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.
After reading (listening) to The Belgariad and The Malloreon I thought I would download and listen to the prequels (addendums), Belgarath the Sorcerer and Polgara the Sorceress. The two, five books series are all read by the same narrator so, the pronunciations and character voices are consistent and well done. Belgarath the Sorcerer is read by a different narrator, the pronunciations are all consistent, but obviously the character voices have to be different, and they were. This wasn't distracting and you became accustom to the new narrator quickly.
Polgara the Sorceress, however, has a poor narrator. She clearly has not listened to any of the previous books, or if she has, she ignored them completely! The pronunciations of: character names, place, and titles ignores all previous narrations. Her syntax is awful, it sounds like a female William Shatner is reading complete with weird and arbitrary pauses, and bizarre dramatic inflections. Her typical reading voice is pleasant, but some of the character voices are so irritating that it's distracting to the story. In addition to this, the audio editing of the reading isn't helping her; many of the stops and starts are very abrupt and are distracting.
This aside, the content of the story is good. It gives you another point of reference for Belgarath's history and reveals interesting things about Polgara and her motivations. I enjoyed the story and suffered the narrator.
I think Steven hit the nail on the head with his description. The narrator was horrible. I guess she thought that it wasn't necessary to listen to the VOLUMES of books that had been read before this one so as to make things as consistent as possible. I don't know if I can adequately describe how grating on the nerves it is. For example she pronounces ctuchek's name (one of the disciples of Torak) as chew tik. Another one that is grating is Maloria (mah loria), which she reads as mal o ria. Okay, I know, I'm quibbling, but this had such an amateur narrator feel with Ms. Pearlman that I wish I could fire the person that chose to use her as the narrator. This reminds me of awarding the contract to the lowest bidder.
Now, for David Eddings, he did a great job. I love hearing the story from a different point of view. It is definitely not the same story, unlike what another reviewer wrote. It has the same end, but both stories cover roughly 5000 to 8000 years and they each focus of different things in their histories with some common major events tying them together so that you have a point of reference from Belgarath's point of view.
Great story, would be nicer if they just deleted her recording of it and got somebody a little more qualified.
I loved the whole series when read by Cameron Bierle. He was the best narrator I had ever heard, so why on EARTH they switched to this woman is beyond me. I honestly haven't been able to do more then skip around in the book, because if I had to listen to her constantly I would go mad. Her voice for C'Nedra is so atrocious. She made a young dryad queen sound like a 90 year old hag. WHY??? I just don't understand. If it ain't broke, don't FIX it!! The book is good but I am going to read it on my kindle, because I just can't stand this narrator.
The final story in Edding's universe of the Belgariad. This tale is from Polgara's point of view and while there is some repetition, which is natural since "her" version is to correct her father's, it also contains multiple plot lines and stories that have not been mentioned before.
Narration is decent, unlike the Belgarath novel, making the flow of the story more enjoyable.
Highly recommended if you enjoy listening to the story of "Polly"'s life story!
The narrator pronounce many of the words differently than the reader of the other books. I found the book to be a real disappointment.
Agreeing with what seems to be a consenses that Dina Perlman's pronunciation of most ALL of the cities and characters were WAY off. Drove me nuts! Book is great. I mean did she and or Audible not collaborate w/Cameron Beierle or J.P. Linton at all?! Come on Audible! Your the publisher "Audible Frontiers" of both Belgarath the Sorcerer and Polgara the Sorceress, would've been nice of you to go to the "Books in Motion" publishers of the Belgariad and see if Cameron was free from any contract so YOU could use him too.
The narration was well done, the book had the potential to be quite a boring audiobook because so much of is said by Polgara so I was peasantly suprised. The accents are good, took a bit of getting used to because I first listened to the Belgariad and Mallorean narrated by Cameron Bierle so I was used to those accents. My only complaint with this audio book is the pronunciation of some of the cities and countries. I think it would have main sense to keep the pronunciation the same as in the Belgariad and the Mallorean.
Dina Pearlman has a great voice and she works as Polgara, but as so many Steves have already pointed out, her pronunciations are maddening. MaloREEuh and CHEWtick put my teeth on edge. I downoaded the Conan stories and that narrator pronounced it SimmuhREEuh. Almost ruins it for me. And it's why I didn't get Belgarath the Sorcerer. I was hoping it would be Cameron Bierle on that and it wasn't and the guy's pronunciations were worse than Dina Pearlman's.
Other than that, though, if the pronunciation doesn't bother you, it's a great story with a narrator with a great voice and worth the listen.
About in the middle.
The other books in this series - the Belgarian, the Mallorean, Belgarath the Sorcerer. I love this series by the Eddings and Polgara's story fills in a lot of gaps.
The performer's voice was pleasant, but her pronunciation of some of the names was jarring. I think she should have listened to some of the other books to be more consistent in the way these names are normally pronounced. A major difference was the word "Mallorea". She pronounced it "mal-o-RE-a", when others read it as "ma-LOR-e-a". Everytime the word came up, I was jarred out of the story.
Too long for one sitting.
