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A Princess of Landover is the sixth volume in one of my favorite fantasy serieses after Lord of the Rings and The Belgariad. For years my only exposure to these novels came via the Library of COngress and their Talking Book program. Unfortunately the narrator of those versions wasn't the greatest as far as I was concerned. He gave characters different voices but not much in the way of expression.
Then about eight years ago I discovered the commercially available audiobook versions, produced by Brilliance Audio and narrated by Dick Hill. These versions were far better, not merely because Dick Hill's voices were more varied (although I will agree that he makes Abernathy sound rather like the Geico Gecko), he also brings emotion to the presentation. When characters cried I thought he actually was crying about something on several occasions. Others may not agree but I generally have liked everything I've heard from Mr. Hill.
But unfortunately I'm not fond of abridged books, even if I'm rereading a book I've already read before. So I was a little disappointed when I purchased the then five novels in the Magic Kingdom of Landover series and found them to be abridged. Fortunately most of what was cut from the programs was unimportant.
Now, however, they're all available from the same company and done by the same narrator, but in unabridged form. The sixth novel takes up five years after the end of Witch's Brew. Mistaya, the daughter of Ben Holiday and Willow, king and queen of Landover, has just been expelled from a women's college preparatory school on Earth and returns to Landover. As punishment, Ben charges her to reconstruct Libris, the long-abandoned royal library. Though initially reluctant, Mistaya quickly befriends a mysterious young man named Tom and discovers a sinister plot in the works that could spell the end of Landover.
9 of 10 people found this review helpful
After listening to the rest of the Landover books by a different narrator, this narrator nearly destroys the characters as I have came to know them. It would have been nice if the new narrator would have at least listened to the other books. Abernathy voiced by the the last narrator at least sounded like a dog, this narrator makes him sound like the Geico gecko. It is also irritating each time he mispronounces Mistaya's name. The story is good though and true to the Landover series.
8 of 11 people found this review helpful
Such a shame that they switched the narrator from the one who did the first five books in this series!
The problem is that as a result I had definite ideas about how the regular characters would sound and the new narrator didn't conform to those ideas. What was with the extremely excitable Scottish ( I think it was meant to be Scottish though I've no idea why as there's no mention of it in any of the books) accent? I had to keep rewinding as I was so distracted by the narrator practically jumping up and down for a character who came across in the previous books as calm and considered, that I missed vital parts of the plot. Personally, even without the random changes to strong bad accents I found this narrator far too excitable for my tastes. This isn't a young children's book but at times it felt like it was being read to a 3 year old!
Surely in this situation a good narrator should take the time to first listen to the recording of the previous book in the series and attempt to at least modulate their voice to a similar level for each character?
Apart from the narration the story was typical Brooks' Landover series and enjoyable as such. It's certainly 'listenable' but I'd recommend a longish gap between listening to the other books in the series and this one.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
Generally a good recording, unfortunately marred somewhat by the worst attempt at an accent (supposedly Scottish, but my second guess would be an obscure dialect from Tibet) since the classic days of Dick van Dyke's cockney chimney sweep.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful