Lafayette, CA, United States
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  • A Wizard of Earthsea

  • The Earthsea Cycle, Book 1
  • By: Ursula K. Le Guin
  • Narrated by: Rob Inglis
  • Length: 7 hrs and 17 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 3,313
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,938
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 2,962

When Sparrowhawk casts a spell that saves his village from destruction at the hands of the invading Kargs, Ogion, the Mage of Re Albi, encourages the boy to apprentice himself in the art of wizardry. So, at the age of 13, the boy receives his true name - Ged - and gives himself over to the gentle tutelage of the Master Ogion. But impatient with the slowness of his studies and infatuated with glory, Ged embarks for the Island of Roke, where the highest arts of wizardry are taught.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A little gem, excellently narrated.

  • By Marjorie on 05-14-12

A little gem, excellently narrated.

5 out of 5 stars
5 out of 5 stars
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 05-14-12

A Wizard of Earthsea is the first installment of Ursula K. Le Guin's classic fantasy. Having read the Earthsea novels (five in all, plus a collection of short tales) years ago, I was very happy with this audio version, which is beautifully done. Re-visiting Earthsea, it's interesting to notice how many of what are now conventions of fantasy writing were in fact pioneered by Le Guin so long ago.

One thing that's different about her books: the writing is beautiful but spare. She can tell you in a few paragraphs what other fantasy writers seem to need long chapters to explain. Each of the Earthsea books comes in at something around 200 pages, quite a contrast to the bloated tomes of so many contemporary fantasy writers.

30 of 31 people found this review helpful

  • The Curse of Chalion

  • By: Lois McMaster Bujold
  • Narrated by: Lloyd James
  • Length: 18 hrs and 27 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,191
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,964
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,971

Amidst the decaying splendor and poisonous intrigue of Chalion's ancient capital, Cazaril is forced to confront not only powerful enemies but also the malignant curse that clings to the royal household, trapping him, flesh and soul, in a maze of demonic paradox, damnation, and death for as long as he dares walk the five-fold pathway of the gods.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • What makes a hero... LMB knows

  • By Terri on 04-12-12

Terrific book -- can't say as much for the reader

3 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 03-24-11

I'd give the book a five if the reader was better.

Bujold is a superb story teller and It's a marvelous story -- well crafted, endearing characters, an appealing hero, thoroughly hate-able villains, a well-designed parallel universe (a vaguely feudal land reminiscent of medieval Spain).

But the reader is ALL WRONG for the book. The "voices" he gives the characters (particularly the women), the implausible accents -- above all that irritating little laugh to indicate whenever a character says something that we are supposed to take as humorous or satirical -- all grated.

I should have paid more attention when I ran the sample.