I was rather proud and astonished to be picked out recently by the South China Morning Post for my ‘bravura reading’ of War and Peace – astonished because the abridgement I recorded twenty-one years ago is so very … well, abridged.*

At the moment I am deep into reading aloud the first of two mystery novels (to be recorded as audiobooks), practising fluidity and the varied characterizations of a colourful cast so as to face the mike for the first time on Friday.** Consequently I have only spared the time to revisit my audio Tolstoy for a few minutes.

I was amazed to hear myself plunging into the world of St Petersburg and Moscow high society with confident pronunciations of the names of a plethora of Russian princes and princesses and even managing the occasional quick burst of French. I imagine it is an act of faith in the listener to hang on in the hope that he or she will begin to identify and remember who is who.

Portrait of Tolstoy by Leonid Pasternak.

* You can download the pithy five-hour abridgement of War and Peace from iTunes.

** The two novels Edward is about to record are published by Thomas & Mercer, an imprint of Amazon Publishing known for its mysteries and thrillers. Details to be revealed shortly.

To read an interview Edward gave to Vulpes Libris in 2010 on the art of recording audiobooks, click here.

4 thoughts on “AUDIOBOOKS”
  • Jane Ramsden

    I eagerly await the 2 new mystery audiobooks, the latter being such an enthusiasm of mine. I have pre-ordered the Mark Gatiss ‘Dracula’ from Big Finish that you mentioned a while ago, vampires being another enthusiasm! I have never been able to re-visit War & Peace since first reading, or more likely watching the epic film at probably too young an age. The only memory I have of the whole thing is a man getting run over and crushed by a horse-drawn cart, which was so awful I’ve not even watched the new current tv series. So 5 hours listening may be perfect for me! I was just thinking this week that I may well be able to cope with the ‘Pethabridged’ version. One always has the option to listen to an unabridged version at a later date. I have sometimes done that, & the other way round. Thanks for the informative interview on the art of reading audiobooks. It always impresses me how a reader can keep track of the different characters’ voices, which I often like better than a dramatisation with different actors.

  • Cornelia

    I`m very glad to read that you will record some more audiobooks. Right now I`m listening to „presumption of death“, and I really enjoy how you manage to create an atmosphere that one forgets immediately that someone is reading aloud (sorry for my English, I´m german and my schooldays are more than 40 years ago now, and many thoughts I can`t phrase …).
    In fact, going home after work on a bicycle now and then in the wintertime is always rather uncomfortable, the darkness is boring for the eyes, and 20 miles are pretty much, BUT: with your voice in one ear (the other is for the slight traffic of course) it becomes an intensive pleasure in spite of it all.
    Two years ago I was searching for more books from Dorothy L. Sayers and accidently found the BBC-movie versions with you playing Wimsey, and you are playing so marvellous, really really wonderful. Everytime I`m watching you in these movies it`s such an enjoyment that I immediately forget all troubles. Thank you ! Sayers must have known that someday you will play Wimsey.
    I wonder if there will be a DVD with „My Perfect Mind“ available sometime, besides the enjoyment that would be a hard exercise to me to understand every word.

    I wish you all the best from Berlin and stay healthy !

    • Jolyn

      We stumbled over here by a different web address and thought I may as well check things out. I like what I see so i am just following you. Look forward to looking over your web page reatdeeply.

  • D.R.

    I second Cornelia’s sentiments on the Lord Peter/Harriet Vane shows of the ’80s. My wife and I just finished up Gaudy Night (for the fifth or sixth time) and were wishing out loud that you had also tackled the solo Lord Peter stories for the camera. Quite coincidentally, I started watching Nicholas Nickleby later in the evening, having forgotten you were in that, as well. So, an inadvertant Petherbridge festival going on in our house this week.

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