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The Winter King Audiobook

The Winter King: The Warlord Chronicles, Book 1

Regular Price:£16.99
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Publisher's Summary

Uther, the High King of Britain, has died, leaving the infant Mordred as his only heir. His uncle, the loyal and gifted warlord Arthur, now rules as caretaker for a country which has fallen into chaos - threats emerge from within the British kingdoms while vicious Saxon armies stand ready to invade.

Uther, the High King of Britain, has died, leaving the infant Mordred as his only heir. His uncle, the loyal and gifted warlord Arthur, now rules as caretaker for a country which has fallen into chaos - threats emerge from within the British kingdoms while vicious Saxon armies stand ready to invade.

As he struggles to unite Britain and hold back the Saxon enemy, Arthur is embroiled in a doomed romance with beautiful Guinevere.

©1995 Bernard Cornwell (P)2014 HarperCollins Publishers Limited

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.5 (401 )
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Story
4.7 (366 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Matt 29/08/2014
    Matt 29/08/2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
    13
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    5
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    "Simply Brilliant"
    Would you listen to The Winter King again? Why?

    This is the kind of story you can enjoy over and over again. The Winter King boasts an engrossing, complex and compelling storyline rarely found in stories based on the Arthurian legends, which tend toward the tradition of chivalry, knights, round tables and simple good/evil battles against Mordred, Oberon and Morgan Le Fay. Bernard Cornwell has done a masterful job in The Warlord Chronicles of creating an Arthur that is believable, an Arthur desperately trying to hold post-Roman Britain together when the stabilising forces of the empire have gone and the chaotic forces of inter-kingdom warfare, religious conflict and Saxon invasions have come. This brilliant story is told by a brilliant narrator, Jonathan Keeble, whose voice and performance are absolutely perfect for this dark historical fantasy.


    What did you like best about this story?

    Perhaps the story's strongest aspect is Bernard Cornwell's careful maintenance of historical realism. It is easy to imagine a Britain in the grip of the early Dark Ages, unsure of itself and vulnerable in the aftermath of the departure of the Roman legions and the arrival of hordes of Saxons. It is all the more moving when you realise that history holds the eventual end of the story; we know that the Saxons succeeded in conquering much of Britain, and it doesn't matter how hard Arthur fights. The Saxons will win in the end.


    Which character – as performed by Jonathan Keeble – was your favourite?

    Jonathan Keeble's performances of all the characters in this audiobook are brilliant - he is the perfect narrator for this story. But perhaps his greatest success is in his portrayal of Arthur himself. The voice that Keeble uses for Arthur is only slightly different than the voice which he uses to portray the main character, Derfel, but it is enough. A slight tone in Arthur's voice immediately identifies him and carries across his humanity, compassion, ambition and altruism all at the same time.


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

    The only downside to this audiobook is its sheer length. At almost 20 hours, it is impossible to listen to the whole thing in one sitting - unless you are possessed of resolute determination, an iron will, and a lack of need for sleep. I would have liked to listen to all 20 hours without a break, as I found that when I had to turn it off to sleep and resumed it in the morning the story became a little disjointed. However, this is only a minor complaint and I would much rather have a long audiobook that takes multiple sittings than a short one that's over too soon.


    Any additional comments?

    This is an excellent example of historical fiction and of a legend being historicised. I cannot recommend this audiobook highly enough and eagerly await next month's credit so I can download the next instalment in the trilogy.

    8 of 8 people found this review helpful
  •  
    RJB1 UK 08/01/2015
    RJB1 UK 08/01/2015 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
    10
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    "The start of a great trilogy"
    Any additional comments?

    Another excellent series by Bernard Cornwell. In my opinion this is his second best series behind The Saxon Stories. His portrayal of magic is excellent such that it becomes believable in a historical fiction setting, rather than fantasy where magic usually belongs.

    As always with Cornwell, the battles are marvelously described, seeming to put you in the middle of the shield wall with the protagonist, Derfel.

    The narration is superb, Jonathan Keeble has a powerful orators voice and is able to do a wide variety of accents so you immediately know the character who is speaking.

    If you enjoy historical fiction, fantasy or other novels by Bernard Cornwell you should definitely try this one.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    TheOutsSeeker 30/11/2014
    TheOutsSeeker 30/11/2014 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
    ratings
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    13
    2
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    "Just excellent - well narrated and catching story"
    What did you like most about The Winter King?

