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The Sword of Shannara

The Shannara Trilogy, Book 1
Narrated by: Scott Brick
Length: 26 hrs and 21 mins
4.1 out of 5 stars (161 ratings)

Non-member price: $31.21

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Publisher's Summary

50 million Terry Brooks copies sold around the world
The Shannara Chronicles is now a major TV series

Volume one in the classic best-selling series from one of the all-time masters of fantasy.

Long ago, the world of the Four Lands was torn apart by the wars of ancient Evil. But in the Vale, the half-human, half-elfin Shea Ohmsford now lives in peace - until the mysterious, forbidding figure of the druid Allanon appears, to reveal that the supposedly long-dead Warlock Lord lives again. 

Shea must embark upon the elemental quest to find the only weapon powerful enough to keep the creatures of darkness at bay: the fabled Sword of Shannara. 

©1977 Terry Brooks (P)2003 Books on Tape, Inc.

Critic Reviews

"A marvellous fantasy trip." (Frank Herbert)
"Confirms Terry's place at the head of the fantasy world." (Philip Pullman)

"If Harry Potter has given you a thirst for fantasy and you have not discovered the magic of Terry Brooks, you are in for a treat." (Rocky Mountain News)

What listeners say about The Sword of Shannara

Average Customer Ratings
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Thoroughly enjoyed good solid fantasy

Really enjoyed this self-contained story, from slow humble beginnings to full blown fantasy adventure - loved it!

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great! loves it!!

can't wait to finish the rest of the books in the series!! absolutely brilliant book

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Even better twenty years on.

I loved this book when I was a child and enjoyed revisiting it even more as an adult.

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Awesome Audible book

A great listen from start to finish. You won’t regret buying this wonder audible book

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great story and great person reading book

this book was great. story was amazing
the person reading book was very good also

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Very different from TV Series but still very enjoyable

Different story line from the TV Series.
Some predictable some fascinating.
Fun all along! Perhaps the tv Series is after this story?

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Good story, but ......

Seems to be a bit of a rip off of The Lord of the Rings.

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"Inspired" by Tolkien...

A decent story, BUT but if you have read The Lord of Rings, don't bother reading this. The rest of the series might be different, but this is effective The Lord of Rings with all of the names having been replaced, some of the characters roles reversed or switched and the order of the storyline reshuffled in places. It's not a exact copy, but to say it was just inspired by Tolkien's work is a bit of a stretch. If you haven't read Lord of the Rings, just read that as it's much better.

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Sounds familiar

Seems like I've read this before... A band of heroes (of multiple races I might add) seeking a ancient relic that has the power to destroy an evil warlock (sound familiar yet???) while being chased by the warlocks powerful henchmen.

All in all its not a bad story at all its just too similar to LoTR to bother with.

Scott Brick doesn't make the story any more appealing offering only two different styles of voice, pathetic and weak for all of the non-warrior characters and deep and gruff for the stronger more "manly" characters. Found it hard to differentiate between half of the non-warrior characters because of their annoying high pitched whiney British accents...

In summary, don't waste your time with this poorly voiced LoTR ripoff.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Gem & Mike
  • 14-02-2016

a great listen

a great listen the reader was fantastic looking forward to the next one a really great book

4 people found this helpful

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  • Ms. S. C. Taylor
  • 28-03-2016

Shanara

I read this book years ago when I was a teenager and I feel like I've just revisited a long lost friend... great book...

5 people found this helpful

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  • Phil Sayers
  • 25-07-2017

I read this book 30 years ago

and wondered what it would be like now.
A slightly predictable plot but a great romp though a Tolkien like world. Good character development and concepts.
I'd would recommend this book. and now im about to start the elfstones of shannara

1 person found this helpful

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  • David
  • 08-07-2017

One of them books you've heard of...

... but never read. Great story, lots of depth to the characters. Pity you don't find out what happened to the rock troll. Looking forward to the second one.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Steve Harris
  • 23-10-2017

A Lord of the Rings clone.

I struggled to finish this audio book. The story copies far too many elements from Lord of the Rings. The narration is over exaggerated and very hard work to keep listening too. This has put me off trying the rest of the series.

4 people found this helpful

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  • Kevin Gilmartin
  • 01-04-2016

Dull...so dull

If this book wasn’t for you, who do you think might enjoy it more?

Honestly, I've no idea. I'm a big fantasy fan and this just didn't do it for me

What will your next listen be?

American Gods, by Neil Gaiman

Would you be willing to try another one of Scott Brick’s performances?

Hard to say, he wasn't great in this one. I had to set it to x1.25 speed just to inject some life into the reading.

What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

Disappointment. I'd heard the Shannara books were great but this wasn't very good at all.

Any additional comments?

The reading is slow and doesn't make me want to keep listening, and the actual story itself basically a lift - structurally, thematically - from Lord of the Rings: Fellowship of the Ring.

4 people found this helpful

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  • mark l.
  • 14-10-2020

would recommend

excellent book, well narrated could not wait to see how it would end whilst also not wanting it to end about to get book 2

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  • Rachael
  • 20-09-2020

Tolkien fans beware...

If you're familiar with Tolkien the similarities you can draw between this and lott might drive you nuts. Thing is, I want to read some more - the characters are great and if they get their own story I would enjoy it a lot more. The border accents got to me by the end but it's well read.

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  • Smithfishe
  • 18-08-2020

Great Story Shame Reader pronounced Shannara

I've read the book many times over the years and so was really looking forward to hearing the audio book. Scot read it really well using different accents for each character but what ruined it for me was the way he miss pronounced Shannara (Shan Ra) instead of (Shan Nara). If youve never read the books or seen the screen play then maybe it would rest easy for you but for me it ground on my nerves everytime he did it. Im really hoping this has been rectified in the rest of the books because it really is an abomination.

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  • Jackaboy
  • 26-06-2020

Have we not been here before?

Ok a classic? probably. well written yes, well performed yes. original...... not so sure. Although an enjoyable listen I can't help but notice the similarities to Tolkens LOTR which is a bit of a shame really some of the original bit were good but more often than not you feel you are in middle earth with the fellowship than in the world of Shannara on a original quest.. The best I can give it is LOTR re-Imagined. this does not mean its not worth the time to listen to.