We are currently making improvements to the Audible site. In an effort to enhance the accessibility experience for our customers, we have created a page to more easily navigate the new experience, available at the web address www.audible.com/access.
 >   > 
The Emerald Atlas: Books of Beginning | [John Stephens]

The Emerald Atlas: Books of Beginning

Kate, Michael, and Emma have been in one orphanage after another for the last ten years, passed along like lost baggage. Yet these unwanted children are more remarkable than they could possibly imagine. Ripped from their parents as babies, they are being protected from a horrible evil of devastating power, an evil they know nothing about. Until now. Before long, Kate, Michael, and Emma are on a journey to dangerous and secret corners of the world....
Regular Price:$33.60
  • Membership Details:
    • First book free with 30-day trial
    • $14.95/month thereafter for your choice of 1 new book each month
    • Cancel easily anytime
    • Exchange books you don't like
    • All selected books are yours to keep, even if you cancel
  • - or -

Your Likes make Audible better!

'Likes' are shared on Facebook and Audible.com. We use your 'likes' to improve Audible.com for all our listeners.

You can turn off Audible.com sharing from your Account Details page.

OK

Audible Editor Reviews

The Emerald Atlas author John Stephens has a Hollywood background, so it’s not surprising that his debut novel feels like a movie in the making, with elements that recall the Harry Potter series and other kid-friendly fantasy epics. It’s to Stephens’ credit, though, that Atlas never comes off like a cash-in or a cheap imitation: It has its own fully realized world and compelling characters, and the familiar aspects of the story serve mainly to place it in an honorable tradition.

The set-up is easily relatable and recognizable: A trio of siblings (Kate, Michael, and Emma) have been left to the fates after the disappearance of their parents, bounced from one comically horrific orphanage to the next. Their latest home, however, is somewhat different: It’s a mystical town that hides some magical secrets, and soon the kids have discovered a mysterious book that transports them back in time. There they face down an evil witch who is holding the town’s residents hostage. Wizards, dwarves, and ancient prophecies all come into play in a story that takes advantage of plenty of well-worn genre tropes.

Narrator Jim Dale handles it all masterfully, with a warm and inviting tone and some highly entertaining voices for the colorful supporting characters. Some of it might be a little too colorful, though, as Dale’s animated voice acting can become a little distracting. Still, he neatly delineates the various players in Stephens’ grand tapestry, and enhances the suspense of the various moments of peril. The book ends, naturally, with the set-up for the next installment of a planned trilogy, but it’s a satisfying enough story on its own. We can only hope for the same for the inevitable movie version. —Josh Bell

Publisher's Summary

Kate, Michael, and Emma have been in one orphanage after another for the last 10 years, passed along like lost baggage.

Yet these unwanted children are more remarkable than they could possibly imagine. Ripped from their parents as babies, they are being protected from a horrible evil of devastating power, an evil they know nothing about.

Until now.

Before long, Kate, Michael, and Emma are on a journey to dangerous and secret corners of the world...a journey of allies and enemies, of magic and mayhem. And - if an ancient prophesy is correct - what they do can change history, and it is up to them to set things right.

The Emerald Atlas brims with humor and action as it charts Kate, Michael, and Emma's extraordinary adventures through an unforgettable, enchanted world.

©2011 John Stephens (P)2011 Listening Library

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.2 (634 )
5 star
 (300)
4 star
 (210)
3 star
 (88)
2 star
 (18)
1 star
 (18)
Overall
4.2 (514 )
5 star
 (247)
4 star
 (166)
3 star
 (72)
2 star
 (15)
1 star
 (14)
Story
4.5 (515 )
5 star
 (339)
4 star
 (117)
3 star
 (37)
2 star
 (11)
1 star
 (11)
Performance
Sort by:
  •  
    Stacey Fort Madison, IA, United States 04-21-11
    Stacey Fort Madison, IA, United States 04-21-11 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
    26
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    6
    1
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    2
    0
    Overall
    "Fantastic addicting fantasy"

