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The Empty Throne

The Last Kingdom Series, Book 8
Narrated by: Matt Bates
Series: The Last Kingdom Series, Book 8
Length: 11 hrs and 12 mins
Categories: Fiction, Historical
4.5 out of 5 stars (818 ratings)

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Summary

The new novel in Bernard Cornwell's number-one best-selling series "The Warrior Chronicles", on the making of England and the fate of his great hero, Uhtred of Bebbanburg.

In the battle for power, there can be only one ruler.

England is fractured, torn apart more by internal fighting than the threat of Viking invasion. The ruler of Mercia is dying, leaving no legitimate heir. His wife is a formidable fighter and great leader, but no woman has ever ruled over an English kingdom. And she is without her strongest warrior and champion, Uhtred of Bebbanburg.

So the scene is set for an explosive battle between elders and warriors for an empty throne. The vacant throne leaves a dangerous opportunity for the rival West Saxons to seize Mercia. But Edward of Wessex is distracted by the succession of his own throne, with two heirs claiming the right to be West Saxon king. And while the kingdoms are in disarray, the Vikings, this time coming from the west, will go on the rampage once more.

The very future of England hangs in the balance. A hero is needed, a hero who can destroy the threat to Mercia, a hero who will ultimately decide the fate of a nation…

©2014 Bernard Cornwell (P)2014 HarperCollins Publishers Limited

Critic reviews

Praise for Bernard Cornwell:

"The best battle scenes of any writer I've ever read, past or present. Cornwell really makes history come alive" (George R.R. Martin)
"Cornwell is always in full command of his material" (Sunday Times)
"Like GAME OF THRONES, but real" (Observer)
"Tense, powerful, compulsive" (The Times)
"He's called a master storyteller. Really he's cleverer than that" (Telegraph)
"Nobody in the world does this better than Cornwell" (Lee Child)

What members say

Average customer ratings

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Reviews - Please select the tabs below to change the source of reviews.

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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
  • Dr Zube
  • Ross on Wye, United Kingdom
  • 09-01-15

Good but nothing new

I have listened to all the others so I guess I will keep going, although I have to say it is getting quite difficult to differentiate between the titles. Its more slashing, burning and colourful insults (amusing and entertaining but not challenging or particularly surprising). It does exactly what you would expect, good fun, but in many ways a bit dull. This series needs to go out with a bang. ASAP.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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Good book - another enjoyable story.

Well written, well read but at times the readers accents and voices seem to blur into one which made it tricky to follow in parts where all the characters had similar names! I enjoyed it and looking forward to the next instalment.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Another easy listen from BC

If you like the series you'll like this. An easy listen with our hero remaining a hero. Somewhat predictable but never the less entertaining.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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An adequate replacement for Jonathan Keeble

I found it really hard to get through the books between Sword Song and this book because of the change from Jonathan Keeble to the others. Matt Bates is great at playing a different voice for each character so it is never confusing for the listener. He lacks the hoarse battle beaten storyteller voice of Keeble but he is certainly second best

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Simply Brilliant

Matt Bates is one of the best narrators I've heard. Another gripping book by Bernard Cornwell.

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Matt Bates brings Bernard Cornwell's story to life

Read with just the right amount of emotion to bring this story, the eighth in the series to wonderful life. I've enjoyed all of them in the series so far, but this one may be my favourite, seeing the pagan raised Saxon Lord as a more mature loveable rogue. Thought provoking with treachery and feel good moments a plenty. Now, I must take my leave to download the next installment from Bernard Cornwell, a true "Weaver of dreams using nothing more than words"

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The Empty Throne

Cornwell just never gets boring, I cant get enough of Uthred's exploits. Besides the blood-curdling battles I enjoy the plots twists. I hope the next episode will have the same narrator, thats what I imagine Uthred would sound like. He even got the norwegian accent down👍

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other great book to the collection

I've been out the last Kingdom series for a little while so it took a few chapters to get back into this, the narrator just made me laugh with some of his sayings of places like Cumbria, but it was a nice relax from a serious book.
highly recommend any from the author looking forward to starting the next.

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Great story development

The story develops carefully, thoughtfully and with great skill. The same battle trap that we saw in book one is deliberately set in this book. A wonderful "read" well narrated with our hero thinking ever deeper about his destiny.

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Bates is a huge improvement on Perring.

Another great instalment but still hankering for Keeble’s narration. Liked the sneaky addition at the start too.

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  • Rui Ribeiro
  • 23-08-16

Entertaining

Still a very interesting book, especially for anyone who has listened to the previous books in the series. Not as good as some of the previous books, but keeps on telling the story of saxons and their viking enemies through the remarkable character of Uhtred, in a narrative that is always well built and enthralling.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Erin
  • 16-10-15

So very very good

Fantastic series and truly excellent narrator - listened to the whole series and now beginning again with the first book

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Profile Image for luke
  • luke
  • 01-03-15

Eight books in and still well worth a credit.

Where does The Empty Throne (The Warrior Chronicles, Book 8) rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

Among the chronicles it is in the top half

What was one of the most memorable moments of The Empty Throne (The Warrior Chronicles, Book 8)?

As always, the ending was the best part!

What about Matt Bates’s performance did you like?

Good but not great

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

Every book Cornwell has written is a "one-sitter". Stretching it out is always a challenge.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful