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A Game of Thrones Audiobook

A Game of Thrones: A Song of Ice and Fire, Book 1

In a time long forgotten, a preternatural event threw the seasons off balance. In a land where summers can last decades and winters a lifetime, trouble is brewing. As the cold returns, sinister forces are massing beyond the protective wall of the kingdom of Winterfell. To the south, the king's powers are failing, with his most trusted advisor mysteriously dead and enemies emerging from the throne's shadow.
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Audible Editor Reviews

Why we think it's Essential: A favorite of Audible listeners, the first book in Martin's series introduces a world of deep intrigue, dark fantasy, and varied characters. It might prove overwhelming, were it not for Roy Dotrice. With a voice so seasoned and gripping that he may have stepped from, well, a George R. R. Martin novel, Dotrice gives each character their own persona and regionality, helping to anchor the listener throughout the action and intrigue. —Ed Walloga

Publisher's Summary

In a time long forgotten, a preternatural event threw the seasons off balance. In a land where summers can last decades and winters a lifetime, trouble is brewing. As the cold returns, sinister forces are massing beyond the protective wall of the kingdom of Winterfell. To the south, the king's powers are failing, with his most trusted advisor mysteriously dead and enemies emerging from the throne's shadow. At the center of the conflict, the Starks of Winterfell hold the key: a reluctant Lord Eddard is summoned to serve as the king's new Hand, an appointment that threatens to sunder both family and kingdom. In this land of extremes, plots and counterplots, soldiers and sorcerers, each side fights to win the deadliest of conflicts: the game of thrones.

©1996 George R.R. Martin, (P)2003 Books On Tape, Inc., published in arrangement with Random House Audio Group,a division of Random House, Inc.

What the Critics Say

  • Locus Award, 1997

"Martin's trophy case is already stuffed with major prizes...He's probably going to have to add another shelf, at least." (Publishers Weekly)
"The first volume in Martin's first fantasy saga combines intrigue, action, romance, and mystery in a family saga." (Booklist)
"Grabs hold and won't let go. It's brilliant." (Robert Jordan)
"This novel is an absorbing combination of the mythic, the sweepingly historical, and the intensely personal." (Chicago Sun-Times)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.6 (47055 )
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Performance
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  •  
    goldgirl59 09-20-14
    goldgirl59 09-20-14 Listener Since 2007
    HELPFUL VOTES
    7
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    "Accent makes it hard to follow"
    Would you try another book from George R. R. Martin and/or Roy Dotrice?

    I could not follow the story line because the narrator's accent made it too difficult too follow


    What could George R. R. Martin have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

    Lose the accent, I could not even get past the first chapter


    How did the narrator detract from the book?

    YES


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

    Lost interest due to accent


    Any additional comments?

    no

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jonathan 09-13-14
    Jonathan 09-13-14
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    "An Audiobook That Stands Apart"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    The Song of Fire and Ice series is a masterfully done work of literature. The television show is a stunning interpretation of that work. Equally as impressive is the audio book performed by Roy Dotrice. I would recommend this audio book to anyone who enjoys the show, has read the books, or even someone who has little or no experience with the series. Like the show and the books the audio books bring something unique to the franchise. Roy Dotrice is absolutely masterful is his performance. He brings the written word to life in ways that I, an avid reader and audio book listener, have rarely encountered. I would say the for anyone who enjoys the series I would say that the audio book is just as important a piece as the books or the television show.


    What other book might you compare A Game of Thrones to and why?

    In A Game of Thrones George R.R. Martin sets the tone for a series that is a true work of art. A Game of Thrones, as well as the entire series, has its place among the greats of fantasy. I would place it among the likes of the greats of the genre and beyond.. It combines the wonder and deeper meaning of Lewis' Lion, Witch, and The Wardrobe. The unfettered sense of adventure of 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea or The Lost World. The world that Martin has created rivals that of the eminent world building authors such as J.R.R. Tolkien (The Lord of The Rings) and Robert Jordan (The Wheel of Time series).


    Any additional comments?

    It is a sprawling and imaginative and wondrous book. George R. R. Martin deftly combines the fantasy elements of the book with a gritty realism that captures the attention of the reader and leaves them craving more. Martin possesses a rare quality in an author to create in his writing a sincere and vivid sense of awe in the reader. Literature is a well of that runs deep with a diverse array of masterpieces, A Game of Throne belongs among that number.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ben 09-12-14
    Ben 09-12-14 Member Since 2013
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    "Great story, so-so narration"
    Any additional comments?

    I do not care for the narration. The same heavy accent for every character. And the female roles, Roy just does not do a good job of female voice.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Christy and Michael Nash 09-10-14 Member Since 2012
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    "Excellent story & the best narration I've heard."
    What made the experience of listening to A Game of Thrones the most enjoyable?

    The narrator is amazing. He has a voice for every single character. It was like watching a movie.


    What did you like best about this story?

    What can I say - it's Game of Thrones. It's awesome.


    Have you listened to any of Roy Dotrice’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    Never have - but I intend to.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Courtney Tucker, GA, United States 09-09-14
    Courtney Tucker, GA, United States 09-09-14
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    "Great book from the first page to the last"
    Would you listen to A Game of Thrones again? Why?

    Yes, it has excellent character driven narrative. The narrator performs many many voices extremely well.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of A Game of Thrones?

