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The Soldiers of Halla

Pendragon Book Ten
Narrated by: William Dufris
Series: Pendragon, Book 10
Length: 18 hrs and 1 min
Categories: Kids, Ages 8-10
4.5 out of 5 stars (313 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

It has all been leading to this. Every victory. Every loss. All the thrills and sadness; the hope and despair. Bobby Pendragon's heart-pounding journey through time and space has brought him to this epic moment. He and his fellow Travelers must join forces for one last desperate battle against Saint Dane. At stake is not only the 10th and final territory, but all that ever was or will be. Everywhere.

This is the war for Halla.

Every question is answered. Every truth is revealed.

The final battle has begun.

©2009 D.J. McHale (P)2009 Brilliance Audio, Inc.

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Hobey-ho, let's go!

Before I begin, let me start by saying I'm going to treat this review as a sum of the entire series, considering the same narrator (William Dufris) is throughout the entirety of this absolutely wonderful book series written by D. J. MacHale. Also, I'm assuming you're not going to try and read the series out of order.

WARNING; Small spoilers ahead. (Nothing so grievous as to ruin the story!)

Pendragon. It is a name I haven't forgotten since I read the series back in my high-school days. I remember asking the school librarian for a good fantasy or sci-fi to read, telling her that I had tried the popular ones and couldn't get hooked. She thought for a moment, wracking her brain before suggesting I give the Merchant of Death a try.

Boy, am I glad I did!

While all of my other nerdy, geeky friends were invested in Harry Potter and/or Lord of the Rings, my eyes were glued to the pages of D. J. MacHale's novel. From the very beginning, the style of writing had me absolutely enthralled. The story all the way back in book one starts off with your average middle-school boy, Bobby Pendragon, being thrown through space and time with his distant (and totally cool!) relative, Uncle Press, to a world unlike the Earth we're so familiar with. As each book in this ten-book series progresses, the plot becomes thicker with mysteries, drama, and action until the final installment of the Pendragon series; The Soldiers of Halla. What had started as an innocent boy trying to solve the problems of territories ridden with trouble transformed into a battle for the very existence of all that is, was, and will be.

The author does a fantastic job of convincing the reader you're reading the journal of a fourteen year old boy who has been thrown into a situation he can barely comprehend. The part that keeps you reading is seeing (or hearing, in Audible's case) how Bobby grows and matures throughout the series. By the tenth book, gone is the scared boy. He is now a man with a war on his hands that he has to lead.

Something I love about this series is how the author switches perspectives between characters. Sometimes you'll be reading a journal from Bobby, other times the author narrates the plot back on Earth with Bobby's two best friends, Courtney Chetwind and Mark Dimond, who are just as immersed in their best friend's journey as the reader is!

Of course, what would be a great story without an even greater villain? The author has convinced me that if there were a devil, his name would be Saint Dane. The main antagonist in this series may come off as cheesy or one-dimensional at first, but that's only the tip of the iceberg. As you read on, you discover more and more about him, usually disturbing or frightening in nature. You learn of his motives, and you can begin to see things from his perspective as well.

The story is filled with everything under the sun; blockbuster action, complex mysteries, heart-wrenching scenes, comedic relief... It really has it all! Even if you aren't convinced to buy this audio book, I *urge* you; go to your local library and request the Merchant of Death. You won't regret it, I promise. Even though Pendragon is a young adult series, it transcends age, much like Avatar the Last Airbender on television, and provides a story that young and old both can enjoy.

William Dufris, the narrator, may come off as corny here or there, but what I love most about his narration of this series is how he conveys each and every character's emotions and actions. There is a certain energy to his voice that shifts as necessary to truly embody the characters of Pendragon. I can tell exactly who is speaking in the audio book just from the way he embodies those characters. If you ask me, that's exactly what I want from a narrator.

Bravo to Mr. Dufris for his "brilliant" (get it?) narration, and bravo to D. J. MacHale's masterpiece of a book series.

I have a list of things that I will someday be doing with my future children. On that list is listening to Pendragon, Journal of an Adventure through Time and Space.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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To the end, What An Amazing Ride!

Bobby Pendragon is now a family institution. I have re-read this entire series four or five times now. This last instalment is definately more emotionally mature than book one, but then Bobby and crew are much older, and they've been through lots of refining fire.

Mr. MacHale's writing in such a way that I, as the reader, know only what the point of view characters know has been brilliant throughout the series and the pay off in this book is huge. Book 9, Raven Rise, left me hanging. The Soldiers of Halla opens with explenation of who Bobby really is.

By the end of the book, I cry happy tears in the last chapter every time.

The battle for Halla, and between Bobby and Saint Dane is classic good verses evil. Freedom of choice verses totalitarianism. I am greatful that my kids can read this and see brave kids making hard but good decisions, even when it hurts them to do so.

I have two daughters who also love these books. My 11 year old first started this series when she was 9 and has re-read the series twice. She always wants these books to be on her kindle and her mp3. Thanks to Mr. MacHale she is becoming an avid reader.

Mr. Dufris has taken lots of abuse in reviews. I completely disagree. His reading is magical. The voice he uses has always been apropriate to the book he is narating. He brings the stories to life and is consistant across the series. There are far worse narrators in the audible panthion.

And So We Go...

This is the way it was meant to be.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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Pretty good!

It's a solid ending to a good series. The narrator is a little nasally, but you stop noticing after a few minutes, and he does do a good job acting out the story. I enjoyed it.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Perfect ending!

It's a brilliant way to end the series! You'll laugh and you'll cry! It's simply a stunning conclusion to this utterly Amazon series!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Better than harry potter!!

Like i said. Way better. Must ready for any fans of scifi/fantasy/suspense.

Best book i ever read. Read!!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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superb

loved the whole series such a wonderful and fun adventure i got book after book because i couldnt stop listening to it.... the reader does a great job performing.

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Well done, only one complaint.

Great series, great reader. I read these concurrently with my 11 year be old son My only complaint was the painfully irritating inconsistency in pronunciation of character and tribe names in the last book or two, as compared to the first right books. I find this hard to understand because these books are otherwise well executed by the same reader. I can only conclude that he either forgot how he had pronounced these familiar words in the first few books (which would be pretty lame), or maybe he learned how the author intended them to be pronounced, and corrected course. Either way, it was annoying and distracting each and every time, because these were now familiar people and tribes, whose names were being butchered.

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sensational in every way

This story was epic. Action, adventure, and excitement at each page. Top that with a sensational voice performance by William Dufris and you will beg for more. This is without a doubt one of my favorite series ever and it was brought to life beautifully.

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Hard to see it end

With this being the last in the series it was hard to see it end but it was a wonderful end to a journey that has been going on for years. Just wishing there were more books in the series.

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great book series

Great performance and outstanding book series. Entertainment at it's finest. I recommend all 10 books.