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Graphic Audio Review: Elantris: Part II By Brandon Sanderson

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Elantris: Part II begins with Raoden continuing to try to make Elantris into a better place by giving the inhabitants work to do instead of wasting their time thinking about their never ending hunger and physical pains. Sarene continues to build her followers while trying to understand what Harathen's goals are. Are they truly to convert the kingdom, or does he have some other agenda?

Once again, I was treated to a Graphic Audio performance that really brings you into the story. The combination of sound effects and artistic vocal performances creates what Graphic Audio calls a “Movie in your Mind,” and that is truly what Elantris: Part II is.

It was through the process of the Shaod, a transformation, that the gods were chosen. It happened to paupers or princes, men or women, old or young; a person would just wake up and the burden of mortality would be gone. That is how it was ten years ago, before Elantris fell. After it fell, the city began to rot, as did its gods.

At least that is how it was until Raoden entered Elantris. Now, he is seen by many as a savior, at least until Sarene decides that it is her mission to provide food to the people of Elantris. When she meets Raoden, who now goes by the name Spirit, he recognizes her for his intended princess, but, because they never met before they were to be wed, she does not know him. But there is some reason that she is drawn to him.

Raoden knows that the giving of food only hurts the Elantris people since they do not need it to live, so he must find a way to get her to stop. Harathen, who is constantly thwarted by Sarene's intervention, ends up being taken by the Shaod and winds up in Elantris.

Will Sarene understand that Raoden is her prince? Will Raoden change the mindset of the Elantrian's and restore the honor of their former selves? And why is Harathen now in Elantris?

The quality of the story and performance are the reason that I will be coming back to Graphic Audio products. By using a whole cast, over 20 performers, you don't get one person trying to sound like many different voices; you get unique individual characters. There are also sound effects that give added reality. It is this quality production that makes listening to it such a treat.

You can also check out some of their other series as well. If you want, you can listen to a sample, or purchase the GraphicAudio Book from their on-line Store. The story comes three ways: standard CD (the version I reviewed), MP3 CD and downloadable WMA with digital rights management.

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About T. Michael Testi

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