    One of the main characters is killed...it was awful. There are many small moments where the characters are teaching the young about the nature of life and the world. Ned Stark tells his children that "The lone wolf dies when winter comes - but the pack survives." That quote is worth the whole purchase price for me.


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

    The man is brilliant. He performs men and women of different races, ages, and sizes. He performs animals as well. Brilliant voice actor.


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

    Yes, When one of the main characters dies I was saying no no no - to my ipod. When the leader of the Black watch speaks to a character about where his true duty lies and that he belongs...got a little teary eyed at that. The conclusion was AMAZING


    Any additional comments?

    I listened to this book because a friend recommended it. An excellent friend indeed! On to Book 2!!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Bror Erickson Farmington New Mexico 09-05-14
    Bror Erickson Farmington New Mexico 09-05-14 Member Since 2014

    Your Brother in Christ

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Ice and Fire Brought to Life"
    If you could sum up A Game of Thrones in three words, what would they be?

    Story of Betrayal


    What did you like best about this story?

    The story has a lot of great characters and vivid scenes. There is a lot of story telling for your money in this book.


    Have you listened to any of Roy Dotrice’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    I have not listened to any of Roy Dotrice's other performances but this one makes me want to listen to more.


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

    This book has the ability of bringing a person through lots of emotions.


    Any additional comments?

    It's funny, but for as sex obsessed as the HBO series supposedly is, it doesn't play near as much of a role in the book. It's there, but it doesn't seem to be as central.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    ROBERT 09-05-14
    ROBERT 09-05-14 Member Since 2013

    Say something about yourself!

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    "Vocal range is too far stretched for one man."
    How could the performance have been better?

    The narrator has a really good sense of the theatrical and a good sense for the inflection and moods that are set in the book. The does not however have the vocal range or acuity for a story with this many important characters. Many of the knights are done in the exact same voice and even some of the women. The voice used for a character may change during the course of the book as well. if Roy Dotrice narrated and there were other voice actors in the audio play it would enhance the story. The director for Roy Dotrice does do an exceptional job.


    Do you think A Game of Thrones needs a follow-up book? Why or why not?

    The TV show is so different from the books that it's like watching a whole new story.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    icedsoftball 09-03-14
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    "Beautifully written, wonderfully told."
    What made the experience of listening to A Game of Thrones the most enjoyable?

    I have had problems in the past reading this series, basically, with every chapter I'd feel more like drinking. Drinking gives me migraines, so you can see the conflict involved in reading this book. That being said, I have thoroughly enjoyed this book being read to me. Mr Dotrice does a wonderful job bringing voices to each character, I'd say bringing them alive but Mr Martin's writing does that well enough.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Can I list the reader as my favorite? I'd really love nothing more than for the lot of them to drop dead. Well, I did like the lady marrying the barbarians. She was interesting. I hope she wins.


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

    For one thing, I didn't feel like pausing the book to think of all the ways the problems could be solved with a good dose of mass murder. I've always thought the book well written, but having the characters illustrated though a second medium of sound made their antics enjoyable rather than maddening. He carefully considered and does his best to provide each character with their own distinct voice. Also I didn't feel the need to drink to get though the book, which meant no migraines for me.


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

    No, I didn't even feel like drinking. I just had fun.


    Any additional comments?

    Don't drink and read. Things get weird. Also, this guy, if her reads anything else you should give it a listen. This man is a true storyteller, a craft long dead except to a few.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    J. Clark 08-30-14
    J. Clark 08-30-14 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Great story, too bad the narration is so bad"

    To get the obvious out of the way, the story is fantastic. It's huge and lyrical, brutal and shockingly real. If you, like me, have already seen the HBO show, the book is still worth a read for some of the subtle changes, and of course a huge amount of extra backstory and information.

    It's too bad, then, that the narration is pretty bad. Not enough to ruin it, but it could be so much better. Most of the characters, even the women and children, should like old men the way it's read. And the actual old men suffer from so many over done vocal defects that they're hard to listen to. Varys is particularly bad, sounding like he is constantly salivating to the point that it's rather gross. The accents are also inconsistent. Some of the Dothraki, for example, sound like barbarians. Others sound like English nobles, for no apparent reason. The only voice I think he absolutely nailed is King Robert. With such a large cast, that's an abysmally low success rate.

    Add to that the fact that he can't decide how certain names are pronounced. Joffrey becomes Jeffrey quite often. Arya is sometimes Aurya, sometimes Aerya, sometimes Aya, and occasionally Ara. He also insists on pronouncing Petyr as "P'tar", which makes little sense (I could see "Pet-eer", or "Pet-eyr", or even "Peter" as in the show, but not "P'tar").

    As I said, it's not enough to ruin the book, but it did make it hard to get into initially, and is constantly irksome.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    David from Lancaster 08-28-14
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    "Wow!"
    Would you listen to A Game of Thrones again? Why?

    No I wouldn't, but only because I don't listen to books more than once.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of A Game of Thrones?

    I have to admit that I've already seen the series on HBO so there weren't a lot of surprises, but it was nice to have more details to "fill in the blanks" that the series lacked.


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

    His performance was ok, but he has a lot of trouble getting out of character. By that I mean he doesn't change his voice when he moves on to being just the narrator. Not very clear in my explanation but I don't know how else to put it.


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

    Moot point right?


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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