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The Merchant of Death: Pendragon, Book 1 | [D. J. MacHale]

The Merchant of Death: Pendragon, Book 1

Bobby Pendragon is a seemingly normal 14-year-old boy. He has a family, a home, and even Marley, his beloved dog. But there is something very special about Bobby: he is going to save the world.

And not just Earth as we know it. Bobby is slowly starting to realize that life in the cosmos isn't quite what he thought it was. And before he can object, he is swept off to an alternate dimension known as Denduron, a territory inhabited by strange beings, ruled by a magical tyrant, and plagued by dangerous revolution.

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Publisher's Summary

Bobby Pendragon is a seemingly normal 14-year-old boy. He has a family, a home, and even Marley, his beloved dog. But there is something very special about Bobby: he is going to save the world.

And not just Earth as we know it. Bobby is slowly starting to realize that life in the cosmos isn't quite what he thought it was. And before he can object, he is swept off to an alternate dimension known as Denduron, a territory inhabited by strange beings, ruled by a magical tyrant, and plagued by dangerous revolution.

If Bobby wants to see his family again, he's going to have to accept his role as savior and accept it wholeheartedly. Because, as he is about to discover, Denduron is only the beginning.

Listen to more from the Pendragon series.

©2002 D. J. MacHale; (P)2005 Brilliance Audio

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.7 (228 )
5 star
 (81)
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 (52)
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3.9 (116 )
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Story
3.8 (113 )
5 star
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3 star
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2 star
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1 star
 (9)
Performance
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  •  
    Bronwyn ErindaleAustralia 07-26-08
    Bronwyn ErindaleAustralia 07-26-08
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "The Merchant of Death (Unabridged"

    This is a fast paced book. It is well narrated. We listen to these in the car and it kept the whole family entertained and wanting more. The only bad part was when it finished and we did not have the next book to go on with. Fantastic for all ages.

    9 of 10 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Phelix_da_Kat 07-07-08 Member Since 2005
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Alex Ryder MEETS John Twelve Hawk's The Traveller"

    Definitely more fantasy than sci-fi.

    After listening to this, (for you dads out there) the storyline reminded me of Mark Twain's "A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court" - whereby the main character is transported to a less advanced civilisation - using their wits and brains they save the day.

    For the kids, this was more like Alex Ryder crossed with "The Traveller". The boy is a "choosen one" who unknown to him, is being mentored, travels with his "uncle" through different worlds to fight on behalf of good against an evil foe that is present in worlds.

    The narration by William Dufris has light and lively pace that is definitely young adult. Something for both father and son to enjoy together..


    10 of 12 people found this review helpful
  •  
    speedr3436 FL, United States 08-08-10
    speedr3436 FL, United States 08-08-10 Member Since 2007
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "LOVE these books!"

    DJ MacHale takes you on a wild ride with Bobby Pendragon. William Dufris does a fabulous job reading these books. I really got into the entire series and enjoyed them thoroughly. I do recommend reading them in order, but each could stand alone on their own merits easily. The pace is fast and furious and the plot twists keep you interested 'till the very end. I highly recommend ALL the Pendragon books!

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Rosemary Kramme 08-17-08 Listener Since 2005
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "My First Review"

    The story develops a young self-centered boy into a great adventurer and hero. Every boys dream. Excellant read.

    5 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Carolyn WILLIAMSBURG, VA, United States 06-30-13
    Carolyn WILLIAMSBURG, VA, United States 06-30-13 Member Since 2010
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    "Series is Awesome. Narration not so awesome."

    I am re-reading the series because I enjoyed it so much. I thought I'd add the audio to my collection. The story is still exciting and unpredictable, but I don't think the narration adds much. Dufries is good with adding vocal excitement to his narration, but there is a whine-factor to his style that takes away from the story. He did the same to the Enduring Flame Series. I know Pendragon is a teenager and they are supposed to whine, but his translation is more of a two-year old's.

