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Redwall

Redwall, Book 1
Written by: Brian Jacques
Narrated by: Brian Jacques, Full Cast
Series: Redwall, Book 1
Length: 10 hrs and 41 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (37 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

When Redwall was published in 1987 it catapulted author Brian Jacques to international stardom. And small wonder! This enthralling tale is jam-packed with the things we long for in a great adventure: danger, laughter, hairbreadth escapes, tragedy, mystery, a touch of wonder, a truly despicable villain, and a hero we can take to heart.

That hero is Matthias, a young mouse who must rise above his fears and failures to save his friends at Redwall Abbey. The villain is Cluny the Scourge, one of the most deliciously despicable rats of all time. The unforgettable cast of supporting characters includes the stalwart badger Constance, an irrepressible hare named Basil Stag Hare, and the elderly wisemouse Brother Methuselah.

But most of all there is Matthias, seeking his true destiny in a journey that will lead through danger and despair to true wisdom.

©1995 The Redwall Abbey Company, Ltd. (P)1997 Random House, Inc., Listening Library, An Imprint Of Random House Audio Publishing Group

What the critics say

"This epic adventure contains elements of all grand quests, with heroic archetypes that will keep fans of Tolkien and King Arthur tales engaged to the final battle." (Publishers Weekly)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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

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

great story, loved performance!

the volume is a bit up and down but you cant beat a book narrated by the author and acted out but over 10 pros! my child hood favorite was brought to life and made for some enjoyable car rides!

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

good and goofy

real good, performance is a little over the top at times but can be fun and goofy

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Simply Brilliant

I've read and reread this book countless times, the storytelling and characters are really impressive.

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

Very Fun

Fun! Light. Likable. Audio book cast was great! Don't compare it to what it's not.

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

it was okay

not worth the purchase in my eyes. my son and I were reading it and he wanted to listen to a book like his papa. this was a bad choice to start him on. I fell asleep quite a few times. just doesn't keep you enthralled enough.

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Jonathan
  • 2004-03-21

A childrens book for adults.

I had read this book prior to downloading the audio version, and the voice talent used in this incarnation of the story made me love it all the more. The use of many voice actors appealed to me in the case of this story because it helped to flesh out the feelings of the many creatures who graced Redwall Abbey and the surrounding area. The story itself is a great revisiting of the classic good vs. evil plotline, and is written in a manner that is suitable for young adults. I assume by some of the writing style that the main target audience of this book and its sequels is the young adult audience, but any avid reader will appreciate the fine thread of the plot and the rich weave of the setting.

34 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • D. McMillen
  • 2004-09-30

Two paws up from an initially skeptical listener

I was doubly a skeptic before downloading this title: I had picked up Redwall (in print) a couple of times before and failed to get into it; and I generally dislike any form of "full cast" production. But I took a chance, and I'm very glad I did, since I'm enjoying the heck out of this recording!

The key problem with most full cast recordings is that they usually involve drastic abridgements of the text, a failing that negates any benefit to having a bunch of voices. Here they use a much more sensible approach: the full text is still there, but when each character speaks, their dialogue is read by whatever voice actor is playing that part. The effect combines the best aspects of a radio play and an unabridged recording of a book: you still get all the narration and interior dialogue, but there's a wide range of distinct voices to bring the characters to life. A book that never really grabbed me in print became a pleasure to listen to.

The story itself is entertaining, though perhaps not brilliant, but overall it's great fun. It's my first exposure to this style of recording, and I'd rate it a success. I hope other books explore this method of presenting the text, rather than succumbing to the temptation to do highly abridged dramatizations.

60 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Native Texan
  • 2004-02-03

A colorful tapestry of voices

A colorful tapestry portrait is a key element in this story but the real tapestry is the audio. The many wonderful voices and accents are enough for a 1960s epic film. There are lots of fascinating characters and enough plot twists and well-made turns of suspense to keep you interested. The villianous rat is robust and evil from the tip of his nose to the end of his lethal tail and the noble inhabitants of Redwall Abbey are charming and unselfconscious. From the willing but unintellegible guild of moles to the hearty soldiering hare and the heroic baby squirrel this is an entertaining audio book for all ages.

