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R. Moorhouse

UK
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A Game of Thrones (Part Two)
    Book 1 of A Song of Ice and Fire
    
        By:
        












    





    





    
        
            
            
                
            
        
        George R. R. Martin
    
    


    
    
        Narrated by:
        












    





    





    
        
            
            
                
            
        
        Roy Dotrice
    
    


    
    Length: 17 hrs and 5 mins
    2,291 ratings
    Overall 4.6
  • A Game of Thrones (Part Two)

  • Book 1 of A Song of Ice and Fire
  • By: George R. R. Martin
  • Narrated by: Roy Dotrice
  • Length: 17 hrs and 5 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,291
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,595
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,595

This is Part Two of Book 1 of the A Song of Ice and Fire Series. This first volume in the hugely popular and highly acclaimed epic fantasy series A SONG OF ICE AND FIRE is unabridged and split into two parts. Now a major Sky Atlantic TV series from HBO, starring Sean Bean. Summers span decades. Winter can last a lifetime.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Best fantasy around if you have the time

  • By Marcus on 01-01-12

Excellent story, narrator still irks

Overall
3 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 14-06-12

The story is brilliant - what stops these audiobooks being five star recs from me is the narration.

I wonder whether this is another of those US/UK taste things - perhaps different elements of narration strike us, whilst other elements pass us by? In the case of this audiobook, characters change accents, characters get mis-named (Joffrey frequently becomes Geoffrey), and the narrator's tone often seems to be at odds with the text.

There are two killers for me, though, which cause me to hit 'pause' before I throw the iPod at the wall. The first is Mr Dotrice's tendency to interject pauses mid-sentence (and yet, at other times, he'll run on immediately to a new scene with nary a breath), which just breaks the story's flow and makes it harder to follow than it need be.

The second is more personal, I admit, but his habit of assigning an *awful* cod-Irish accent to any arguably 'ethnic' character, the bizarre decision to have Tyrion's voice in Welsh (for the most part!) vs the rest of his family, and voicing characters like Theon as though they're middle-aged... All these are, to me, jarring, but I appreciate that you've got a cast of thousands, and so it's going to be difficult to make them all distinct.

I listen to audiobooks whilst walking the dog - normally in hour plus chunks. I almost never managed to get a solid hour's listen in with these books; I'd always reach a point where the narration was so painful that I had to switch the iPod off. The fact that I've completed the book is testament to the compelling story, despite the pains of narration.

29 of 33 people found this review helpful

  • A Game of Thrones

  • Book 1 of A Song of Ice and Fire
  • By: George R. R. Martin
  • Narrated by: Roy Dotrice
  • Length: 33 hrs and 45 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 12,995
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 11,052
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 11,057

The complete, unabridged audiobook of A Game of Thrones. HBO’s hit series A Game of Thrones is based on George R. R. Martin’s internationally best-selling series A Song of Ice and Fire, the greatest fantasy epic of the modern age. A Game of Thrones is the first volume in the series. Summers span decades. Winter can last a lifetime. And the struggle for the Iron Throne has begun.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Great Story, Difficult Narration

  • By R. Moorhouse on 10-06-12

Great Story, Difficult Narration

Overall
3 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 10-06-12

I actually own the paperbacks to A Song of Ice and Fire. And I re-bought the entire series as eBooks for my Kindle. The I purchased the Season 1 DVDs for A Game of Thrones. And the Graphic Novel (Part I). So take it as read that I'm familiar with the books, the story, George R R Martin's writing style, and the cast of thousands that populate Westeros and the lands across the Narrow Sea.

As you might surmise, I love the story. Unfortunately, this audiobook was a struggle to listen to because I just couldn't get on with the narration. Leaving aside the characterisation, for a moment, Roy Dotrice has this bizarre habit of pausing... mid-sentence so you're not sure if the sentence is finished... or if there's another portion... to come. At some points, these pauses almost change the sense of what's being said, and you find yourself having to mentally re-wind to re-phrase the words in your head to get the proper meaning.

In a similar vein - just concerning the narration rather than the characterisation - at some points the narrator's choice of tone doesn't jibe with my own interpretation of the story's tone; the first time we hear the Stark's motto, '"Winter is Coming", we're given it in almost upbeat fashion, rather than the heavy, almost portentous phrase that I have in my head.

However, my biggest obstacle with the narration was the characters' voicings; to be fair, the book has a cast of thousands (probably literally, although I haven't counted), and it would be impossible to form a distinct voice for every single person. But characters frequently sound much older than written (Theon Greyjoy, for example), the cod-Irish accent deployed for some characters is almost unlistentable, and, most disappointingly, Tyrion's accent changes mid tale, from Lancastrian to something that oscillates between Welsh and Irish.

It's a hard job, and I wish Mr Dotrice no ill, but I would've liked to hear Steven Pacey's reading of this instead.

207 of 220 people found this review helpful

  • Snow Crash

  • By: Neal Stephenson
  • Narrated by: Jonathan Davis
  • Length: 17 hrs and 3 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 956
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 764
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 768

Neal Stephenson is a blazing new force on the sci-fi scene. With the groundbreaking cyberpunk novel Snow Crash, he has "vaulted onto the literary stage." It weaves virtual reality, Sumerian myth, and just about everything in between with a cool, hip cybersensibility - in short, it is the gigathriller of the information age.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A Perfect Blend

  • By R on 23-09-10

Excellent reading

Overall
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 09-02-10

A really good reading, with good voicings for the characters, I nonetheless felt that the story ended a little abruptly, and whilst there were certain set pieces that stood out, other sections of the book seemed a little disjointed, with characters appearing in consecutive sections with little indication of how they arrived there.