City of Golden Shadow : Otherland

  • by Tad Williams
  • Narrated by George Newbern
  • Series: Otherland
  • 28 hrs and 42 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

Surrounded by secrecy, it is home to the wildest dreams and darkest nightmares. Incredible amounts of money have been lavished on it. The best minds of two generations have labored to build it. And somehow, bit by bit, it is claiming the Earth's most valuable resource - its children.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

You will want to listen to the Otherland series

You are probably reading this review wondering if this book or series is worth your time and money. YES! The Otherland books is one of my all time favorites and I am not easy to please. Have patience this book takes a little time to get into and is confusing at first with it's many story lines but by the time you get to the end of Sea of Silver Light the 4 the book in the series you will sit back and go WOW! I never wanted the story to end it was so much fun. I felt like I was saying goodby to close friends. This is worth your money and time and will be a story you can return to time and time again with great enjoyment. A true classic.
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- Michael Gadwell

Weird. Seriously weird.

WAIT! Don't give up too soon!

The City of Golden Shadow opens with trench warfare. Oh no, says I, no way I'm listening to another WWI trench warfare book. I almost quit right there, but fortunately I hung in for a few more minutes and the narrative took a turn for the truly bizarre. This has to be one of the oddest opening sequences ever written. I knew right then that I was probably going to give it a pretty high rating.

The story takes place towards the end of this century (mostly?), shifting back and forth between RL and VR ( real life and virtual reality.) The main character is a female South African computer teacher, a sort of cyber detective. Her student/sidekick, a bushman, provides an interesting counterpoint to the high tech world they work in (literally!)

I like the book. Really. Still, I have to say it's awfully long.... And then there are the three remaining volumes staring me in the face. And be warned, if you make to the end of this one, you'll pretty much have to read the rest. Combined, the series adds up to Nearly 120 hours, so you won't like this book unless you REALLY like this kind of book.

As for the narration, I thought it was dead on. One thing to watch out for: within a chapter, there is absolutely no break as the scene shifts from one character/situation to another. At first I was a little frustrated, but then I decided that it was precisely the right approach to convey how very confused the characters were most of the time. (Is virtual reality just a fancy term for unreality?)

This book gets an extra star just for the sheer magnitude of intriguing strangeness. I was going to give it three because there were times when I felt like I was slogging through molasses and I wanted it to start clearing up some of the mysteries, but I kept going back to the delightful weirdness. I confess that I plan to take quite a long break before I start the next book in the series.
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- Townsend

Book Details

  • Release Date: 10-30-2014
  • Publisher: Penguin Audio