Sterling Audiobook by Dannika Dark Review

Posted by on Aug 4, 2014 in Reviews | 26 comments

Review of: Sterling Audiobook
Dannika Dark

Reviewed by:
On August 4, 2014
Last modified:November 10, 2015


Sterling Audiobook: Mageri, Book 1

By: Dannika Dark

Narrated by: Nicole Poole

Published by: Tantor Audio  06/09/2014

Sterling Audiobook Cover

Zoë Merrick lived an ordinary life until late one night, she was brutally attacked and left for dead. She survived, saved by a stranger who witnessed her undergo a physical transformation. That’s not the only thing that’s different. Zoë is unable to control an unexplainable energy coursing through her body.

Justus De Gradi is a man who can teach her that control. He’s handsome, arrogant, and not entirely human. He reveals that she is a Mage – an immortal made of light, not magic. She must now make a choice: Rebuild her life in the human world with the man who saved her, or live with Justus and learn how to use her extraordinary gifts. Justus has sworn an oath to protect her life, but can he guard her from the one man who has a right to claim it?

©2012 Dannika Dark (P)2014 Tantor



3.5 Hearts Rating Image- Hot Listens

Mageri Series # 1

9 hrs and 58 mins

Whispersync for Voice-ready

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Sterling Audiobook Sample


My review

Sterling had me going back and forth. There are parts of the story that I really liked and parts that I didn’t. We start the story with Zoe going out partying with a friend. There is a decent amount of effort into introducing you to Sunny, Zoe’s best friend and even Zoe’s cat, Max, only to have them both leave the story in less than twenty minutes into the book. Zoe is attacked and left for dead after leaving the bar. She then wakes up and runs into a guy name Adam.

Adam is probably my favorite secondary character in the book. He helps Zoe after her attack, even though there is something going on with her. She just travels with him and meets Justus, who she learns is like her. Justus explains what she has transformed into, takes her under his wing and offers to train her.

After some time with Justus, the man who transformed Zoe appears and tries to claim her. After some arguments, the council agrees that her maker has a right to her. This does not go over well with Justus or Simon, one of Justus’s Magi friends. They plan to get her back.

My problem with the book is we spend time learning about Max, the cat. Then the cat leaves the story. Then we meet Sunny, Zoe’s best friend, then she is gone. We meet Adam, who is around much longer, but then he is gone when Justus comes into the picture. Do you see the pattern here? I just felt like there was too much effort spent on details on minor characters that would disappear quickly.

What I enjoyed was the world. I loved this world of magic, even if it a feudal system that these magical being live in. I love the powers that these magical creatures have and the fact that they are created. They are almost like magical vampires in the way that they are turned. I do like the characters and want to learn to more about them. I will be trying book two in the near future to see where things are going for Zoe/Silver.

Author Dannika Dark

Author Dannika Dark

Dannika Dark was born on a military base in the U.S. and had traveled the world before she was nine. Now she is rooted in the south, but her head is planted firmly in the clouds. When Danni is not writing, she enjoys a great sci-fi or fantasy movie, heaps of chocolate, and unleashing her dark side.


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Narrator Nicole Poole

Narrator Nicole Poole

Nicole Poole is a classically trained actor with equal passions for literature and improvisation. She has toured with the Royal Shakespeare Company, has been a member of the critically acclaimed Walter Thompson Orchestra for over fifteen years, and recently became a member of the Parisian groups SPOUMJ and Anitya. She is honored to have been recognized for her narration by an AudioFile Earphones Award, a Publisher’s Weekly Listen-Up Award, and nomination for an Audie Award.


Tantor Audio   Audible

Sterling Audiobook Narration

Review by Ml Simmons

Nicole Poole does an okay job. I think her voice worked for the main character. I think her male characters could be more masculine, but they weren’t horrible. She did a couple of different accents and they weren’t bad.

I like to thank Tantor Audio for providing me with a copy of this audiobook in exchange for an honest review.

