New York Times bestselling author Tamora Pierce returns to the magical world of Winding Circle. Set two years before the events of The Will of the Empress and Melting Stones, this adventure reunites plant mage Briar; his mentor, Rosethorn; and his young apprentice, Evvy, who has a talent for making stones...do things. The three journey eastward to the forbidding land of Yanjing, where they discover a danger that threatens the home temple of the Living Circle religion.
©2013 © 2013 by Tamora Pierce (P)2013 Scholastic Inc.
I've read almost all of Tamora Pierces novels, include Battle Magic. I also have the majority of them on audio via Audible. I enjoy listening to them while driving or doing other tasks.
Battle Magic is a great novel. The characters are full of life, Tamora Pierce does yet again a wonderful job of drawing the reader into the story and weaving a good paced attention keeping tale.
Unfortunately Nancy Wu narration slaughtered Battle Magic. I read the book before getting the audio. I was going to do a long drive and thought it would be nice to listen to the story. I got so irritated that midway through I had to turn it off. The way she changes the voices are horrid. At places she goes to a monotone voice and I felt myself not listening anymore. The story is a good one, that was the reader not the story. Sometimes I couldn't even tell that the speaker had changed except by the word "said" or such. The vocal reading didn't give any indication with change in inflection. She doesn't make any pause between section changes. The first time she went from the end of a sentence in one section (think context change within a chapter) - straight into the next without pausing , I thought the audio was broken. Then I realized what had happened. It happened again and again. Seriously. She completely ruined this story for me. Read the book instead.
I would prefer to have Tamora Pierce and the cast of the other books do the narrative. And if not that - then someone who can at least read without just ruining everything together. The character of Briar Moss is an upstart street wise cocky kid who is maturing - but her narrative of him has absolutely none of that feel or playful tone, etc that goes with his character. I don't know the reasons why the narration was done differently for this book than the others, but it was a mistake to change.
The story is great. Tamora Pierce put out another well written novel. I did love the book - I hated the audio narration.
Nancy Wu's performance as Evvy is enthusiastic, youthful, and convincing as a 12 year old girl with immense magical abilities.
Tamora Pierce's cultural and political designs are realistic, and the descriptions are vivid.
Evvy's excitement, rosethorn's maturity, and briar's adolescence. The characters all came completely to life; Nancy Wu's performance is nuanced and diverse.
I did, and am listening a second time.
looking into Nancy Wu's other work, I enjoyed her narration and characters in particular!
after reading "the will of the empress" ( a must read BTW) most of the story seems to match up to the hints you get in that book of what happened to Briar, Evey, and Rosethrone. but minus those deviations in both books. battle magic was a great read. I did not fully enjoy the narrators voice at times but she did a great job making the story come to life.
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