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The Mad Ship

The Liveship Traders, Book 2
Narrated by: Anne Flosnik
Series: Realms of the Elderlings, Book 5, Liveship Traders, Book 2
Length: 33 hrs and 56 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (161 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

The second volume in this superb trilogy from the author of The Farseer trilogy continues the dramatic tale of piracy, serpents, love, and magic.

Althea Vestrit has found a new home aboard the liveship Ophelia, but lives only to reclaim the Vivacia as her rightful inheritance. However, Vivacia has been captured by the pirate ‘King’ Kennit and is acquiring a keen bloodlust. Bingtown becomes embroiled in a violent political upheaval against the corrupt Jamaillian leader, while the fading fortunes of the Vestrit family lead Malta deeper into the magical secrets of the mysterious Rain Wilds Traders.

Beyond Bingtown, enigmatic wood-carver Amber dreams of re-launching the Paragon, The Mad Ship, despite the history of death and despair that surrounds him. Secrets will be revealed - secrets forgotten by sea serpents, hidden by the disfigured Wild Rain Traders, buried deep in wizardwood coffins - secrets with startling, dramatic consequences.

©2012 Robin Hobb (P)2012 HarperCollins Publishers Limited

Critic Reviews

“Hobb is one of the great modern fantasy writers… what makes her novels as addictive as morphine is not just their imaginative brilliance but the way her characters are compromised and manipulated by politics” ( The Times)
“Assassin's Apprentice:A gleaming debut” ( Publishers Weekly)
“Assassin's Quest: 'Assassin's Quest achieves a bittersweet, powerful complexity rare in fantasy” ( Locus)
“Robin Hobb writes achingly well” ( SFX)
“Praise for The Liveship Traders series: 'Even better than the Assassin books. I didn't think that was possible” (George R R Martin)
“Hobb is a remarkable storyteller.” ( Guardian)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Just love Robin Hobbs work but not this narrator

This narrator seems to hang onto words particularly at the end of sentences. I will certainly
listen to series 2 but could wish for a different narrator.

2 people found this helpful

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Brilliant story horrendous narrator

I am amazed that Robin Hobb would agree to Anne Flosnik being the narrator again after the disastrous narration of the first book! Beyond the narration this is a 5 star book! Robin Hobb has weaved a magnificent world that it is a privilege to get lost in. She is one of the best writers of our time.

1 person found this helpful

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Fascinating to listen

Follow along this thrilling adventure and enjoy the realm Robin Hobb has created. It's thoroughly enjoyable!

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Audio version is dreadful

This narrator is appalling! I mean seriously appalling. She reads as with no intonation other than elongating the last word of every sentence to extraordinary length. Then the voices she makes for the characters is just awful, I mean really awful.
Just read the book if you are able, the audio version is unlistenable

1 person found this helpful

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The Epic Continues

What did you love best about The Mad Ship?

The Restoration of the Paragon.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

No it is too big

Any additional comments?

Just as good as Ship of magic

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Great book, great narration

Thank you both Robin and Anne. A great story with excellent narration. I can't imagine anyone else narrating this story in such a wonderfully compelling way.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Kusameh
  • 04-13-13

Love the story, not sure about the narration

I knew I would enjoy the context of the story from looking at the description, reading other reviews and talking to a friend. What I found particularly enjoyable was the complexity of the characters in this fantasy novel, the way that all characters have depth and mixtures of pleasant/interesting/unpleasant characteristics. I found the narration difficult. When I first started listening it sounded like 'text to speech' with perfect diction and monotony. I still enjoyed listening but I would have greatly preferred a more natural speech rhythm with more lively inflection.

7 people found this helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 07-17-19

Well followed on

I would say that I am veracious reader and listener and get through a few books/ Audio books a week. I have eclectic tastes which range from Jeffrey Archer to Stephen King, My main genres are Fantasy and Sci-fi.

This was excellently written with rich and vibrant language and it was very well paced and developed it is definitely becoming a great series and easily rivals the farseer trilogy.

Narration was good but not Great.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Ulric Wolfshead
  • 01-19-19

loved it

it was most enjoyable, wonderful to drift off to another world were you love the characters .... recommended, brilliant and fantastic

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    1 out of 5 stars
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  • Adrian
  • 10-08-18

Awful narrator

Anne Flosnik’s voice is one of the most annoying noises. Slightly better than nails across a blackboard.

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  • Mafro
  • 08-08-18

Great book, no audio issues this time!

