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Publisher's Summary

"The evil foretold has risen...and we are all that stands between it and the end." Asher has come a long way for a fisherman's son. Together with his friend Prince Gar, he has defended their kingdom against its bitterest enemy, but at great cost.

Now, the evil mage Morg is preparing for his most deadly assault. Desperate, trapped in a broken body, Morg has little time and fewer scruples. And he has a plan. As Gar and Asher unwittingly fall into a dangerous deception, Morg gets ever closer to his goal. And this victory would be particularly sweet... for who better to destroy the kingdom than the two who would give anything to save it?

©2007 Karen Miller (P)2010 Tantor

Critic Reviews

"Adventure, magic, friendship, love, and a battle of good versus evil---I can see this tale becoming a classic." (Scifichick.com)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    216
  • 4 Stars
    175
  • 3 Stars
    95
  • 2 Stars
    22
  • 1 Stars
    9

Performance

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    239
  • 4 Stars
    146
  • 3 Stars
    44
  • 2 Stars
    8
  • 1 Stars
    1

Story

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    177
  • 4 Stars
    137
  • 3 Stars
    83
  • 2 Stars
    31
  • 1 Stars
    11
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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Bruce
  • Knoxville, MD, United States
  • 03-29-12

Well crafted heroic Fantasy

This was my first experience with Karen Miller's work. I enjoyed both books in this series very much. This is Fantasy with characters I could understand, a lot of raw emotion, and a rich background story only hinted at. Looking at the other books available, I can see that the history behind the Innocent Mage is out there as well. Miller breaks a couple 'rules' of writing and does it very well. She writes in dialect, and she calls real things by made up names. These rules are meant to be broken, but it takes a good fantasy writer to do it. She succeeds. The narrator of these books handled the dialect very well but does not return to read the series that comes after, and that may be a difficult switch. I was looking for long fantasy novels where I could get involved with the characters and not have my attention wander. Miller gave me that and I will continue to read her novels. The only criticism I have is that she seems to be dancing around a religious allegory and that was a bit distracting. I may be confusing the basic progression of "The Hero's Journey" with religious allegory... something to think about. It may also just be my imagination, and if so, she has touched on an issue in Fantasy I strongly believe in. We have to be able to believe in the character's world before we can believe in them. If it is too alien, we shouldn't just be dropped into the deep end unless we already know how to swim. That doesn't say it very well, but I've read books where I've drowned, and a few brilliant works that I have learned to swim in. I prefer to wade in and swim out to the deep end when I'm comfortable. These are well worth the time to listen to.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Could Have Been Better

After having enjoyed The Innocent Mage, I expected more than this book delivered. Much of the story line was so predictable that it felt as though I'd already read it by the time I actually got to the parts I already knew were coming. There was also a lot of repetition that could have been done away with by a good editor. Many times I thought my iPod was playing up or the audio book was skipping or hadn't been properly cut together, but it turned out just to be the author repeating the lines again.

Having said that, the last third of the book was a lot better. There were several events that I didn't see coming and one or two quite clever plot devices. It basically saved the book. I also thought Karen Miller did a good job at making her characters realistic. Few of them were wholly good or purely evil, which is more in keeping with truth and reality. It did, however, sometimes make it quite difficult to decide whether a character was likeable or not and left me never quite knowing if I wanted to invest any particular feelings in the characters. Still, it added depth to the book and was well done and I applaud her for it. Do I recommend the book? I don't really know. This is one book where I would make an exception for an abridged version as a lot could have been cut with no ill effects on the story.

Narration: The book is well narrated and I would listen to Kirby Heybourne again.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

what a conclusion

What made the experience of listening to The Awakened Mage the most enjoyable?

The fact that if you stopped anywhere for a minute it did not matter, you can pick it up at another time and continue, nothing to complex there

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

the very end, do not read this part if you dont want the book spoiled but when Asher goes to the Crypt to talk to Gar, from the part of Gars death to the end of the book i could not stop crying. the bad part of it was that I was at work on break crying in my car. but Asher talking to his dead friend and keeping in touch is a amazing way to end it.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

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

good story

If you made it through the first book then you should enjoy this one. I would even say it is better than the first in the series as the characters have matured and we finally come to our conclusion. My main criticism of this series is it is a bit drawn out and there is a lot of whining and unnecessary conversations through out the books. Terrific narrator by the way. I applaud his performance.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars

Tedium has a new name

Warning, some spoilers in the description (but not really as you can predict all of them within the first three chapters of the book)

It is Asher. This book might appeal to a pre-pubescent teenage girl, but I doubt it. Let me start at the beginning...I labored through the first book in this series because I found the characters somewhat intriguing, shallow but with promise. Unfortunately that promise was not fulfilled, even in the slightest. These characters become so one-dimensional by halfway through this book that I actually stopped listening and turned the book off. The first mistake Karen makes is that she decides that each of her characters will be the epitome of a caricature. Asher is the country mouse in the city, Dathne the young headstrong idealistic women, Matt the sensible, Gar the noble prince, and Morg is the evil magician. By half way through this book they make you want to puke. The love scenes between Dathne and Asher are so puerile they make you cringe. What is worse are the lead ins to the love scenes, Asher and Dathne come across like 13 year olds, pathetic. The bromance between Asher and Gar is even worse, with each of them taking turns wailing about one thing or the other, I just wanted to yell "shut up already...can't you ever talk about something without sounding like a whiny little sprat". Morg was the best character of the bunch, but even he is emotional state is one step from giving him apoplexy at any given moment. After 6 hours of listening to characters who are ALWAYS on the verge of emotional collapse I wanted to poke my ears out. And all this happens without ANY advancement in the plot!!! Halfway through the book and we are at the same point in the plot as we were at the start. Some might argue that Asher getting his magic is a major plot development, and it is/should be, but it did not actually move the plot forward for several more hours (at least it seemed like several more hours). It certainly did not count as a "plot twist" as we have been waiting for it for 1.5 books at that point. If you like high-strung, always teetering on the edge of an emotional chasm, characters???by all means you will love this book. If you like your characters to be a little more fully fleshed and developed, and emotional stable....you will hate this book.

5 of 7 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Fantastic!

After reading "The Innocent Mage" I could not wait to read this book. It is a fantastic sequel and final book to end an incredible story. The narration is phenomenal and makes this an all time best audio book! I recommend the series!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Excellent story, excellent narrator

I would highly recommend this book. The narrator really brings out the drama of this story and it is easy to get lost in the story and narration. I loved this book.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Louis
  • Cincinnati OH
  • 04-05-12

Not very good series

What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

The first book in this series held promise, but that was all. The Awakened Mage covered maybe a 2 months time frame in which the characters barely accomplished anything. The first and second book combined would have made an okay book, but separately the second book was a failure in my opinion.

What do you think your next listen will be?

The Sum of All Men; The Runelords

What do you think the narrator could have done better?

I feel the narrator did a fair accounting of a poorly written series.

What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

Mainly disappointed in a drawn out series and an over indulges in the characters ranting and anger at each other and where prophecy was leading them.

Any additional comments?

Read the 5 books connected to this one at your own risk of disappointed. I know the two I did read, I was disappointed and I'm inclined to listen to the other readers on the rest of the books.

4 of 6 people found this review helpful

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

Narration level: epic

The narrator did such a fantastic job of being the various characters. The story was good, but the narrator really made it superb.

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

Droned...

I loved the story's idea. I listened to the 1st book but just couldn't get to the end for this one. I found myself jumping 30 seconds to a less boring time & never found one. Disappointment for this story line was the main issue. The narrator was superbly done, tho.