Young Lerris is dissatisfied with his life and trade, and yearns to find a place in the world better suited to his skills and temperament. But in Recluce a change in circumstances means taking one of two options: permanent exile from Recluce or braving the dangergeld, a complex, rule-laden wanderjahr in the lands beyond Recluce, with the aim of learning how the world works and what his place in it might be. Many do not survive. Lerris chooses the dangergeld.
When Lerris is sent into intensive training for his quest, it soon becomes clear that he has a natural talent for magic. And he will need magic in the lands beyond, where the power of the Chaos Wizards reigns unchecked. Though it goes against all of his instincts, Lerris must learn to use his powers in an orderly way before his wanderjahr, or fall prey to Chaos.
©1992 L. E. Modesitt (P)2013 Tantor
I was a little disappointed with the audio version of this book because of the verbal sound effects made by the narrator. Things like a horse whinnying, explosions and such were a bit distracting. It's been a long time since I read the print book, but more than likely I paid little attention to those sentences when reading. The narrator's voice seemed too soft and quiet at first, but I got used to it, especially when realizing the character of Lerris is still in his teens.
The most memorable part of the book was when Lerris was fighting the White wizard.
Kirby Heyborne did a good job of distinguishing characters vocally. His voice is pleasant to listen to for a long story.
This book didn't spark any extreme reactions, but it is one I've read often and really enjoyed because of the characters and the well defined magic system.
I am so glad this series is finally available on audiobook. I've read through almost the whole series, and often wished I could listen to it, as I've listened to The Wheel of Time series, The Song of Ice and Fire, and many other sci-fi series. Thanks to audible for making this happen!
I like Fantasy & Science Fiction but not into Zombie. Due to Health issues, listen to Audiobooks/read ebooks where I can enlarge the print
I read the first L. E. Modesitt's Recluse series when it first came out in the early 1990's since then15 additional titles have been added to the series.
If you enjoy Epic Fantasy over many long novels, then this series is for you (this novel alone is over 19 hours long).
The book is Narrated by Kirby Heyborne who does an excellent job of trying to read an difficult novel. Anyone who has listened to Lynsay Sands Argeneau vampire series will be recognise his name.
The audio issue is that the book has many written "sound effects" which when read one can partially ignore, but the narrator cannot do this in an unabbridged version. Although Kirby does a reasonable job with the "sound effects" they tend to destroy the flow a bit in the Audio version. The ideal audio version should have actual sound effects, but that would have mad it too costly to produce.
L. E. Modesitt's world and character building is excellent. The main character wears on you a bit as he seems fixed in his "eveything is boring" mode and his need to be spoon fed information at least at first . . . but slowly he learns and grows.
Even with the comments above i would highly recommend this book and the Recluse series.
I gave Kirby Heyborne's perforce 5 because i did not feel it was fair to lower his score because of the authors tendency to throw in sound effects every where eg clop, clop clop for horses. If i remember correctly sound effects were in italics in the printed version.
In the book the White (Chaos) wizards are the "bad guys" and the Island of Recluce is the home of the Black (Order) wizards. Anyone on Recluce that does not embrace Order is exiled or give a chance to learn to embrace Order by receiving a little training and then going on a dangergeld, a complex, rule-laden quest in the lands beyond Recluce . . . but all is not that cut and dry . . .
The Magic of Recluce follows the adventures of Lerris and several of the dangergeld group he trained with, trying to complete the dangergeld or at least come to terms with their exile
describe the sounds instead of writing them seriously describing how a horse sounds and acts is more effective then writing the sound.itself
He is just boring
If you have patient with bad reading the story is pretty good but I think the book would be better. Also the series is complete in print but only first to in audio
If you always have a book with you...
I found this book really slow and almost void of adventure. It was a good listen, but largely because I was always thinking, 'OK, now it is going to get interesting'. Being the first in a series, it is often tough for an author to lay down all of the ground work for the world, the history and the characters and then throw in a few things to make it interesting. I found this novel to be a good foundation to build on, but just didn't capture me enough to go onto the second book in the series. But, I do like a good Orc bashing, and there are no Orcs.
I hold a BA in History from York University of Toronto; a 3yr Diploma in Computer Networking from Sheridan College in Oakville Ontario. I have been "reading" audio books sinces the late 80s and a member of Audible back to 2004. What a really like is a good long story preferable over 30 hours. :)
My Mom is a huge Modesitt fan and owns and has read almost all of his works. Therefore it helped a lot when she told this isn't the first series in Recluce world. It did explain why the opening 4 hours nobody is really explaining anything. If unlike Lerris you hold on and think for yourself some it does start to clear up. If you have heard the Imager books then the first Imager set of 3 explain stuff which isn't re-explained in the Scholar but Scholar shows you different rules. Same problem here without the advantage of just buying the other books.
Neither Order or Chaos is inherent good or evil. In the 13 or 14th books some are set on each side. The black staff Lerris is issued is the mark of low level learner Order Mage.
