Title: Queen of Sorcery
Author: David Eddings
Narrator: Cameron Beierle
Length: Unabridged (12 h, 44 m)
Published: 2003 (Books in Motion)
Start: 3 January 2011
Finished: 13 January 201l
From Audible.com: Legends tell of the evil god Torak coveting the power of the Orb of Aldur, until he was defeated in a final battle. Prophecy also speaks of a time when he will again awaken to seek dominance over all the world. Now the Orb has been stolen by a priest of Torak, and that time is at hand. Belgarath the Sorcerer and his daughter, Polgara the arch-Sorceress, are on the trail of the Orb, seeking to regain it before the final disaster. With them goes Garion, a simple farm boy only months before, but now the focus of the struggle. He had never believed in sorcery, wanting no part of it. Yet with every league they travel, the power is growing within him, forcing him into acts of wizardry that he can’t accept. His fate is inextricably woven into the fabric of an unfolding prophecy for glory or doom.
Why this book?
It is the second book in the Belgariad, a favorite series of mine that I’m re-discovering in audio format. Since I’m very familiar with the story and characters, this is more my thoughts on the audiobook experience than a review of the story.
Narrator: Cameron Beierle
Once again, Mr. Beierle narrates the story. It was during this reading that I realized that he made Belgarath sound a little like Sean Connery. Or, I should say, that’s who he sounded like to me.
The group gain a few additions to their party. The first two are Arends, Lelldorin and Mandorallen. I was a bit surprised by their voices. Though, looking back, I really shouldn’t have been — at least, not as far as Mandorallen is concerned. He has always reminded me a little of Lancelot, so the French accent Mr. Beierle gave him shouldn’t have thrown me. Lelldorin, on the other hand, I had always pictured more of an Englishman.
My favorite new character is Ce’Nedra. She has a very girlie, lightly Italian-accented voice that I thought was adorable. I thought he nailed the little Imperial Princess’s personality perfectly, whether she’s screeching at Garion or using a wheedling voice to get what she wants. And the accent makes sense: Tolnedra is modeled after Imperial Rome.
Speaking of Ce’Nedra, I’ve always had a problem with how her name was supposed to be pronounced. When I first read the series in the 80s, I pronounced it “See-Nee-Dra”. I eventually realized “Sa-Ned-ra” was probably a more accurate pronunciation. Mr. Bieirle, probably taking into account how an Italian would would pronounce a “c + vowel” word, gives it a soft “cha” sound. It’s not an unreasonable assumption: Italian for hello/goodbye is “ciao”, which is pronounced “chow”. I found it interesting.
As for Silk and Durnik — I think Durnik’s accent has been more consistently Australian than anything else. And Silk’s is still all over the place — but it stands out from the others, oddly enough, and really doesn’t distract. I’m beginning to think it fits his personality.
I think Mr. Beierle did a good job with the Dryads — all those female voices, and Salmissra’s court — all those hissing lisps, petulant-sounding eunuchs, and Issa the Snake-God. To me, it sounded like he had fun with them.
I ended up buying a copy of this audiobook. My library check-out time expired before I finished the book and it wasn’t available for re-check out. This series seems to be very popular at the local library.
I’ve also noticed, when I was researching when the Belgariad audiobooks were published, that I was using the date it was added to my library’s “stacks” or when it first became available in Audible.com’s catalog — instead of when it was produced by Books in Motion. I think 2003 is a more accurate date for this series, since it is the copyright date for the back-blurb used on Audile.com’s site.
Story: 4.5 Stars
Overall Reading: Very Good
Characters: Very Good
For 2011 “pages read”: 327 pages (own a paperback copy of book)