Eight years later the City of Dunce has forgotten about Bran. Even his foster parents don't seem to know he exists. But there are those who have been watching, biding their time, waiting to strike, people who know where Bran came from and why he was sent away. And they will do anything to get Bran back, dead or alive....
Welcome to a world unlike any other where the adventure of a lifetime is just beginning.
Let me start by saying that I did finish this book and I will probably check out the sequel. That is not necessarily a sign of a well written book though, as I did slog through all those popular vampire stories too.
This book could have been very good, not great but a fun imaginitive adventure if it had been proofread prior to publication. The premise is fun but the writing feels unfinished with unnecessary conversations that drag inteminably plus a huge inconsistency in the hero's intelligence from page to page. Nobody who has the conversations and uses the vocabulary that Bran does could be believed to be that dense. The supporting characters are a bit better but several of the more important ones lack development and fail to be likable. The bumbling stupidity shown by most of the adults in the story fails to be funny and silly as it should be and is, actually, a bit insulting. It feels as though someone who writes quite well for adults has tried to create a children's book by taking very young books and adult novels and running them through a blender. Kids are not all stupid and want as much an anybody to read intelligently. I still have high hopes for the author as the story is quite fun and the monsters and suspense are well done.
The narration also leaves a bit to be desired. Mr. Thompson does a lovely job with most of the characters and even manages to make some of the dialogue believable but he could use a bit of work on the women's voices. Most of the female voices are shrill and vapid and although the women are written to be more intelligent then the male characters, they come across as a bit too saccharine.
In spite of my criticism, I did actually enjoy the story and I hope Mr. Nation takes a few more creative writing classes and tries again. Maybe if the author had a higher opinion of his readers' intelligence he would stop dumbing down his characters and write a really fun adventure story that everyone could enjoy.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful
Where do these books come from? Did someone run it past an editor?
While this is a childrens book, it starts off like an adult book with a rather cold blooded murder. Then continues as if written to 5 or 6 year olds with adult characters behaving childishly, interminable pointless dialog and dragging out a story line beyond endurance. I couldn't get past Part 1, skipped to Part 3 and managed to endure to the end. Two of my children listened to parts of this story and told me it wasn't very well written. One of my children who started the story with me, asked me to please put on another book because this one was painful to listen to.
The narrator was actually good, but I don't know how he managed to stay with this book.
4 of 6 people found this review helpful
Would you try another book from Kaleb Nation and/or Marc Thompson?
The characters were flat and one-dimensional, and the pacing was atrocious. Kaleb Nation doesn't just give us one or two examples to show the idiotic nature of the family Bran lives with, he gives us about ten examples. The story really drags, and I didn't even want to finish it. Furthermore, several themes are identical to Harry Potter, from the orphaned boy who lives with an unkind, unloving family, to the discovery of his unique abilities at puberty, to the villain who won't leave Bran alone.
Has Bran Hambric turned you off from other books in this genre?
I don't plan to read any other books in this series, or by this author.
What about Marc Thompson’s performance did you like?
Marc Thompson is a great voice-actor, and we've enjoyed many other audiobooks he's performed, especially in the Star Wars series.
What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?
I was disappointed that I used my credit on this book, especially after reading some reviews that looked promising.
Bran Hambric borrows a lot from it's predecessors in the genre, including Harry Potter. However, it lacks sophistication in the form of explanations that help the reader understand the context of the world in which the story take place.
It also misses a critical opportunity to explore the human condition resulting from abandonment, and loss, while making light of the emotional abuse afforded the main character by his wards. There is an attempt to rectify this by giving Bran an acerbic and some times sarcastic manner, but in the end he goes right back to living with the family that treats him like a slave at the end of the story.
The reading was mildly entertaining, and the story would be found acceptable by early readers of novels in the range of 8-12 years old.
I wasn't sure I would like this book at the beginning. However, Marc Thompson's narration using many FANTASTIC voices made the book most enjoyable. I give the narration 5 stars. A great pre/early teen book.
At first i was hesatant but thought ill keep going and I'm so glad i did after the develop the characters a town the store starts taking of .
0 of 1 people found this review helpful
I really can't put my finger on what was missing but it was an o.k. book the story was good and told pretty well but I wasn't really impressed.
0 of 1 people found this review helpful
I loved this book, characters really came to life, recommended for kids that love magic and suspense. Excellent narration.
The only problem is that I could not stop listening and could not wake up the next morning.
0 of 2 people found this review helpful