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After book 3, I was gutted to find out Roy Dotrice didn't do the narration for book 4. Instead, some talentless no-mark got the gig and, almost without exception, made an absolute dog's dinner of it.
So imagine my delight when Dotrice returned for book 5!
And then I started listening...
I've praised Dotrice's work previously because he gave a huge range of characters a unique and consistent voice. Why then does he suddenly elect to give a young girl the screwed up voice of a yokel crone when previously she'd been anything but? Why then does he take what was previously a rich, husky female voice and again turn it into something more suited to a wart-nosed witch? Yes, the majority of the characters are as they were, but these two aren't the only jarring changes but they are by far the worst.
And then there's the story. The previous books had intrigue, shocks, revelations and great characters and a wide but still cohesive narration that was occasionally interspersed with chunks of 'nothing much happens'. This book still has the intrigue etc, but it also has great swathes of text where characters just... really... don't... do... much. At all. I'm looking at you Daenerys, you wishy washy sack of absolute tedium. Other characters that have been dead since before book 1 suddenly take centre stage. Martin has never been shy of offing major characters but he seems to be developing a taste for occasionally resurrecting them without really seeming to have good reason. The cast just keeps getting bigger and more complex. The chronology of events from one place to the next gets tricky to follow.
Dragons feels more like a book from an author who's created too much 'stuff'' in his world trying to give it all time in the sun so he can get it straight. As a result, the tale sometimes seems a little forced and occasionally 'round peg, square hole' as pieces are forced into places and events that just lack.. something.
Still, if anyone can tie it all together in the end, it's GRRM.
9 of 11 people found this review helpful
Story - This is a continuation of a series and the last in the series to date. This book feels a little drawn out with some "filler", which is a bit disappointing. However it is still a great story and I look forward to the next installment (if Mr. Martin ever stops the book tours etc and gets down to writing again!)
Narrator - The narrator makes every woman or girl sound like an old crone and every man or boy sound as if he is in his fifties. It hasn't really bothered me until this book. The accents are still getting on my nerves. I am glad that the series has ended (so far) because now I can have a break from this reader.
I think a listener might be well advised to space out listening to this book only because of the narrator. The only problem with that is that the listener may forget the more intricate plot lines.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful
Roy Dutrice has so many voices and accents and reads with such feeling.. His narration would be perfect if only he didn't change a characters accent half way through!! It really ruins parts of the story. Aria has suddenly been given an Irish accent ??? None of the other Starks have though ?? And Danares has also suddenly become Irish ?? It really is so annoying! I know there are a lot of characters but accents for families or areas should have been decided beforehand and a sample recording of each saved for reference in case there was any doubt.. I would have expected a more thorough and professional approach for the amount of money I have spent buying this series of audio books.
13 of 13 people found this review helpful
I seem to be of a different thinking from many of the reviews on this book. I don’t really have a problem with Roy Dotrice as a narrator. However I am finding I am getting bored with the story and how it does not seem to be going very far. I got hooked on these books and love all the characters, cultures and depth that Martin has created in this world. However I really get the feeling that even Martin has no plan on where this story is going. We found out in book 1 that ‘winter is coming’ but still? Is this saga even going have an end? Or will it have no idea how to end, like the series Lost? I am someone who normally does not get impatient with a story taking it’s time to build, however on this one I am starting to wonder if I will keep investing my time into this series.
26 of 29 people found this review helpful
Great book it really takes you out of the story when the narrator changes character voices between books, when listening to them back to back it really stands out. That and he changes how he pronounces names and places between books.
6 of 6 people found this review helpful
The change in accents and name pronunciation from the earlier books is irritating. Messes with my memory of each of the characters. Otherwise an awesome continuation of an epic book series.
8 of 9 people found this review helpful