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Publisher's Summary

Granddaughter of the sorceress Kethry, daughter of a noble house, Kerowyn had been forced to run the family keep since her mother's untimely death. Yet now at last her brother was preparing to wed, and when his bride became the lady of the keep, Kerowyn could return to her true enjoyments - training horses and hunting.  

But all Kerowyn's hopes and plans were shattered when her anscestral home was attacked, her father slain, her brother wounded, and his fiancee kidnapped.

©1991 Mercedes R. Lackey (P)2020 Tantor

What listeners say about By the Sword

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

Classic Mercedes Lackey - but those accents...

I was delighted when Audible announced they were working on a recording of this book; it's my favourite one in the Valdemar universe. I listened to it as soon as it was released and enjoyed it very much - and will undoubtedly listen to it again. But I'm baffled by the decisions on accents.

Since British accents & dialects were used, why not have someone to whom they're native read the book? The reader is pretty good, but the net effect of her near-misses on the various accents/dialects, and occasional American pronunciations of words that are said differently in the UK was like listening to a favourite piece of music played ever-so-slightly off key.

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  • Kindle Customer
  • 2020-08-05

Book was good...

All -in -all, I found the book to be pretty good. This is Kerowyn's back story. Several things are explained, such as when Kerowyn and the Queen's husband were chosen, for two. There are several plot lines, skillfully woven together in this book.

The narrator was not good. Her pronunciation of Shin'a'in, for instance, was stilted, various, and all of them WRONG! Except for Kerowyn, her grandmother and her sword sworn, and a couple of Scottish accents, one nice and heavy, all accents were the same to me. HAVE mercy 😱 But, in all fairness, she has a lovely speaking voice

I think you'll enjoy the book despite the narration. Oh, there is sex in this book, huggy body, kissy face, off with clothes, fade to dark. There's not much sex, though, and it's tastefully written. Now, 🙋

6 people found this helpful

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  • Lynne C
  • 2020-08-11

One of my favorites

I loved this book and was excited when it came out on audible. My only disappointment was the narrator. The odd British accents when speaking a characters, like Kerowyn, was very disconcerting. They neither fit the dirty or were well done. Had she stuck to her normal voice I would have had no complaints.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Bear Hardin
  • 2020-08-01

My absolute favorite!

Of all her ‘Valdemar’ books, this one was my absolute favorite! Although I will admit that her, “Deed of Paksenarion Dorthansdaughter,” is my favorite of ALL of her books.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 2020-07-23

Great Story Train Wreck for a Narrator!

This narrator is honest terrible. I bought this book when it first came out, and I love the story. This narrator sounds like a robot, and there's no feeling in her voice. Such a disappointment

2 people found this helpful

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  • K.M.
  • 2020-07-25

Finally!

This is one of my favorite books from the Valedmar world. I was ecstatic when I saw it was available for pre-order and counted the days before it showed up in my library. This audiobook did not disappoint. The narrator was great and the story was what I remembered. I will listen to this one again.

1 person found this helpful

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  • K. Asiu
  • 2020-07-24

Great story, ok performance

A classic by Mercedes Lackey. This was written towards the middle of her Valdemar series, following on the heels of the Magic and Arrow's trilogies as well as the Tarma & Kethry duology. As such, it builds on the world Lackey created and makes way for Elspeth's story in the Winds trilogy. The performer was ok, and though there were some odd choices made for accents of certain characters - especially Warrl, she gave a satisfactory performance otherwise.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Mama
  • 2020-07-20

Finally on Audible!

My favorite Valdemar story. I adore Kerowyn.
By The Sword is three books in one, about Kerowyn. She starts as a house keeper, to a mercenary, and finally to Herald. The time line is during the same time as in Arrows of the Queen Trilogy (Arrow's Fall) and The Mage Winds Trilogy.
Speed x1.60

1 person found this helpful

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  • J. W.
  • 2020-07-19

one of my favorite books

I've been hoping and waiting for this volume of the Valdemar books too be available as an audiobook! I've always considered it a keystone in one of the arcs of narrative, bridging Tarma & Kethry to the Haralds.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Evelyn
  • 2021-04-03

a series that never disappoints me

Like all the other books in the Herald series, I have no complaints. Finally learning Keros back story was wonderful. The narrator is great too!

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  • glvr1
  • 2021-03-21

Great for long trip

By the Sword has always been one of my favorite Lackey books. As an audiobook it was still very enjoyable. The voice actor was at times so quiet I had to change my volume, and occasionally got a word or the accent of X person wrong (she'd establish one accent and then deviate). I still enjoyed it very much, and she was overall very soothing to listen to while remaining engaging.