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Lionheart the review
I have read Lionheart twice and have just had the extreme pleasure of listening to it. Yes finally a Penman novel on audio. The Narrator Emily Grey does a fine job and one of the things I like most about listening to an audio book is for the pronunciation of languages I am unfamiliar with.
Ms. Penmen’s works are dense and take concentration, the world often fades away as I read or in this case listen to her work, and when I am interrupted it takes time for me to come back to myself.
Lionheart is the 4th book in the Angevin saga which will end up spanning 5 books. The 5th book is also a bridge to her earlier work: Here be Dragons and the accompanying books collectively known as the Welsh trilogy. But all of Ms. Penman’s books can stand alone. I am a devotee of Penman’s work and have read and reread all of her books. She never ceases to amaze me with her skill; her writing is as close to perfection as one could ask. She is a novelist true but she offers characters so fully etched that at times you have to remember to tell yourself that besides the thorough research, the rest is supposition. She gets the psychology of the characters right, and their reactions to situations are so real that it is uncanny. She knows the history, customs, morals, the religion and the political climate of the time period, I feel very comfortable with her conclusions.
38 of 38 people found this review helpful
Year's ago I read several Penman books and loved them. Many years later I read a comment by her on her website. She was asked why none of her books had been produced as audio books. She said she thought her books were too long and complex to be successfully transferred to audio. At the time I thought that was ridiculous. Other BIG books were huge audio book hits.
I was excited when I found that one of her books was to be released as an audiobook. I read it and realized she was right. For some reason this book was dry, dull and difficult to finish. There were moments when it shone. And some of the supporting characters were fascinatingly portrayed, especially Richard's mother and sister. But they were fascinating in real life too. History tells us that Richard was larger than life, charismatic, a born leader and dead before his time. He should have been an amazingly interesting character in this novel. Instead he was one dimensional and boring.
I don't know why this book did not translate well into audio format. Perhaps the novel itself was not up to par with her earlier work. I would still be thrilled if her trilogy Here Be Dragons, Falls the Shadow and The Reckoning ever made it to audio. But now I am worried they might disappoint.
17 of 17 people found this review helpful