Review of The Gathering Storm by Robert Jordan and Brandon Sanderson

February 25, 2010 by · 2 Comments
Filed under: Reviews 

SFFaudio Review

Fantasy Audiobook - The Gathering Storm by Robert Jordan and Brandon SandersonThe Gathering Storm – Book Twelve of The Wheel of Time
By Robert Jordan and Brandon Sanderson
Read by Kate Reading and Michael Kramer
26 CDs – 34.5 Hours – [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: Macmillan Audio
Published: 2009
ISBN: 9781593977672
Themes: / Fantasy / Epic fantasy / Good and Evil / Power / Politics / Religion / Magic /

The Gathering Storm is the first of the final trilogy of The Wheel of Time series. It was a long time coming, and I am pleased to report that Brandon Sanderson did an outstanding job. I actually spent part of my listening time looking for stylistic differences from the other books, but hats off to Sanderson for pulling this off. He nailed the tone of the other books, and tells a good story.

There are so many characters in these books, with different styles of speaking, that Michael Kramer and Kate Reading would be forgiven for inconsistencies in their narration, as they’ve done all 11 volumes that come before this one. That’s over 230 hours of audio! But they were right on, too. Their professional, enjoyable narration gave the book an additional source of continuity. These two are the voices of the Wheel of Time series.

So much has happened in this series that to say much about the plot here will spoil previous volumes. It should suffice for me to say that I enjoyed this book enough that I’ve started the series over from the beginning, in anticipation of the upcoming pair of concluding novels.

Posted by Tricia

Recent Arrival: The Gathering Storm by Robert Jordan and Brandon Sanderson

November 5, 2009 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Recent Arrivals 

SFFaudio Recent Arrivals

Fantasy Audiobook - The Gathering Storm by Robert Jordan and Brandon SandersonThe Gathering Storm – Book Twelve of The Wheel of Time
By Robert Jordan and Brandon Sanderson
Read by Kate Reading and Michael Kramer
26 CDs – 34.5 Hours – [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: Macmillan Audio
Published: 2009
ISBN: 9781593977672

Here’s the first of the final three novels of the massive Wheel of Time series. Kate Reading and Michael Kramer continue narrating, which is great news.

Tarmon Gai’don, the Last Battle, looms. And mankind is not ready.

The final volume of the Wheel of Time, A Memory of Light, was partially written by Robert Jordan before his untimely passing in 2007. Brandon Sanderson, New York Times bestselling author of the Mistborn books, was chosen by Jordan’s editor—his wife, Harriet McDougal—to complete the final book. The scope and size of the volume was such that it could not be contained in a single book, and so Tor proudly presents The Gathering Storm as the first of three novels that will make up A Memory of Light. This short sequence will complete the struggle against the Shadow, bringing to a close a journey begun almost twenty years ago and marking the conclusion of the Wheel of Time, the preeminent fantasy epic of our era.

In this epic novel, Robert Jordan’s international bestselling series begins its dramatic conclusion. Rand al’Thor, the Dragon Reborn, struggles to unite a fractured network of kingdoms and alliances in preparation for the Last Battle. As he attempts to halt the Seanchan encroachment northward—wishing he could form at least a temporary truce with the invaders—his allies watch in terror the shadow that seems to be growing within the heart of the Dragon Reborn himself.

Egwene al’Vere, the Amyrlin Seat of the rebel Aes Sedai, is a captive of the White Tower and subject to the whims of their tyrannical leader. As days tick toward the Seanchan attack she knows is imminent, Egwene works to hold together the disparate factions of Aes Sedai while providing leadership in the face of increasing uncertainty and despair. Her fight will prove the mettle of the Aes Sedai, and her conflict will decide the future of the White Tower—and possibly the world itself.

The Wheel of Time turns, and Ages come and pass. What was, what will be, and what is, may yet fall under the Shadow.

Posted by Scott D. Danielson

The SFFaudio Podcast #039

October 12, 2009 by · 4 Comments
Filed under: Audio Drama, Podcasts 

Podcast

The SFFaudio PodcastThe SFFaudio Podcast #039 – Jesse and Scott are joined by Fred Greenhalgh of Final Rune Productions (and the Radio Drama Revival podcast) to talk about the twin arts of radio drama and audio drama.

