Empire of the East

Narrated by: Raymond Todd
Length: 18 hrs and 26 mins
3.9 out of 5 stars (281 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

In the distant future, society has crumbled. Dark forces now rule the land, keeping all humans under their oppressive thumbs.

In the darkness of the shadows and whispered on the winds, there is talk of rebellion. In the swamps, a small band has formed. Determined to regain their freedom, the rebels, heavily outnumbered, plan to overthrow an army of thousands, with the help of one incredible weapon.

It is only a legend, a story left over from the Old World before magic and the wizards came to the land. A weapon of technology. It is the mystical Elephant, and whoever masters it holds the key to freedom...or defeat.

One young man, determined to avenge the death of his family, sets out to join the rebellion and find Elephant. What he discovers will change everything.

©1979 Fred Saberhagen (P)2005 Blackstone Audiobooks

What listeners say about Empire of the East

Average Customer Ratings
Overall
  • 4 out of 5 stars
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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars

Good book, bad narrator.

First, I'm a Saberhagen fan, so I lived the book when I read it and as I listened to it. Todd's narration is, as always, barely tolerable. The frequent mispronunciation is very distracting. I won't buy anything he narrates again.

8 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • L.
  • 04-07-06

ALMOST quit

I have to admit, I quit listening to this book several times in the beginning, listened to other books, and then came back to it. Honestly I didn't think I was going to ever finish listening to it based on the beginning...

BUT, then I started over while I had no other books to listen to, and THEN got hooked... couldn't put down the MP3 player after that until it was done.

Don't let the first part put you off, the plot thickens and the characters get fleshed out... I'll probably go ahead with the other books in the series now...

I ALMOST quit, glad I didn't!

8 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars

A subtle crescendo.

This book is the psuedo prequel to "The Swords" and "Lost Swords" novels by Saberhagen. Stand alone this is a very good novel and closer to what many expect from him. Taken as the prequel to the Swords novels, this is a must read and great set up for one of the best fantasy series ever written.

36 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars

Distracting Reader

Overall I did like this book and would recommend it but you have to be patient. It gets off to kind of a slow start and to make things worse the reader is well.. kind of annoying. I could ignore the long pauses but the constant loud inhaling is VERY distracting. Could they not edit that out.
...INHALE CATCH MY BREATH,,,,,LET IT OUT... KEEP READING...

11 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars

READ

I don't know if the story is good or not - the narrator ruins the story. I think I would actually have to read it myself to truly know.
The story seems discordant, but the narrator reads it in such a choppy manner that I can't be sure. It's hard to listen and it easy to be distracted by other things going on around me so that I miss key points in the story and have to go back and listen again - argggggg.
The narrator also seems to lack the basic ability to follow the writers grammar clues, completely skipping over intentional pauses marked by commas and then completely distorting the sentences. He does this through the entire book.
So don't waste your credit or $ on this one, check it out from you local library if you are truly interested.

8 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars

Uninteresting

I looked forward to listening to this book. I had known about Fred Saberhagen for sometime as I have been "into" SF for many years, but just hadn't gotten around to any of his material. Well... I just couldn't get into this story. I quit in the middle of part 3. I did not care about characters, the plot was not unique. It was like he told himself he needed to write a book that had some typical sci fi/fantasy riffs, complete with the usual suspects. . I just can't recommend this book. I did not care for the plot or characters. It did not have any heart. There are too many good ones out there don’t waste your time.

6 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Best so far

This is the best book I have listened to yet from audible.com. It was like 3 books in one. The plot elements were interesting, the tension was sincere, the characters were likable and the world was fascinating. I highly recommend this book!

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars

stay away

An awful book! It was painful to listen to, although other reviews said that it got better towards the end. Weak character development. Characters had no personality. This book was like a trilogy crammed into one abridged book. A descent plot that goes nowhere. Its just bad

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
  • NM
  • 09-08-20

The later books are better, but this is still ok!

Bought this about two years ago, but am getting ready for a Swords Re-Listen as had also purchased the other eleven Swords books, totaling around 4 1/2 days start-to-finish. Figured I'd start with E of the E as that's technically the Very First Book and some of the information here-and-there helps out in understanding the later books. Have actually been listening to a few chapters from the each book and skipping around to keep things interesting. Am also listening to the three books from the Swords Trilogy - hopping back and forth with a few chapters here and a chapter there. Back at Empire of the East, it's First book - The Broken Lands - does take a while to build momentum as the Big Reveal doesn't happen till Book Three. It's a similar pattern with the First Book of Swords, as the First book concerns itself with world-building and the Mindsword and Soulcutter don't show up until - again - Book Three. It does take a while to get going, but it's worth the wait. Chapter Info for Empire of the East ---------------------------------------- Book 1: The Broken Lands (Chapters 1-13) Book 2: The Black Mountains (Chapters 14-24) Book 3: Ardneh's World (Chapters 25-35) Note: Book 3's original title was Changeling Earth, with the new title used when the books were updated/re-released Yes, the performance by Raymond Todd could have been better, but looks like this was a production done circa 2005 which Audible later acquired the rights to. When the Swords Trilogy came along in 2012 it seems those might have been done by Audible itself with Derek Perkins as narrator, and the remaining eight Lost Swords books were narrated by Cynthia Barrett. The narration for E of the E does have room for improvement, but it's not exactly enough to send one running from the room with hands over their ears. Personally I have a harder time blanking out the responses of the average TV sitcom's Live Studio Audience than this narrator's Pause-For-Breath/Inhale before each paragraph. Other trivia: There was a 2006 sequel to Empire of the East called Ardneh's Sword, but doubt that book will ever get an audio release since the reviews tend to be less-than-stellar. If there isn't a demand, then it won't exist as an audiobook. If one has the choice of a 3 or 4 star audiobook or None At All, would think it'd be better to have something to listen to that Nothing At All. Am thinking that once I finish E of the E, may start reading Ardneh's Sword to see how that plays out. If not, there are still the eight books from the Lost Swords series to listen to.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Fred saberhagen

I was introduced to Fred saberhagen when I was a young Seaman in the United States Navy, I have been a fan for the last 45 years. I am still a fan, and plan to stay that way!

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • nasir hyder
  • 05-31-15

Fantastic book. Revisited!!!!!!

Re-read this book after many years. Better than the first time. Loved it. Narrator was expressive and enjoyable. However accenting all the speech was maybe not a good idea.

Excellent nevertheless!

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Si
  • 01-28-14

Somewhat bizarre delivery

An average fantasy tale spoiled by an unaccountably poor narrator. If you like all your characters to sound like a drunken Swedish speak-and-spell then this is the audiobook for you. If not, maybe consider the hard copy.