Lord Foul's Bane

The Chronicles of Thomas Covenant the Unbeliever, Book 1
Narrated by: Scott Brick
Series: Thomas Covenant, Book 1
Length: 19 hrs and 28 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (84 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

He called himself Thomas Covenant the Unbeliever because he dared not believe in this strange alternate world on which he suddenly found himself.

Yet, the land tempted him. He had been sick but now, he seemed better than ever before. Through no fault of his own, he had been outcast, unclean, a pariah. Now, he was regarded as a reincarnation of the land's greatest hero - Berek Halfhand - armed with the mystic power of white gold. 

That power alone could protect the lords of the land from the ancient evil of the Despiser, Lord Foul. Except, Covenant had no idea how to use that power....

“Covenant is [Stephen R.] Donaldson's genius!” (The Village Voice)

©1977 Penguin Random House (P)2009 Brick by Brick Audiobooks

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

Finally on Audible!

I had been waiting and hoping for this series of books to be added to Audible since I joined. It took a while but now they are becoming available. I hope all in the series are going to be included. I read these many years ago and am enjoying listening to them now. Some of my favorite stories. Scott Brick does a great job and hope he does all of them. Highly recommended.

3 people found this helpful

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Classic fantasy

Donaldson spins a world on par with Tolkien, both fresh in concept and familiar in certain details. I’ve been waiting for these books for decades and it’s a thrill to finally have them.

4 people found this helpful

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Mild spoiler

Most unlikeable main character I've ever read. Makes you want to grab, shake and slap him. It reads like he's supposed to be sympathetic even as he's raping an underaged girl.

1 person found this helpful

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A Good Blast from the Past with more to come!

I read all three of these books when they first came out and was dismayed that I could not obtain them in the audio format. until now, book 1, is out and I cannot wait for Book 2 and 3. I have enjoyed Mr. Brick's performance as I have gained a greater understanding of Thomas's internal struggle with himself, his view of "The Land", and its people. There is on going internal conflict with is Crime against the young girl which will continue...

This series is a Great Read, I highly recommend it.

4 people found this helpful

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For anyone who love the book . . .

I have been looking for these to be released on audio for a long time. I would randomly check audible. When I saw that Scott Brick was narrating, the purchase was a no-brainer.

I have read these six novels, The Chronicles and The Second Chronicles at least a few times. I wrote reports on the first series in high school, and I loved writing about the books and the poignant, personal struggle of Thomas Covenant.

Listening to this novel, with the brilliant narration of Scott Brick allowed me to understand the characters in new ways, and that surprised me.

I think anyone who enjoyed these novels will certainly love this audio and find the experience to be well worth the wait.

2 people found this helpful

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THIS BECOME MY UTMOST FAVORITE

I ,TRULY, ENJOYED THIS BOOK AND AS ALWAYS, THE PERFORMANCE OF SCOTT BRICK. THANK YOU.

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Dark, distubing, anti-hero

What if you were abandoned by society, a pariah? Then suddenly you are in a fantasy world. Imagination? or not?

One of the central themes is if you would continue to be good, do good things, if you thought you were in a dream? Society abandoned him, his wife leaves him with his kid, His health is collapsing as a leper, he is impotent and alone. No one will visit him or care if he lives and dies.
Suddenly he is pulled into another world, where he is healed, and is the hope to save or destroy. He rapes a girl, still thinking it is all a dream as he is healed and overwhelmed with feeling. But this is a dream, a fantasy of his mind.
An ethical question buried that my friends and I have discussed. Could you, would you, always do the right thing in a dream? He feels the land will kill him if he gives up on the walls and barriers that have kept him alive through his leprous life.
Ultimately you see through the books, where he eventually tries to redeem himself, Tripping over hiimself, and often making things worse. He struggles to understand the place that he is put in, and the power that he has and does not understand how to wield.
Few fantasy books will ever disturb you more or make you think about the questions it poses. You will enjoy, route for, yet hate Thomas. I love the series, yet hate what it does to me.

I struggle with Scott Brick as a narrator. I love him, (mostly) for his work on Dune. Yet for the tone of this book he seems overly deep and choppy. The narrator should add to the story, be inconspicuous. Too often his choppy and odd narration took me out of the book. I found myself thinking of the narration, not the book. I do not think he was a good choice, but that is what we got, and he is better than many.,

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Wtf is this book?

The 5 star reviews surprise me. I've read plenty of Grim dark stories & this isn't remotely grim dark at all. It is simply pathetic. Could barely finish even half the book.

Think afternoon Soap Opera level pathetic, with an utterly weak, stupid & cowardly protagonist. I understand this book is fantasy, but it isn't possible for me to imagine a person that lacks the courage in situations where even a rat in my basement might not. A straight up evil protagonist would have been interesting, as opposed to the one in this book, who seens like he needs a chapter or two to simply whine about tying his shoelaces since he needs to ponder on how the world has wronged him by making him do so. What a complex character indeed. Such philosophy. Much contemplation. Wow.

