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Publisher's Summary

Time is a resource. Everyone knows it has to be managed. On Discworld that is the job of the highly capable Monks of History, who store it and pump it from the places where it's wasted (like underwater - how much time does a codfish need?) to places like cities, where there's never enough time. But the construction of the world's first truly accurate clock starts a race against, well, time, for the monk Lu Tze and his apprentice Lobsang Ludd. For if the perfect clock starts ticking, Time, as we know it, will stop. And then the trouble will really begin.

Subtle, sly, thought-provoking, and hilarious, Thief of Time is Terry Pratchett at his best.

This multi-voice production features Christopher Cazenove, Gabrielle de Cuir, Karesa McElheny, John Rubinstein, and Stefan Rudnicki, with a guest appearance by Harlan Ellison.

Browse more novels of Discworld.

©2001 Terry and Lynn Pratchett; (P)2001 Audio Literature

Critic Reviews

"It's time to discover one of the funniest, most literate, and most thought-provoking authors writing today." (Amazon.com)
"This delightful production keeps the listener spellbound." (AudioFile)
"Think J.R.R. Tolkien with a sharper, more satiric edge." (Houston Chronicle)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.4 out of 5.0
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Performance

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Story

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  • Overall

Good story, but multiple readers were distracting

While most of the readers did a fine job with their segments, I found the switching of voices per character distracting. [This is not a "cast recording"-style reading, with one reader per character; each reader has a section of text and reads all the voices within that segment, so sometimes Igor is voiced by a woman and sometimes by a man - and with different accents, too {wry grin}.] Having one narrator for the text and the others doing one character-voice each might have worked better, though this would obviously be harder to record. Overall I'd prefer a single narrator - and Nigel Planer has been doing a wonderful job on the other books.

14 of 14 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

5 Stars for the story, 1 star for the reading

Out of all the Discworld books offered by this site, this is the first one to disappoint me. Having multiple people read a book is a fine idea, but why does this group have a tendency to change parts at will? You get used to hearing one voice read a character and then you get a different person reading the character with completely different style. I cannot come up with any reason why this was done except for the possibility that the person reading was the one who showed up to work that day. Several of the characters are well done by this group, which makes it even more disturbing when the voice for that character changes.

The story is another wonderful Discworld title. If you like the series, you will enjoy this one also. However, since I have learned that ISIS has produced this book with Stephen Briggs reading, I don't think I can recommend this version. I hope that Audible will acquire the ISIS version and continue to provide the ISIS versions of this series.

26 of 29 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Unique, an entire cast offers more

I found the novel to up to Pratchett's high standard. Studded with satire and dry wit this is a must read. My only minor complaint is the actor that portrayed Death did not have the same presence as some of the other audiobooks in the long Pratchett line. I can only hope that Audible and ISIS can come to an agreement and restore all of this wonderful writers work.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Great story - narration disaster

Because it was a Terry Pratchett story, I bought this with high hopes and because no other narration was available, but agree with other reviewers completely - the multi narrators are a disaster.
When you have an absolute winner like Nigel Planer who has brought our old friends like DEATH and Nanny Ogg to life ( no joke exactly intended!) why change? To hear DEATH in an ordinary dull voice and Nanny Ogg so very American was just all wrong and such a let down, and it just got worse and worse. Please, please, please get Planer back and re- record this as continuous narrative with the right emphasis and pacing.
The story is very very good, but the jarring narration distracts so badly.

6 of 7 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Terrific story; terrible audio production.

The Discworld audio books available on Audible.com are, in general, wonderfully engaging. Although the later books in the series are rather expensive, they are worth it. Unfortunately, this audio book is the exception to this general rule. It's a terrible shame, as the story itself is absolutely wonderful. The problem is with the audio production. Rather than having a single person read the entire book, the book is read by an ensemble cast. Unfortunately, not all the readers are equally well-suited for this genre, and the overall effect is incredibly jarring. For example, Pratchett's trademark parenthetical asides and footnotes are read in a completely different voice from the rest of the text, which ruins the flow of the narrative.

6 of 7 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Doesn't do the author justice

Summary: All in all, buy the book, not the audible. The author is excellent. The sound production is extremely competent. However, there are too many narrators. They are not appropriate for reading satirical fantasy. Some have awful affectations for accents.

***

I have read every Pratchett book (up to Fifth Elephant) at least 3 times. The author is humorous and clever on several levels. Nigel Planer did a good job of carrying the appeal until I had a chance to listen to Briggs read A Hat Full of Sky and was hooked. (Between the two men, Briggs does a much better Vetinari.)

In this book, however, the entire tone and quality of _Thief_of_Time_ was lost in the blur of readers. A few were good, some were adequate, and one female voice was spectacularly bad in doing "Ronnie, the milkman."

Following the progression of producers and narrators, one can see maturation in the products (the audio versions of the Pratchett books). The reading of this book, on the other hand, did the talent of Pratchett a terrible disservice.

The sound production of this story was skilled, but I would prefer to listen to the early, amateurish productions of Pratchett (complete with sound chops and cheesy sound effects) rather than struggle through listening to this book again.

I mourn the loss of this book to this set of narrators and hope fervently that the production company doesn?t make the same mistake again.

9 of 11 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

My first and one of my favorites

This audio book was my introduction to Terry Pratchett and was one of the first books we purchased from Audible when we joined over a decade ago. This recording made me fall in love with Mr. Pratchett, and since then I've greedily devoured nearly everything else he's written. This story is one of my favorites, and I have replayed it at least half a dozen times over the years. Very enjoyable.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • Steven
  • north hollywood, CA, United States
  • 03-16-12

horrible boring narration ruins this listen

Would you listen to Thief of Time again? Why?

no...horrible narration, i missed nigel planer and stephen briggs1

What didn???t you like about Stefan Rudnicki and Harlan Ellison ???s performance?

boring and monotonous especialy rudnicki

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

the narration made me want to cry

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Back to the studio...

Just a quick warning that the 47-second threatening intro about Terry Pratchett's copyright is the best-recorded bit of audio in this purchase. And it's a distributer add-on. Rudnicki, De Cuir, et al have done some great work (Ender's Game). I did not expect a sound-quality issue on this, just style. Now I'm not sure the multi-voiced aspect is the cause of the complaints as much as simple engineering. Sounds like a lousy radio broadcast - audio cues and low-register words are lost, sound stage seems to shift w/different readers. Watch out - it's not just style.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Great story but prefer one reader

I might be spoiled by Nigel Planer. This story is read by
multiple readers. They are very talented and each tries to
bring their piece to the story. Truthfully, give me Nigel
and I am one happy Discworld-er. The story is still well worth
it. I just hope future releases bring back Nigel Planer or someone
of his singular talent.
Steph

2 of 2 people found this review helpful