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What made the experience of listening to Gods and Warriors the most enjoyable?
Written with adolescents in mind, I came to this recording for the always rewarding voice of Toby Stephens. But I was soon drawn into the magical ancient world of the Greek Isles and the surrounding tribal nations. How refreshing to find, along with the strong young runaway boy, a brave, resourceful girl fully realized and not just an afterthought. Stephens did a masterful job of getting the many voices just right. This can be a fatal flaw if the narrator's rendition of that soft, higher register girl squeaks rather than speaks. Oh and the distinctive personalities of thinking animals. I loved being part of a dolphin pod for a while. The other pleasure was in the delivery of the action itself. Not once did I detect a condescending note. But no amount of vocal mastery could overcome what could have been a ho-hum adventure tale. Paver's writing was graphic, exciting, suspenseful and satisfying. I look forward with pleasure to more in this series.
4 of 4 people found this review helpful
I'm a big Toby Stephens fan, so picked this because he is the reader. But I found I liked the story, too, which is set in a fantastical ancient world which may or may not be prehistoric Britain.
Michelle Paver is a popular British children's writer and this marks the start of a new series for her.
The plot zips along apace, with many cliff-hangers, figurative and literal. Altogether an entertaining read. I'll be looking for the sequels.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful
This is a great return to what I think is Michelle Pavers best style. If you liked her Chronicles of Ancient Darkness series, I think it would be difficult not to enjoy this as the formula is just so similar. Equally, if you liked this and haven't listened to that series, I cannot recommend it enough.
I'm not sure this book is of quite the same quality as the Torak books, both in story and narration. It's a tough act to follow though, and I think Toby Stephens does a very decent job on this. I will be looking out for the next one and hope it develops into another great series!
5 of 5 people found this review helpful
I was recommended this book by Audible, as I love science fiction and fantasy. I read the synopsis and decided to give it a try. I really enjoyed it.
Hylas is an outsider (someone not from the village) who has been adopted (somewhat) by a family that keeps goats. He is only 12 years old, but he takes the responsibility of looking after the livestock very seriously. However, when a group of warriors he calls "Crows", starts chasing him and his sister, Issi, he finds himself in an adventure of a lifetime.
This is an exciting young adult story set in the Bronze age. Narrated by the actor Toby Stephens, the story takes the reader on an amazing journey. His voice has a calming timbre that was soothing and exciting at the same time. He read the story with a steady pace that kept me enthralled from beginning to end. I think I could die happy listening to his voice!
The story is a mixture of action, adventure and danger that kept me hooked! The story is mostly told through Hylas's point of view, but there are some scenes which are seen through the eyes of other characters including Pirra, a young girl, and a dolphin. This gives the story an interesting feel.
Pirra comes across as a spoilt brat, who is accustomed to having her every wish granted. However, she grew on me as the story continued. She is stubborn and determined, but she is also very lonely.
The dolphin gives the story a slight twist. They are very intelligent in real life, and this dolphin is no exception. I don't know if it is curiosity, empathy, or something else that makes this mammal so fearless and trusting towards humans. The dolphin in this story is portrayed in the same way, and is very friendly; Hylas names him Spirit.
The mystery and suspense of why the warriors were chasing Hylas was quite intense, and I felt his confusion and terror as he was chased by them. There are some amazing scenes that are described that made me feel like I was there. The fire scene was one such scene - it was definitely intense! The end of the book was a bit bittersweet (in my opinion), and made me want to read/listen to the next book in the series, The Burning Shadow, to see if Hylas eventually finds his sister, Issi.
Michelle Paver has written an exciting young adult adventure that was fast paced and exciting. I loved the way the story flowed, and how she described the scenes in such a way that they came alive in my mind's eye. I would definitely read more of her books in the future.
I highly recommend this book to young readers aged 10 to 15, and to adults who love YA novels. - Lynn Worton
2 of 3 people found this review helpful