This was my first refund on Audible.

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fantastic read

I love this book and the series would love and can't wait to hear more.

2 people found this helpful

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Greatest trilogies ever performed admirably

The first and second trilogy of Thomas Covenant are the greatest stories I had read many years ago. I have often reread the majesty of these tales.

To me the Lord of the Rings is more of a teenage type fantasy but these truly the some of the greatest tales of the 20th century which will probably never see itself made into movies as the tale is too complex and the invention of the anti-hero character too difficult to follow on screen.

With it finally being on audible I wondered how it might read. Stephen Donaldson often has a rather internal style which can seem more wordy but adds gravity to the telling and I recall finding myself reading quickly missing details to find out what happens next. I wondered if listening to it (listening being somewhat slower than reading) if it may fell against the story.

However the narrator Scott Brick delivers the telling in an expressive and weighty manner against any temptation to speed forward and the result is a reading as great as the writing.

The 2nd book - The Illearth War is also available and I’m looking forward to listening to the other 4 books after as they become available.

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  • Pod55
  • 12-14-19

“Marmite” book, masterful narration

I first read this book 40 years ago and love the complexity and depth of the characters and huge sweep of the fantasy world “the Land”. The main character is anything but your cuddly Bilbo or Frodo or your wise and powerful Gandalf, Covenant is a complex character who for good reason is difficult or impossible to like or empathise with. This self absorbed, conflicted, unpleasant “hero” makes the book a rather difficult read, at least in the earlier chapters. As the story gains pace other main characters are introduced. I know people who have abandoned the book within the first third because of this. Please don’t, keep going at least until he reaches Revelstone and a number of more sympathetic characters appear.

I have never listened to book narrated by Scott Brick before, an omission that I will now actively rectify. His reading of this book, with it’s diverse characters is, in my option, masterful.

7 people found this helpful

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  • Zilpah
  • 12-19-19

A Blast From The Past

I read the first three trilogies by Stephen Donaldson back in the 1980s and never forgot my fascination with the storylines, the angst, the twists and turns and the fantastic pictures the author paints in telling the tale of Thomas Covenant the Unbeliever. I learnt many new words in the English language, and used to look up the meaning of them in the dictionary as I was reading. The thought-provoking concepts the author explores through the Sunbane, Anderlain, Vain, the seafaring Giants and that all things were possible with a little Wild Magic stayed with me through the years. So I was delighted to see the audio book newly available. It is a very long book and it’s a treat to have it read to me by the very talented Scott Brick. I do hope that Audible will follow up and release the next book soon.

5 people found this helpful

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  • Richard B.
  • 02-02-20

Still love these books

First read this trilogy back in the early 80s and also the follow up trilogy. All the characters came flooding back, as did the constant hope that at some point The Unbeliever will use that ring. I am really hoping the 3rd book of the first 3 is released soon and keep my fingers crossed for books 4, 5 and 6. Scott Brick's narration is also second to none.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Chris. K
  • 12-24-19

Exception writing

Enjoyed this book greatly, an anti hero who is difficult to like but who is the most sane person, going crazy, in the story.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Starbuck
  • 02-02-20

Our tastes change with age it seems...

Many years ago I read and enjoyed the chronicles of Thomas Covenant. I always described it as "Lord of the Rings" for Adults. (I did however skip the parts before Thomas entered into the Land in subsequent readings). The Land was so vividly realised, it was somewhere I wished I could be summoned to.

I was very excited to see the series appearing in audio format.

However I cannot enjoy or even complete listening to the first book. Other reviewers praise Scott Bricks narration. Personally I find the whole timbre of the narration is "depressing" and strange. As a sufferer of depression I would warn others BEFORE listening to or reading this for the first time that it can act as a trigger.

The Narrator makes too many mispronunciations, so many that it constantly irritates and breaks immersion for me personally. I also find it hard to differentiate between characters as they all sounds more or less the same.

As to the story itself. The behaviour of the main character is extremely irritating. The response by the surrounding characters is unbelievably tolerant or forgiving. It seems that now I am older, wiser and have enjoyed a wider scope of reading
, I cannot enjoy what used to be a favourite at all.

1 person found this helpful

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  • John Landel
  • 01-19-20

Still Powerful 40 Years On!

I started reading this series 40 years ago and have been waiting impatiently for it to become available here for some time. Experiencing the books again - this time via audio-books - is a dream come true. The power and the descriptive nature of the prose shines through with a great performance via Scott Brick. Rates alongside 'Lord Of The Rings' as one of the great fantasy novel series of all time. More Please!

2 people found this helpful