• Minstrel

  • Tir Athair, Volume 1
  • By: Marissa Ames
  • Narrated by: Matt Thurston
  • Length: 12 hrs and 34 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Release date: 04-16-14
  • Language: English
  • Publisher: R.J. Reign Press
  • 4 out of 5 stars 4.1 (49 ratings)

Regular price: $23.08

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Publisher's Summary

Arriving in the royal city of Cynegil just after the good king's death, Liam and his traveling troupe face arrest for entertaining during a time of mourning. The new king, Riordan, offers them a choice: play for the court as he demands or be punished for the crime. With little recourse, they acquiesce. While the troupe entertains within the hall, Liam witnesses the dissension between the king and his twin brother, Shamus. When Shamus enlists Liam to record the kingdom's history from his own viewpoint, the king becomes suspicious. And when Liam becomes involved with Molly, the mysterious redheaded washerwoman, and Tristan, the royal soldier with a deadly secret and a skill for causing unfortunate accidents, his life becomes even more complicated. As the kingdom staggers beneath drought, famine, and conflict, Liam and Shamus must flee Cynegil with prices on their heads. Will they survive their journey or will they become just another ballad to be sung?
©2013 Marissa Ames (P)2014 Marissa Ames
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By Angela Goff on 05-28-14

A Well Wrought Tapestry

If you could sum up Minstrel in three words, what would they be?

A gorgeously rendered tale of blackmail, intrigue, divided loyalties, gut instinct and hard-earned love. No shallow, swoony period piece this: Minstrel is a finely crafted story with complex, sympathetic characters who are as endearing as they are beautifully flawed. Their moral dilemmas, prejudices, shortcomings, inherent talents, and temperaments knit the plot into a solid, character-driven story that fascinates and entertains. The narration is also extraordinarily well done - I am a sucker for audiobooks where the narrator does all the voices, believably and clearly, with distinct tones for each; and this one most certainly delivers. All in all a well told tale. Would heartily recommend.

What was one of the most memorable moments of Minstrel?

I adore the main character, Liam. Just simply adore him.

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7 of 7 people found this review helpful

5 out of 5 stars
By Michael on 05-11-14

A Ballad Well Worth Hearing

Would you listen to Minstrel again? Why?

Yes. The story is engaging, and the performance is top notch.

What did you like best about this story?

The characters. Ames does a wonderful job of creating complex and sympathetic people.

What about Matt Thurston’s performance did you like?

The narration is solid and the character work is excellent.

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

I laughed quite a bit. I will also admit to getting a bit misty at a couple of points.

Any additional comments?

This is a delightful novel, well written and performed. I fully recommend letting yourself get lost in Tir Athair for twelve hours or so.

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6 of 6 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By Laura Jamez on 06-12-14

Outstanding tale

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

It has everything you could possible want in a tale : Love, mystery, betrayal, heart stopping action sequences. Everyone should own this.

What did you like best about this story?

The world created by Marissa Ames contains characters that are multi-dimensional, in a world that is totally believable and it was easy for me to loose all sense of time whilst listening.

What does Matt Thurston bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you had only read the book?

Matt brought the characters to life, his accents matching the visuals in my head perfectly. His voice had a soothing quality, and the subtle way he built tension allowed me to appreciate the story so much more than if I had only read it.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

I can't pinpoint any one moment in the book that moved me as there are way too many to say, you'll just have to listen to it and find your own moments.

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5 out of 5 stars
By Wombat on 05-31-14

This Minstrel will make your heart sing

If you could sum up Minstrel in three words, what would they be?

That would be impossible. The story, which I loved already from the ebook, is given such life by Matt Thurston that this listener experienced a myriad of emotions. Three words for such a resonating read? Can't be done.

What other book might you compare Minstrel to, and why?

It rather reminded me of Karen Maitland's 'Company of Liars', not because of any plot similarities, but rather due to a beautiful evocation of the worlds and the finely-drawn characters that inhabit it.

Which character – as performed by Matt Thurston – was your favourite?

Molly. Truly remarkable work from Mr. Thurston in bringing to life quite a difficult, complex character.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

No (although I did read the eBook in one massive go). Taken in one chunk, the exquisite nuance of Mr. Thurston's delivery would be dulled. It is far better to take a leisurely pace, and savour a voice that, according to my mother, caresses the ears.

Any additional comments?

Roll on Vassal, the next in the series!

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