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Extended Audio Sample Songmaster Audiobook, by Orson Scott Card Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (4,221 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Orson Scott Card Narrator: Stefan Rudnicki Publisher: Blackstone Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: January 2006 ISBN: 9781455182565
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Kidnapped at an early age, Ansset has been raised in isolation at a mystical retreat called the Songhouse. His life is filled with music, and having only songs for companions, he develops a voice that is unlike any other. But Ansset’s voice is both a blessing and a curse—for it reflects all the hopes and fears of his audience, and, by magnifying their emotions, can be used either to heal or to destroy.

When it is discovered that his is the voice that the Emperor has waited decades for, Ansset is summoned to the Imperial Palace on Old Earth. Many fates rest in Ansset’s hands, and his songs will soon be put to the test: either to salve the troubled conscience of a conqueror or drive him, and the universe, into mad chaos.

Songmaster is a haunting story of power and love—the tale of a man who would destroy everything he loves to preserve humanity’s peace, and a boy who might just sing the world away.

Download and start listening now!

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Quotes & Awards

  • “Card understands the human condition and has things of real value to say about it. He tells the truth well—ultimately the only criterion of greatness.”

    Gene Wolfe

  • “Stefan Rudnicki narrates this novel with the power that the prose demands…Rudnicki, when called upon to do so, sings lines with an understated grace that effectively suggests the great abilities of the characters doing the singing.”

    AudioFile

  • “The audiobook is narrated beautifully by Stefan Rudnicki. Mr. Rudnicki conveys an introspective and measured performance that suits the novel perfectly…The recording is up to the usually high standards that we expect of a Blackstone audiobook.”

    SFFAudio.com

Listener Opinions

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Allisyn | 2/20/2014

    " It's been a while since I've read anything by him and I'd definitely forgotten how beautiful how world building is. His prose is so lovely and he'll contrast it by writing in an event or something so horrible or ugly that it sometimes takes another read or two of the passage to comprehend what exactly happened. Songmaster follows one man from events that make his existence significant to his death. The young man transforms from a gifted young singer in an isolated school to the companion of an emperor to a man of great consequence in his own right and finally his return to the home of his youth. There is love, both familial and romantic, cut-throat political maneuvering, bold kidnappings, and whirlwind fight scenes. I really enjoying reading this novel. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Tori | 2/20/2014

    " This is one of the few books I read annually. I could go on and on about OSC's genius and the way he brings out the child-hero in everyone, but I think that saying "I read this book annually" is pretty much all that needs saying. This book lives on a special shelf with "To Kill a Mockingbird" and "A Prayer for Owen Meany" "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Natalie Musick | 2/19/2014

    " admittedly it's been 20 years since I read this book, but i loved it at the time-- memory is a bit veiled now, but it was a vibrant fantasy-sci fi book. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Noah Diewald | 2/18/2014

    " I read this book when I was very young so that is likely influencing this rating. At the time it had been the most moving book I'd ever read. I may have become more demanding since then. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Erin Glover | 1/28/2014

    " This was one of my favorite books when I was growing up. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Hanabrighton | 1/15/2014

    " Sad. A warning. Like reading a prophet's speech. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Dallas Funk | 1/13/2014

    " This is perhaps my favorite Orson Scott Card book. It has a richly developed universe and characters and covers the entire lifetime of the main character. I did not want to put it down and when the book was over, I felt as if I had been in the presence of a great person and was happy to have joined him on his journey. This book is a science fiction, but has a similar feel to a lot of epic fantasy, so would probably be good for fans of either genre. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Tessa Eger | 1/11/2014

    " Very violent story of child gifted with song/singing that can manipulate. Eventually "given" to the emperor for six years, he becomes caught up in conspiracy and betrayal. Homosexual scenes. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Katy Defay | 1/3/2014

    " Probably 3 1/2 stars. Not nearly as good as Ender's Game, but still, an interesting storyline. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kate Rudasill | 12/27/2013

    " What a strange little story. Card is at his best when he takes you on an adventure through the mind of a child. Did not disappoint...don't judge this book by its lame cover! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jeremiah Hebert | 12/24/2013