Reading is much better, and, unlike the first book, the sound production has been done well.

I won't deny that Anne Flosnik might not suit everyone, but I find her reading in this book easy to follow and clear - if you made it through the book one reading you'll definitely be fine! You are rewarded with a faster, clearer and well recorded rendition.

The story really gets going in this book, there is none of the long-feeling development of world building and character establishing segments in this. The story is engaging, tense and very enjoyable - I really do recommend making it through the first book if you are reading it and unsure.

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  • Sam Martin
  • 03-07-18

Slow but Brilliant

Despite the rather unfortunate narration, these books are full of the most incredibly well written characters.
The story is fantastic, the world beautiful and terrible.
Give it a go!

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  • Colin
  • 08-23-17

Cracking stuff!

And great narration too, despite lots of adverse comments on line

Can't write more, need to download the next book in the series!

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Michael C
  • 07-10-17

A great listen.

A good continuation from the first but which see the story progress at a good pace.

The narration seemed a bit wooden and disjointed to begin with. But after the first hour it settled in to a nice rythm which matched the story well and had a diverse range of character voices.

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  • B W M GASCOYNE
  • 07-03-17

The series come together

This book you really start to feel the tales of the other Robin Hobb series link together. Cross book and cross trilogy references start to appear and really help you to appreciate the world that is being created around you.

Not my favourite Narrator overall, range of voices and accents not as strong or consistent as other narrators but still tells the story well overall.

Very happy with this series and glad I have another book to go now

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  • Dave Watts
  • 04-21-17

Epic and absorbing story

I've read the book previously but the audio version has brought this to life and made me realise what an accomplished piece of work this is. The scale of the story is immense, the characters are diverse and real, but the dialogue is what really makes this so engaging. Loved it!

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  • Gabrielle
  • 06-22-17

Narrator

When I first started listening to the first book, I didn't like the narration at all. Possibly because it was disorienting after listening to the Assassin series. Now, at the end of the second book, I love the narration. Exceptional voices and brings the story to life. I'm glad I persisted!

3 people found this helpful

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  • donnelle
  • 12-07-16

amazing book

I normally listen to audiobooks to help me sleep, but this was so riveting it kept me awake.

2 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Siobhan
  • 03-22-19

Why do I suddenly love Malta??

I’ve really enjoyed the development of each of the characters... there is such a strength behind each of Vestrit women! I HATED having to listen to Malta complain about dresses and boys in the last book however shes one of my favourite characters now! How did that happen?!

The only bad thing I can say about it is that there are too many storylines/ POV characters... but ask me to choose which to cut and I’d struggle to answer

Narration is alright- accents given to characters can often slip or be forgotten about between chapters :/
Definitely would recommend this audiobook

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  • Anonymous User
  • 03-19-19

Simply brilliant. Fantasy at it's best.

Can't wait to hear the next book. Thankyou Robin and Anne as well as Audible.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 02-15-19

Can't stop listening

These stories just get better all the time. I like how the strength of the characters builds and even those who you would thing the worst to begin with turn out to be much better.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 05-07-18

Loved it

The narrator grows on you, and I love the story although and that there is depth to the characters

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • J. Allsopp
  • 02-16-16

Much better than Ship of Magic - interesting story

What didn’t you like about Anne Flosnik’s performance?

I have great difficulty enjoying her narrations. It is obviously a personal preference, however the Robin Hobb stories she narrates are worth listening to as they add greatly to the overall storyline. I did eventually become used to her style of narration and could immerse myself in the story. Still at times her unusual style distracts.

Any additional comments?

A great yarn. I originally skipped the Mad Ship & Rainwild trilogies, choosing to follow Fitz and The Fool through all the stories they appeared in. So the Mad Ship trilogy was a step back in sequence for me. I've really enjoyed the added knowledge they have given me. Some of the characters are excellent and the story itself is fascinating.

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  • Damon
  • 12-10-15

Wow

I don't know how Robin Hobbs came up with the concept of the dragons and the serpents but it is amazing. my mind is blown.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Rachel
  • 11-01-15

Very enjoyable

I love this story. Robin Hobb is an amazing storyteller with vivid settings and multifaceted characters.

I know some people don't like this narrator but I liked her lilting accent and calm voice. Her character voices were excellent and she made each one unique and recognisable.

I highly recommend this one!

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  • Anonymous User
  • 08-29-17

reading

the reading was appalling. id rather listen to my mother read it to me, sorry