Best-selling authors David and Leigh Eddings welcome readers back to the time before The Belgariad and The Malloreon series. Join them as they chronicle that fateful conflict between two mortally opposed Destinies, in a monumental war of men and kings and Gods.
When the world was young and Gods still walked among their mortal children, a headstrong orphan boy set out to explore the world. Thus began the extraordinary adventures that would mold that youthful vagabond into a man, and the man into the finely honed instrument of Prophecy known to all the world as Belgarath the Sorcerer.
Then came the dark day when the Dark God Torak split the world asunder, and the God Aldur and his disciples began their monumental labor to set Destiny aright. Foremost among their number was Belgarath. His ceaseless devotion was foredoomed to cost him that which he held most dear - even as his loyal service would extend through echoing centuries of loss, of struggle, and of ultimate triumph.
©1996 David Eddings and Leigh Eddings (P)2010 Audible, Inc.
"This prequel to the earlier books, presented as Belgarath's memoirs, offers an absorbing story line and some memorable characters as, once again, the authors touch all the right fantasy bases." (Publishers Weekly)
Belgarath the Sorcerer is one of the books that fueled my love of modern fantasy, so when I saw it released by Audible Frontiers I leapt at the chance to revisit the oddball immortal sorcerer and his world.
I can't recommend this book enough. It's meant as a prequel to Eddings's Belgariad and Mallorean series, but I actually read it before reading those books and still enjoyed it immensely. I missed some of the explicit and implicit foreshadowing, of course, but this didn't impede my enjoyment of this fantasy autobiography.
Unfortunately, this edition is hobbled by lackluster narration. Belgarath is an enigmatic character with a wry and sometimes acerbic wit. This comes through only occasionally in this telling. The original audio I listened to--I'm legally blind--was Recorded Books for the Blind's cassettes read by Roy Avers, and they were brilliant. I've also relistened to those recently, so it's not just my nostalgia talking.
By the way, the Audible Frontiers edition of Polgara the Sorcerer also claims to be narrated by J. P. Linton, with perfect female pitch. Either J. P. Linton has an INCREDIBLE vocal range, or one of the titles is mislabeled.
Don't get me wrong. I'm usually a big fan of Audible Frontiers work. This is just sadly the exception that proves the rule. The narration is certainly listenable, and I'd still recommend it if this is your only access to this great novel.
I can't tell you how much I loved David Eddings and his writings. What J.P. Linton has done to his work is nothing short of a crime! He is awful! The narration sounds like a cross between a 40 hour lecture by the most horrible professor you've ever had, and an arrogant, insincere preacher. For those of you who may have made the mistake of downloading this travesty, don't let it get you down on David Eddings. He's an amazing writer, and the Belgariad and Mallorean on audible are worth the downloads.
I love this story and have read the book many times. I picked this up because the other Edding's books were so well done. This one is not. The narrator puts emphasis in the wrong places, consistently pronounces names incorrectly, and on top of that it feels like he is talking to fast. He has no ability to separate voices when the characters are speaking so you often find yourself wondering who just said what. I was listening to this on a long trip and after about an hour I turned it off and drove in silence. If the only way you can get this wonderful story is to listen to it hear, then I guess it is better than nothing but not by much.
The narration of this person is so unbearable that its not even funny. When i tried out and listened to him i thought that it was not ALL that bad and it was after all great quality on the sound. But as i listened on i quickly noticed how truly horrible this man is. A shame indeed, i had to get another audiobook copy elsewhere wich is far far older than this but oh sooo much better. Stay away from this Narrator..
I spend so much time driving on business trips or suffering in boring exercise. For over 40 years I dreamed of something like Audible.
I exercise every day with Audible. I drive every day with Audible. I have listened to everything Frank Muller. Frank's death pained me so. He set a very high standard. I loved Dickens done by Muller, and King's Dark Tower was so good, even after Frank had to stop reading. I've now done 228 unabridged books on Audible done by many great narrators. Yes, I also read, but mostly when I go to bed at night. I consume a great deal of literature. This is the only book I've had to turn off. Too bad. We learned in choir to soften our "R"s. Linton wasn't there. Narrators do so much more than read. To the blind person who wrote another review. I hope you can get my message that I should have listened to you.
So far, great story...but this voice actor is horrible. Great voice...but his inflections and emphases are just weird. How many words in one sentence can you emphasize before it sounds ridiculous? Find out. He reads with a dozy cadence and a grandiose bass bellow. Cameron Bierle, who did the other Eddings novels, was not much of a treat, but he's a total Frank Muller compared to this guy. I'll get through despite to horrific narration, but I won't enjoy it.