Talked about on today’s show:
Modern radio drama, The Sonic Society podcast, Roger Gregg, William Dufris, H.P. Lovecraft, Halloween, horror, The Grist Mill, Dark Passenger by Fred Greenhalgh, Willamette Radio Workshop, zombies, The Drabblecast podcast, Dunesteef Audio Fiction Magazine, WMPG, Maine, equipment for recording, Zoom Q3, Zoom H2, software for editing audio, Audacity, Adobe Audition (formerly Cool Edit Pro), Pro Tools, The Most Dangerous Game, Three Skeleton Key, Infidel by Roger Gregg, “field recording” audio drama, Marantz PMD660, the growth of amateur audio drama, AudioDramaTalk.com, Mad Horse Theatre Company, Waiting For A Window by Fred Greenhalgh, 2008 Ogle Awards, Wireless Theatre Company, The Grimm Of Stoddesden Hall, folklore, mythology, Medusa On The Beach, New Orleans, fantasy, Day Of The Dead by Fred Greenhalgh, the Dragonlance series by Margaret Weis and Tracy Hickman, Robert Jordan, Final Fantasy, German audio drama (“Hörspiel”), the freakonomics of audio drama (dubbing drives interest in audio drama), the Torchwood radio dramas, Lux Radio Theatre, Academy Award Theatre, will radio drama revive?, what’s wrong with terrestrial radio?, what’s wrong with satellite radio?, Sirius Channel #163, radio drama in decline?, CBC mothballing radio drama, Colonial Radio Theatre, turning radio drama into cartoons, The Anne Manx series, Anne Manx animated (on YouTube), Radio Repertory Company of America, Decoder Ring Theatre’s The Red Panda Adventures, machinima, Creepshow, Wormwood, is the month of October for radio drama?, or is it just Halloween?, The War Of The Worlds, Simon Jones, The Hitchhiker’s Guide To The Galaxy (radio drama), The Hitchhiker’s Guide To The Galaxy by Douglas Adams, The Adventures Of Sexton Blake, Dirk Maggs, stream of consciousness, post modern audio drama, Yuri Rasovsky‘s The Cabinet Of Dr. Calagari, Tom Lopez (aka Meatball Fulton), The Cabinet Of Dr. Fritz, Cellphone Theatre, ZBS.org, Audible.com’s new stereo format, Bradbury 13, 90 Second Cellphone Chillin’ Theatre, Blackstone Audio’s The Maltese Falcon, narration in audio drama, Rogue Male, storytelling and medium, First Blood, RadioArchive.cc.

Posted by Jesse Willis

Chapter Two of The Gathering Storm Available at Tor

September 24, 2009 by · 2 Comments
Filed under: Online Audio 

SFFaudio Online Audio

The Gathering Storm by Robert Jordan and Brandon SandersonTor appears to be going all-out in its promotion of the 12th installment of Robert Jordan’s Wheel of Time series, The Gathering Storm, co-written by Brandon Sanderson. In partnership with Macmillan Audio, Tor.com has made the novel’s second chapter, “The Nature of Pain” narrated by Kate Reading, available for online listening.

The Gathering Storm, Chapter Two, “The Nature of Pain”

Registration on Tor.com is required, but it’s fast and free to sign up. The novel’s Prologue, “What the Storm Means”, is also available at Audible for a low price, and the first chapter, “Tears from Steel”, is readable–sadly no audio–at Tor.com. The Gathering Storm will be released on 27 October.

Posted by Seth Wilson

The SFFaudio Podcast #017

December 22, 2008 by · 2 Comments
Filed under: Podcasts 

Podcast

The SFFaudio PodcastThe SFFaudio Podcast #017 – Brian Murphy of The Silver Key blog joins the podcast and talks to us about his terrific blog, writing habits, and how vikings and rappers are alike.

Talked about on today’s show:
Seamus Heaney’s Beowulf, Michael D.C. Drout‘s Beowulf, Neil Gaiman‘s Beowulf, religion in fiction, god in fiction, Stephen King, Carrie, The Stand, Desperation, The Regulators, Kate Nelligan, Delores Claiborne, Cujo, The Tommyknockers, On Writing, Duma Key, The Dark Tower, George R.R. Martin, A Song Of Ice And Fire, Roy Dotrice, Pandora Star, Peter F. Hamilton, Audiofile magazine, how being a truck driver is worse than being in prison (without audiobooks), Mini-Masterpieces of Science Fiction edited by Allan Kaster, Fantasy, Brandon Sanderson, Robert Jordan, The Wheel Of Time, Robert E. Howard, J.R.R. Tolkien, my fantasy fiction rant, “fantasy fiction works best when magic is talked about but rarely seen”, The Cimmerian blog, Mark Finn’s Blood And Thunder, Michael Chabon, The Yiddish Policeman’s Union, Gentlemen Of The Road, Henry Treece, The Viking Trilogy: Viking’s Dawn, The Road To Mikligaard, Viking’s Sunset, Bernard Cornwell, Saxon Stories: The Last Kingdom, Michael Shaara, The Killer Angels, William Gibson, Neuromancer, The Dark Worlds Of H.P. Lovecraft, Wayne June, horror movie: Session 9.

