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As I began listening to this book I was rather disappointed in the narration. As I continued to listen I became incredulous as to just how poor the narration was—stilted reading of the text, unconvincing character voices, atrocious attempts at accents. Then I found myself becoming angry—not at the narrator, at the audiobook publishers. This appears to be the narrators first attempt at audio narration and he obviously had no idea what the art of narration required. Furthermore, he likely didn’t know what audiobook readers expect and how demanding we are… but the publishers knew.
Now I am actually angry with the publishers at Penguin/Random House/Listening Library for throwing this performer to the wolves without a second thought. He is going to be slammed for the quality of the narration—sadly, deservedly so—and I feel certain he had no idea such a slap down was likely. What were the publishers thinking?! They knew the narration would be included in reviews. They knew readers didn’t appreciate the poor narration of the last two books they published by Riordan. And they had to know this performance would be received even more poorly than those. Why would they set up anyone for the public humiliation that will come with the performance of this book?
Rather than list the name of the narrator, they should list the names of the people responsible for choosing someone to read this book who didn’t have the skills required for a satisfying audio experience. I’ve heard others say before that large publishers aren’t concerned with quality, only money. This is the first time I’ve felt the publisher’s insult so blatantly: “You stupid audiobook listeners will snap up anything so we don’t have to give you quality… who cares if you actually enjoy the experience of reading this book!”
I also feel sorry for Rick Riordan who has put a lot of work into creating this new series, only to have it butchered by a publisher who hires a narrator with insufficient talent or experience to do justice to the work.
If this narrator continues with the next book in the series, someone needs to give him some serious coaching on how to read text in a natural manner, differentiate character voices effectively, and—please, dear lord, please—how to do accents! I’m sure this guy can learn… somebody please help him… I don’t want to have to give another crushing review of his performance!
161 of 177 people found this review helpful
Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?
I'll be honest - I'm only at Chapter 8.
I love Rick Riordan, and have been waiting for this to be released. I eagerly downloaded it this morning and started listening. Go buy the book and read it yourself.
How would you have changed the story to make it more enjoyable?
I'm at Chapter 8, but I am liking the story. I'm confused, but I'm supposed to be.
Would you be willing to try another one of Christopher Guetig’s performances?
No. This performance made me nearly return the audible and just buy the book. I drive a lot and listen to books as I drive, so I can get through more of my reading list. I don't know if the idea was to make the narrator sound like a teenager, but it is simply awful. I can't decide if he sounds drunk, drugged, or is just slow for effect. I keep telling myself that it will get better, or that the story is worth it. I'm trying.
92 of 101 people found this review helpful