    " Very interesting and different Sci-Fi book. Reccomended "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Steve | 12/17/2013

    " This is one of my favorite books by one of my favorite authors "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Edward Rosenfeld | 12/14/2013

    " Well worth the read, or in this case the reread.....a fine story with interesting characters and a good plot line.... "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Fran Frambach | 11/10/2013

    " Beautiful, inventive and unforgettable. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Rae | 12/10/2012

    " A story with characters who communicate primarily through music and thought. The plot was decent but the characters were too shallow for me. I didn't enjoy this. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Shana | 10/27/2012

    " Very interesting book. I heard a snippet on siriusxm book radio, and was intrigued enough to check it out. Card really does capture agony, redemption and a whole host of other human experiences in this novel. Very moving. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Kirstin | 7/22/2012

    " Not my favorite orson scott card book but still a good one "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Jane | 6/19/2012

    " Uncle Orson, you know I love you. But I got about 3 chapters in and I just couldn't go any further. Sorry. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Gillie | 3/14/2012

    " I was really into it...until the end. I was disgusted. Don't bother reading it "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Amanda Lance | 2/19/2012

    " Another great stand alone by one of my favorite authors. You haven't read this story before. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Annie | 1/28/2012

    " This book is breathtakingly lovely for the first half, which I must have read in just a day, but I had to quit halfway through. It burned me, and I just cannot forgive it. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Patti | 8/19/2011

    " In my opinion, his best besides Ender's Game. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Liz Brau | 7/15/2011

    " there is something i totally loved about this book. i think it's the emotional intensity that card kept all through the book. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Blackbook | 6/12/2011

    " One of my favorites of all time. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Leslie | 4/24/2011

    " I swear Orson Scott Card smokes pot while he writes. His books are always so way out there and interesting. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Katy | 4/4/2011

    " Probably 3 1/2 stars. Not nearly as good as Ender's Game, but still, an interesting storyline. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Emily | 3/10/2011

    " I read this when I was much younger and found it quite confronting, but also incredibly captivating. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Melissa | 2/27/2011

    " An old favorite that was as good as I remembered. An original story that was told really well. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Jennifer | 2/24/2011

    " I both look forward to and dread the day my boys will be old enough to read this. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kate | 2/8/2011

    " What a strange little story. Card is at his best when he takes you on an adventure through the mind of a child. Did not disappoint...don't judge this book by its lame cover! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Plop246 | 12/18/2010

    " Another fascinating story by Orson Scott Card. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Emily | 12/3/2010

    " Some disturbing scenes, not a very happy outcome. kind of a strange story. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Pam | 10/1/2010

    " I liked this book and the way the Card looks at the different kinds of power, and use of that power. It wasn't quite the page turner that some of his other books are, but still good. Warning - there is a homosexual relationship in it. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Brandi | 9/30/2010

    " It was very interesting. A totally new idea! But the life stories were just too depressing for me and the gay guy stuff was... um, just not what I really wanted to read. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Amanda | 9/26/2010

    " Another great stand alone by one of my favorite authors. You haven't read this story before. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Cristov | 7/24/2010

    " Fascinating combination of ideas. Music, war, aging, power. "

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About the Author
Author Orson Scott Card

Orson Scott Card, the author of the New York Times bestseller Ender’s Game, has won several Hugo and Nebula awards for his works of speculative fiction. His Ender novels are widely read by adults and younger readers and are increasingly used in schools. Besides these and other science fiction novels, Card writes contemporary fantasy, American-frontier fantasy, biblical novels, poetry, plays, and scripts.

About the Narrator

Stefan Rudnicki first became involved with audiobooks in 1994. Now a Grammy-winning audiobook producer, he has worked on more than three thousand audiobooks as a narrator, writer, producer, or director. He has narrated more than three hundred audiobooks. A recipient of multiple AudioFile Earphones Awards, he was presented the coveted Audie Award for solo narration in 2005, 2007, and 2014 and was named one of AudioFile’s Golden Voices in 2012.