March 2, 2016

The Dragon and the Raven: Kings, Castles, Vikings, and Adventure! {Product Review}

Heirloom Audio Productions just recently released the next G.A. Henty audiodrama in their collection, The Dragon and the Raven! We have already been blessed to have copies of the three previous audiodramas in their collection, and were eager to review this exciting new story. Would it be up to the high quality of the previous productions? We sure hoped so!
The Dragon and the Raven~ A product review

Product Summary

The Dragon and the Raven is #4 in the collection of audiodramas produced by Heirloom Audio Productions. Adapted from the book by G.A. Henty of the same name, the story takes us to the early 9th century and the world of King Alfred the Great--when he was still just a king of Wessex-- as he attempts to keep the invading Danes from completely taking over England. With everyone else surrendering in the wake of the viking destruction, King Alfred of Wessex is joined by young Edmund, and together the two young warriors fight to turn the tide and save their world as they know it. With God on their side, nothing is impossible!

With a cast ensemble of John Ryhs-Davies (Lord of the Rings, Indiana Jones), Helen George (Call the Midwife), Brian Blessed (Star Wars, Tarzan, King Lear), and Sylvester McCoy (Doctor Who VII, The Hobbit), the production is superb! Once again Emmy-Award winning composer John Campbell contributes a fabulous original soundtrack. With full movie sound effects, this isn't just any old audiodrama--it's an ADVENTURE!

The Dragon and the Raven is a 2 CD set (2 hrs of story) for $29.97 and comes with instant access MP3 download. You will also receive the following bonuses:

1. The complete The Dragon and Raven eStudy Guide and Discussion Starter (48 page PDF)
2. A beautiful, printable copy of the inspirational verse (Proverbs 21:31) as quoted by King Alfred in The Dragon and The Raven which can be framed.

3. The Official The Dragon and The Raven Soundtrack MP3 download.

Perfect for ages 6-100+, this is a high quality production, you don't want to miss!

We were given the 2 CD set, and the bonuses to review with our family.

How Did We Use the Product?

As we typically do, we simply started at the beginning! We had to run a lot of errands one day, and I knew we would be in the car for at least an hour, so we began The Dragon and the Raven. I didn't have the eStudy Guide with me at the time, so I didn't look at it WHILE we were listening. I did pull it up and pull out some questions to incorporated in our discussions later. I prefer having it printed out, but since that would use up a lot of ink/paper, I opted to just read it from my Kindle Fire which worked perfectly fine this time. It was a simple download.

The other bonus I used was the mp3 complete soundtrack of the production! That's actually a really nice background music for when I am driving!

What Are Our Thoughts on the Product?

Oh my. I don't know that there is anything I can say that I didn't say on the last three reviews I did of a Heirloom Audio Production audiodrama! That stories are intriguing and fun. The soundtrack is phenomenal. The bringing to life of the characters, simply marvelous. There were a few actors/actresses in this production that I know from TV, so when I heard their voices on the production, I knew immediately who they were. Having experienced performers makes the production that much better because they know how to do their voices with the right intonations.

And as for the music...sigh. What a treat to have such a high quality soundtrack! It is so nice to have the soundtrack itself as a bonus mp3 with this product. Sometimes you miss the beauty of the music as you are listening to the dialogue.

As usual, the The Dragon and The Raven eStudy Guide and Discussion Starter was great to check the attention of my boys. I always like how it adds discussion questions for you to take it further. This one also provided internet links, so you could look up more information, like on the Alfred Jewel that is mentioned in the story. Little Britches was eager to see what it looked like...though he declared it rather ugly. LOL.

I also love that the focus throughout the story is how on God and His help and protection through the trials and situations the characters find themselves in.

Are there any cons?
No, not really. We just love these productions. Knowing I can keep the family interested in something for the 2 hrs per audiodrama is just fabulous for long trips...although lately they have been asking to listen even for shorter errands!

Would I Recommend the Product?

Absolutely! This is one product that I really think the whole family would enjoy. The history is brought to life with great drama, and the study guide helps you take it even further for critical thinking and discussions. I didn't know anything about the Danes and King Alfred, so now I want to research more into the very incredible story!

As I have said about the other three audiodramas, the quality of the whole thing is simply incredible. You will love how it brings you in. If you want to have a stash of great selections to play for those long car trips or plane rides, you need to be thinking about adding the audiodramas from Heirloom Audio Productions to your list!

As an aside--these are Christian productions, so there is a lot of mention about the relationship with God each of these main characters had and how it was such a part of their lives. So if that would bother you, you might reconsider purchasing this product, because it's definitely a major part of the story.

Want to Know More?

We reviewed The Dragon and the Raven from Heirloom Audio Productions. You know how much we enjoy the audiodramas, but what did the rest of the review crew think?
The Dragon and the Raven {Heirloom Audio Productions Review}
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I am so glad that this 4th installment of the stories of G.A. Henty was just as enjoyable as the others were. We have already received the news that the next audiodrama to ve released with be The Cat of Bubastes which was G.A. Henty's first book and takes place in Ancient Egypt. I'm sure it will be a spectacular production as well!

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