"The shapeless mass of darkness split apart. It sundered, and a pale spindle of light gleamed between his open arms. In the oval of light there moved a human shape: a tall woman...beautiful, and sorrowful, and full of fear." - from A Wizard of Earthsea, first in a tetralogy that includes The Tombs of Atuan and The Farthest Shore, introduces the listener to Ged, the greatest sorcerer in all Earthsea, known also as Sparrowhawk. When Sparrowhawk casts a spell that saves his village from destruction at the hands of the invading Kargs, Ogion, the Mage of Re Albi, encourages the boy to apprentice himself in the art of wizardry. So, at the age of 13, the boy receives his true name - Ged - and gives himself over to the gentle tutelage of the Master Ogion. But impatient with the slowness of his studies and infatuated with glory, Ged embarks for the Island of Roke, where the highest arts of wizardry are taught. There, Ged's natural talents enable him to surpass his classmates in little time. But when his vanity prompts him to summon Elfarran, the fair lady of the Deed of Enlad, he unleashes a shapeless mass of darkness - the shadow.
©1968 Ursula K. Le Guin; (P)1992 Recorded Books, LLC
I spent the first half of this book waiting for character development - it was only when I realised that I wasn't going to get any that I actually started to enjoy the story.
I appreciated the simplicity of this tale. I will be coming back to this series when I have children old enough to appreciate it as a bed time story.
I don't want to spoil anything, suffice to say my favourite scene involved a dragon.
If this were made in to a movie I would go and see it. I think it would be difficult to fit everything in to one movie as the story covers so many small adventures without really delving into anything with much detail.
This is the sort of story I would read to my kids at bed time because it's just that, a story. There isn't much in the way of a complicated plot, in depth characters or intricate character relationships - it's just a nice story.
I would have enjoyed this a lot more knowing what I was getting in to.
I had forgotten how beautiful and spare LeGuin's writing can be. Here she's like a cross between Tolkien and Hemingway: lyrical, but no extraneous cruft.
I am a big fan of the performer/narrator, Rob Inglis, who can also be heard reading The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings. I was so happy to find more opportunities to listen to him read to me.
Rob Inglis brings anything he reads to life in a spectacular way. and this book was already bursting with life all its own. I highly reccomend this book to any and everyone who enjoys High Fantasy.
This novel shows its age in the fantasy genre. I can't decide whether it aged well or not, but there is no missing the generation it came from.
Hello, I'm Adrian. I'm engaged to Nichole Braddock and love books! Though I don't have much time to sit and read so I listen... But audio books whole new universe! They make old books new and new books classics! I myself get into some moods and don't write the greatest reviews. Forgive me. I like to review books but it just feels too much like work to me :p
Overall it is nice. A very simply story about magic. It's not so much about Ged as it is a general outline of what things are like in this world.
The story, characters, world & magic are all straight foward. It has a good constant pace, that keeps your interest, with little or no filler bla bla BS. It's a comeing of age story, with some magic. I would of liked to of seen a bit more action & magic thow. The end is hard to guess & that's a nice plus :}
Do you enjoy fantasy? Do you enjoy ANY stories with wizards in them? If you answered yes, then you CANNOT pass up this book.
The only criticism i have of this book is that it's too short. I think the target audience is younger readers, but enjoyed reading it for the first time as an adult. I have never read anything like it from this perspective.
This is the first book I've read by Ursula Le Guin, but so far I love her. She knows how to paint a scene, without being too wordy so that we can actually enjoy a progressing story. *
Love the Narrator; he's perfect for this one.
*I read an article from George R. R. Martin where he basically said if it wasn't for writer's like Ursula Le Guin and her "Wizard of Earthsea" (and a few others), that fantasy wouldn't be where it is today. That says a LOT.
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