Black = Order (later explain the absence of light)
White = Choas (mix of all light and therefore not orded)
Recluse wasn't always the prudish place depicted.
It's a story of a young man growing up. Apparently in the series written before this one was about the founding of the island of Recluce a few hundred years prev. and therefore the rather dull first couple of hours are a contract between society that the reader last saw and what it became. I'm ensured the effect was very good. Finally (~4hr) Lerris get off Recluce and things pick up as the meat of the story get going.
My problem with Kirby is rather simple: he can't do an onomatopoeia and not jar me out of the story. Modesitt work at exciting moments seems full of Howlling, Naaaing of the horses etc. I don't believe Kirb Heyborne is a bad reader just not one who should ever try to make howling wind sounds.
I REALLY hope that Tor release the rest of the Recluce books.
If you liked Imager, you'll like this and whilst I am waiting on the 8th Imager book, I will continue with this series. Just as good and just as compelling, in a quiet sophisticated style rather than grandiose and pretentious. Great character and development, excellent story, good basis for Magic Chaos and Order.
As alluded in the headline, the narrators 'sound effects' really work against the story telling. If they want 'Sound Effects' do REAL Sound Effects. At times, especially in one of the final scenes the amount of irritating 'sound effect' really almost spoilt the final chapters.
Yet...... I am purchasing books 2 and 3 right after this review is posted!!
Hey there! I am a Fantasy/Sci-Fi nut. I also enjoy a good zombie novel or thriller now and then. My likes tend towards Young adult novels as I find most of the "adult" Fantasy novels to be uppity for lack of a better word. Follow me if you like the same as I intend to go back and review every book I had listened to on this site and will keep doing so.
Frankly the book was just boring for me. The reader seemed monotone and horrible. The story itself felt very stale and done before. I tried giving this book a chance a few times but for whatever reason it was just a very poor listen for me.
Thwack! Clank! Aiyeeee! Thud! The fight was over in moments. I'd rather get a description of the fight than sound effects. The bell tolled ominously is better than BONG...BONG...BONG! I gave it three stars across the board because I didn't like Modesitt's sound effects.
I didn't get far enough to make a recommendation.
Young-adult, monotone, adolescent
Commodities broker, father, husband, and avid scifi/fantasy/self help fan.
If you follow my reviews, you already KNOW I focus my reviews primarily on scifi and fantasy works. I began building my library of favorite books when I was twelve, for God's sake. And my audiobook library? Let's just say that I have a one terabyte server dedicated to my current and future audiobooks, and it's about 35% full. Do the math. That's either awesome or very, very weird, depending on your viewpoint. Boil all this down, and it says one thing:
Once you find a great scifi or fantasy read, especially a series, you have to have it, and you want to keep it.
You become possessive. Obsessive. You find yourself talking about it, both live and online. Don't lie. You've done it, and confession's good for the soul. Especially when it comes to this first audiobook, and the subsequent books, in the Recluce series by Modesitt,
I began reading this series when it first appeared, and thought back then, "This is awesome, and it's going to make a great audiobook." When this finally DID arrive, I was wonderfully pulled back into Modesitt's rich, detailed magical world.
So, let's get to the real reason you should get into this audio series, outside of my saying, "It's good!"
You liked the rich magical system of Jordan's "Wheel Of Time" series? Good. Take that, and refine it just a bit, and add Terry Brook's descriptive fantasy writing. Hmmm. Better. Now let's throw in Saberhagen's strong world-building. Nice. Let's not forget a dash of Butcher's solid character interaction. Perfect.
The Recluce series begins this way, and although it starts out the gate just a bit slow, it truly sets into place a great premise and storyline that makes for a great listen, and definitely more than once. Modesitt's unique take on the fantasy genre is a welcome change to a fair number of fantasy writers who take tired plots and lame magic systems and crank out tome after boring tome of forgettable efforts. Or lack of effort. Modesitt has created a series that you'll listen to, talk about, write about, and as I said earlier, you'll listen to again. I already have. That's why it took so long to do this review.
The book's just that darn good.
Modesitt has created, in this first of the series, a WONDERFUL listen that pulls you in, sets you on its path, and creates a unique fantasy world you'll not want to end.
Thankfully, it doesn't have to - The second in the series is already available here at Audible, and I already have it. And yes, it's equally as good!
And on a final note, Modesitt's "Imager" series is already here at Audible, eight audiobooks strong, and yes, I'll be writing a review on them, as well. The man can write.
So, this is a keeper. It's on a shelf in my library, and now, it's a great listen on my audio server. It's going to STAY there.
A really good time. I have read the Recluce books and found then to be entertaining and at times thought-provoking. The series is in my opinion well written and well thought out. An escape from reality that brings out a childlike wonder that most novels cannot match. I believe you will enjoy this si-fy series and feel well pleased with your selection. Happy listening!
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