Listen free for 30 days

1 credit a month, good for any title to download and keep.
The Plus Catalogue—listen all you want to thousands of Audible Originals, podcasts, and audiobooks.
$14.95 a month plus applicable taxes after 30 day trial. Cancel anytime.
Buy Now for $37.53

Buy Now for $37.53

Pay using card ending in
By confirming your purchase, you agree to Audible's Conditions of Use and Amazon's Privacy Notice. Tax where applicable.

Publisher's Summary

You define life or it defines you. In Shawn Speakman’s case, it was both. Lacking health insurance and diagnosed with Hodgkin’s lymphoma in 2011, Shawn quickly accrued a massive medical debt that he did not have the ability to pay. That’s when New York Times best-selling author Terry Brooks offered to donate a short story that Shawn could sell to help alleviate those bills - and suggested he ask the same of his other writer friends. Unfettered is the result: An anthology built in order to relieve that debt, featuring short stories by some of the best fantasy writers in the genre.

Twenty-three tales comprise this incredible collection, and as the title suggests, the writers were free to contribute whatever they wished. Here is the table of contents:

  • Foreword by Patrick Rothfuss
  • Introduction: On Becoming Unfettered
  • Imaginary Friends by Terry Brooks
  • How Old Holly Came to Be by Patrick Rothfuss
  • The Old Scale Game by Tad Williams
  • Game of Chance by Carrie Vaughn
  • The Martyr of the Roses by Jacqueline Carey
  • Mudboy by Peter V. Brett
  • The Sound of Broken Absolutes by Peter Orullian
  • The Coach with Big Teeth by R. A. Salvatore
  • Keeper of Memory by Todd Lockwood
  • Heaven in a Wild Flower by Blake Charlton
  • Dogs by Daniel Abraham
  • The Chapel Perilous by Kevin Hearne
  • Select Mode by Mark Lawrence
  • All the Girls Love Michael Stein by David Anthony Durham
  • Strange Rain by Jennifer Bosworth
  • Nocturne by Robert V. S. Redick
  • Unbowed by Eldon Thompson
  • In Favour with Their Stars by Naomi Novik
  • River of Souls by Robert Jordan & Brandon Sanderson
  • The Jester by Michael J. Sullivan
  • The Duel by Lev Grossman
  • Walker and the Shade of Allanon by Terry Brooks
  • The Unfettered Knight by Shawn Speakman

    With the help of stalwart friends and these wonderful short stories, Shawn has taken the gravest of life’s hardships and created something magical. Unfettered is not only a fantastic anthology in its own right, but it’s a testament to the generosity found in the science fiction and fantasy community—proof that humanity can give beyond itself when the need arises. After all, isn’t that the driving narrative in fantasy literature?

©2013 Shawn Speakman (P)2013 Audible Inc.

What listeners say about Unfettered

Average Customer Ratings
Overall
  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    6
  • 4 Stars
    8
  • 3 Stars
    2
  • 2 Stars
    1
  • 1 Stars
    2
Performance
  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    7
  • 4 Stars
    3
  • 3 Stars
    3
  • 2 Stars
    0
  • 1 Stars
    1
Story
  • 3.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    5
  • 4 Stars
    5
  • 3 Stars
    1
  • 2 Stars
    0
  • 1 Stars
    3

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

Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars

ugggg

didn't even finish too painful 15 word word word word word word word word word word

1 person found this helpful

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

Dull and dry

Purchased expecting to carry on with the king killer series from Patrick Rothfuss. Listening for over 2 hours and have gave up. Stories are very boring and difficult to finish.

Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Randall
  • 2018-12-21

A TRULY BAD COLLECTION OF DOGS

After reading a review of this book I expected the stories to be a " hit and miss collection " of short stories. This collection of dogs is abysmal. Only two of the stories worth listening to (The Jester by Michael J Sullivan and Unfettered Knight by Shawn Speakman). The rest seemed to be a bunch of leftover crap by various authors .

I would have returned this book, except it was on sale (therefore cheap) and I was warned it was a hit and miss collection. I guess sometimes you lose in a gamble.

118 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Amberlynn
  • 2015-06-20

I guess I'm not into short stories

It's hard to judge a book when there's so many different authors. The sentiment behind it seems to be well illustrated. However, I found it hard to get into any of the stories. I found myself drifting off rather than continuing reading. I guess this might be for the fact that it takes me a good three or four chapters in any book to really understand the characters and feel the surroundings. I believe as most fantasy readers would probably agree it takes a lot more than a couple of pages to set the scene of a true story.

SIDE NOTE
If you purchase this book to understand more of the King killer trilogy, do NOT! The only story put in by Patrick is a bout a tree and how the tree stands. Moral of the story a tree will outlive us all. Don't buy this book for the specific reason being you want more of the King killer story, because it's simply NOT here. If you like Patrick's writings and you want to purchase this book go ahead. I just don't want you to have a misconception about it. The story is more of something to meditate on rather than a fantasy story.

70 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
  • GLENNO
  • 2014-01-31

Excellent writing. Great cause.

This book is well worth reading for the quality of the writing. The bonus is that it's for a great cause. Hooray for you wonderful writers, artists and readers! And man are there some amazing readers in this audiobook. It's always great to help a brother out.

