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The Delving

Overthrown - The Chronicles of Denoril, Book 1
Narrated by: Matthew E. Berry
Length: 10 hrs and 3 mins
5 out of 5 stars (3 ratings)

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Summary

It rests deep in the ground, they say, an ancient burial treasure of unimaginable wealth. Riches to humble even the most prosperous men, locked away from time itself. But the Council’s edict was clear - keep the tombs of the ancient dalan closed. Keep the past sealed. But where there is wealth, there is greed, and nothing stays buried forever.

Thorben Paulson is an ordinary man, trying to raise his family the honest way. Unfortunately, the Council’s tax collectors demand more and more each thaw, taking in both coin and food. For a branded man like Thorben, his checkered past means the burden is always greater. With hungry mouths to feed and winter on the horizon, Thorben’s desperation grows. A visitor appears unexpectedly in town, a man from his past, carrying a map and a promise - enough coin to feed his family for the foreseeable future, in exchange for a single job. Not just any job, however. Thorben must delve once again, leave the sun behind and enter the underground crypts, the realm of the dead, and find priceless dalan relics. And yet, more lies in wait than things that sparkle and glimmer, and in Denoril, some things never truly die.

©2019 Aaron Bunce (P)2019 Aaron Bunce

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Things men do for family

Thorben Paulson is a poor but honest man trying to raise a wife, six boys and a girl. Unfortunately, before he first met his wife he was arrested for delving (tomb robbing) and spent time in the mines. He was also branded. This brand meant that he was classed as the lowest of the low and the tax men took more coin and food from the family then they would have done if he had not sported the brand. One day when he was beside himself wondering how he was going to feed his family over the winter he met an old man from his past. This man told him about a long lost crypt where treasure was abundant and asked him to go delving once more. He showed him a map and to wet his appetite he told him that he knew someone who could remove his brand once the delving was over. Thorben agreed to go with him stealing away in the dead of night. They met a group of men who were to travel with them. The fun begins when they enter the labyrinth of the crypts. Facing danger, ghosts and the undead of Denoril. Not to mention the men who had traveled with them. Thorben and Jezabel (the daughter of his old friend) have to fight their way out of the crypt and get back home. A good exciting listen and well read.

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The Delving

I was given a free copy of this book and I'm leaving an honest and voluntary review.

The build up and the introduction of the characters is really good. The story is very well written and engaging, keeps you entertained.
The narration is really good, bringing the characters to life making the whole experience more enjoyable.
I would recommend this to anyone.

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Profile Image for Milica
  • Milica
  • 13-01-20

Dark fantasy exceptionally written and performed

Thorben, struggling to raise his family from their financial troubles, gets an unexpected visit. He is offered a deadly job in exchange for the financial security of his family.

The Delving is a dark fantasy story with a mixture of adventure, suspense, horror as well as some emotional moments. The plot is well written, with vividly described scenes and characters. Your imagination will go into overdrive listening to this one.

Matthew narrated masterfully. He takes on a variety of character voices and you sometimes wonder whether there is more than one performer. His performance fits the scenes superbly with scary, emotional and exciting tones. He is one of my favourite narrators and does not disappoint with this one.

I recommend this story to dark fantasy lovers, particularly those who like to visualize the stories they are reading.

Note: This book was given to me for free at my request and I provided this objective review voluntarily.

3 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Blackeagle
  • 27-12-19

The past must stay buried

Thorben Paulson will do anything to take of his wife and seven kids even if that means bringing his past into his present. He must learn that some things should be left as they are. Delving is forbidden for a reason and they are about to find out why.
Aaron Bunce really worked some creative magic in this book. The Delving is full of suspense, love, sacrifice, supernatural creatures and mystery. The book is well written and kept me intrigued. Narrator Matthew E. Berry really brought the story alive he was phenomenal. I highly recommend this book you will not be disappointed.
I received this book at my request. I am leaving my honest review here voluntarily of my own volition. Do not let this book to unread or unheard.

