• The Judging Eye

  • The Aspect-Emperor, Book 1
  • By: R. Scott Bakker
  • Narrated by: Kevin Orton
  • Length: 19 hrs
  • 4.3 out of 5 stars (236 ratings)

1 title per month from Audible’s entire catalog of best sellers, and new releases.
Access a growing selection of included Audible Originals, audiobooks and podcasts.
You will get an email reminder before your trial ends.
Your Premium Plus plan is $14.95 a month after 30 day trial. Cancel anytime.
The Judging Eye  By  cover art

The Judging Eye

By: R. Scott Bakker
Narrated by: Kevin Orton
Try for $0.00

$14.95/month after 30 days. Cancel anytime.

Buy for $38.49

Buy for $38.49

Pay using card ending in
By confirming your purchase, you agree to Audible's Conditions of Use and Amazon's Privacy Notice. Taxes where applicable.

Publisher's Summary

A luminary in the fantasy genre firmament, R. Scott Bakker returns fans to his acclaimed Prince of Nothing universe with The Judging Eye. Aspect-Emperor Kellhus is waging a terrifying war, subjugating all nations in his path. There are those willing to stand together against him, but these rebellious souls must act quickly and decisively to thwart his mad schemes of power and domination.

©2010 R. Scott Bakker (P)2013 Recorded Books

What listeners say about The Judging Eye

Average Customer Ratings
Overall
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    127
  • 4 Stars
    79
  • 3 Stars
    19
  • 2 Stars
    6
  • 1 Stars
    5
Performance
  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    100
  • 4 Stars
    55
  • 3 Stars
    38
  • 2 Stars
    12
  • 1 Stars
    13
Story
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    143
  • 4 Stars
    52
  • 3 Stars
    16
  • 2 Stars
    4
  • 1 Stars
    3

Reviews - Please select the tabs below to change the source of reviews.

Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Terrible narrator

Narrator absolutely ruined this series for me. Made it through the first book, but quit with White Luck Warrior. Too bad they changed narrators from Prince of Nothing series. What a shame!!

5 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

A complete letdown

Would you try another book from R. Scott Bakker and/or Kevin Orton?

I would try another book from R. Scott Bakker but not with Kevin Orton som narrator.

How would you have changed the story to make it more enjoyable?

I would change the narrator.

How did the narrator detract from the book?

His reading was overall annoying.

You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

It might have but I will have to read it in another format to find out.

Any additional comments?

I really looked forward to the Aspect Emperor triology, I even added the second book to my wishlist. But I see that Kevin Orton narrated that one too so it will get off the list.

5 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Terrible Narrator- James Lipton esk....

Love the series, but this narrator makes it so hard to listen to. I've listen to a few hundred audio books in my life, and never had a narrator ruin the experience before. This is also the first review I've ever written, motivated by my need to share my frustration with a great series ruined by an awful narrator. He's like James Lipton ('inside the actors studio') crossed with Vincent Price... might sound like it would be fun to listen to, but it's not. Comes off very pretentious, and the terrible pauses (multiple times in every sentence) made me want to invent a time machine to go back and stop his parents from meeting.

4 people found this helpful

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

Good, adult, story. Poor choice of narrator.

What made the experience of listening to The Judging Eye the most enjoyable?

The Judging Eye is consistent with the previous trilogy. Bakker's stories and characters are deep and his story elements are mature.

What did you like best about this story?

I like that Bakker takes his subject matter seriously in spite of the story taking place in a fantasy setting.

Who would you have cast as narrator instead of Kevin Orton?

David DeVries would have been a better choice of narrator. Kevin Orton's intonations are overly dramatic, even stodgy.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

The characters are flawed in very human kinds of ways. They aren't typical "good guys" and "bad guys" for certain.

Any additional comments?

Overall, the book is quite good. If you like the original trilogy, you are likely to enjoy this book. Since the world is established, there is less time spent on world-building, however. This is important for those who were attracted to the first three in the series for their brilliant take on fantasy history.

The narration was completely inappropriate to the novel, however. There were moments when I was completely taken out of the experience of listening by the overly dramatic performance of the narrator. It seems clear that he did not understand the story or the characters.

4 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Disappointing narration when compared to The Prince of Nothing, narrated by David DeVries.

Not even comparable to the narration of The Prince of Nothing series. Read like a dull and lifeless Presbyterian sermon - making it difficult to stay engaged with the story and differentiate the characters. Bakker’s work deserves better.

3 people found this helpful

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

Amazing story marred by poorly edited narration

Where does The Judging Eye rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

I've probably listened to 150-250 audiobooks, and this is somewhere in the lower 50% of that. The writing is great, though.

