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Publisher's Summary

An international best seller, Across the Nightingale Floor is the first book in the Tales of the Otori series by Lian Hearn.
In his black-walled fortress at Inuyama, the warlord Iida Sadamu surveys his famous nightingale floor. Constructed with exquisite skill, it sings at the tread of each human foot. No assassin can cross it unheard.
The youth Takeo has been brought up in a remote mountain village among the Hidden, a reclusive and spiritual people who have taught him only the ways of peace. But unbeknownst to him, his father was a celebrated assassin and a member of the Tribe, an ancient network of families with extraordinary, preternatural skills.
When Takeo's village is pillaged, he is rescued and adopted by the mysterious Lord Otori Shigeru. Under the tutelage of Shigeru, he learns that he too possesses the skills of the Tribe. And, with this knowledge, he embarks on a journey that will lead him across the famed nightingale floor - and to his own unimaginable destiny....
©2002 Lian Hearn Associates Pty Ltd (P)2015 Bolinda Publishing Pty Ltd
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

By Georgia on 07-30-16

Ruined by intrusive, loud music

I've read this book, and was looking forward to hearing the audiobook. And I have to say, the story was as engrossing as I remembered - and the two narrators did it justice.

HOWEVER, the music was really intrusive - cymbals crashing at almost random intervals, and instrumentals played over the top of narration! As someone that listens to audiobooks at night, while driftng off to sleep, I've always found musical interludes and sound effects annoying (they always seem much louder than the narrators!) This recording hit new lows...

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1 of 1 people found this review helpful


By anon on 12-09-17

Pure magic

What did you like most about Across the Nightingale Floor?

The intriguing mixture of history, religion and magic. Every part of the story is described perfectly and draws you in.

Who was your favorite character and why?

I really loved all of them. Especially Takeo, Lord Shigeru and Kaede

Any additional comments?

I read these books as a child and the series was definitely among my favourites. I don't think I will ever get sick of re-listening.

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Customer Reviews

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By Todd on 05-19-17

Great story, but somewhat let down by the ending

I enjoyed this book. It was well on its way to being great, but is let down by both one of its main characters and the ending. Spoilers follow.

If the author had focused on Takeo only, instead of Kaede too, the book would have been way better. The pacing set by Takeo's story is halted whenever the perspective changes to Kaede. Her story is simply not as intriguing as Takeo's. Plus she has personality traits that defy logic. For example, she is abused and is the subject of unwanted male attention for over half her life. She even states multiple times that she "hates men" and that "men are monsters". Yet she instantly falls in love at first sight with Takeo just by looking at him. She also is almost raped for the second time near the end of the novel. And although disgusted and traumatized by this, proceeds to have sex with Takeo IMMEDIATELY afterwards (like minutes afterwards). I mean, come on.

The ending is also a letdown. We have a massive buildup to Iida's assassination and how Takeo trains himself to move silently across the Nightingale floor. But in the end it's all for nothing, because Takeo isn't even the one to kill Iida.

Despite all this, the story is good and the Takeo's journey is intriguing. It's worth a listen.The narration is ok, but being an Aussie, I found the Aussie narrators distracting. Especially Anna Steen. Her accent is jarring at times.

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By Lachlan Peterson on 03-27-16

Fantastic and innovative

Fantastic story, eagrely moving on to it's sequel. The audiobook makes good use of sound effects to help set tones like that of ancient japan which adds to the story, and the 2 narrators helps differenciate the characters. Overall a great listen.

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