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The Lions of Al-Rassan Audiobook

The Lions of Al-Rassan

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Publisher's Summary

The ruling Asharites of Al-Rassan have come from the desert sands, but over centuries, seduced by the sensuous pleasures of their new land, their stern piety has eroded. The Asharite empire has splintered into decadent city-states led by warring petty kings. King Almalik of Cartada is on the ascendancy, aided always by his friend and advisor, the notorious Ammar ibn Khairan - poet, diplomat, soldier - until a summer afternoon of savage brutality changes their relationship forever.

Meanwhile, in the north, the conquered Jaddites' most celebrated - and feared - military leader, Rodrigo Belmonte, driven into exile, leads his mercenary company south.

In the dangerous lands of Al-Rassan, these two men from different worlds meet and serve - for a time - the same master. Sharing their interwoven fate - and increasingly torn by her feelings - is Jehane, the accomplished court physician, whose own skills play an increasing role as Al-Rassan is swept to the brink of holy war, and beyond.

Hauntingly evocative of medieval Spain, The Lions of Al-Rassan is both a brilliant adventure and a deeply compelling story of love, divided loyalties, and what happens to men and women when hardening beliefs begin to remake - or destroy - a world.

©1995 Guy Gavriel Kay (P)2012 Audible, Inc.

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.5 (513 )
5 star
 (344)
4 star
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3 star
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2 star
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1 star
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Overall
4.5 (485 )
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3 star
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2 star
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1 star
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Story
4.6 (484 )
5 star
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4 star
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3 star
 (18)
2 star
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1 star
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Performance
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  •  
    john 06-16-17
    john 06-16-17 Member Since 2016
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    "sensational"

    absolutely loved it. amongst the top 'fantasy ' I've read. my only gripe would be ambiguous perspective shifts

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Alana Angeja 06-02-17
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    "Guy Gavriel Kay is a master storyteller"

    Kay's prose is as insightful as it is beautiful. He is one of the rare authors of our time who manages to capture something authentic about the human experience within the pages of homework novel. We would all be better for reading books like the ones he writes.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Diana M. 02-02-17
    Diana M. 02-02-17 Member Since 2015
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    "Superb"

    My first GGK novel, and wow. What lyrical language! And a good story to boot, leaving the reader thinking, something I always appreciate in a book. Looking for my next GGK novel now!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer Montana 08-19-16
    Amazon Customer Montana 08-19-16 Member Since 2016
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    "Exceptional adaptation of an exceptional work!"

    Lions is one of my favorite books of all time and the audiobook definitely doesn't disappoint; excellent production, narration, etc.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sandy 05-31-16
    Sandy 05-31-16 Member Since 2015
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    "GGK at his finest!"

    One of his finest works, and they are all so fabulous! The narrator was great.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    M. Rosen Santa Barbara, CA USA 04-06-16
    M. Rosen Santa Barbara, CA USA 04-06-16 Member Since 2016
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    "Superb! Very compelling"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    As I listened I was thinking - who else can I tell about this wonderful book? People need to know about it!


    What did you like best about this story?

    Perhaps the best part of this book is the beauty of the language. It is almost like reading poetry or prose, not just a story. And the wonderful narrator enhances the joy of listening to this immensely.
    The story was excellent - complex at times and required attention and the willingness to follow it carefully, but the payoff for doing so was great.
    I was struck by the way the author could get behind the eyes of each character so thoroughly. As each person spoke you saw the world from their perspective. It wasn't so much as story about people and what they did as it was about what each main character thought and felt and how they perceived and related to each other. Yes there was action, but in my mind it was secondary to the telling of each character's true nature.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Rachel 03-17-16
    Rachel 03-17-16 Member Since 2017
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    "Loved the characters"

    This is a great story with a fantastic set of characters. Let me say first that I LOVED the characters, and it is honestly very difficult for me to become attached to a character. But these characters were fully realized and not only likable, but you get into their heads. You get into their depths. You connect with them on an intimate level.

    The story was also quite exciting. It was interesting because as we had characters from all sides of the conflict, there wasn't really a "right" or "wrong" side to root for. As is the case in many wars, I suppose. It was a nice change of pace.

    Euan Morton is a FANTASTIC narrator. One of the best I have ever heard. He was a liiiiittle slow sometimes, but his voice was a pleasure to listen to.

    The reason I knock this down to four stars is because this book just contains... too much history, I'd say. Kay spends very long periods of time explaining the detailed political history of a country or conflict, and it honestly detracts from the characters and plot. The thing about world building is you can't do too much too fast. When readers enter a new story, bombarding them with new names and places and detailed histories will just make them forget it all. Kay did this in the very first chapter. An extremely exciting military coup was taking place, and Kay interrupted it for a pages and pages long history of the region and the political powers. 1. I didn't know any of the characters so I couldn't CARE if I wanted to. 2. It was like reading a history textbook. These all-too-frequent "history lessons" were not well integrated, were too long-winded, and overall brings this book down from "amazing, one of my favorites to "good, but flawed, and would not read again."

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Michael Reynolds 03-05-16 Member Since 2014
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    "Magnificent"
    Would you listen to The Lions of Al-Rassan again? Why?

    One day, I will listen to The Lions of Al-Rassan again. It is one of those rare books which, once finished, doesn't allow you to just pick up another one right away. It evokes an emotional toll that takes time to process, and rewards those who take that time. It is a soul-stirring tale of love, loyalty, cultural identity and romanticism, which is by turns infuriating,inspiring, and heart-breaking. Guy Gavriel Kay writes vivid life into his characters, humanizing those on all sides of storys' central conflict. In Lions, he reminds us of the universality of humanity, a lesson as relevant today as it ever has been, and in so doing shines a light on the divisive forces which continue to plague the world today. All of this is done against the backdrop of a thoughtfully and richly constructed world, replete with a troubled past and an ominous future, yet through this there is still hope to be found in the closing passages of the book.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    My favorite characters (2!) are Rodrigo Belmonte and Ammar ibn Khairan, who are each written as complex and conflicted men, divided between their loyalties to their respective cultures and faiths, and their friendship for one another.


    What does Euan Morton bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    The narrator, Euan Morton, imparts a rich texture upon the story. He does great service to the narrative and its characters. His cadence and pace flow smoothly, and never distract the listener.


    Any additional comments?

    Prior to listening to this book I would have said that my favorite GGK novel was Tigana. It's very close now between that book and this one.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Joseph S. Merola 03-03-16 Member Since 2009
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    "My favorite GGK book thus far"

    I have read quite a few Guy Gabriel Kay's books so far and this is my favorite. In all of his books, the character development is outstanding and this is no exception. His descriptions of the physical settings are vivid. He always weaves many story threads into whole cloth. The Lions of Al-Rassan does all of this too a high level. The numbers of complex characters interacting are many. Their backgrounds are quite different and he is dealing with many different cultures. An excellent book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Fabrice 01-05-16
    Fabrice 01-05-16
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    "An extraordinary read of a fantastic book"
    Would you consider the audio edition of The Lions of Al-Rassan to be better than the print version?

    Lions of Al rassan has always been one of my favorite book from Guy Gavriel Kay. And I feared a bit the audio version. But I was not disappointed. On the contrary, this is an extraordinary read of the book that will make it alive


    Any additional comments?

    This is a great story and in view of current event a very modern one. How can good and honest men live together in a wold torn asunder by religion ? It is well written and makes you think a lot while entertaining you .

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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