14 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Mike Roberts
  • 2010-03-10

An epic story

This book, and infact this whole series is fantastic. Sure, after a while it becomes a little predictable, but hey, it's for kids! They like that! My ten year old brother has all the books from audible and has heard them all at least five times. Do not, however, confuse the book with a kiddie story, because there is a good bit of violence, especialy in the later books. I would recomend getting this, it's well worth your money.

10 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Ann Thackerq
  • 2006-10-07

Too Much Fun!

Our whole family loved Redwall. Sometimes the characters were hard to understand at first, but well worth the effort. Great fun!

6 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • B. Abraham
  • 2017-01-10

Wonderful Production

This unabridged reading of Redwall is almost a full radio drama! It is wonderfully done with different voices for different characters. It was a very enjoyable listen.

3 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • L. Atkinson
  • 2004-10-03

Excellent Listen

Although the accents of some of the characters make their dialog a little hard to follow at first, you are soon swept into the world of Redwall Abbey and the creatures who inhabit it. Our whole family thoroughly enjoyed this book.

3 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Elizabeth
  • 2019-08-23

Incredible book, mediocre volume control

The book is amazing! If you haven't read this story or if you're coming back for more I definitely recommend. The production cast is incredibly talented and the voices are on point, however this was recorded in 1997, and it shows at times. The volume control is off at times. Brian will be quietly narrating, then the Scourge will LOUDLY yell something... it can be a bit jarring.

Still recommend though.

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Arthur
  • 2005-06-13

The makings of a good Disney flick :)

Redwall is definitely a book for the young or the young at heart, with a story and presentation of a quality on par with the recent action-oriented Disney animated films. The narrator does a great job and most of the full cast performance was excellent, though there were a few accents I did not care for--namely the irritating, stereotypical asian voices of the sparrows. Portions of the dialog were trite and some characters were a bit too cheesy, but for a story such as this with a possible younger audience, it was excusable. The biggest fault for me was the pace of the book; it was rather slow and I didn't find any real tension in the story until the last two hours. But overall, it was a solid read with no real glaring faults. There were memorable characters like Basil Staghare (wot wot!) and Cluny The Scourge, who I found hillarious when he was berating his troops and there were definitely some other funny moments (like when Matthias meets the Guerilla Union of Shrews in Mossflower, which seemed like something out of a Monty Python skit.) I was surprised to see death and war addressed in the book, though neither of which was dwelt on for any length of time and violence is no worse than a PG rating. Redwall is essentially a traditional hero's tale, and as such offers no real surprises or plot twists, but it remains a charming read nonetheless.

7 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Matthew Devlin
  • 2011-05-15

Anthropomorphism is for everybody.

In reference to the person who gave this two stars, Redwall is not a story for children, nor is it a story for squeamish adults. There is violence throughout and anyone who buys this for their children will be shocked by the acts of violence. Redwall is, however, an excellent story full of interesting characters, a rich tapestry if adventure, friendship and courage. The two star review claims that Redwall is a disappointment similar to Watership Down. That would imply of course that Watership Down is anything less than stellar literature. Of course the plight of the animals in Adams story is bleak, and of course many of the characters meet violent ends, but what else is life for an animal if not short, violent, and bleak. As far as Redwall is concerned, the story demonstrates the turbulent life of medieval monks, the despicable nature of warlords, and the harshness if the animal kingdom. Even O'Brien's beloved Mrs. Frisky is confronted with despicable tyrants and violent upheaval. In that story, almost the entire population of mice who escape NIMH are killed in a horrifying moment by a blast of ventilated air. Furthermore, most beloved fables are terrible and violent. Does the flippant grasshopper nit starve to death while the diligent ant lives on through the lean winter months? Reality is not a carefully censored and adequately anti-violent Disney film. The mice at Redwall abbey live and die, sometimes their death is violent, sometimes quiet. And the heroes if Redwall are also capable of the same brutality and arrogance as the rats who lay siege on their precious home. Rats and mice, owls and shrews, foxes and death adders do not live together in harmony in the wild so then why should the same animals live as one when civilized by the fiction writer? Redwall is for adults, plain and simple, and anyone who would criticize an adult oriented novel for it's stark portrayal of life and death obviously needs to consider that some might have evolved sensibilities.

6 people found this helpful