28 December, 2013

(audiobook) Review - The Garden of Stones (Echoes of Empire #1) by Mark T. Barnes


As usual, you can find this review for The Garden of Stones by Mark T. Barnes on SFFaudio.com where I do all my audiobook reviews. I really enjoyed this one although I'm sure it would have been better had I read it with my eyes instead of ears because of the amount of characters and the fact that it's like Erikson in that it drops you right in without explaining much.
With The Garden of Stones, I wonder if I would have stalled in my reading. I’m no stranger to being thrown into the action having survived (and thoroughly enjoyed!) Erikson’s masterpiece, The Malazan Book of the Fallen, so that probably wouldn’t have been a problem. I did, however, have a difficult time keeping a lot of the characters, names, and races straight through listening only. Had I had my eyes on this one, I probably would have enjoyed it even more than I already did.

3 comments:

Carl V. Anderson said...

I do think it is sometimes easier to experience a character-heavy book in print form vs. audio as I think there is something about seeing the way the names are spelled to help your mind differentiate characters.

Glad that you enjoyed it despite that.

Bryce L. said...

Definitely. I remember way better when I can look at it, plus you can always go back and look at it again which doesn't do well in audio. I'll rewind and then miss it just as well the second time. :)

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From the opening of this first work, Barnes plunges the reader into a richly-imagined, complex, sophisticated world which draws on concepts and imagery that are, to start with, strange and potentially difficult to ingest; but the reward is plain: a new fantasy world quite different from your run of the mill adventure story.