    If you love Rowling, Tolkien and Lewis, you will love this book. A fast paced, well written novel about three children and their nail biting fight against evil. Although maybe not incredibly original, this book has all the earmarks for a run away hit: an evil witch, a mysterious book, good hearted orphans, an absent-minded wizard and of course, terrifying creatures that seem unstoppable. As a testament to how addicting this book is, I started listening to it Monday morning and finished Thursday morning. And I must rave about the narration- Jim Dale could make a book about the history of dimes interesting and he does not disappoint here. The only odd thing is the book takes place in America yet all of the characters have British accents (very well done thanks to Mr. Dale but British none the less). You do get over that, but it's a little weird. All in all an excellent book- I predict this series will be a wild success.

    26 of 26 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Rex 05-28-11
    Rex 05-28-11
    HELPFUL VOTES
    8
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    1
    1
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    1
    0
    Overall
    "Emerald Atlas"

    Excellent book by a talented author brought to life by an excellent narrator! A pleasure to find a book that is exciting, involving and fun yet appropriate for the whole family. We are very excited about the coming books and wish Mr. Stephens would hurry up!

    8 of 8 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Matt Everett, WA, United States 08-25-11
    Matt Everett, WA, United States 08-25-11 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
    9
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    10
    4
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    2
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Excellent!"

    This book brought me into another world, and kept me excited throughout. I actually listened to this Book at work, while doing my price changing work while my store is closed. Every time i got off work, i hated having to stop at that chapter and wait till next week to listen to more. I didn't want to listen to it while i was off, because then i would have nothing left to listen to at work, and hanging tags all night long gets really boring if you don't have something good to listen to. It took me 3 work days to finish this book, but when i was done i was really wanting more.

    I am very much looking forward to the next book in the trilogy. This book is very well written and exciting throughout. It is filled with emotion as well. It really takes you into their world and lets you feel what the 3 main characters feel. At times, i felt like i was there with them and traveling on their journey with them. When writing reviews i worry to much about giving away to much information about the book, so i generally don't give to much length about what happens in the book.

    So, to sum it up, these 3 kids are on a journey of fate, which they are not informed of. They find themselves separated at times and are forced to continue on their journey without their siblings and continue their search for the emerald atlas, while trying to keep it out of the oppositions hands at the same time. The sibling squabbling between the younger 2 siblings brings much comic relief at times to lighten the mood.

    I really enjoyed listening to this book, and Jim Dale did another fantastic job in narrating as he usually does.

    7 of 7 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Lance W. Larsen Middleton WI 09-21-11
    Lance W. Larsen Middleton WI 09-21-11 Member Since 2006
    HELPFUL VOTES
    12
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    276
    11
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    3
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Fantastic"

    What an awesome book -- whole family (7 and 10 year old daughters, my wife and I) enjoyed thoroughly -- you know it a great book when after you've driven 5 hours and are at your destination - the girls say - awww can't we keep driving... :)

    Eagerly await next book in the series.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Emiko Grannis, AR, United States 06-13-11
    Emiko Grannis, AR, United States 06-13-11 Member Since 2006
    HELPFUL VOTES
    191
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    93
    40
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    73
    0
    Overall
    "Three and a Half Stars"

    I listen to lots of children's stories since I have toddlers and most adult books that I tend to listen to are not appropriate for little ears. I wasn't a fan of the defensive/ sometimes bratty attitudes of the main characters and it took me awhile to become more interested in the story. I can't say that I ever truly "got into" the book. However, it wasn't so bad that I won't listen to the next books in the series. This story didn't hold my attention as well as Peter and the Starcatchers, Harry Potter or the Bartimeaus trilogy. But it did pass car time.