3 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • D. Fischer, Author
  • 28-12-19

A picky audio listener

I’m a picky audio-listener. Almost high maintenance-ly picky. I found this narrator to have quite a pleasant voice and excellent acting. He truly brought the story to life. I have a few favorite narrators that I’ll listen to despite the genre of the book their reading, and I plan to add Matthew Berry to that list.

The story was good. A little predictable but not in a “I feel cheated” way. The journey was thrilling, tinged with horror and peppered with suspense. I liked that the characters themselves didn’t have magic, but what they sought after ended up being magical. Interesting fantasy twist to it. Not something I’d normally pick up, but glad I did.

The story reminds me quite a bit of Six of Crows. The plot is different, but the feel is the same: a band of criminals, some with more to lose than the others, all in a fictional world with fun quests that never go as planned. It’s dark, but deliciously so. Matthew was able to truly bring out the creepy parts in the story, and I found myself with goosebumps a few times, and embarrassingly I admit, he startled me once, lol.

I’d recommend this for dark fantasy lovers, perhaps gothic fantasy lovers as well. If you like quests, this would be a good one. The main character is a middle-aged man so probably won’t be relatable to many teens.

When the second audio book comes out, I will be snatching it up. Matthew Berry has a new fan!

2 people found this helpful

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  • Jennifer Stover
  • 03-01-20

Can’t wait to hear the next

Just when I really started to get into it felt like it was already over. However the story was very intriguing kinda has hobbit vibe so to speak. Looking forward to continuing the story with the next in the series. Berry does a very good job narrating the story. Can always tell the different characters apart and doesn’t over do it. Easy voice to listen to be it in the car , doing chores around the house or listening to as I go to sleep. I definitely recommend not only this story but also Matt berry’s other works as well. He’s great narrator and lately those can be hard to come by. Some narrators can just really ruin entire story you might otherwise enjoy but just can’t get through due to the sound of their voice for number reasons. I genuinely enjoyed all his books I have listened to. This is first time I’ve listened to this author however after this story I will definitely be looking into more. I really like these types of stories however good ones can be hard to find as most nowadays just tend to be what I call ,pardon my expression , fairy porn. This was no where near close and would allow my daughter to hear it if she wanted. I was given this audio in exchange for honest and fair review for free and I would definitely recommend it.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • TU
  • 24-02-20

A very solid dark fantasy tale

I was given this free review copy audio book at my request and have voluntarily left this review.

This was actually a great book. It was pretty entertaining and very well performed. The characters are interesting and the dialog was entertaining. I would say this is dark fantasy, but not so dark as to be overwhelming. All in all, I enjoyed the listen and would definitely be up for more.

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  • Kim
  • 10-02-20

Great!

This was an awesome book! A wild ride into delving by a good man trying to save his beloved family.

Well worth the listen!

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Willow Star Serenity
  • 09-02-20

Brilliant!

Thoben finds himself constantly struggling. He is a branded man and unable to find work as often as he needs to provide for his family. The taxes have been going up every year after winter. Thoben finds that if he doesn't do something soon, his family won't even have enough to eat. Out of the blue, a proposition is given to him. One that he finds hard to resist. He is very much against doing what is asked of him, but he finds that he could really use the money more than worrying about the risk involved.

I really did enjoy the story quite a bit. I wouldn't say that it was one of my favorites. I do believe that I will probably go back and reread the book just to make sure that I didn't miss anything. I may continue with the series as well, but it won't be for a while if I do. I do very much love the idea behind the story. It was very creative and unique. I love unique!

Thoben is the type of person that the reader can easily get behind. He does the right thing. He cares about his family. He would give someone the shirt off his back if they feel like they needed it. His family is beautiful as well. It's a family that I'm sure a lot of people who are from broken families just adore so much. Of course, I feel like I feel that families like that are just fairy tale families, but I digress. It was beautiful.