    Stay with the book, unless audio is your only option. If you have a Kindle, buy it first, and then get the audio for $3.99.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Richard Santee, CA, United States 01-12-13
    Richard Santee, CA, United States 01-12-13 Member Since 2007
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    "mediocre"
    Is there anything you would change about this book?

    oddly slow and non griping


    What was most disappointing about D. J. MacHale’s story?

    didn't grab my interest


    What do you think the narrator could have done better?

    be a better voice actor or go to a full cast


    Did The Merchant of Death inspire you to do anything?

    no


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Matthew Henrietta, NY, United States 09-07-12
    Matthew Henrietta, NY, United States 09-07-12 Member Since 2010
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    "Mediocre writing made worse by a mediocre narrator"
    What disappointed you about The Merchant of Death?

    There are quite a few things I didn't like about the book. Most of the characters are whiny, unbelieving and in need of a kick in the pants. The plot is predictable. The contrived friends reading a journal narrative framework distracts from any tension or energy that the plotline could have worked up. The fact that the entire book is written as a journal assures the reader that the idiot protagonist is never in any danger of actually being snuffed out by the baddies. The baddies are also tragically incompetent. Note for future authors, if you paint a antagonist as intelligent, ruthless and more than willing to destroy something in his way without thinking about it... DON'T abandon this when he learns of your hero.


    What was the most interesting aspect of this story? The least interesting?

    The idea of the two frameworks... story time... and the real world... is an interesting idea. It could have worked. It didn't. But that might be the fault of the narrator. Least interesting... Yet another whiny 14 year old.


    How did the narrator detract from the book?

    *sigh* It's hard to describe... He detracts from the writing in so many ways. His voice grates. I could probably stand his voice in conversation or in a work environment but for HOURS straight in my ear? His delivery of Bobby makes it sound like a stereotypical oppressed geek trying to deliver the lines of a nerd jock who is awesome. It's just hard to swallow. This also makes Mark, the geeky sidekick, even more of a stereotype.

    Also, several times I would lose track of who was talking in conversations due to the narrator not differentiating enough between the characters. When they are of different genders... this is kinda sad.

    Yes, voice work is hard. Especially in large cast situations. But YEESH!


    What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

    Annoyance.


    Any additional comments?

    If you can get it free and are out of other books... Sure, might be worth a read or a listen. Spending a credit on this or real money... no way. Jim Butcher, Orson Scott Card, Heinlein's Juveniles(for the kids), late Heinlein(for the adults) or a number of other excellent authors would be better choices.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Camron KENT, WA, United States 06-06-12
    Camron KENT, WA, United States 06-06-12
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Good Book"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    i would recommend this to a friend and family i like these kinds of books


    What did you like best about this story?

    creativity


    What about William Dufris’s performance did you like?

    creativity and ability to write and come up with this kinda stuff


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    maybe me laugh had some good points where he made the main dude look kinda stupid.. funny stupid


    Any additional comments?

    really good book and cant wait to finish the complete series

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Stuart Kirkland, WA, United States 02-28-13
    Stuart Kirkland, WA, United States 02-28-13 Member Since 2004
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    "Interesting story, but the writing is annoying"
    What did you like best about The Merchant of Death? What did you like least?

    I found this to be an interesting story line, and reasonably well developed. I am interested in how the series turns out. Unfortunately, the main character tends to go on and ramble far too much about analogies, and past experiences. In the middle of an exciting time in the story he will take 10 minutes to relate something back to an earlier childhood experience. I was often left with the feeling "when will he just get on with the story"I liked the performance for the most part, but my wife thought the narrator had problems with women's voices and he made them very breathy.


    How would you have changed the story to make it more enjoyable?

    Less rambling narrative by Bobby.


    Did William Dufris do a good job differentiating all the characters? How?

    Yes, but the women were a little unrealistic in their breathy voices.


    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Little SAlem, OR, United States 05-30-12
    Little SAlem, OR, United States 05-30-12 Member Since 2011

    I Love reading books, My Job makes that difficult, so Audio Books have re-opened the Universe to my Soaring Imagination!

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Uber Cool!"

    My Nephews got me hooked in this series. Great Imagination, Great story. Great for 11 and up!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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