    8 of 9 people found this review helpful
  •  
    CJ 05-16-11
    CJ 05-16-11 Member Since 2009
    HELPFUL VOTES
    107
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    443
    29
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    7
    2
    Overall
    "Good children's book, not for adults"

    I bought this book as it was highlighted as an editor's pick, hoping it would translate well to the adult audience. It did not. That being said, this book has some great adventure for kids in it, would recommend for ages 8-12-though some of the chase scenes, like when the characters were chased by wolves may be pretty intense for the younger end of that range,

    Narration was also an issue with me. The narrator, who did a wonderful job in Peter and the Starcatchers, where the main characters are a group of boys in England, evidently does a lousy job with female characters. In this book, two of the three main characters are girls, and narration for the girls was painful. The voices sounded stuck up and bored, like a kid imitating their older sister, and I kept on imagining how my impression of the book might have been different with perhaps a paired narration with one of the fantastic female narrators I've heard on audible books.

    14 of 21 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Marmalade Los Angeles, CA, United States 11-30-11
    Marmalade Los Angeles, CA, United States 11-30-11 Member Since 2005
    HELPFUL VOTES
    24
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    240
    17
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    3
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "I like Jim Dale..."

    But having a British narrator for a book set in the US is really, really weird. Felt like they were a little too desperate to try and capture some of the magic of the Harry Potter books.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    nevina CT, United States 04-29-12
    nevina CT, United States 04-29-12 Member Since 2006

    nevina

    HELPFUL VOTES
    94
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    132
    45
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    7
    2
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Too derivative"

    A grudging 3 stars for me because it was so heavily and obviously influenced by The Hobbit, The Narnia series, Lemony Snicket and Harry Potter etc that it became distracting and annoying to me. My 13 year old son felt the same as me but my daughter (8) couldn't get enough of it. She would give it 5 stars so it worked well as a read aloud to an 8yr old who hasn't read any of the above mentioned books except for Narnia.
    I know it is almost sacrilege to say anything negative about Jim Dale but I'm going for it anyway. As a Harry Potter narrator he is brilliant, but he reads this book in EXACTLY the same way as HP. The Emerald Atlas is set not in England, but America. Baltimore I believe, but I may be wrong. However every character in The Emerald Atlas bizarrely has a quirky English accent, and uses English colloquialisms like "a potty old lady" and such,
    (okay that part isn't Jim Dale's fault but I'm blaming him anyway), and all of the annoying dwarfs have cartoony Scottish accents. Being Scottish myself I was further annoyed by this.

    4 of 7 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Stephanne Dennis Southeastern US 09-03-14
    Stephanne Dennis Southeastern US 09-03-14

    A good story is something that makes life feel... enriched by having experienced it.

    HELPFUL VOTES
    0
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    14
    4
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "An escape for all ages"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    This book, the first of a trilogy, introduces readers to a trio of siblings who have nothing but a bond and whispers of hope holding them together. Embedded among a cast of the 'usual types' of adults, the trio show bravery and loyalty that is beyond their years.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of The Emerald Atlas?

    The setting for Atlas is part of the allure. Hidden among the regular people are magical areas; while I was worried the setting would be quite Potter-esque, it thankfully exceeded my expectations as a unique work.


    What does Jim Dale bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    Jim Dale is, in my opinion, one of - if not THE - most entertaining narrators I've ever heard. He brings life to the characters and adds a richness to any story that he tells. I often find myself wishing my grandfather would have had his knack when I was a child (but, then again, maybe then I wouldn't have read so much on my own?).


    Any additional comments?

    I foresee a movie cross-over in this trilogy's future; it is a far better read than the popular book-to-movie trends of late (Divergent, Hunger Games, etc).

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kim S. Brinkley 07-12-14
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    2
    2
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Entertaining"

    Entertaining story with great narration! Jim Dale always adds depth with hits character voices.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Showing: 1-10 of 38 results PREVIOUS124NEXT

    There are no listener reviews for this title yet.

Report Inappropriate Content

If you find this review inappropriate and think it should be removed from our site, let us know. This report will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.

Cancel

Thank You

Your report has been received. It will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.