The Summer Tree : Fionavar Trilogy

  • by Guy Gavriel Kay
  • Narrated by Simon Vance
  • Series: Fionavar Trilogy
  • 13 hrs and 3 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

The Summer Tree is the first novel of Guy Gavriel Kay's critically acclaimed fantasy trilogy, The Fionavar Tapestry. Five university students embark on a journey of self-discovery when they enter a realm of wizards and warriors, gods and mythical creatures - and good and evil....It all began with a lecture that introduced five university students to a man who would change their lives, a wizard who would take them from Earth to the heart of the first of all worlds - Fionavar. And take them Loren Silvercloak did, for his need - the need of Fionavar and all the worlds - was great indeed.And in a marvelous land of men and dwarves, of wizards and gods, five young people discovered who they were truly meant to be. For they are a long-awaited part of the pattern known as the Fionavar Tapestry, and only if they accepted their destiny would the armies of the Light stand any chance of surviving the wrath the Unraveller and his minions of darkness intend to unleash upon the world....

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Classic fantasy at its best.

I read The Summer Tree (and the rest of the Fionovar Tapestry) many years ago and absolutely loved it. Consequently, I was a little apprehensive about the audio version - worried that the story might not live up to my fond memories, or that the narration might not match my vision of the characters. My apprehension was unfounded on both counts. I really enjoyed listening to the story unfold - a bit like visiting an old friend and being made to feel totally at ease. Simon Vance is a wonderful narrator - and I particularly liked the way he used regional British accents for the races/characters in the stories. It felt right. This is a 'Tolkienesque' style fantasy series - a bit 'Fairy Tale', with its mythology and classic fantasy components (dwarves, mages, elf type creatures, horse-riders etc). Some suspension of belief is required - of course! There is nothing ground-breaking here, so don't expect to have your mind blown by an innovative story. In my opinion, however, it is really well written and has an interesting plot and characters; that's what makes it special. The Summer Tree is perhaps 'the slowest' of the trilogy. The Wandering Fire has more action and I found the end of the series (The Darkest Road) particularly moving. But then - I am a big softy. I highly recommend this series to anyone who enjoys a good old classic Fantasy romp.
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- Sharon

A classic of the genre.

I first read The Summer Tree in the early 80's and have loved it ever since. At a time when fantasy literature was just becoming popular most books were either Tolkien rip offs or D&D clones, and often part of very predictable ongoing series. Kay, draws his inspiration from mythology, and although we find orcs (Svarts) elves (Lios Alfar) dwarves and other fantasy staples they are not the usual flat stereotypes. Kay brings a language style reminiscent of the Morte D'Arthur and weaves a magical tale that set a new standard for fantasy at the time.
Simon Vance is a great performer and brings the characters to life. Initially the accents and character voices felt strange, but only because I've read the book so many times and have my own versions in my head. I've yet to hear a bad reading from him.
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- Pete

Book Details

  • Release Date: 01-08-2009
  • Publisher: Penguin Audio