Beautiful, proud Roxana is terrified of being poor. When her husband leaves her penniless with five children, she must choose between being a virtuous beggar or a rich whore.
Embarking on a career as a courtesan and kept woman, Roxana passes from man to man in order to maintain her lavish, glamorous lifestyle. But this life comes at a cost; she is torn between sinful prosperity and the respectability she craves.
Public Domain (P)2013 W F Howes Ltd
"Roxana is possibly Defoe's most fascinating story-teller and this, one of his most intriguing stories." (Daily Telegraph)
17th Century Lady
I'm surprised at the negative reviews for this classic. I thoroughly enjoyed it and though Juanita McMahon's delivery was excellent - she brought the characters to life with her masterful delivery.
Published in 1724, and in the first-person as a memoir, “Roxana” describes her youth, marriage to a whom man she often refers to as “a fool” and the dire straits she found herself in following her abandonment by this man (the brewer).
I would, however, recommend potential readers who listen to this audiobook to also seek the full 1745 edition – as this gives a fuller ending (a common cause for complaint is the abruptness of the ending in the original and in the abridged versions).
I have to say, by the end of the story I was sad to be parted from Roxana's world. I had grown so attached; it surprised me!
She was excellent with Roxana and the two male characters who stood out the most because of her great delivery were the Prince in France and the Dutch merchant.
When she reunites with the Dutch merchant.
"Right narrator for Defoe's psychology"
Juanita McMahon becomes Roxana, the titular heroine, infusing the confession (for such it is) with gravitas, wit, tenderness and humanity. However, she is best as Amy, Roxana's maidservant and friend. One senses that she had the most fun voicing Amy.
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