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Extended Audio Sample Otto of the Silver Hand Audiobook, by Howard Pyle Click for printable size audiobook cover
3.38 out of 53.38 out of 53.38 out of 53.38 out of 53.38 out of 5 3.38 (24 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Howard Pyle Narrator: Ralph Cosham Publisher: Blackstone Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: April 2009 ISBN: 9781455178537
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“This tale that I am about to tell is of a little boy who lived and suffered in those dark middle ages; of how he saw both the good and the bad of men, and of how, by gentleness and love and not by strife and hatred, he came at last to stand above other men and to be looked up to by all.”—from the book

Young Otto is born into a warring household in a lawless age. Having no mother, he is sent by his father, a valiant robber baron, to be safely raised by the monks until the age of twelve. But when he returns, gentle Otto can no longer escape the bitter blood feud between his father and the rival house of Trutz-Drachen. He is kidnapped by the rival family and his hand is cut off, to be replaced forever by a silver one. Can his brave father and his captor’s kind daughter, Pauline, help him escape?

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Quotes & Awards

  • Otto of the Silver Hand has audience appeal for fans of the Arthurian legends…[Ralph Cosham’s] crisp diction and nuanced characterizations enhance this classic story…a worthy addition to any audiobook collection seeking lesser-known classics in children’s literature.”

    School Library Journal

  • Otto of the Silver Hand is marvelously read by [Ralph Cosham]…well worth the listen.” 

    Largeprintreviews.com

  • “The story's unflinching portrayals of the unpleasant aspects of medieval life may shock some young readers, but its well-organized and exciting plot makes for entertaining reading.”

    Beacham's Guide to Literature for Young Adults

  • “An excellent addition to any study of the Middle Ages, or simply an enjoyable read.”

    BookAngles.com

Listener Opinions

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Abraham | 2/18/2014

    " This is a fine book, as are all great offerings from the masculine Pyle. This is a dark and more exotic tale than Men of Iron, and more complex than his Arthurian tellings. It is a good book for a young man -- portraying the discipline of education, the excruciating hardship of pain and torture, the marvels of love, and the thrills of cloak-and-dagger intrigue -- though every young woman will be enthralled by the same. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Jesse Winslow | 2/14/2014

    " I didn't really enjoy this as much as I thought I would. Some exciting parts, but Otto is really a wuss. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Regina | 2/5/2014

    " Jordy and I read this as a 7th grade history assignment. Great historical fiction that gives a picture of what it was like to live in a castle community in early western Europe. Life was harsh and morals were low, but anyone can change. Old English wording and uncommon vocabulary made comprehension an effort at times. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Esther | 1/22/2014

    " Howard Pyle has an unassuming writing style that I love. His description is never over the top, but just enough to set the scene without calling attention to itself. It's hard for me to decide which I like best, the story or the illustrations. Anyone who likes stories of knights and monasteries will like this one. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kelli | 1/16/2014

    " Morality tale about a blood feud between robber barons in medieval Germany. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Leah | 1/16/2014

    " I read it when I was about 12, maybe even 11. But at that age, if I had to read a book for school I always decided before hand that I wasn't going to like it. So of course, as I look back, I remember "reeaalllllyyy not liking it at all". But if I read it now, I would probably like it. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Dani | 1/9/2014

    " Medieval Germany.....robber barons, plundering, feuds. But also a brave young boy. And happily ever after. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Tammy | 10/28/2013

    " I really enjoyed the story. Liked the photos, too! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Theresa | 10/27/2013

    " Good story. Easy read. Not really my style, but I enjoyed it as a light read. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Skye | 7/7/2013

    " Homeschool book. Okay. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Haley | 5/31/2013

    " this book is great but very sad at the same time. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Elizabeth | 4/11/2013

    " Well written historical book about the Dark Ages. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Katherine | 2/2/2013

    " A wonderful book about how being a nobleman does not mean having to maraud and loot. There's a reason that "noble" is part of that compound word. Otto is a good role model for what being a real man is all about. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Jessica | 9/14/2012

    " I loved this book and Pyles usual genius combination of word and image. Thanks Gail! "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Zinger | 8/28/2012

    " I thought Otto was a good kid, but really boring. An ok book for a young reader interested in a quick adventure during the dark ages. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Jayme VA | 4/28/2012

    " This is very much a "boy" book, although I did enjoy it for what it was- a medieval fairy tail with lots of fighting, barons, and of course a fair maiden. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Natasha | 3/27/2012

    " Loved it!!! Now tell me, is there a sequel? "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Madcrit | 2/20/2012

    " Ok it's a pre 1900 but still the narrative is awefull and the ending is way too aprupt. I don't say that there are not some cool ideas (for example One eyed Hans rescue mission) but reading Otto of the Silver Hand is overall just a waist of time. I can't recommend it! "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Falina | 10/10/2011

    " The story is very simple but enjoyable, and the illustrations are great. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Relstuart | 1/20/2011

    " The Artwork in this book is amazing. The story is interesting and it does have a bit of a sad ending. It does make one think about the cost of violence and peace. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Annette | 4/27/2010

    " Hopeful in spite of the dark drama. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Michelle Polk | 2/9/2010

    " excellent book for the student that is studying middle ages. A story of loss, revenge, and forgiveness. We read this together as a family for our unit study on the Middle Ages. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Tessa | 8/23/2009

    " This isn't my favorite book. Otto is too perfect, to the point of being annoying. The story would have been better with more believable characters. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Liz Gibbs | 8/21/2009

    " This little boy stole my heart. His dad's a barbarian - pretty much literally. The boy grows up in a monastary and he's so considerate and sweet. Then, his dad takes him back home and during a raid the boy is kidnapped by the bad guys. "

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About the Author
Author Howard Pyle

Howard Pyle (1853–1911), author and illustrator, was born in Wilmington, Delaware. Inspired as a child by Grimm’s German Fairy Tales and The Arabian Nights, he decided as an adult to write and illustrate stories for children. After some success contributing to children’s magazines, he became famous with his book The Merry Adventures of Robin Hood of Great Renown in Nottinghamshire. He also wrote and illustrated historical romances and fairy stories.

About the Narrator

Ralph Cosham (1936–2014), a.k.a. Geoffrey Howard, was a British journalist who changed careers to become a narrator and screen and stage actor. He performed in more than one hundred professional theatrical roles, and several of his narrations were named “Audio Best of the Year” by Publishers Weekly. In 2013 he won the coveted Audie Award for his narration of Louise Penny’s The Beautiful Mystery.