Who was your favorite character and why?

Hmm, I guess Drusas Achamiam. His pain is more relatable than anyone else's.

What three words best describe Kevin Orton’s voice?

Resonant, unchanging, adequate. His real problem is mispronunciation. He mispronounces /misreads words constantly, which shouldn't have been hard to catch because he reads so slowly! I mean, he changes the meaning of passages constantly, and makes hilarious errors that are extremely jarring (my favorite is in The Great Ordeal when he changes "She glimpsed a small girl wailing over a woman prostrate on the hard cobble" to "...a woman prostate on...").

If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

It would probably end up being something dumb like "... sees all."

Any additional comments?

I really wish David DeVries had read this sequel series. Not only is the change in narrator jarring, but I don't think Kevin Orton ever learned phonics. I don't know who produced the audio book, but there's no excuse for the number of errors Mr. Orton makes that are in the final product.

3 people found this helpful

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

Go ahead and continue

Any additional comments?

If you liked the Prince of Nothing series, you may as well keep going. It was a little hard in the beginning, getting used to the new narrator and starting a new set of characters, but it was worth it.

Narrator's not as good as the last trilogy but the story itself is just as good. May as well keep going if you've come this far.

2 people found this helpful

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

Interesting Start. Brilliant Performance!

What did you love best about The Judging Eye?

I thought the prior Trilogy was amazing, and I was immediately looking forward to the follow-up. One of the strengths of the prior series was how distinctly unique and involved the lore and setting had been. Each culture from the Three Seas had been painstakingly crafted, and I was actually a little worried that so much had been explored that there would be little left to learn in this series. I expected this series to focus heavily on the characters at the expense of setting development.

I am very pleased to admit I was wrong. While this book definitely focused on a smaller core cast, we learn a great deal about the world and history beyond the Three Seas. The Judging Eye explores the history of the Nonmen, the northern kingdoms, and even delves deeper into the faith while maintaining the philosophical musings that carried the first set.

What other book might you compare The Judging Eye to and why?

There are really 3 distinct stories being told in The Judging Eye, and it's difficult to relate these stories without going into spoilers. I would say that if you enjoyed the sections of The Fellowship of the Ring spent in Moria, or the Dune Messiah/Children of Dune books you will probably enjoy The Judging Eye.

What about Kevin Orton’s performance did you like?

First order of business, the narrator for the Aspect-Emperor Trilogy (Kevin Orton) is different from the narrator of the prior The Prince of Nothing trilogy (David DeVries). Both reads were great for very different reasons; in David DeVries' read I can much more vividly remember what people said primarily because each character's voice was pitch-perfect. On the other hand, Kevin Orton's read of descriptions and actions resonated much more strongly, and gave me a much clearer picture of events in my mind's eye. Both were great, but I preferred Orton with a very slight caveat; DeVries' Cnaiur from the prior trilogy was worthy of a standing ovation.

With that established, I feel the need to provide a very bizarre warning. Roughly halfway through this book I was overcome with the feeling that I had heard Kevin Orton's voice somewhere before. It haunted me for a few hours before I my terrifying sudden revelation.


It's clearly not the same voice actor, but Orton's pace and tone melded seamlessly with Bakker's writing and style. For the remainder of this and the following book I could not help but picture this story being told by the Cybernetic Ghost of Christmas Past from the Future.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

Definitely. It was difficult to pause or walk away from The Judging Eye.

2 people found this helpful

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

Story is great - have to agree about the narrator

These are complex books that center around a story begun three books before this one. The first three volumes were narrated very ably by David DeVries. I would think that a new narrator would listen to at lease some of the preceding books in order to get a sense of how the action flows, who the people are, etc. I am not sure that happened with this narrator.

This narrator does things that call attention to the narration rather than the narrative. His delivery is overly dramatic. Additionally, what really bugs me is his mispronunciation of ordinary words. For example the word "learned" can be a verb about having gained some knowledge in the past. Or it can be an adjective. These two words are pronounced differently. Also the word "wolf" is not to be confused with the word "wuff", whatever that is. And then there is his pronunciation of "circumfix".

However, I do enjoy listening to the audiobooks because I have read the books and it is good to go back and revisit the action at an 'audible' pace. So - recommended with complaints.

1 person found this helpful

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

Previous narrator was better

This book is great, but the narrator seems to have a hard time keeping pronunciations straight. Even the nickname of the Wizard, Akka, gets pronounced as both Ah-ka and A-ka (first 'A' sound like the 'a' in cat). The guy who did the last three books was much better.

1 person found this helpful