Audiobook Review – The Iron Crown by L. L. MacRae, Narrated by R. J. Bayley

Audiobook Information

Fenn’s first and only memory is finding himself in the middle of a forest, face to face with a dragon spirit mocking him, all knowledge gone apart from his own name.

Lost and confused, his only hope for answers is Calidra—a woman living on the edge of the world with her partner. Forced to return home when her father dies, Calidra has put off facing her estranged mother for seven years, and she begrudgingly helps Fenn, forging papers for him so he can avoid the Queen’s Inquisitors.

But her mother is the least of her worries when they discover an ancient enemy is rising again. It should be impossible with the Iron Crown in power—and Fenn is terrified he might unwittingly be playing a part in the war’s resurgence.

Surrounded by vengeful spirits and powerful magic, Fenn’s desperate attempt to find his way home might well alter the fate of Tassar, and every power in it.

A new high fantasy series bursts into life with the DRAGON SPIRITS who reign supreme in the magic-drenched world of Tassar.

Audible | goodreads

My Review

I loved this book when I read a digital copy last year and was excited to revisit it in audiobook form while waiting for the sequel. My full review of the story can be found here. Thank you to L. L. MacRae for sending me a review copy.

R. J. Bayley is such a great narrator and I was really pleased that he was selected to narrate this book. I loved the way he tackled all the character voices with different accents – particularly the dragon spirits. Fenn sounds suitably young and his encounter with the learned-sounding dragon at the beginning of the book sets the tone of the novel wonderfully well. The main female characters Calidra, Jisyel and her grandmother are suitably feminine and yet diverse enough that you know who is speaking at all times. Torsten has a cruel and sneering voice and his dragon friend Miroth has a sickly, weak sounding voice. Apollo, the thief and lovable rogue, sounded quite different than I had imagined him, but I soon got used to his voice. All in all this is a really amazing treatment of the source material!

The Iron Crown is the story of the journeys of its main characters through the world of Tassar, a world where war is on the horizon. Amnesiac Fenn is trying to rediscover who he is and where he belongs. Calidra is on an emotional journey home to a place she no longer belongs, for her father’s funeral and Jisyel, lost and cursed, is trying to find her beloved Calidra and discover if she can get rid of the curse placed on her by Hassen a mischievous dragon spirit. On the way they encounter many other spirits along with their shrines and supporters, the return of an ancient and deadly old enemy, a Phoenix rider, visions, an evil torturer, clashes with authority and family, confrontations with their own prejudices and self discovery.

About the Author

Lauren is a fantasy author of character-driven stories and epic adventure. Her books usually contain dragons, eclectic characters, and are typically fun and hopeful. 

She lives in a tiny village in the UK, has a degree in Psychology, and was a professional copywriter before going full-time as an author—swapping corporate copy for magic and dragons!

She has previously published under the name L.L. McNeil.

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