Oh what a terrible thing the narrator has done to this wonderful book. I have the all the other books in this series in audible format (as well as written!), and loved each and every one. But this is appalling, the narrator is boring, and worse than that there has been no attempt to make sure that the pronunciation is in line with the other audio books. It makes it almost painful to listen to, and the voice of "Silk" at the end is cringe-making turning him into a slimy character instead of the intelligent and witty person we all know him to be. The book is written from the viewpoint of Belgarath telling his life history, but the audible version makes him sound bored and arrogant. I have given it one star only because I know the story to be, in fact, well worth reading the book. I expected this to be 5 stars, instead I got 30ish hours of the worst audio book ever.
The first of two prequels to Eddings' Belgariad and Mallorean series is packed to the hilt with characters only mentioned in legend during the first two series. This tome fills in the gaps and expands on the rich world that Eddings built.
Unfortunately, this narrator has to be the worse I have ever heard on any any audiobook. He is downright painful and I had to fight to stay with it since this is one of my favorite novels in the fantasy genre.
Since there is no alternative, I still recommend this if you are a fan of the old wolf.
This story is amazing, and well written. Eddings does an excellent job of filling out the missing parts of the story that aren't covered in The Belgariad or The Mallorean. The narration, however, leaves quite a bit to be desired. I had to fight to keep from grinding my teeth every time he said "Ki Nedra" when it's obviously "Sin Nedra". He also improperly names Cyradis, again using a hard K instead of a flowing S. Also, at one point during the book, it's obvious that he has a cold or some illness, because his voice drops quite a bit. But aside from the narration, the book is great, and along with Polgara the Sorceress, ties up all the loose ends and fills in the story wonderfully. Highly recommended.
Personally, I would have had the narrator listen to the previous 10 books before reading this book.
Pawn of Prophecy, Queen of Sorcery, Magician's Gambit, Castle of Wizardry, Enchanters Endgame, Guardians of the West, King of the Murgos, Demon Lord of Karanda, Sorceress of Darshiva, and the Seeress of Kell.
My two main issues are that he put the accents on the wrong syllable (bel - GAR - ath instead of how it was pronouced in the previous 10 books BEL - gar - ath) and he just mispronounced other names like Ce'Nedra (which in one of the above mentioned books it is explained that it is pronounced like X'Nedra or sze'nedra) instead he pronounces it Kinedra...
I read this when it first came out...I have the paperback in storage somewhere and love the story. I know that the story was worth it so I struggled through the horrible reading.
If there are 10 previous books all ranging between 10.5 - 16 hours and a new narrator is reading the next book, the producers should have the new narrator listen to those books to hear the correct pronunciation, or at least have a cheat sheet with the correct pronunciations of the names. I mean really I just spent 120+ hours listening to the previous 10 books. I spent this month's credits on the last 2 in the series and the first one was a horrible listen.
I am a big fan of The Belgariad and The Mallorean and have read this book and thoroughly enjoyed it, however the audiobook has greatly disappointed me. The narrator for me fails to interpret the characters correctly and the voices he gives to the characters are just wrong. For those who know the character Silk from the books, in this audiobook he sounds like Piglet in the disney cartoon, I so wish I had listened to the sample before buying. Cameron Beierle may pronounce some words strangely when reading the Belgariad and Mallorean but this guy massacres them.
"New narrator that feels wrong"
Sadly this lovely story is destroyed by the narrator. He is over ambitious and tries so hard to dramatize and fails utterly because I have listened to the other books in this series and now I do not recognize names or characters... If a narrator takes up the job after another he could at least see to it that he pronounced NAMES in the same way as the older one... VERY irritating...
"Ruined by the Narrator"
First of all let me just say that I am a huge fan of David Eddings and that any criticism here is directed at the narrated book not at the book itself.
Belgarath the Sorcerer was my favorite of all of that set of books and I was looking forward to listening to it no end. Having paid my money and downloaded the book I settled in for a quiet few hours. Imagine then my shock and dismay when I heard J P linton launch into a truly awful narration. I am afraid that I managed only an hour or so of this production before I gave in. It was ruined for me. Why oh why did they change from Cameron Beierle who did an admirable job.
If I could have rated this as zero I would have done.
What a shame!
"Turn speed to 1 1/4"
It was ok
Probably if I knew they hadn't read all the others in the long list of endings books. That's the only way it stands alone. Basically in my opinion its a rehash of those wonderful earlier books and not a very good one. Polgara is a better listen.
