• Straken

  • High Druid of Shannara, Book 3
  • By: Terry Brooks
  • Narrated by: Paul Boehmer
  • Length: 15 hrs and 21 mins
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars (988 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

The High Druid of Shannara trilogy draws to a thrilling close as a young hero nears completion of his trial by fire, a banished ruler fights for her life in a wilderness of dread, and forces of darkness and light square off in a battle unto death for the right to absolute rule. Prepare to be spellbound by the masterly hand of best-selling legend weaver Terry Brooks, conjuring at the peak of his skills.

For reasons known only to himself, the King of the Silver River has charged young Penderrin Ohmsford, barely more than a boy, with the daunting task of rescuing his aunt, Grianne, Ard Rhys of the Druid order, from her forced exile in the terrifying dimension of all things damned: the Forbidding. With the noble dwarf Tagwen and the prodigal elven princess Khyber Elessedil by his side, and with the outcome of the bloody war between the Federation and the Free-born at stake, Pen has accepted his mission without question. But not without risk, or sacrifice.

Shadea a'Ru, the ruthless Druid responsible for imprisoning the true Ard Rhys and usurping leadership at Paranor, has sent her agents and assassins in relentless pursuit of Pen and his comrades. In securing the talisman he needs to breach the Forbidding, Pen has paid a devastating price. Now if the Free-born forces, already decimated by the Federation's death-dealing new weapon, should fall, Shadea's domination of the Four Lands will be assured. Nothing short of Pen's success can turn the tide.

But Pen's challenge grows greater when he learns that his parents, Bek Ohmsford and Rue Meridian, have fallen into Shadea's hands. He must try to help them, but once within the walls of Druid's Keep, where Shadea's minions and dark magic lurk at every turn, Pen's survival is far from assured. Yet it will all pale in comparison to the horrors that wait inside the Forbidding, horrors poised to break free upon the Four Lands when the time is right.

©2005 Terry Brooks (P)2005 Books on Tape, Inc.

Critic Reviews

"A great storyteller, Terry Brooks creates rich epics filled with mystery, magic, and memorable characters. If you haven't read Terry Brooks, you haven't read fantasy." (Christopher Paolini)
"Terry's place is at the head of the fantasy world." (Philip Pullman)

What listeners say about Straken

Average Customer Ratings
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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Finally!

Lately I've been listening mostly to the works of Robert Stanek (The Kingdoms and the Elves, his recent story collection) - books that reminded me how much I love the fantasy genre. I must say, and I could be the only one to not like where Terry has been going with the Shannara books, but I just didn't like Jarka Ruus, the first book of the High Druid trilogy. Tanequil was more of the same, and it suffered lots from "middle book syndrome", but unlike Morgawr, the last book from the previous trilogy which was disappointing to say the least, Terry catches stride, returns to form with Straken. Straken was thoroughly enjoyable, a cut above the norm.

9 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Wrong narrator

Would you try another book from Terry Brooks and/or Paul Boehmer?

Love his books, but favor Scott Brick narration.

Who was your favorite character and why?

Probably Penn, preserverance against all odds.

What didn’t you like about Paul Boehmer’s performance?

His inability to match emotion with the scene he is reading or the voices of the characters.

Could you see Straken being made into a movie or a TV series? Who should the stars be?

Maybe, if if the screen writer has vision

3 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

narrator, not so much.

The story was good. Good turns and twists. true to Terry Brooks style. good strong characters, even the evil ones.
The narrator butchered the pronunciation of characters' names, to the point of confusing the the tale.
I still give this book a 5 star, despite the narrators blunders. And if I recommend this book for Shannara fans.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars

Horrid Narrator

Terry Brooks story seems to follow much of the same plot as the rest of the Shannara series, which of itself is a little tiresome. What makes this particular series absolutely horrid is the narrator, and his lack of talent to pronounce words the same way throughout the story. He constantly alters the way he'll pronounce one name or refers to something in the story then pronounces it completely different a bit later. All male voices are the same...whiney and gruff when doing all characters that are not of the "human race". Scott Brick was the narrator in the first book of this series, and he was tolerable...Paul Boehmer has no talent for making the books enjoyable. I wish they wouldv'e paid an extra $50.00 dollars to get someone else...anyone else. Save your credits. *the narrator on the abriged version is much better, and does a wonderful job, however, it is also much shorter and doesn't delve into the story as deep.*

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars

Narrator ruins an excellent novel!

I am a HUGE fan of Mr. Brooks and I was not disapointed with this addition to the Shannara Family. However, the narration of this story by Mr.Paul Boehmer is far from enjoyable. He seems to lack the ability to pronounce common every day words & his over use of dramatic pauses puts William Shatner to shame. His soft "sing song" style of reading would be much better suited to children's books.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars

Sacarin?


Much as I like Terry Brooks it does seem that the same themes are repeated ad nauseam. If it just me or do female lead characters die / nobly sacrifice themselves in every book. Not that I object to either the sentiment or even the device but it can get old. In short read one series and then quit to avoid d?j? vu.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars

Yada, Yada, Yada

The story itself isn't bad but before any action can be taken, the author has to do a disertation of how to's, what if's and back history. If you are going to do a magic spell, do it. Don't go into the history of it everytime. I find myself fast forwarding to get back to the action, then just stopping all together listening cuz I am so agitated.
Just my thoughts.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Best one yet

This kept me on my toes. Personally like the British narrator better but he was ok.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Great story, irritating narration

This is the second book I've listened to with this narrator, and I don't enjoy him. Sometimes his pacing and phrasing are odd, and often his pronunciation of names is different than in other books. It's jarring when it happens.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

You can breathe again when the story ends!

A fantastic ending to an epic story! Terry Brooks delivers again! Can't wait til the next installment!

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Kaatje
  • 10-13-21

high druid trilogy

I like the High Druid trilogy, but it was a bit let down by the narrator. I thought his voices were okay, but it was as if he was reading to a child and in almost every sentence he had a pause before the last few words, probably for emphasis, but that started to really annoy me after a while. the story is good though and I did enjoy it.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Sarah Batten
  • Sarah Batten
  • 02-09-21

Couldnt put it down want to listen to more

The twists and turns of the different stories in start inside the stories so interesting a con white to listen to more

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Paul Roberts
  • 11-02-20

not my favourite

simply not my favourite for some reason and a struggle to finish in the end

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • BB
  • 04-20-20

Pronunciation

I wish all you narrators would all stick to pronouncing names in the same way. It is very annoying.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Anonymous User
  • 10-05-21

This is a great work from Terry Brooks.

Well. Written and well read, truly a masterpiece, and that is coming from a fan of Terry Brooks, this series was the first I read and since then Terry has been the focus of most. Of my. Library

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