MacBeth A Novel by A. J. Hartley & David Hewson
Audiobook Published by: Audible.com
Published on: June 2011
Narrator: Alan Cummings
Audiobook Length: 9 hours 45 minutes
My Reading Format: Audiobook purchased from Audible.com.
Available Formats: Audiobook only
As the title suggests, MacBeth A Novel is a novelization of Shakespeare’s MacBeth. Per the author’s introduction, the setting was changed to match the place in which the historical figures lived. All of the main characters are present as well as many new supporting characters used to help flesh out the main characters as well as provide details on those events that happened off stage in the play.
I can’t remember if it was the result of an email or a chance sighting of the page on Audible.com, but as soon as I saw the article about the making of MacBeth A Novel along with the video with Alan Cummings, I was sold. I purchased it immediately. I hadn’t had a chance to begin listening yet when the latest issue of AudioFile Magazine arrived also featuring Alan Cummings. As soon as I finished See A Little Light, my current listen, I could wait no longer. The audiobook began with a short introduction by the author and then came Cummings’ Scottish brogue. I was entranced. It was good that I’m quite familiar with the play because there were moments where I was listening to him speak for the sake of the sounds themselves. His voice and his intonations are rich and wonderful. I’d be tempted to pick up anything he were to narrate. There are times when Hollywood actors have let me down in an audiobook setting. No true of Alan Cummings. Spending time with him was audiobook reader’s delight.
I have focused mainly on Alan Cummings, but I was recommend MacBeth A Novel on its own merits as well. I love what the authors did with the weird sisters especially. They were wild, manipulative and without shame. This novel also shed Lady MacBeth in a different light as well. It’s been several years since I’ve read this play, but she has always been more evil to me. I felt she deserved her nightmares following the death of Duncan. The scenes leading up to and including his murder are well done. Lady MacBeth is no less responsible here, but there is something more warm about her. This deeper look into Lady MacBeth and other characters brings home the repercussions of listening to the wrong people.
I think MacBeth A Novel will appeal to a broad spectrum of audiobook fans. It was read by a marvelous narrator and brings the characters to life in a new way. I had no idea at the time, but MacBeth A Novel is only available in audiobook. I think that’s a first for me. I’ll be curious to see if it’s published in print. In the meantime, pick this up with your next credit. If you just couldn’t wait as I couldn’t, experiencing this story through Alan Cummings was worth every penny.