Library Ed. Books on Tape 2010
CD ISBN 978-0-3077-1370-4 $70.00 Seven CDs
This unusual and powerful story is set in a pre-Civil War resort town in Ohio, where free blacks came to take the waters, as did slave-owning Southern white men with their slave mistresses. Perkins-Valdez vividly imagines the tensions this anomalous situation created for the slaves and weaves a moving narrative about their bonds with each other, temptations, and disasters. Robynne Young's performance is a mixed success. She reads descriptive and narrative passages in a flat declamatory manner, with zero dramatic pacing or flair. Further, her accent is confusing to a Northern ear, with many vowel sounds rendered alike. (For example, “feel” sounds like “fill.”) Yet her voice is lovely, and her dialogue is wonderful. An incomplete triumph, still haunting and memorable. B.G. © AudioFile 2010, Portland, Maine [Published: FEBRUARY 2010]
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