Yes, the the basic story line is very interesting. However, in this book, Polgara is extremely self-centered and egotistical. It's much more than the banter shared between Polgara and Belgarath in the other stories. The character admits to the behavior in her auto-biography, but shows no remorse or regret for it.
No, the book is just a bad book for the genre
They chose a female narrator since much of the book is in the first person voice of Polgara. However her pronunciation is off on many key words. Not only off of how I have pronounced them for years, but totally off from the narrator of the other novels. It sounds like a different world, with some words almost unrecognizeable. The emphasis is on the wrong syllable.
If you are narrating a book in a series or a world, narrated by another narrator, you need to listen to a couple of the other books to understand the characters and pronunciation. Adding your own style is disruptive and distracting.
"Much more like it"
I recently reviewed and rated the brother book to this one as extremely poor due to the narrator, indeed I gave up on after only a short period.
However this production was excellent. I think with the possible exception of Ce'Nedra, Dina Pearlman managed to pull off the characterisations brilliantly. Carmeron Beierle still sits atop the pile for me though.
I can strongly recomend this production to all Eddings fans. The story is a crisp as ever and Dina P. does a wonderful job of bringing the story to life.
I bought this audiobook with some trepidation - Polgara the Sorceress was (and still is) one of my favourite books growing up, I was therefore slightly concerned that it would have been mangled like many of the other sci fi/fantasy type books on here.
fear not! it's brilliantly read, once you get used to the American pronounciations (and over the 'I don't pronounce Ctuchik like that!' issues) and had me totally addicted very quickly, much like the book.
Now if only the guy reading Belgarath the Sorcerer was as good...!
"Thrilling and exciting!"
It keeps you on the edge of your seat. My freinds all know my love for this story and if I say its worth a read they normally will give it a go.
The way the story was told, Dina was perfect in her guise as each character.
Why that would have to be Polgara herself, Don't ya know!
When Polgara lost Beldarren, it was heartbreaking, Then many years later when she fell in love with Ontrose, only to loose him at the fall of Vo Wacune, so very sad.
"Good value for money listen"
Just that - Have loved the story for years so knew I would enjoy the unabridged retelling. Lots of interesting listening, only a few quibbles with pronunciation and a lovely timbre to the narrators rather too american (for me) accent. Happy, happy, happy.
"Spoiled by terrible narration"
Polgara ~ always a favourite of mine
Just awful ~ it grated on my nerves. I only managed 2 chapters and gave up. Ce'Nedra sounded like an old crone when she is a very young woman and that was just the start.
Sorry to say I did not get far enough in the book to comment on this.
I did read the reviews which is why I tried this one and not Belgarath. Foolish mistake. Personally I did not particularly enjoy Cameron Beierle narrating the other two series by David Eddings BUT he was 100 times better than this narration. Sorry, not for me
"Well read, and one of my favourite stories."
I would really recommend his audiobook to any friends who love David Eddings work :) Polgara the Sorceress just rounds the universe off beautifully and is well read.
I just adore finding out details about one of my all time favourite literary characters. polgara is a joy of writing and a wonderful character. She reminds me of my best friend and my grandmother all rolled together into one.
She had a lovely voice and was very well spoken. I missed the voice acting of Cameron Bierley (who reads the Belgariad and Malloreon) but I felt that a woman reading was a nice touch. And Pearlman certainly had the right attitude for Polgara :)
I both laughed and cried several times, as I do whenever I read anything by Eddings.
One small problem for die hard hard fans is that Pearlman pronounces several of the city names and nation names wrong. It isn't too much of an issue, but it certainly annoys me.
Loved the book, the terrible narration, strange pronunciation of words and very similar voices for all characters doesn't diminish the story. At times it's difficult to know which character is speaking and the change from the gods name Ul, first pronounced ool and later yule may confuse those who have not read any of the series before. I would recommend struggling through the grating voice and trying to ignore the pronunciation of both English words and invented countries and races and giving this fantastic story a listen. For lovers of fantasy, the book will not disappoint.
"Fantasic story, weak narration"
I got increadibly attached to the characters in the Belgariad and Mallorean and it was lovely to get the full back story in Belgareth and Polgara. It really is as good as those books.
When Dina is narrating (rather than reading speech) her voice has that flat American tone I've found in many audiobooks. It's a soothing sound but makes it difficult to concerntrate.
Some of her character voices are excellent and others are very grating. She makes Ce'Nedra sound like a senile old lady and Polga sound like a teenager! It was so irritating I found myself skipping through Ce'Nedra's parts.
Pratical, wise and clever
building the house and surrounding it with roses as a hide away
The story told of someone telling a story is very good and the bits of humor are great. You even try imaging you are at the places discribed well. good listen.
"Great story, inconsistent narration"
Definitely recommended. A great story especially if you have read the Belgariad and the other stories in this series.
Similar to Belgarath the Sorceror in that it wraps up neatly the history behind the cracking of the world and the events that transpired before Garion was born.
The narration was poor and inconsistent in places. Often the same names would be pronounced in different ways which made it hard to listen to at times.
There are several sad sections where Polgara loses close family which will make you feel very upset.
If you can get past the poor reading of the book it is well worth a listen.
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