This book was narrated by Matthew E Berry. It's the first one I heard narrated by him, but I can promise that it won't be my last. It looks like he has a pretty decent library going for him. All of the titles look pretty amazing. I also have to say that he gave this book a lot of understanding for me. I feel like if I just flat out read it, I'd of had to reread many passages to fully understand it. I didn't have to do that thanks to him. I'm not saying this book is bad. It's just new to me.

I really did enjoy this book very much. I'm going to let my feelings on the book digest a bit before I decide on reading it again or continuing on with the series. I really loved the idea behind the story. It was a very refreshing page. It wasn't predictable at all. That's a very impressive feat. I do fully recommend the book.

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  • The Book Junkie Reads . . .
  • 07-02-20

more than expected and let me wanting more . . .

Fantastic world building. Fantastic journey with a band of misfits/criminals/outsiders. Characters that were so real. They could be people you know or want to know. The direction of the group of characters was open and engaging. There was an edge of darkness that fit the realness. What would you do for the future of your family? How far would you go to make sure their future was secure? The narrator brought it and gave distinction to the various characters. The was edge, turmoil, adventure, a bit of suspense, some horrible things, and even a touch with the emotions. I am very much emphatic and this got me. I was not expecting to feel emotional at all. A dark adventure fantasy that will have you wanting more.

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  • Delilah
  • 05-02-20

An excellent introduction to fantasy

Disclaimer, I received a free copy of this audiobook. I have posted this review by my own choice and my opinion is not affected by the reeipt of a free book.

The Delving is a fantasy adventure book which reminds me of a well-played out game of Dungeons and Dragons. I wasn’t too keen on the narration. The voice which the narrator used to portray the main character’s thoughts annoyed the heck out of me. But I realized after a while that, that was exactly the way that Thorbin would probably actually sound. He’s a reformed ex-convict after all. And he’s not like a hardened criminal, he’s a grave robber who got caught young and laments the hardships that his youthful choices have caused him.

I’m not exactly sure where the narrator hails from, but…there are a lot of scenes where the things that “never truly die” are described as “horrors” (I assume) but whatever the narrator’s accent is (or the one he’s trying to emulate) make it sound like he is calling the zombies “whore”. At first, I was a little disappointed because I thought I had missed something important. So, I rewound and listened to an entire chapter over again to find what I had missed. But no. It sounded like a mispronunciation. But it kept happening over and over again, through to the end of the book from that point on. Maybe my ears are going? Maybe that’s just how it’s pronounced wherever he is from.

For all his back history as a “delver” or grave robber, Thorbin is just an average guy. He’s not even all that bright, adventurous, or brave. He is, however, mechanically inclined which made him really good at Delving and solving the locks and tricks to get into ancient graves. Similarly, to a Dungeons and Dragons campaign, the story takes you from his humble home through increasing levels of danger until he finally experiences a change in himself to become braver and more valiant than he was.

I enjoyed listening to this book very much. The pace of the story starts slow and gradually increases. It’s a wonderful get-your-toes-wet book for those new to the fantasy genre as the more fantastical elements are introduced gradually. Something I hated is that there is a made-up word, “arns”(?) I think it is, that denotes a unit of time. I was unable to determine from context whether it meant “hours”, “days”, or “years” but it is used to discuss things which happened in the main character’s youth or someone’s age so I assumed it was years.

Despite the things I disliked about the book, I have rated it 4 out of five stars and DD on the Delighting Delilah scale. I’m not going to say you should read it, but if you like DnD, fantasy, or zombie fighting, you are probably going to like it..

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  • Sparky's Girl
  • 05-02-20

A new look at some old characters

This is a shoot off of Aaron Bunce's Overthrown series. So far a character from that book has made an appearance and I really like that with cross over series'. But even if you haven't read the other series, you will be okay starting this one!

*I requested this book and am voluntarily leaving this review