Reviewed by:


ML Simmons Reviewer

  • 3
    editor rating
Loupe Duffy
A mom, a wife, a friend, a happy ending addict, an Audiobook junkie, a wine lover and geek wanna -be. I'm constantly looking to be blown away.
Loupe Duffy

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  1. It’s a little weird that the author kept introducing new characters, only to have then disappear. I’m intrigued my Dark’s magical vampires though, but you didn’t seem overly wowed by Nicole Poole’s narration, so I’ll probably read this one if I do decide to add it to my TBR pile. Great review as always!

    • Thanks. After listening to book two, the purpose of those characters are explained. I’ve grown to like the series more after listening to book two, which isn’t extremely uncommon. I also liked the narrator better. I think I just got used to her, but I’m not as picky as some. Hope you enjoy.

  2. You right Melanie, it’s not very uncommon to enjoy the second book’s narration a lot more than the first, and it always makes me wonder if it is because we get used to their interpretations or because they make corrections after getting the feedback from the first book. Maybe it’s a little bit of both.
    If you really start getting excited about this one, I’ll add it to my TBL.
    Thanks Melanie 🙂

    • I really enjoyed book two more than book one, not that book one was bad. It will be interesting to see where the story goes next.

  3. Thanks for the review, it sounds a little confusing.

    • It took a little bit. I’ve already finished book two (review to come) and it brings the story back together where everything makes more sense.

  4. I’ve had that issue with a few books before, the bit too much detail on minor characters. Can’t wait to hear what you thought of book two 🙂

    • Book two was better. I’m working on the review now. Makes much more sense. Also meet some more new characters, which were great.

  5. So the book suffers from a case of the dropsies. I always get a bit upset when characters just drop off with no explanation. Otherwise it sound like it was a good read.

    • It is a pretty interesting world. When I got to book two, things started to make more sense. I enjoyed the series much more after book two.

  6. Yeah . . . this was one of the very first indies I ever read, and I liked it, but there were definitely problems. Book 2, however . . . book 2 rocked my socks off. And Adam and Sunny do get more page time, so hopefully you’ll like it better too. Great review, Melanie!

    • I did enjoy book two better. It is a very interesting world.

  7. I read this a long time ago. I remember I didn’t like Silver as much. Is Adam the human who ended up defending her? If that’s him then I liked him too, it didn’t make sense to me why he did it and not the other otherworldly guys. Rules are being broken already, why let a human take on a non-human didn’t sound logical to me then I think Justus was sort of getting the credit for it. Again I may be wrong but I think it’s this reason why I never bothered reading the series further.

    • I think you are right, Braine. Adam was the human. Justus does seem to be getting all the glory and the student back for nothing. I will say that book two is better. I enjoyed it more. My understanding is that book three is even better, though I haven’t gotten to it yet.

  8. Hm. I don’t know that that would work for me. I like people (and herd babes) to stick around and not just poof be gone like that. Thanks for the heads up!

    • Well, if it helps, they do come back in book two. I hadn’t started book two when I wrote this review, so I didn’t know that then. I’ve finished it now, and the characters make sense, but it leaves something in book one.

  9. I do like the sample you provide, how else to know if I like the narrator 😉

    • They narrator does a good job. The more I listen to her, the more I like her.

  10. Oh no..I am one of those readers who will be plagued the whole series wondering what happen to these lost characters..LOL Great review!

    • Thanks. I spent a large portion of the book wondering what the point of these people was. I was glad to see them return in book two. At least then I know I didn’t waste time meeting them.

  11. How strange that she spent time on characters that would then disappear from the story. I wonder if maybe they’ll matter later in the series? I haven’t read any Dannika Dark yet, so I’ve been thinking I might try this series while it’s still in its early stages. Great review 🙂

    • Thanks. They have already appeared in book two, so there was a point to it, it just didn’t seem like it in book one. I really enjoyed book two. The world is so interesting.

  12. Enjoyable world…some issues with characters, at least you were able to enjoy the 2nd book more 🙂

    great review Melanie

    • Thanks. The world is very unique and interesting. I think it just took me more time to get used to the world that I’m used to.

  13. I don’t think this book is for me. Thank you for the honest review.

    • Not a problem. Not every book works for everyone. Book two does get better. There are so many good books out there, you have to be picky. I know I am. 🙂

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