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I went back and relistened to the first 2 books and I am so glad I did! It was like listening to one long great book. You love the characters and the story is engaging. There are so many books out there with similar premises that sometimes they just blend together. This series is well worth the credits. Can't wait for the next book!!
4 of 4 people found this review helpful
Bowl of Souls Series (books 1–3): B-
Bottom line recommendation: “If you’ve got a credit (or $) to burn, and you’re looking for some decent entertainment, yeah sure, might as well go for it.” If there’s some supposedly acclaimed book sitting on your wish list that you’re considering diving into, but haven’t jumped, I’d say go get that one, and you can come back and listen to this afterward. That is to say, save the Bowl of Souls for when you want a break from those “deeper” more “Intense” or “intricate/complex” books. I think this series certainly has it’s high points, but overall, this is just another fantasy book with the story line and characters poured straight out of the mold. I certainly wouldn’t say I wasted my time by any means—it has been entertaining thus far… but I also won’t be putting this one on any top-10 lists.
- The good stuff: 1) As stated, it’s entertaining. I suppose it would be one of those good pure entertainment “beach-reads.” 2) Though it doesn’t really come to light until after the first book, there’s a pretty neat component of the magic system that is either original, or I just didn’t come across it before. So it was nice to ponder that different aspect. 3) The fauna is neat. There’s a lot of variety and the interactions between species and races is pretty cool.
- The not-so-good stuff: Not the best writing in the world. It’s somewhat juvenile, especially for character dialogue. I don’t know if it was just my failing patience, but it seemed to get worse as the books went on. Also, I don’t really want to be “that grammar guy,” but I think that people on the radio should be able to enunciate clearly and writers should be able to employ grammar properly. If I’m the one (as a “sciencey” person) catching the grammatical goofs, it’s probably not a good sign.
Eye of the Moonrat: B
They might look like it on the cover, but Moonrats are NOT cute!
- Story: The first book of the series is definitely the best so far. This is one of those books with a few distinct plot lines with different sets of characters (the sort in which you just know those stories will come together by the end). For this book (1st in series), I like the fact that the author doesn’t always use cliffhangers to get you to read on (like many authors employing this format do), but rather makes each chapter self-contained enough that you’re not screaming “WTF happens after he picks up the sword?!” or whatever. Instead, the author has made the stories interesting and somewhat dynamic in such a way that you’re excited to read on instead of compelled to do so. I just finished a chapter and thought, “wow, that’s nice. I’m sure glad he wrapped that up before switching to the next story line,” and figured I’d better make note of how much I appreciated that aspect. There are DEFINITELY some heavy fantasy genre clichés. This gets significantly worse in the following books.
- Audio: Narration was pretty good (B). Some characters in the voice acting seemed a bit forced, but still OK. I actually enjoyed the fact that the narrator (or someone) decided to go with a US southern/south western accent for the dwarf instead of the typical Scottish. No complaints about production quality.
Messenger of the Dark Prophet: C+
- Story: This is where all the fantasy genre clichés cast right out of the same ol’ mold really come to light. Another story of a boy going to school, feeling out of place, meeting some new friends, and running into the obligatory characters who, because of some scarred past or for whatever stupid reason, become obsessed form some petty vendetta against the main character for their own f-ups. Really? There’s not another plot device out there? We’re gonna keep bludgeoning that poor deceased equid?
- Audio: Narrator was same as before = good, not great. No complaints about production quality.
Hunt for Bandham: B-
- Story: The plot picks up a bit and gets into the larger scope during this book. Background built up during the first 2 books starts to come together and the tale gains momentum.
- Audio: The narrator switch in book 3 was a MAJOR step down (grade = C). The characters that may have previously seemed a bit forced became downright caricatures in this book. Also, the reading style for the narration reminded me a bit of a child being careful to pronounce every word properly, because the kid’s just getting this whole reading thing down. No complaints about production quality.
Future: I'll be getting the upcoming books, as long as I remember (but I'm not putting stickers on my calendar for release dates). They're good enough for entertainment. :)
8 of 9 people found this review helpful
Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?
While there was some development it feals like the rules and the way the magic universe in this books are changing so the book can be more interesting. while i like the book being more zap bang, having stuff that happens that was said couldnt happen before is odd. ruins the continuity a bit.
Would you be willing to try another book from Trevor H. Cooley? Why or why not?
yes, while the afore mentioned mistakes are the hall marck of a writer finding his feet. which dosent mean his future work will have these mistakes.
Would you be willing to try another one of Andrew Tell’s performances?
no I was annoyed that they swapped narrator, not a good idea. find a good one from the beginning dont change whenever u find a better one.
Did Hunt of the Bandham inspire you to do anything?
no, i can neither train at sword craft or do magic , so it can inspire me to do nothing.
Any additional comments?
While the story develops it dosent develop well. it definitely feels like the author is feeling his way out here. i hope he settles down soon.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
this book so good can't wait to hear the next book so hurry up and get the next book out