Trade Ed. Naxos AudioBooks 2017
CD ISBN 9781781980545 $22.98 Three CDs
DD ISBN 9781781980552 $15.00
Clare Wille's performance may help listeners appreciate Behn's tragic romance despite the story's seventeenth-century prose. It features the star-crossed love of a noble (and highly emotional) African king who is tricked into slavery. Wille's pace can be a touch quick, but she aids understanding through her clarity of enunciation and her astute interpretations of emotion, expression, and emphasis. There is some staginess in her reading, but it fits the audiobook's melodramatic tone; in particular, her cultured-sounding English accent fits the book's high rhetorical style. She doesn't overdo it, a choice that helps the text to seem merely ornate and high-flown rather than purple and overwrought. While not for every taste, OROONOKO is a notable piece, and Wille does a fine job of presenting it at its best. W.M. © AudioFile 2017, Portland, Maine [Published: AUGUST 2017]
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