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Summary

Trumps of Doom is the sixth book of The Chronicles of Amber; an epic fantasy series written by six-time Hugo Award winning and three-time Nebula Award winning author Roger Zelazny.

The ten books that make up the series are told in two story arcs: The Corwin Cycle and the Merlin Cycle.

Trumps of Doom begins the Merlin Cycle, with Alessandro Juliani handing over his narration duties to customer favorite Wil Wheaton, who won the 2012 Audie Award for his engaging performance of Fuzzy Nation. Wheaton brings this classic series to a stunning close by giving voice to Merlin, Corwin’s son, for the final five audiobooks.

©1985 The Amber Corporation (P)2012 Audible, Inc.

What members say

Average customer ratings

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Enjoyable story, underwhelming performance.

What did you like most about Trumps of Doom?

The change of character perspective, and new magical/fantasy elements introduced.

What other book might you compare Trumps of Doom to, and why?

The five books which came before it in the Amber Chronicles. Some Michael Moorcock, perhaps some of the Elric saga.

Would you listen to another book narrated by Wil Wheaton?

I was disappointed with this performance after listening to the first five books. My main complaint would be that the characters are hard to distinguish and sometimes this can get a little confusing.

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

None that immediately spring to mind.

Any additional comments?

I felt this book could have been greatly improved by a more versatile narrator. It wasn't terrible, and I still enjoyed the book, but after listening to the first five narrated by Alessandro Juliani this was a let down only on performance.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • California
  • 28-11-13

Favorite Series - Good Narration - Great Storyline

I have read this series several times over the past 20+ years and never tire of it. Zelazny is imaginative and spices the dialog with just the right amount of reflective commentary and occasional humor. The only lulls in the story are the infrequent, but detailed, descriptions of passing through shadow. While this might be great for someone who jumps into the middle of the series and only reads one book, I didn't benefit from its repetition. They give the reader/listener a good feeling for what Zelazny was visualizing. But, for those who are progressing through the series, these periods of "shadow manipulation" dialog become a down-draft when you'd rather be soaring.

Regarding narration, I prefer Alessandro Juliani's performance to Wil Wheaton's. This is not to say Wheaton's performance detracts from the story; not at all. It's the comparison to Juliani's performance for the Corwin Chronicles that elicits my opinion. Juliani has a good command of voice specialization and identification for each character and manages these identities extremely well. Once you make the connection of the voice to the character you no longer need Corwin said, or Julian said, or Random said. Wheaton's voice is rich and easy to listen to; it's just not what I was used to after the Corwin Chronicles and Juliani' versatility.

I'm 60 now and I plan on listening to this series several more times before I pack it in. Over the years, when asked what I like to read and what my favorite books are, this series is always part of my response.

If you like fantasy, action and a good story-line you will find this series a pleasant escape from the more mundane activities of daily life.

8 of 8 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Daniel
  • 12-01-16

good but not QUITE good enough for $130

I love the Zelazny Amber series and Wil Wheaton does a great job of brining it to live as Merlin.
The only catch is, while this series is excellent, it's just two expensive - 10 volumes as $12-$15 (members) and 6 hours each is an astronomical price, and there is no bulk discount. I bought the first 6, but will read the rest on paper in the library and save my credits for longer books.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • shirley
  • 26-12-12

love this series

now listening to blood of amber, I really don''t
know what I will do when I have finished the whole lot, the characters are part of my life now. Narrated perfectly for the subtle humour in the books.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Melissa
  • 04-09-12

April 30'th starts the new direction.

Would you consider the audio edition of Trumps of Doom to be better than the print version?

I cannot consider any audio version of a book that I've read multiple times as better... a new way of hearing it in my head, yes, Better?

What other book might you compare Trumps of Doom to and why?

Anything in the Amber Chronicles stands out as a thing on it's own. A unique and above all CONSISTANT system of magics, answers that get more questions brought up... It's addicting.

What about Wil Wheaton’s performance did you like?

Wil Wheaton brings to life Merlin, the son of Corwin of Amber. He brings the wry humor of the character in subtle ways. I manage to loose Wil and find Merlin within the performance.

If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

I'd have two separate choices.

1) "April Thirtieth will never be the same."

or

2) "Pick a card, any card."

Any additional comments?

The Amber Chronicles have been one of my favorite series for a LONG time. In the beginning we know just as much as the main character. By book five we have followed Cowrin through a long journey of change and discovery. Questions are raised, answered....and more questions come from the answers.
In this, the sixth book of the series we meet Merlin the son of Corwin of Amber, and Dara of Chaos. Merlin, it turns out, seems to have inherited his father's knack for troubles.
Who is behind the yearly attempts on his life? What is going on with his Ghost Wheel project? As he solves one problem another rises to take it's place... The Courts of Chaos, the Palace of Amber... Poles of reality of which everything else is but a reflection and shadow..between them lies the life of Merlin.

5 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Kindle Customer
  • 14-05-15

Excellent

I loved the amber stories when i first read them. Now Mr. Wheaton has brought them to life. A really good listen.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Douglas R. Pratt
  • 03-08-12

excellent performance

What made the experience of listening to Trumps of Doom the most enjoyable?

