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Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?
Yes, but only in the sense that I want to continue with the Malazan series but do not have the time to read traditionally (I listen while commuting etc). While Page is competent, the memory of how vastly superior Ralph Lister was makes it difficult to enjoy the performance (as opposed to the book itself).
How did the narrator detract from the book?
It is a huge shame that Ralph Lister seems to no longer be narrating the books. While Michael Page is generally decent enough as a narrator, he simply doesn't have the range of voices, accents and intonations that Lister used. Admittedly, he makes an effort to distinguish characters (more than most narrators do), but he simply isn't as good as Lister. Lister's Kruppe will be missed!
What is also off-putting is that no effort seems to have been made to match pronunciation with the previous books. While I have no idea what led to the (very unfortunate for us readers) decision of letting Ralph Lister go, Michael Page should have acknowledged that he is picking up a series part way through and therefore should have made sure to maintain a consistent pronunciation. It is incredibly jarring to hear Page pronounce things in a manner which I (thanks to 3 gigantic books prior to this) think of as incorrect. Every time this happens I am brought out of the narration; constant interruptions to the flow of the narration like this make it difficult to enjoy the book. Unfortunately, with a book series like this with so many fictitious names and terms, it happens a great deal.
57 of 58 people found this review helpful
Malazan Book of the Fallen is one of the most complex Epic Fantasy series every written. I listened to book one, and book two, then book 3. When I listened to book three, everything clicked. I went back and listened to the series again from the beginning, and this vast world is amazing. Gods walking among men, warrens, magic.. I could go on and on.. Ralph Lister was amazing. And now we have Michael Page... Who I've never heard narrate before... And to be blunt, all his voices are the same voice, with different variances of 'grate' to it. And I couldn't concentrate on the book. I couldn't connect to the characters. I was sad to look on Brilliance Audio's website to see the rest of the 10 book series will be released over the next 3 years, and they all have this new narrator. I've never reviewed a book where I focused on the narration before, but wow. This world is too rich to go from someone who narrates a character like Fiddler with a very fast, witty voice... Then have the have the same character turn into a gruffy sounding soldier who just grunts.
I'm just... Disappointed.
69 of 72 people found this review helpful