Told him not to droll on so much, was better when I raised the speed to one and a quarter, to be honest without that I was have given up. Sorry J P.
The insight into Belgarath's love for Poledra.
"Great Listen. Well read. Some cringeworthy accents"
I really enjoyed this listen and have no reservations in recommending it to anyone.
The Belgariad is a series close to my heart so i admit the narrator had an uphill struggle to win me over with his interpretation of characters Ive been listening to with my minds ear for more than half my life.
The Belgarath story is my favorite of the entire of the Eddings catalogue. That said I cant imagine anyone listening to this would be new to the series, and i would recommend at least reading/listening to the belgariad if not the mallorean first.
Ive knocked off 2 stars on the performance as the narrator, while competent, falls flat on the humour. I remember laughing out loud at points while reading the book, but the same can not be said of the listen. The narrator either lacks the ability to deliver a comic line, or did not recognise that there was a joke there in the first place. The second star i knocked off was for the "Brogue" that Belgarath and Beldin lapse into when being flippant. It tweaks my pet hate of awful Irish accents. Im irish and i know what we sound like, and its not that. While i admit nobody says explicitly its Irish and in fact couldnt be, as the story is set in a fictional world. We all know a Darby o Gill/Tom cruise in Far and Away Irish accent when we hear one. Please stop, just no...... anyway rant over.
4 out of 5 stars. Enjoyable listen.
"Belgarath The Sorcerer"
Easy to follow, interesting characters, ok storyline.
The Wolf, to me it seemed like the most interesting.
Someone less boring, the narrator totally spoiled the listening for me, bit of a droning boring voice that almost made me put the book down many times.
Perhaps Michael Kramer or Scott Brick.
Had I not really wanted to listen to the book I would most likely have returned it do to the annoying narrator.
I wish the narration flowed better and the reading, although better than Cameron Beirle, still lacked understanding of basic punctuation.
When you have the 11th book in a series read by a new reader, you should get them to listen to the previous readers books so that the understand how to pronounce the names of characters and have a bit of continuity in their personalities. J.P Linton seems to want to read this book as fast as he can. It's flat with no drama whatsoever. Awful. Just awful and very disappointing.
"A good fantasy brick, but the reader lets it down."
Absolutely not. In fact, very much the opposite. Cameron Beierle's reading is worse by an order of magnitude, in a class of its own, but J.P. Linton could clearly do better and has not done so with this. I couldn't bear to make it through 30 hours of his overblown Belgarath.
Belgarath's journey to retrieve the Orb with Cherek Bear-Shoulders' sons. I won't specify further, as it would give too much away for new readers. I didn't get that far with the audiobook version, and since I struggled to bear the narration as far as the second proper chapter, I doubt I would have liked the audio version as much as I like it on paper.
The book has its fair amount of drama, but Linton makes the whole thing into melodrama, even when Belgarath isn't trying for that effect textually (which he occasionally does, being Belgarath). You can hear in his Garion that he has potential to be better at it all, but he doesn't sustain it well. It's also very clear he did not bother to try to find out how any of the names should be pronounced, Ce'Nedra - whose name is, as she herself says in an earlier instalment of the series, meant to be pronounced more like X'Nedra, its true written form, with the X softened - being a notable example from very early on. I cannot listen to him calling her "Kanedra" without cringing.
Belgarath's return to his tower to find Poledra gone, and his first meeting with Polgara and Beldaran. (Though again, I didn't get this far with the audiobook version.)
I don't recommend J.P. Linton as a fantasy reader, I really don't. Seriously, I wish I could find some versions of Belgarath and the Belgariad & Malloreon read by other narrators than Linton and the abysmal Beierle! I find it wholly depressing that I can't honestly recommend the Audible editions of the series or this companion to anyone, especially not a fan. I suggest sticking to the ebook or paper edition until someone else records it, if you can. I can only hope the woman narrating "Polgara" and the men who narrate the rest of Eddings' works do a better job of them. My rating for the performance of this otherwise 4* book is 1.5*, rounded down.
Listening to the story made it so much easier to be there as I closed my eyes it was like I was actually there.
How could you compare Belgarath to any other book, I feel I just could not answer that , Unless you want to pit Belgarath against his strong willed daughter Polgara!
Beldin, the mis-shapen dwarf, He says what he feels and he does exactly as he pleases, (within reason lol )
At long last bought to the Big Screen, I bring you "Belgarath"
I could read this book over and over again, It always gives me such excitment as i read about everyone in it, it just gets better with each read.
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