©2004 Trudi Canavan; (P)2004 Bolinda Publishing Pty Ltd.
"The first part of the Black Magician Trilogy, this captivating tale has already been hailed by critics as a 'must for lovers of good fantasy'." (Marie Claire)
I hesitated to get this book because of the review about the narrator, but I read Magician's Apprentice (new hardcover) first, like it, and decided to try the audio book. I am enjoying it very much, and the narrator seems fine to me. The harsher voice (described by another reader as a smoker's voice) reminds me somewhat of Jim Dale-though he is in a category by himself!- the book is certainly worth reading, and I intend to get the rest of the series.
Listen to this book to get to the others in the series. Books 2 and 3 are very interesting and suspenseful. You won't be sorry with your listening investment in book 1. This first book starts off a little slow, but 2/3 of the way in you'll be hooked on the whole series.
I was first put off by the reader's voice (like a heavy cigarette smoker's) but I got used to it, and actually liked it eventually. Same with the book. I couldn't get into it at first. It seemed like a kid's book, which surprised me, there were some obvious grammar mistakes, and it was too long for the amount of story. Where are the editors nowadays?
Having said that, I am glad I stuck with it since I got totally hooked later on, esp. when the story dealt more with the magicians and their world. A fun adventure! I am downloading the next book right now.
I enjoyed this book very much. If you like reading fantasy, or magic I think you will like this book. I hope to listen or read the next one.
This book is like a wooden roller coaster ride. It starts out slow: Some people complain that it is boring while others just enjoy the view. However, like the wooden roller coaster, once you crest the first and tallest hill things really pick up.
I set this book down twice and I'm glad I picked it up the third time. I started listening to it at night when I was trying to fall asleep, and at first it was great for that...
Other reviews have mentioned the 'monotone voice' of the reader. This reader uses a very monotone voice as the 'narrator voice'.
This reader uses many voices for the different characters (and you can recognize which character speaks by the voice the reader uses!) as the characters are introduced into the book. There is more narration at the start of the book, setting things up, than the rest of the book.
My Personal; About This Book:
Each night I would find the beginning of the last chapter I could remember hearing and start there, and listen again until I fell asleep...
... In the early chapters I fell asleep pretty quickly (not 'because' of the book, but the sound of someone reading muffled other sounds, and the images I formed in my head helped me to forget about stuff I had to do the next day or other worries I had)...
... However, about the third or fourth night I found the book was keeping me awake. I had to stop listening to it at night because I found myself staying awake to find out what happened 'next'!
The book had me cheering for 'both sides' of 'the conflict'.
Review Wrap Up:
I can understand why some people gave it a low rating, and if you just don't like slow starts then don't buy this book.
If you don't mind enjoying the scenery and just going with the flow, understanding that things will be explained later, then this is a good book.
I couldn't put the second book down and I'm reading the third book right now.
It took me several hours to try and get into this book. I was about to ditch it and rate it a one. But after about a 1/3 of the way through finally I became interested. I don't remember much of the earlier chapters because it was hard to grab your attention and the narration was average early on.
Basically here is how I rate this book...
- The story is pretty basic and classic. Won't get into details as to spoil it here. But you've heard this story before.
- The narration is hard to follow until you get used to the narrator. I found it way to easy to drift away from listening early on. He does a nice job with some of the voices later in the book but his standard narration voice is thick with accent and mono-toned.
- The book would make a better movie than a book and I do think it would be a good movie. It's basically written like a screen play more than a novel. By that I mean it takes the entire book for me to get behind the characters and there is little extensive description of the scenes and more description like the author is telling actors what to do and where they are to go.
- Having said that, after making it through the first 5 hours somewhat painfully and distracted... I did finally get into it and want to follow it to the end and see what happens even though I was pretty sure I knew.
Over all it's average with some rather low parts but towards the end some nice characters that will maybe get you to buy the next book.
Hope this helps.
I listen to Fantasy and SciFi, nothing but for about three years now. I'd like to think I've developed an ear for a good story in the making. This sounds like a good story. I think the author lays quite a few plot threads and if she can keep them together this will be a great series. Narrator does an excellent job, which may mask some of what the book lacks in depth but I do recommend this book for Fantasy listeners.
worth the time and money spent it keep me going on all three books. wish they had more.
This is the first time I've written a review and I own many audiobooks,
I have repeatedly tried to "get into" this book but monotone drone with not enough change and richness keeps losing me.
The story line sounds interesting but I can't evaluate due to reading. This is a sad waste.
A different narrator might make something of story.
This book was a disappointment especially after reading Jim Butcher's series "The Furies of Calderon." I said it all in the title for a fantasy adventure this had very little adventure. At half the length it still could not compare to Furies - Read Butchers series if you want great fantasy, action and adventure
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