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Editorial Reviews

Full Cast Audio works closely with Pierce to transfer her novels to audio productions. So it's no wonder that this audiobook is a superb result of this partnership. The four characters from the Circle of Magic series, Sandry, Tris, Briar, and Daja, have lost their magical connection, and only through a diplomatic junket to the Empress Berinene's court do they reforge their friendship. At first, one questions the choice of Pierce to narrate since she has a slightly sibilant sound and speaks too slowly, but listeners soon realize that her pace differentiates dialogue from description. The young actors portraying the friends are well cast, and the empress is convincing as a charming yet controlling ruler.

Publisher's Summary

For years, the Empress of Namorn has pressed her young cousin, Lady Sandrilene fa Toren, to visit her vast lands within the Empire's borders. Sandry has avoided the invitation for as long as it was possible. Now, Sandry has agreed to pay that overdue visit. Sandry's uncle promises guards to accompany her. But they're hardly a group of warriors! They're her old friends from Winding Circle: Daja, Tris, and Briar. Sandry hardly knows them now. They've grown up and grown apart. Sandry isn't sure they'll ever find their old connection again, or if she even wants them to.

Tamora Pierce returns to the world of Circle of Magic for this smashing novel, which brings the four young mages back together as teens.

Suspense! Court intrigue! Romance! Fights! All the things that you love about Tamora Pierce's books are here in abundance.

©2006 Tamora Pierce; (P)2006 Full Cast Audio

Critic Reviews

"A delightful page-turner." (KLIATT)
"How well word-mage Pierce understands what her audience wants, and how ably she provides it in this epic postscript to her two Circle quartets....A standalone tour de force, this will gratify Circle devotees and ensnare new readers for the series." (Booklist)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.6 out of 5.0
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Performance

  • 4.6 out of 5.0
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Story

  • 4.7 out of 5.0
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  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • Morgan
  • BURNSVILLE, NC, United States
  • 04-21-12

A treat for any fan!

Would you listen to The Will of the Empress again? Why?

I have listened to this book several times. I think five so far actually. I love listening to this story so much because each time I do I can place details I didn't before. Some details are about Will of the Empress, but others go back to the original Circle of Magic books. It's a delight each time!

What did you like best about this story?

There's so much to like it's hard to pick a 'best' out of them. Especially without giving away some of the story!

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

I think that having the author herself read brings out hidden 'flavors' that no one else could. Who better to read the story than the woman herself?

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

Several! There were times i found myself bolling with rage, others almost drawn to tears.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

from a writer's perspective

Like her earlier works this is a prime example of epic fantasy. We see the return of old beloved characters a little worse for the ware form their time spent apart but it is great to watch them find their way back together against all odds. The prost vexing of those odds is of course the will of the empress (who would have thought). She is a very beguiling character who dominates the book. If you did not like the plotting and scheming in the author’s earlier works then you might want to shy away form this book because it is overflowing with sinister plots and strong willed nobles forcing their wills on others though the unwritten laws of the court. However if you love thwarting the upper-class at least once before breakfast then this is the book for you. Sure it might spend a little too much time telling rather then showing but who really wanted to work at discovering the main characters emotions and motivations for themselves, the real fun is in the scheming, the action, and of course the magic! As someone who reads four or five fantasy books a week and wants to eventually write this stuff for a living I give this 4 stars for a good job done and a very engaging read if it is what you are looking for.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • SG
  • 06-13-07

Acceptable narration of good story

An enjoyable story - I like it better than the second quartet in this series, actually. I find the primary reader's lack of inflection in some sections (particularly the beginnings of chapters) a bit distracting, but not overwhelmingly so.

This book seems targeted at an older audience than the previous books in the series.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Lacey
  • SPRINGFIELD, MISSOURI, United States
  • 03-17-11

Full Cast Phenomenon!

I have long been a Tamora Pierce fan, but this was the first audiobook I purchased from her collection, and I was not let down. Each of the voices was a perfect match for the character. This is a wonderful production, and I cannot imagine that anyone who is a fan of Tamora Pierce's books (or even someone new to the series) could be disappointed.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Amy
  • Lee Center, NY, USA
  • 06-12-07

AWSOME!

Great story! I love the world Tamora Pierce has created. Its always a delight to enter her world once again!

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

circle reforged

They are all back from their travels, but they aren't like they were. Will a trip to Namorn to help Sandry pull them together or finish cutting them apart?

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

One of my favorite Tamora Pierce books

I really enjoy this book and Full Cast Audio is once again amazing. Personally, after hearing Tamora Pierce read in person I really enjoy her narration. My go to audio book whenever I just need something to listen to.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Tamora Pierce Fangirl

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

I would, very much. First off, I loved the full cast. It made it much easier to envision the characters and the world they were in. I love all Tamora Pierce books, and I had already read this one, but it's one of my favorites and I loved hearing it read aloud by the author.

What other book might you compare The Will of the Empress to and why?

Any of her other books. I can't think of others offhand that are similar.

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

It's the author of the actual book, for one. She's not alone, of course. There are voice actors for all of the characters. I also loved the music. You can tell she's very passionate about her content.

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

I was really looking forward to the moments when the four finally came together and really used there magics together. I don't want to get spoilery but the end was awesome.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Maarya
  • Minneapolis, MN, United States
  • 05-24-08

ok

Im usually a very big fan of the author but I have to be honest; this was not her best work. In terms of action and adventure it was nice to relax to, but as a story it lacked the "Tamora-ness" all of her other books. I liked the charactor Daja alot because she stood out more. Still I gotta pass on this one.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

For once it works

I think because I listened to the previous series when I as younger, I was more okay with there being a cast of readers, instead of just one, so I actually enjoyed the many many voices.

I do love this book quite a bit, and the story is, as always, like comfort food for me. Tamora Pierce is just such a classic these days that it's wonderful going back to it.