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by | Read by Douglas Hodge, David Horovitch, Derek Jacobi, Jeremy Northam, Diana Quick, Sian Thomas, Prunella Scales

Poetry & Drama • 2.5 hrs. • Unabridged • ©

It's remarkable how much poetry comes alive when it's performed by the likes of Derek Jacobi or Prunella Scales, rather than a stodgy prof in a tweed blazer. This fine HighBridge series introduces listeners to major English poets using a successful formula in each of its titles. A narrator introduces each poem, providing biographical information, setting the work in its historical context and clarifying any obscure references. The selections--usually unabridged, though sometimes excerpts--are then read by one of several actors, providing a good cross section of each poet's oeuvre. One special highlight is a haunting reading of Coleridge's "The Rime of the Ancient Mariner." With only a few exceptions, these performers have a keen ear for the rhythm of the verse, and they illuminate it in new ways for readers who may have previously experienced this work only in print. D.B. © AudioFile 2000, Portland, Maine [Published: APR/MAY 00]

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