Posted by Jesse Willis

Recent Arrivals from Macmillan Audio

November 18, 2008 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Recent Arrivals 

SFFaudio Recent Arrivals

Four exciting titles from Macmillan Audio!

Anathem by Neal StephensonAnathem
By Neal Stephenson; Read by William Dufris, Oliver Wyman, Tavia Gilbert, and Neal Stephenson
28 CDs – 34 hours – [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: Macmillan Audio
Published: 2008
ISBN: 9781427205902

Fraa Erasmas is a young avout living in the Concent of Saunt Edhar, a sanctuary for mathematicians, scientists, and philosophers, protected from the corrupting influences of the outside “saecular” world by ancient stone and complex rituals. Over the centuries, cities and governments have risen and fallen beyond the concent¹s walls, yet the avout have always managed to adapt in the wake of catastrophe.

Now, in celebration of the week-long, once-in-a-decade rite of Apert, the fraas and suurs prepare to venture beyond the concent. During his first Apert as a fraa, Erasmas eagerly anticipates reconnecting with the landmarks and family he hasn’t seen since he was “collected.” But before the week is out, both the existence he abandoned and the one he embraced will stand on the brink of cataclysmic change.

Powerful unforeseen forces jeopardize the peaceful stability of mathic life and the established ennui of the Extramuros. Erasmas and his colleagues, teachers, and friends are summoned forth from the safety of the concent in hopes of warding off global disaster. Erasmas finds himself a major player in a drama that will determine the future of his world‹as he sets out on an extraordinary odyssey that will carry him to the most dangerous, inhospitable corners of the planet . . . and beyond.

A multi-cast recording, this program also features a cameo by the author and original music inspired by the story. Composer David Stutz says of the writing process, “I was excited by the creative possibilities opened up by Neal’s imagination. These ideas, realized, are the music that you hear on this audiobook.”
 
 
Ender in Exile by Orson Scott CardEnder in Exile
By Orson Scott Card; Read by David Birney, Cassandra Campbell, Emily Janice Card, Orson Scott Card, Gabrielle de Cuir, Kirby Heyborne, Don Leslie, Stefan Rudnicki, and Mirron Willis
12 CDs – 14 hours – [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: Macmillan Audio
Published: 2008
ISBN: 9781427205124

At the close of Ender’s Game, Andrew Wiggin – called Ender by everyone – is told that he can no longer live on Earth, and he realizes that this is the truth. He has become far more than just a boy who won a game: he is the Savior of Earth, a hero, a military genius whose allegiance is sought by every nation of the newly shattered Earth Hegemony. He is offered the choice of living in isolation on Eros, at one of the Hegemony’s training facilities, but instead the twelve-year-old chooses to leave his home world and begin the long relativistic journey out to the colonies. With him went his sister Valentine, and the core of the artificial intelligence that would become Jane.

The story of those years has never been told… until now.
 
 
Heretics of Dune by Frank HerbertHeretics of Dune
By Frank Herbert; Read by Simon Vance, Scott Brick, and Katherine Kellgren
15 CDs – 18.5 hours – [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: Macmillan Audio
Published: 2008
ISBN: 9781427203168

On Arrakis, now called Rakis, known to legend as Dune, ten times ten centuries have passed. The planet is becoming desert again. The Lost Ones are returning home from the far reaches of space. The great sandworms are dying, and the Bene Gesserit and the Bene Tleilax struggle to direct the future of Dune. The children of Dune’s children awaken as from a dream, wielding the new power of a heresy called love.
 
 
The Path of Daggers by Robert JordanThe Path of Daggers: Book 8 of The Wheel of Time
By Robert Jordan; Read by Kate Reading and Michael Kramer
19 CDs – 23.5 hours – [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: Macmillan Audio
Published: 2008
ISBN: 9781427205087

The phenomenal tale that is mesmerizing a generation of readers now continues!

The Seanchan invasion force is in possession of Ebou Dar. Nynaeve, Elayne, and Aviendha head for Caemlyn and Elayne’s rightful throne, but on the way they discover an enemy much worse than the Seanchan.

In Illian, Rand vows to throw the Seanchan back as he did once before. But signs of madness are appearing among the Asha’man.

In Ghealdan, Perrin faces the intrigues of Whitecloaks, Seanchan invaders, the scattered Shaido Aiel, and the Prophet himself. Perrin’s beloved wife, Faile, may pay with her life, and Perrin himself may have to destroy his soul to save her.

Meanwhile the rebel Aes Sedai under their young Amyrlin, Egwene al’Vere, face an army that intends to keep them away from the White Tower. But Egwene is determined to unseat the usurper Elaida and reunite the Aes Sedai. She does not yet understand the price that others–and she herself–will pay.

Posted by Scott D. Danielson

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