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by | Read by Julia Whelan, Gabra Zackman

Fiction • 4 hrs. • Unabridged • © 2021

Narrators Gabra Zackman and Julia Whelan bring fine individual skills and compatible vocal registers to their performance of Simone de Beauvoir's previously unpublished 1954 novella. The production also includes an introduction, an afterword, and a selection of letters between de Beauvoir and Zaza Lacoin, whose relationship inspired the book. Set in Paris, in the milieu of radical conservative Catholicism, the novella explores Sylvie (de Beauvoir) and Andree's (Lacoin) friendship and the stifling effect of strict social codes. Zackman brings clarity and engagement to her reading of the introduction and afterword, and heartbreaking liveliness to Lacoin's letters. Whelan's narration of de Beauvoir's letters highlights the author's mix of desperation and self-control, and her performance of the novella nicely contrasts Sylvie's naïve yet sensible personality and Andree's emotionality. A.C.S. © AudioFile 2021, Portland, Maine [Published: OCTOBER 2021]

Trade Ed. • Harper Audio • 2021

DD ISBN 9780063075078 $17.99

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