Twenty hours! I think the great beauty of this audio-book lies in its bulk- and the knowledge that the rest of the Pallisers- each equally bulky- can follow behind it- like a warm ocean of Trollope stretching out with no further shore in sight.
It's a sort of gentle relief from boredom on an epic scale- and Timothy West's voice assures us that it will all be very moderate, very reasonable, very English... and there is no need at all to hurry...
I listened to it in about a week, while lambing sheep, as a kind of backround music.
In the whole thing only one mistake springs to mind- He pronounced 'Shoreditch' once with too much emphasis on the last syllable. And the pauses between chapters are too long.
I've listened to it right through, twice- with about 18 months in between the two, but I was still surprised how gripping it was on the second outing.
As always, beautifully read.
But spot the mistake! at the meeting of the hunt on Copperstream Common (or wherever it is) a character is said to be talking to Lady Chiltern when she is actually talking to Lord Chiltern. Trollope's mistake or Timothy West's?
This is the best of the Romeo and Juliets that I have heard- it's well played, absorbing and well paced; in that I felt it was particually faithful to the Elizabethan stage- there was no obtrusive attempt to set scenes within a sound-scape ( not that there is anything wrong with this- the BBC ones tend to do it superbly, but if you have a few seconds of backround noise before a scene begins it does hold up the action) and the scenes are often divided just by the sound of a rapier swipe- just as one would imagine the scenes following hot on the heels of each other in the original staging- and of course the play itself is about rush and the lack of time.
Fiona Shaw is good as the nurse (though to be honest the BBC nurse is slightly better) and Anton Lesser made a more than usually sympathetic Mecutio. He did the 'queen Mab' speech very well, but rather underplayed his death scene.
Frances Barber made a convincingly harsh Lady Capulet- but the acoustics made me wonder if she was actually occupying the same space as the other actors- incidentally her Cleopatra (BBC radio) is even better..