever making any progress, and Aragorn's group seem the same.
He really brings the songs alive, and the portions spoken in Elvish or Entish etc. His voice and accent are absolutely suited to the style of writing so it draws you in quickly even if you're not familiar with Middle Earth.
... stick with us, the next one will be better, honest.
Yes, it's a classic and epic tale that everyone should enjoy.
The meeting of Rohan's riders and the remaining members of the 9 Walkers.
Every scene with Treebeard, including those being described by Pippin and Merry.
Many sections needed to be listened to in one sitting, but the story overall is far too long for that to be an option.
Lord of the Rings is one of the best audiobooks I've ever listened to, easily in the top five.
The Council of Elrond. Great way to catch readers up on what's been happening elsewhere in Middle Earth without clumsy exposition attempts, and gives a good idea of the cultures (and therefore hypocrisies etc) of the different races.
The reunion of Gandalf and Frodo.
One of the few failings of this book is that it doesn't provoke really strong emotions. The movie was much better at demonstrating the fearful situation in Moria and the tragic loss of Gandalf.
The comprehensive world created by JRR Tolkien
Gandalf's humour, especially in relation to hobbits.
The songs, they left me completely cold when I first (and second, and third) read this. He gave life to the songs and the snippets of other languages, really bringing the world into focus.
I couldn't help but smile at much of Sam's character, what he says, how he thinks, what he does. I was also surprised at several points, not having read the book for so long that things like the hobbit's knowledge of the ring took me by surprise.
This, the third book in the Dark Tower saga, really brings the ka-tet together and sets them on their path. It has some very dark concepts and unpleasant sections both because it deals with negative emotions, war, assault, abandonment etc and also because it shows weaknesses in each of the characters. It ends on a heck of a 'To be Continued' which feels quite frankly cheap, but I'm one of the fortunate ones that had the next book loaded and ready to go !!!
While this is a very involved, rewarding saga overall, this first book can be very difficult to get into. Based in a world not quite like our own, but with confusing tidbits which make it seem like the future, or perhaps the past, or perhaps an alternate dimension??? This book raises a great deal of questions and provides virtually no answers so unless you can stick with it for the entire 7 novels of the Dark Tower saga it won't seem worthwhile.
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