ABR's full Eye of the Moonrat audiobook review and many others can be found at Audiobook Reviewer.
Look at that cover! How could anyone say that they didn’t want to know what this story was about after seeing that calm yet creepy cover. As soon as I saw it I needed to know more. Thankfully I am well aware of the narrator, yet the author is new to me, so I had some idea of what I was in for.
This is a total unadulterated fantasy story. Full of all of the creatures one would expect, Ogres, Orcs, Gnomes, Goblins, Elves, Dwarves, and many other fantastical and potentially magical creatures and races. The main focus is on a young man, Justan, who has tried for his entire adult life to get into the prestigious battle academy. Here was a guy that didn’t think he needed to do anything difficult in life and everything should just pan out. This was not working for him. Now this is his last chance to get enrolled and this time he is given a trainer. Here we get to see Justan grow from a cowardly youngster into a brave adult. While some of his dreams are met, others are seemingly taken away from him without reason.
Eye of the Moonrat has a lot going on, many things that seemed disjointed, slowly came together, even though not close enough for me, the nearer I got to the end. As there are several side stories happening at the same time, I think, as Justan’s. They never did merge into one, however I do see that happening in the future.
Trevor H. Cooley did a great job creating a world that, while familiar to fantasy lovers like me, still has an originality to it all. The characters are given space and time to grow and develop. Descriptions of the scenery would make you swear that he has been there.
At first it felt a bit sacrilegious to hear James Foster be anybody other than Adrian Ring. I did eventually get used to this and allowing Foster to lull me into my imagination. He has a certain calming quality to his voice that allowed me to forget that I was in pain, forgive me I listed to most of the audio book while on an epic 30 mile bicycle ride. I think this is the highest amount of characters that Foster has had to deal with in one story. Happy to say he pulled it off very well. I especially like his take on the dwarf Lenny, er, Lenry, whatever.
If you are looking for a fantasy story that tells itself to you, rather than lecture, look no further. While some may say it is juvenile, I would saw that you have to start somewhere and might as well be the beginning. I am looking forward to being able to listen to book two in this fascinating series.
Audiobook provided for for review by the narrator.