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Von AH Am hilfreichsten 25.02.2012
A Good Start
I picked this book up because the review compared Elspeth Cooper with Patrick Rothfuss (whos Kingkiller Chronicles I HIGHLY recommend).
While the book isnt quite as good as Rothfuss' work it never the less is a great book to listen to. The main character Gair struggles to come to terms with his life after his hidden ability to connect with the Song (essentially the flow of magic) gets found out. His struggle to learn more about his gift is one part but the book expands on an entire world where magic breaches the vail and slips in and out of the 'real' world.
While this may sound like something you've read before (it is a standard fantasy premiss after all) I do think that here we have a 'hero' who has great inner struggles that don't connect to him 'having to save the world' (although that may come down the road); it is essentially a struggle to come to terms with himself and his surroundings. It's a story about loss, dealing with that loss, finding a new place in the world and dealing with new situations and yes, more loss.
While the main character is set up as immensly powerful he neither feels like the shining white knight nor the pure hearted youth that shows up in so many books. Gair is likeable without feeling like a cliche.
On a side note, I tend to have issue with books that heavily rely on religion to be one of the main factions in a book. I find it a cheap way out because you can always just write 'it was the will of the gods'. It's easy to use religious zealots as counterpoint to a magic users/ heroes. This book however handles the aspect of religion quite well and takes a step back from the pure black/ white aspect that is so often a part of fantasy books. The religion, while portaying your classic anti-magic view, doesn't seem as wooden as in most books and the leader of the religious order is actually quite likable in his own way.
Songs of the Earth is a good 'read', the writing is enjoyable and Allan Corduner does an excellent job portraying the characters and accents without being annoying. I look forward to the other books of the series.