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Publisher's Summary

"The shapeless mass of darkness split apart. It sundered, and a pale spindle of light gleamed between his open arms. In the oval of light there moved a human shape: a tall woman...beautiful, and sorrowful, and full of fear." - from A Wizard of Earthsea, first in a tetralogy that includes The Tombs of Atuan and The Farthest Shore, introduces the listener to Ged, the greatest sorcerer in all Earthsea, known also as Sparrowhawk. 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. There, Ged's natural talents enable him to surpass his classmates in little time. But when his vanity prompts him to summon Elfarran, the fair lady of the Deed of Enlad, he unleashes a shapeless mass of darkness - the shadow.

©1968 Ursula K. Le Guin; (P)1992 Recorded Books, LLC

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

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  • Overall

Magic, shadows, wizardry, oh my

What's not to enjoy?! This is a most wonderful read. The story has a deeper meaning in my eyes. It is what we face daily. Our shadow selves. What are you waiting for?! Give it a read. You may enjoy it. :)

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similar to Lord of the rings

I enjoyed reading this book. It reminds me of a gap that Bridges between Lord of the Rings and Harry Potter. I'll go on and read the other two books

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Rewarding, Epic Tale

Beautifully written and narrated, rich and lyrical. Far from fast-paced, yet always a pleasure to listen to. I also appreciated hearing the omniscient story-teller voice (which is pretty much impossible to find in newer books).

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  • motti
  • holon, Israel
  • 05-14-17

I didn't care for it

the premise of the story is nice but the delivery of it just don't hold up on today's standards

if you like old fantasy style you will love this
I for one do not

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Great Story

Good story, shot and sweet
Need to update the narrator
To many pauses and it sounds like he needs a drink of water

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Classic must read

the story doesn't take much time to get hooked on. the char development is very relatable.
I highly recommend this series.

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Just brilliant.

One of my favorite fantasy books narrated brilliantly by Mr. Inglis. Highly recommend this unabridged version

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  • David
  • San Diego, CA, United States
  • 03-03-17

A YA Classic

Would you consider the audio edition of A Wizard of Earthsea to be better than the print version?

I think a print version would have helped me keep the names (of both people and places) a bit more straight, but over all, both versions are enjoyable.

What other book might you compare A Wizard of Earthsea to and why?

This is one of the many Bildungsroman out there. LeGuin blends in both Anthropological and Daoist influences in her story. Another text (sci-fi rather than fantasy) that matches Earthsea in its scope and blend of influence might be Dune.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

The very end, Ged's confrontation with his shadow.

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Nonstop Action and adventure.

A face paced story of magic, myth, and world building that elegantly draws in the reader.

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Classic

Earthsea is timeless, right up there with Middle Earth. Slower-paced and more sedate than a lot of modern fantasy, but has a mythic feel. Just put your earbuds in and let it take you away from whatever dull task you're doing. Le Guin is a must for fantasy fans, especially those who also love legends and folktales.