I have read this book (and the rest of the series) several times since buying them in paperback a few years ago. The audio version highlighted a few f..Show More »laws, such as the overly-long descriptions (especially of the various antagonists) and the very slow first half of the book. Susan Ericksen, however, is a fantastic narrator, and I thoroughly enjoyed listening. Kellen is presented as a youth who is dissatisfied with his life. Although he could easily have grown up as a spoiled brat, he thinks about the people around him and is indignant on their behalf as he learns about various ways in which the high mages take advantage of them.
One reviewer claims that Kellen acts like a 10-13 year old. I have two teenage boys, and I can only wish they showed the kind of concern for others I see in this character. Yes, he has doubts, but I don't see any evidence of the whining some others complain of. In fact, being handed one shock after another, being uprooted and having to make major adjustments in his life, he deals with it quite well for the most part.
The biggest problem with this book is the amount of repetition. Especially when Kellen is musing over a problem, injustice, or puzzle, the same questions and observations are repeated way too many times. It's almost like the authors are concerned the reader will forget something important, which is unfortunate.
I fully intend to get the next two books on audio. To avoid spoilers, I will only say that some of the story arcs resolve very interesting and surprising ways, and there are enough plot twists to keep the reader (or listener) guessing. Even with the occasionally too-wordy descriptions, the trilogy is carefully woven together, rich in detail, with characters that have motivations most of us can relate to.
When I first began listening to this series I wasn't sure I liked it .... It's a good story line that is well thought out and overall I was entertaine..Show More »d ... but it's not a story that will task or engage the reader / listener much. Doesn't compete with other top notch series.
I ended up purchasing / listening to all 3 books in the series, however I don't believe I'll ever call this one of my favorites.
1- Overall few surprises or ah ha! moments ... somewhat predictable 2- Character development seems rushed pretty much across the board 3- Narration took some getting used do ... I couldn't decide if it is the way the book is written or the narrators style but I often felt as if I was sitting in a 2nd grade class