Several of these stories are so good that I have placed the author's books on my wish list. So it's a great introduction to these authors if you are not already a fan. If you are a fan, you won't be disappointed with these great tales, some set in the worlds you already know. All of them are well-written.

HEAD-SCRATCHERS
Rothfuss: Haven't read his books. Maybe something about that would have made it better. Otherwise: What the...?
Salvatore: Um, OK. Weird.
Orullian: If you were a band geek you might like this one. I wasn't a band geek. I got lost in all of the musical references.
Grossman: Sophomoric.

INTERESTING
Brooks (Shannara)
Jordan/Sanderson: Love the Wheel of Time books but it's been a while for me. Maybe that's why I didn't connect with it.
Hearne

GREAT
Brooks (Word/Void): A charming tale.
Brett
Vaughn: Interesting premise well carried-out.
Lawrence

OUTSTANDING
Carey
Abraham
Lockwood: A great story that is far better than his first novel.
Charlton
Redick
Durham: Really imaginative! And just a really nice story.
Bosworth: Intriguing story with an electric ending.
Williams: I smiled all the way through this great one.
Thompson: I really enjoyed the characters in this one and want to read the novels.
Novik: I tire of dragons sometimes but this story rekindled my interest. I put her novels on my wish list.
Sullivan: My favorite story by one of my very favorite authors. If you are unfamiliar with Michael J. Sullivan go buy his books. All of them. NOW. You won't be disappointed.
Speakman: Great characters in a compelling world. Made me want to read more.

36 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Stephanie
  • 2014-04-16

Mixed feelings

I wanted to love this compilation of short stories. It was written for a pure, altruistic purpose. The contributors included some of my favorite authors, and many more about whom I had been curious for some time. Some of the stories were engaging, but many were not. Many were downright sad and left me not knowing how to feel, what to think, or what the author was even trying to convey with his or her words.

The compilation receives three stars because of those gems hidden inside. I enjoyed Rothfuss' quirky tale. A couple more - one about a viola, another about saving a library from war (I don't recall the authors) - were interesting despite the deep sadness in the tale.

I took away two stars because of the lack of consistency. Maybe I was expecting too much. Maybe it was unfair to expect to be entertained by every story in such an eclectic compilation. But I wasn't expecting entertainment, so much as I was hoping to be inspired, to have my curiosity piqued, or to just hear stories that I could appreciate (at the very least) for their literary value, if not for the tale itself.

I understand the sadness that permeates many (most?) of these short stories. It was moving at times - leaving me shaken and changed - but I also found myself often pausing the book and stepping away because it was just too much.

The narrators are fantastic. They were well-selected for each story and each performs beautifully. I think only one story stood out as "less-well-narrated" - but it was near the end and not significant enough to recall specifically. With so many stories, and so many narrators, that is a job well done in my eyes.

This book is certainly worth the one credit. I'd buy it again, and I'm tempted to buy the hard copy, if only for those special stories tucked amid the less-inspiring.

34 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars
  • shannon
  • 2018-07-17

Not very good

there were only 3 or 4 stories in this whole book that I enjoyed it sucks to pay for something that is not very good

28 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Timothy
  • 2014-02-22

Disappointing

Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

No. I would not recommend this book. There were more mediocre stories then not. Some were just plain bad. Others didn't make any sense. Umm...Patrick Rothfuss what the heck was that?!! Loved his books; hated his short story. I couldn't even finish it. I guess it was an attempt to be artsy or something. Well, not a fan. There were a couple stories that I did enjoy. It's hard to review in a lump because there are so many authors involved but overall, I'd say pick something else.

Any additional comments?

I do appreciate the thought behind this book. That's why I bought it. I wanted to support the cause. However, I just can't recommend it as a good read.

26 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Sarah
  • 2014-03-01

Dissapointed

This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

If you enjoy thoughtful introspective stories or WTF moments, and if you don't mind a compendium of stories that feature only a handful of resolutions go for it.

Has Unfettered turned you off from other books in this genre?

It has definitely warned me away from short story compilations. This was my first... probably my last.

What about the narrators’s performance did you like?

Most of the narrators did a pretty good job... there just wasn't much to bring to life.

What character would you cut from Unfettered?

I think that in the case of a short story compilation, a more appropriate question would be, which stories would you cut.

I would cut all of them but the music one, and the one about the keeper of memories.

Any additional comments?

Meh.

25 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars
  • pseudonymous
  • 2014-02-26

Depressing

A very depressing compilation of senseless stories. Perhaps Masters of Fantasy can't write short stories because they don't have space to build the worlds.

24 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars
  • John
  • 2017-04-29

This is why I never get anthologies

If I had listened to this in order to see if I liked the authors, I would have missed out on books that I currently have and enjoy.

Were I to grade the stories, Patrick Rothfuss had to come in at the bottom, but not by much. Robert Jordan's story only made sense if you were well versed in the Wheel of Time series, even then it was not that good... but I at least remember some of it.

I only hope this went for a good cause...

21 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Andrew
  • 2014-10-19

Boring shit

What disappointed you about Unfettered?

A place for great authors to unload their crap that they would not normally publish

What was most disappointing about the authors’s story?

Everything

If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from Unfettered?

The lot

Any additional comments?

Don't waste your money or time

21 people found this helpful