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  • Senlin Ascends

  • By: Josiah Bancroft
  • Narrated by: John Banks
  • Length: 14 hrs and 15 mins
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars (2,144 ratings)

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Senlin Ascends  By  cover art

Senlin Ascends

By: Josiah Bancroft
Narrated by: John Banks
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Publisher's summary

The first book in the word-of-mouth phenomenon debut fantasy series about one man's dangerous journey through a labyrinthine world.

"One of my favorite books of all time" (Mark Lawrence)

The Tower of Babel is the greatest marvel in the world. Immense as a mountain, the ancient Tower holds unnumbered ringdoms, warring and peaceful, stacked one on the other like the layers of a cake. It is a world of geniuses and tyrants, of luxury and menace, of unusual animals and mysterious machines. Soon after arriving for his honeymoon at the Tower, the mild-mannered headmaster of a small village school, Thomas Senlin, gets separated from his wife, Marya, in the overwhelming swarm of tourists, residents, and miscreants.

Senlin is determined to find Marya, but to do so he'll have to navigate madhouses, ballrooms, and burlesque theaters. He must survive betrayal, assassins, and the illusions of the Tower. But if he hopes to find his wife, he will have to do more than just endure. This quiet man of letters must become a man of action.

©2017 Josiah Bancroft (P)2018 Hachette Audio

Critic reviews

"Senlin Ascends crosses the everyday strangeness and lyrical prose of Borges and Gogol with all the action and adventure of high fantasy. I loved it, and grabbed the next one as soon as I turned the last page." (Django Wexler, author of The Thousand Names)

"Josiah Bancroft is a magician. His books are that rare alchemy: gracefully written, deliriously imaginative, action-packed, warm, witty, and thought-provoking. I can't wait for more." (Madeline Miller, author of Circe)

"Senlin is a man worth rooting for, and his strengthening resolve and character is as marvelous and sprawling as the tower he climbs." (The Washington Post)

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When compiling our list of the best fantasy listening out there, we immediately came up against the age-old question: Is this fantasy or science fiction? The distinction is not as clear as you may think. Dragons, elves, and wizards are definitely fantasy, but what about wizards that also fly space ships? (Looking at you, Star Wars.) For the sake of fantasy purity, the top 100 fantasy listens include the best audio works in all manner of fantasy subgenres.