Gifts

Annals of the Western Shore, Book 1
Narrated by: Jim Colby
Series: Annals of the Western Shore, Book 1
Length: 6 hrs and 3 mins
3.9 out of 5 stars (223 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

In the Uplands, people have magical and fearsome gifts. Orrec, a boy growing into his powers, can destroy any living thing with simply a glance. But he refuses to use his ability, and wears a blindfold to protect others from his devastating gaze. This allegorical coming-of-age tale shows that power can be cruel.
Listen to another book in this series: Powers.
©1994 Ursula K. Le Guin (P)1994 Recorded Books, LLC

Critic Reviews

"Rich in the earthy magic and intelligent plot twists that made the Earthsea novels classics." (Booklist)

What listeners say about Gifts

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

Book 3 won the 2008 Nebula Award

I had never heard of this series and thought I'd take a chance on them because of the author. These are well written, thoughtful books that really deserve as much attention as her other works. Each audio reader does a good job. Each book could stand on its own, too. The stories are complex (I mean that in a good way - as in, not simplistic). It's just good literature. (...hence the Nebula award.) She respects the intelligence of the reader/listener and the maturity of her characters' thoughts and actions reflects that.

I really enjoyed Le Guin's Earthsea trilogy, so for those of you looking to compare them, this has a less dark theme and these are more about the people than about the magic - if that matters to you. As I listened to all three books, I found myself thinking, "These are really good books!" as I got into each. And they stayed good right to the ending of each. They really deserve just as much attention as other bestsellers in the field.

10 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

LeGuin is guaranteed to please!

This is classic Ursula LeGuin. She tells a story which is interesting, drawing you in to the action and at the same time teaching lessons about kindness, understanding and acceptance of yourself and others. She weaves this into a tale mixed with magic and fantasy. It is written for "children" but is a great read for any age.

6 people found this helpful

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A good intro for a great later book.

This book was fun. I enjoyed it. But the third book is phenomenal. If you only have a chance to read one book in the series, skip to the third (Powers). It can stand completely alone since the main characters of the first two only make cameos in the third book. If you have already read Powers, go ahead and read this one, but be warned it isn't as amazing. If you want to read them all, start here so you are saving your dessert for last!

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Great for Anyone

This is a great book whether you are into science fiction or not. It is thought-provoking and very emotional. It has turns in the story that makes it fun to listen to as well. Definitely recommend it.

8 people found this helpful

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Horrible Narrator

How did this guy get this job. He’s reading is Staccato and without emotion. He used the same voice for everyone. He wouldn’t pause at the end of a chapter. I’ve listened to a lot of audible books and this is my least favorite. Love LeGuin’s work but this reading turned me off to the rest of the trilogy. The narrators for the Earthsea books were so much better.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars

Unique

This is a very unique story, but it seems more like a diary-type story that jumps around a bit. There was no real climax. The story itself was intriguing, but I think the narrator made the story a bit more dull then if you were to have read it yourself.

3 people found this helpful

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I enjoy listening to this book

This book was slow going and felt like it had a lot of back and forth telling between present and past event. I wasn't always sure of the time lime. I am really not sure how the opening chapters fit into the whole of the story, however overall the story was good and I enjoyed listening to it.

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Enjoyed the story

Enjoyed the story and characters. The narrator’s swallowing was really noticeable and distracting. Also, the chapters began very abruptly. No separation from the previous chapter.

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Amazing book, well read!

If you love Le Guin, you'll love this story. The reader does an excellent job dramatizing the voices and emotions. I'm off to download the next volume!

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars

Great story, very unique.

A very lovely story, a nice change from the everyday fantasy with swords and love stories.