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Dark One: Forgotten cover art

Dark One: Forgotten

Written by: Brandon Sanderson,Dan Wells
Narrated by: Rachel Jacobs,Sophie Oda,Keith Szarabajka,Kaleo Griffith,Avery Waddell,Kelli Tager,John H Mayer,Mia Barron,Luis Bermudez,William Elsman,Nan McNamara,Jim Meskimen,Roxanne Hernandez
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Publisher's Summary

From #1 New York Times Bestselling, Hugo Award-winning author, Brandon Sanderson, and co-author Dan Wells, comes DARK ONE: FORGOTTEN, a true-crime fantasy audio series and the first entry in Brandon Sanderson’s new DARK ONE fantasy saga.

Every year in the United States there are fifteen thousand murders, give or take a few hundred. Of those, nearly forty percent go unsolved.

In this six-part audio series, Christina Walsh is determined to change that. After struggling with the loss of her father, she sets out on a journey to bring the justice that has eluded her to the families of other victims. And she starts with a particularly strange case. The murder of world-renowned violinist Leona McPherson who mysteriously disappeared years ago after a concert at the Hollywood Bowl in Los Angeles. As Christina digs deeper, the story gets stranger. Leona was a prodigy, someone too good to be forgotten, but that’s exactly what has happened. She’s been forgotten. Entirely. By everyone who knew her. From the gushing music critic in her hometown to the detectives investigating her murder, even her own mother.

So Christina embarks on a cross-country mission, with her roommate Sophie, to figure out what happened to Leona. In the process, she uncovers a trail of similar victims who have suffered the same fate. But if no one can remember the victims, how can the killer possibly be caught? Christina’s only leads come from a crazed homeless man’s ramblings, a mysterious glass eye, and an otherworldly totem. Is Christina crazy or has she stumbled upon something so implausible it must be true?

©2021 Brandon Sanderson (P)2021 Recorded Books

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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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  • J
  • 2024-01-31

My Least Favourite Sanderson Work to Date

The lead characters, Christina Walsh and especially Sophie Kwan, are annoying. They can be screechy, irritating and they talk about the most ridiculous things when their safety is threatened. Like the time they talked about Disney prince bondage internet searches. I can’t blame the voice actors for this, I think they played the characters to a tee, it is just that, in my opinion, the characters themselves are tiresome.

It wasn’t all bad, there is a scene where Christina is talking about her father, and the whole conversation had Sanderson tones humming through it. That was probably my favourite moment with this character.

The story is better than the lead characters, but I believe it’s still not great. I was disappointed with the story’s climax. The story very minimally connects to the Dark One graphic novel that came out a few years ago. If you were hoping to learn more about that world, forget it. And if you haven’t read the graphic novel you can listen to this story, although you’ll wonder what Mirandus is the entire time. If I hadn’t known what Mirandus was, I would think it kind of sounds like a fake company, Mirandus Business Solutions.

The performance is great, but for a story that begins by focusing on a missing musician, there is surprisingly little music to be heard. Sanderson’s other novel that was released only as an audiobook, The Original, also had music in it, and I found those musical scores to be more memorable. I had hoped that more would have been done here.

The voice acting is good, one scene in particular jumps out at me. The character Henry Fienbert, who I think was played by John H Mayer, had a memorable scene. Mayer was spot on! As I said above many voice actors played their characters well, I just didn’t enjoy the two main characters.

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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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What is Mirandus?

Overall, a fun story that lacks that satisfying Sanderson ending. I enjoyed the performances a lot

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

Decent.

I enjoyed the plot and story itself, but I did not enjoy the writing. It felt really really cringey and childish far too often. I understand the protagonists are young, but they weren't *that* young. It did it's job in making me interested in the world it was setting up but I struggled to get through the actual audiobook just due to the poor writing. The narration was very well done for what they were given but I know for sure I will never want to give this a 2nd listen.

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

great murder mystery

this novel was a joy to read and had me on the edge of my seat. a definite recommend!

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

great audio drama with a disappointing end

I would like to preface this by saying I am a huge Brandon Sanderson fan, and I understand that he acted more like an editor, and Dan Wells did all of the writing. I also am not familiar with the Dark One graphic novel which this is sort of a prequel to.

This audio exclusive story is a great listen. Great performances and acting. I'm not a big criminal podcast listener but I did listen to "Serial" and thoroughly enjoyed it and this is the ameteur version (due to the main character being a young college student). It is a little jarring sometimes because it starts out fairly professional in the first "episode" but gets less so as it goes on (some of this is fair due to the story material in the later half). But otherwise a pretty good story with some good twists.

Now being a Sanderson fan, his books generally have great endings and the magic systems are really thought out and things make sense. With this story though, the ending is kinda meh and I was expecting some more explanation of the more "fantastical elements" (to be non-spoiler), however this did not occur. This made me disappointed in the end, and I don't know if it's explained better in the Dark One graphic novel, and if it is, this is a missed opportunity here because the audience for this is different from a graphic novel IMO.

Overall though it's worth a listen and I know Wells and Sanderson are writing a novelisation of the Dark One graphic novel with some major changes to be more in line with Forgotten. I'm sure this will be a great read and can answer some of the questions I still have.

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Something Different

Long time Sanderson reader. Only read one of Dans books. From that limited experience, this felt like slightly more of a Dan story but it definitely had a sprinkling of Sanderson. Over all I really enjoyed it. The pacing was pretty good, loved how it picked up and got more mysterious after episodes 2 or 3. Only real complains were that some characters were a little awkward at times. I also noticed that some of the “on the fly” recordings had characters describing what was occurring in a way that was super unnatural for someone who didn’t know they were being recorded. That being said those are two minor criticisms and it was overall an enjoyable read.

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

I absolutely loved this

Super interesting story, I liked pretty much everything. It’s unfortunately only 6 hours, but if you like true crime and fantasy, this is probably for you

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Pretty Good (for someone who knows nothing about the IP)

That was a really interesting experience! Not quite how I expected it to end. There are still some loose ends, that I assume get wrapped up on either the Dark One comic or the upcoming novel. I don’t know much about the IP, so maybe there’s just something I’m missing. There were times, particularly in regards to Sophie, where I became so annoyed that I wasn’t sure I would be able to keep going. But if you keep pushing through, it’s a really interesting ending.

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