Library Ed. Recorded Books/ Clipper Audio 2013
CD ISBN 9781470378462 $123.75 Twenty-one CDs
DD ISBN 9781470378455 $109.00
The first in Dunnett's richly detailed eight-volume series set in fifteenth-century Bruges boasts an alarming number of characters. This might confuse listeners if it weren't for Gordon Griffin's stellar performance. Griffin gives each new character a distinctive voice and identifiable mannerism. Nicholas vander Poele, known as Claes, begins as a buffoonish merchant's apprentice, but by using wit and daring, he manages to build a great fortune through trade. Dunnett paints beautiful word portraits of exotic fragrances and textures, and Griffin takes listeners into cargo-rich galleys and ports as bizarre and glamorous as Majorca and the African coast. Griffin also handles the hero's complex maneuverings smoothly. However, noticeable edits--pauses in odd places--interrupt the flow of this sweeping historical fiction and prove distracting. S.J.H. © AudioFile 2013, Portland, Maine [Published: DECEMBER 2013]
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