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Summary

Please note this drama contains some explicit content.

This multicast dramatisation of Arabian Nights: Volume 1 is an Audible Original reenvisioning of three iconic tales - with a twist. 

Adapted by the great Marty Ross, whose previous audio dramas include Romeo and Jude, Dark Shadows, Doctor Who and Treasure Island, listeners can expect to hear Scheherazade, Ali Baba & the Forty Thieves and Julnar of the Sea as they've never done before. 

Step out of your comfort zone and indulge in the dark and fantastical world we've created. Travel with Mermen across the White City, go in search of treasures in hidden caves with Ali and Kasim and let yourself be guided by Scheherazade’s vision as she gives in to a deadly romance with Sultan Shahriya. 

About the stories

In Scheherezade, a woman finds herself the object of desire of a powerful Sultan with murderous desires. Her only chance at saving her life is by using the one power she herself possesses: her gift for telling enchanting stories, the very stories that follow in this drama.... 

Ali Baba & the Forty Thieves tells the tale of an impoverished husband and wife whose lives change drastically when husband Ali discovers the cave where a local gang of bandits are hiding their treasure. A happy ending? Not quite, as the money brings dangerous complications in the form of the greed of Ali's brother and sister-in-law and the determination of the bandits not to be stolen from. Can Ali save himself - or will his wife, Marjana, have to do all the work - in this taut romantic thriller? 

In Julnar of the Sea, a merwoman finds the love of a mortal King and they produce a son, Prince Badr Basim. Julnar will have to look out for her son, Badr, as, true to his undersea birthright, he seeks out the love of Princess Jawhera of the Merfolk. She is haughty and her father King Es Semendel positively hostile, casting Badr into a dramatic odyssey which will take him to the island of a beautiful sorceress who makes literal pets of her lovers. Can Julnar and her brother, Salim, find and save Badr in time? 

The cast:

This drama features Omid Djalili (The Mummy, Gladiator, The Omid Djalili Show), Abraham Popoola, Adam Sina, Alyssa Kyria, Anoushka Rava, Atilla Akinci, Bamshad Abedi-Amin, Betsabeh Emran, Daniel Naddafy, David Ahmad, Gisele Payvandi, Ian Abeysekera, Jonathan Morrison, Mandana Jones, Michael Franklin, Mitra Djalili, Nezar Alderazi, Philip Arditti, Raghad Chaar, Richard Reed, Pezh Maan, Tara Jaffar, Walles Hamonde, Zahra Ahmadi and Hemi Yeroham.

Public Domain (P)2018 Audible, Ltd.

What members say

Average customer ratings

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Fiery, comedic and bursting with life.

I LOVED this dramatisation, Marty Ross and the cast have brought new life to the old stories and I'm so glad they kept all the comedy, the eroticism and did not tone down the violence. Don't buy it for kids, it's made for listening to and enjoying night after night.

29 of 29 people found this review helpful

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6-7 Stars

Can’t rate this high enough, a brilliant telling of the best stories ever told. Can not wait until volume 2!!

14 of 14 people found this review helpful

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Beguiled at bedtime

This production was skilfully adapted and dramatised by an ensemble cast.
The Persian accent sounded good to an untrained ear and important in rendering authenticity.
Suitable for an adult audience, the dialogue is lively, comedic and sensual.
The only distraction and unappealing character was that of the winged monster, whose synthesized voice grated.
Also, in terms of musical scoring I am not a fan of synthesizers. Should Audible's budget stretch to including live musicians, it would greatly enhance one's enjoyment.
Overall, however, I greatly enjoyed the voyeuristic experience of eavesdropping on Sharahazad's tales (standing with the executioner behind a screen), woven with magic and spice.
When can one hope to hear volume II?

12 of 12 people found this review helpful

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Great Story, better than TV!

This was a wonderful listen. The actors really made the story come alive. I especially liked the interaction between the narrator and the Sultan. looking forward to volume 2!

10 of 10 people found this review helpful

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Amazing experience!

Voice cast is amazing, looking forward for the next volume. Thank you audible for bringing life to this masterpiece

10 of 10 people found this review helpful

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loved it! highly animated story telling

enjoyed every minute. great story telling. if you are looking for a dramatised audio book then try this one

9 of 9 people found this review helpful

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Tender hooks

Like the Sultan it keeps you in suspense and involved. Excellently done by the people involved.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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Absolutely brilliant.

This is the most wonderful experience of what Audible can offer. It’s a fantastical drama and I have to say , delightfully profound. It’s beautifully and professionally presented by the narrators and I will definatly be listening to it again. ❤️

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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Arabian Nights<br />

Absolutely brilliant. I used to read these stories to my little brother nearly 50 years ago. It transported me back to those nights when Francis couldn't wait to hear the next story as, night after night, we were whisked off to magical lands and heroes.
Hurry to bring us the next compilation please!

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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Enthralling

I loved this & can't wait for Vol 2! Spellbinding and dazzling stories of love and hate and luck and fate beautifully told by an excellent cast. I was enchanted from start to finish.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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  • theamazingcatherine
  • 08-09-18

Lavish, funny, sensitive, a little bawdy...

This was amazing. The adaptor dug into the basic text - a mad king, a clever storyteller, her loyal sister, and teased out the emotions and passion and heartbreak. I was constantly reminded of the storyteller's presence, and her audience - not just in the interjections from her husband, her sister, and an impatient executioner wanting more gory bits, but in the choices of story that Scheherazade makes, the characters she dwells on, how themes of loyalty and sexual desire and family might speak to the king's madness. Even villains and bit characters get a chance to have their say.

The voice-acting is well done - lively, colourful, easy on the ears, really bringing out the character personalities - and the sound effects are vivid. (There were a couple of times when the sound dynamics made it difficult to understand a djinni character, though - I wouldn't try listening to it while driving.)

The bulk of this is two stories, "Ali Baba" and another I'm not familiar with "Julnar of the Sea" (sp?) and does take some liberties with the plot, at least with "Ali Baba". They make for an interesting narrative, so I'm happy about them. There are gory bits, and several women speaking extremely frankly about their sexuality, so be aware of that if you want your children to listen.

All in all this was grand, and I hope the next volume comes out soon.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • R. MCRACKAN
  • 31-07-18

What a horrible book

For a book which is so highly rated and which came so highly recommended, I'm deeply disappointed.

Ignoring that fact that chapter 1 is pornography, and that the book is rife with violent misogyny, the plot is ok at best and the production quality is very shoddy. In trying to sound middle eastern, the. actual. result. is. to. pace. sylla. bles. alternatelyslowthenpainfullyfast. Nearly every character is almost entirely unlikable. The dialog was usually insufferable and never trusts the reader. It goes to juvenile lengths to show how much of a cartoon each character is. Eg: if it's a killer, he will endlessly refer to himself as such. The barbaric ruthless Shakespearean morality could be seen as a plus if you're into such things, but to me it compounds the previous complaints.

In terms of technical sound, this book is a wreck. The recording volume is equally unbalanced with faint voices, whispering, then yelling. It's not creative dynamic range, it's the equivalent of action movies where you have to jack up the volume to hear dialog then get your ears blown out with the special effect volume. All of this made it difficult to listen to with headphones and nearly impossible in the car. Two of the characters were actually unintelligible about half of the time.

The above issues aside, with few exceptions the use of creative language was genuinely masterful. The effects were also well done. Sadly this was not enough to overcome the aforementioned issues.

3 of 11 people found this review helpful