I know it by heart of course, and I have the audio of the first five books that Roger Zelazny recorded (the tapes were discovered a few years ago). Nothing can match Roger's recordings in sentimental value and in accuracy, but that doesn't detract from Wheaton's performance.

What was one of the most memorable moments of Trumps of Doom?

Roger Zelazny was a poet so the structure of all his work is subtle and delightful. Best of all, he can never resist a good, horrible pun. One of the best is here in Merlin's second hellrun: "It was just one damned thing after another."

What didn’t you like about Wil Wheaton’s performance?

I thought it was splendid throughout. However there is one punch edit that was not removed!

Any additional comments?

Thank you very much for bringing us these performances. Please do some more of Zelazny's books. Someone could have a lot of fun with "A Dark Traveling," the one voiced by a kid in a magical family who is just figuring out that he's a werewolf. Whatever happened to "Lord of Light?" Was there a rights problem? I thought Victor Bevine's performance was one of the best I have ever heard.

5 of 7 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Kindle Customer
  • 30-10-12

Terrible Narrator

I loved the beginning of this series. The story was engaging and original. I was looking forward to enjoying the rest of these books when the narrator changed. I enjoy Wil as an actor but his narration was terrible. I couldn't make it past the first hour of the recording. There was no change in voice for different characters and everything was over-emphasized. I'll have to enjoy the rest of these as eBooks.

6 of 9 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Corwin
  • 03-05-13

Amber's First Book of Merlin's Story

What did you love best about Trumps of Doom?

The Amber stories are perhaps Zelazny's best-known works They cover 10 novels, the first five told from the perspective of Corwin, a prince of the land of Amber. This book starts the tale of Merlin, Corwin's son, as he confronts unknown dangers and intrigues. The story is full of imagination in both settings and plot twists, told with the unique wise-cracking Zelazny flare. Merlin's tale starts with him "waiting around" for someone to kill him. It's something that happens once a year, on a clock-work schedule. And just like that, you're off, into a unique universe of parallel worlds, where anything is possible. If you're a fan of Zelazny, I've probably already written more than is necessary; if you've never read his work before, I encourage you to start with _Nine Princes in Amber_, the story of this famous series. If you *really* need to know more before deciding whether or not to buy, you can find numerous fan sites with a search of "amber Roger Zelazny" on the Internet. You'll be in for a great story!

Who was your favorite character and why?

Merlin is an interesting mixture of cynicism, naivete, insight, and self-blindness. He has a different background and skill set than his father. There is some interesting tongue-in-cheek, such as Merlin coming from a chaotic, magical, and feudal background, and yet becoming a -- designer of a computers.

Which character – as performed by Wil Wheaton – was your favorite?

The story is a 1st person narrative: Merlin is the storyteller.

Any additional comments?

There are a few problems with the narrator. He sometimes miss-pronounces words (e.g., "slavering" -- which he pronounces with a long a rather than the proper short), and names (e.g., "Gérard"). I, at least, expected more of a professional production. Fortunately, these unfortunate assaults on the ear are infrequent. It is interesting to hear the story as read by the narrator, as his inflection and emphasis differs from my reading, and my desire for a different take on the reading was part of my reason for buying an audio version of the books I know so well.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Amazon Customer
  • 29-03-13

A perfect book for narration

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

Roger Zelazney is king of the single character novel. With a rich background and a character you come to love through his own thoughts and ideas this book will get you rooting for Merlin every step of the way.

What does Wil Wheaton bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

The best part about the book is the take on the first person narration as the only way the reader receives information. There is no other picture, not other point of view. This is what make the narration so perfect. The book is written as if Melin is telling a story and listening to it you can get a different enjoyment out of it. I think Wil Weaton really brings out the sarcasm and wry humor out of the book that isn't as poinient if you just read it. He has the perfect tone on the border where exasperation, contemplation and self depricating humor meet.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • J. Rosenberger
  • 19-05-18

Maybe the Best Action-Adventure Fantasy Series

When I read these books nearly 20 years ago, I remember feeling sad that there were only 10 of them. I'm starting to feel the same way as I work my way through the audio versions. After finishing Book 5, I hesitated before jumping into Book 6. I had grown even more attached to Corwin in the audio version than I had in the print version. But I am so glad I started the Merlin series! Merlin is fascinating in his own way, and Wil Wheaton does a very good job with him. Yes, he mispronounces the occasional word, but he has a wonderful grasp of Merlin's wry wit and dark humor. I once heard an old recording of Zelazny himself reading one of his books, and honestly, no one can ever hope do better than that anyway. But, Wheaton does a creditable job here. If you've read the first five books, go ahead and dive into Book 6. Merlin is a different character than Corwin, and he has his own way of approaching things. It's not simply more of the same character with a different name. There's more of Amber, this time with a dash of technology. There are more plots and schemes, and many of the familiar family members make reappearances (plus some new ones). Lots of fighting, problem-solving, wit, humor, weaponry, and creatures from other worlds. I love these books!