Here starts an adventure that will span lifetimes and worlds. Discover where the story begins. Raymond E. Feist is an internationally best-selling author. My name is Pug. I was once an orphaned kitchen boy, with no family and no prospects, but I am destined to become a master magician….
War is coming to the Kingdom of the Isles from another world, bringing with it chaos and destruction. Pug yearns to train as a warrior and fight for his kingdom alongside his foster-brother, Tomas, but instead he is forced to follow a different path: a path that will lead him right into the heart of the enemy. And one that will change the course of the war - and two worlds - forever. So begins the most epic series in fantasy fiction, a tale that will cross worlds and generations. Magician is the first book in the Riftwar Saga. The trilogy continues with book two, Silverthorn.
"Totally gripping" (Washington Post)
"Epic scope…fast-moving action…vivid imagination" (Washington Post)
"Tons of intrigue and action" (Publishers Weekly)
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Mr Joyce makes incredibly strange choices in his reading. As another reviewer mentioned, I see no reason for his decision to pronounce "Arutha" as "Aruta". Nothing in the text or elsewhere suggests it.
Then he seems to have decided not to distinguish between the various characters, just their races - most of the Midkemia men get more or less the same voices, as do the elves, the invaders from Kelewan etc. The only times he deviates from this, he chooses inappropriate voices (particularly Martin and Father Tully). And why did the voice he chose for the men have to be a rasping growl? How many people speak like that? It just sounds like somebody putting on a strange voice rather than the way someone would actually talk. I can see that he's attempting a kind of sing song quality for the elves, but... well... epic fail there.
A good reader should distinguish between voices in a natural way. If a narrator is unable to think of a suitable accent, then it is better that he or she does nothing than something inappropriate. You only have to listen to Stephen Fry reading the Harry Potter novels for an example of how it should be done. Each character has their own 'voice', (a great achievement considering the number of characters), yet each one sounds completely natural. Masterly. Stephen Briggs is also brilliant in his readings of Terry Pratchett novels.
What began to drive me mad though after a while (once I'd noticed it) was his habit of a long pause after saying "[someone] said". Why this huge pause? Continually during the course of ordinary dialogue, it was held up by an extra beat while we waited for what each character was going to say next.
Having said all that, he did at least manage to sound relatively enthused by the whole thing, and Pug's and Tomas' voices were fine, so overall it remained an okay listen. It was just a shame that I had to struggle to screen out certain elements in order to enjoy it.
Generally speaking, yes.
Due to the somewhat stilted narration, I'd head towards the kindle rather than audio version.
A classic fantasy adventure