    The Winter King features an catching, complex and compelling storyline rarely found in stories based on the Arthurian legends, which tend toward the tradition of chivalry, knights, round tables and simple good/evil battles against Mordred, Oberon and Morgan Le Fay.This brilliant story is told by a brilliant narrator, Jonathan Keeble, whose voice and performance are absolutely perfect for this dark historical fantasy.


    What did you like best about this story?

    The careful historical realism maintained by Bernard Cornwell. It is easy to imagine a Britain in the grip of the early Dark Ages, unsure of itself and vulnerable in the aftermath of the departure of the Roman legions and the arrival of hordes of Saxons. Especially in the light of history, we know that the Saxons succeeded in conquering much of Britain, and it doesn't matter how hard Arthur fights. The Saxons will win in the end.


    Which character – as performed by Jonathan Keeble – was your favourite?

    Jonathan Keeble's performances of all the characters in this audiobook are brilliant - he is the perfect narrator for this story. But perhaps his greatest success is in his portrayal of Arthur himself.


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

    I laughed out loud a few times, thanks to both Cornwell's understated writing and Keeble's acting.


    Any additional comments?

    This is an excellent example of historical fiction and of a legend being historic. I cannot recommend this audiobook highly enough and eagerly await next month's credit so I can download the next installment in the trilogy.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    The Wolf Glasgow 20/11/2014
    The Wolf Glasgow 20/11/2014 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
    51
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    "Classic"
    Would you listen to The Winter King again? Why?

    The narrator was entertaining and brought the story - one of my favourites - to life.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of The Winter King?

    The part where Gundlias comes to the Tor....


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

    I really liked his various voices for the male characters. The female characters were sometimes OTT and verging on the Monty Python, Life of Brian "He's not a naughty boy" kind of thing but, overall, Keeble was an excellent narrator.


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

    I laughed out loud a few times, thanks to both Cornwell's understated writing and Keeble's acting.


    Any additional comments?

    I read this series when it first came out and thought the audiobook would be a good way to go through it again without actually reading it. I wasn't disappointed and look forward to listening to the next two books with my membership credits.

    Steven A. McKay, author of WOLF'S HEAD.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Fran McKay 13/09/2017
    Fran McKay 13/09/2017 Member Since 2017
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    2
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    Story
    "Superb delivery of a superb story!"

    I started reading this series on the recommendation of my husband. With my busy schedule I found it hard to find the time to really get into it even though I felt the book was worth it. I decided finally to get the audiobook and I am SO glad I did. This narrator is fantastic (I have listened to a LOT of them, mostly bad...). His primary voice is easy to listen to, and his character voices are distinct without being silly. More importantly, the book itself is outstanding - the story is a masterful retelling of a classic legend from a bystander viewpoint, and I was happy to cheer, jeer, cry, and rage with him. Exceptionally well done!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Katja 07/09/2017
    Katja 07/09/2017
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    4
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    Story
    "OK, but never really gripped me."

    The story line overall is OK but too often the narration falls into modern traps and views and it therefore failed to be entirely immersive. Nevertheless a good read and we'll-performed.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Darren 01/09/2017
    Darren 01/09/2017 Member Since 2012
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    "Outstanding"

    Cornwell at his best, straight on to the enemy of god. Great characterisation, historical knowledge, plotting and action.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    04/08/2017
    04/08/2017 Member Since 2017
    ratings
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    2
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    Story
    "breathtaking"

    The narrator was amazing. I enjoyed every second of it. Great performance. beautiful book I would recommend it too all

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mrs 02/06/2017
    Mrs 02/06/2017 Member Since 2015
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Fantastic"

    It's Bernard Cornwall and Jonathan Keeble, the best combination the storytelling Gods ever created. What more can I say other than completely fantastic!!!!!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    AGGELOS IOAKIMIDES United States 25/04/2017
    AGGELOS IOAKIMIDES United States 25/04/2017 Member Since 2015

    A complicated sapiens. Mainly auditory, with a kinaesthetic touch; curious and resourceful. Reasonable, most of the time.

    HELPFUL VOTES
    5
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    "Exactly as it is supposed to be. Only the first instalment."

    I read the books in the 90s when they came out. I worked then and I web now so it is not only about the first read. The different characters beautifully portrayed by the narrator, and the action well described in the motion. I can only say that this is my definitive offer tail and I'm moving onto the next book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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