A Shiver of Light Audiobook
By: Laurell K. Hamilton
Narrated by: Charlotte Hill
Published by: Penguin Audio 06/03/2014
A Shiver of Light Audiobook Sample
Meredith Gentry Series, book 9
12 hrs and 42 mins
Whispersync for Voice-ready
By Ml Simmons
This is a really hard review for me to write. I’ve been a huge fan of both the Anita Blake and Merry Gentry series for many years. I’ve stuck by Ms. Hamilton while I’ve watch many people I know leave because the amount of sex in her books has increased to such an extent. I’ve never had issues with the amount sex in the books, though I will admit some stories were missing a plot outside of sex. I also read/listen to erotica, so that was never an issue for me. However, that is not to say that I don’t have complaints about the books. Many of the issues that I’ve had, I have been able to overlook because I felt that I could focus on how much I enjoyed the story and especially, the characters. However, my annoyances with Ms. Hamilton’s writing styles are starting to outway the quality of the characters and story, in my opinion.
First, the lack of continuity of the facts throughout the series. In this book, it is mentioned that Kitto isn’t able to bite Merry because his bite is poisonous, but in a previous book, he bit her to share flesh as part of the bargain with Kurag, goblin king. There is also talk of Frost’s former love, Rose, and her mother, also named Rose. The book mentions that they are dead, but in a previous book the mother is still alive at the Seelie Court. I know that you can’t always remember everything about every character you write, but this has become a large issue for Ms. Hamilton in both series and is happening more frequently as of late. In an Anita book, a character’s name even changed. That is unacceptable to me. Once I started noticed this issue, they now stick out like a sore thumb to me.
Second, the excessive descriptions of the persons features and clothing. This has always been something Ms. Hamilton has done. She makes sure you know the height, hair and eye color of every single character and many times throughout every book in the series. There is also a great deal of page time spent describing the fashions that each person is wearing. This is one of those things that I have always written off as part of her writing style and just dealt with it.
With this book in particular, these two issues really bothered more than normal for a couple of reasons. One, I have been waiting five years for the next Merry book, so I was extremely excited about a new story in this world. Then I start reading and the first two thirds of the book is almost a recap of the first eight books and Merry having kids. At 32% into the book, Merry had had her babies, left the hospital and spoken with her Aunt on the mirror. That was pretty much it. Tons of dialogue, lots of descriptions and rehashing everything that is going on in previous books. I had gone through and done a complete relisten to the series this year as a refresher, I didn’t need the first half of the book to do that for me. Even if I hadn’t done it, it was too much, in my opinion. That being said, once we started having actual stuff happening, the political plotting wasn’t too bad. There is a huge spoiler that I saw prior to reading. I had seen what the event was, but not who it involved on Twitter. It is not an event that I’m happy with, but I think it at least has a point in the overall story, so I’m okay with it. I don’t want to say more about, so as not to spoil it for anyone, but it was not the best I’ve ever seen this type of event written. It didn’t have the “feels” that I thought should go with it. I know that is very vague, but once again, I don’t want to spoil this for anyone who wants to read it.
I wanted to like this book so bad, but it just wasn’t up to what I expect from a Merry Gentry book, especially after a five year hiatus. I guess I needed more new story and less dialogue discussing the past; Frost’s former love, killing Cel, Rhys’s new sithen, the battle with the Nameless, etc. I would’ve liked more action, less dialogue and reminiscing. I will say that the overall story arc doesn’t end with this book. I’m still interested to see where Ms. Hamilton takes Merry and her men. A lot happens, big things, in the last quarter of the book, so should be interesting. I’m still not ready to give up on this series or Ms. Hamilton yet.
Laurell K. Hamilton was born in Heber Springs, Arkansas but grew up in Sims, Indiana, a hamlet with a population of about one hundred souls. Laurell’s mother died in a car crash in 1969, after which time her grandmother held the household together. Her mother’s death, her grandmother’s role in raising her, and having grown up with no men in the home are “the three things that made me who I am,” she says. She still believes she would have grown up to be a writer regardless.
No image for narrator Charlotte Hill. It appears this is her one and only title to this date. It could also be that she narrated, A Shiver of Light under a pseudonymous.
A Shiver of Light Audiobook Narration
Reviewed by Ml Simmons
This part is really hard for me too. They changed narrators from the person who has normally narrated this series. While I don’t think Charlotte Hill did a bad job, I really dislike changes in narrators this late in a series. She made a lot of changes to the way some of the names were pronounced. I don’t know which narrator had the correct pronunciation, but the change was difficult for me. One character it took me a few minutes to even figure out who it was because of the pronunciation of his name was so different. If this was book one of the series and not book nine, I think she would’ve been fine. She did fine with both men and women. She put the emotion into the stories. There were some scenes where Merry was sobbing, you could hear it in her voice.