Saturday, 26 July 2014

Audiobook Reviews: The Importance of Being Earnest and A Woman of No Importance by Oscar Wilde


The Importance of Being Earnest by Oscar Wilde, narrated by James Marsters, Charles Busch, Emily Bergl, Neil Dickson, Jill Gascoine, Christopher Neame and Matthew Wolf.
Although I've seen the movie, I'd never read - or listened to - the original play, so I was excited when I came across this audiobook performance on Audible. It didn't disappoint. I loved the story of mistaken identities, long-lost family and rich people's shenanigans, and the characters were all charming and endearing in their own way. The language is obviously gorgeous and witty, and it was brilliantly delivered by the actors in this edition. It all flowed really well and was just a delight to listen to.
Rating: 4/5

A Woman of No Importance by Oscar Wilde, narrated by Miriam Margolyes, Samantha Mathis, Rosalind Ayres, Jane Carr, Judy Geeson and Martin Jarvis. 
After really enjoying The Importance of Being Earnest I was keen to give this audio a try, and while it was good, it wasn't great. It too has long-lost family, mistaken identities and rich people's shenanigans, but it just wasn't as fun. The characters weren't as compelling, and the story wasn't as engaging. The performances weren't as great here either, they FELT like performances rather than like you were listening to actual conversations between the characters. I was also surprised that several of the lines were exactly the same as those found in Earnest - of course, this came earlier and so Wilde must have reused them for Earnest, and they ARE great lines, but I didn't like the repeated use. I wouldn't listen to or read this again.
Rating: 3/5

17 comments:

  1. Oh no, I have 'A Woman of No Importance' but not 'The Importance of Being Earnest' in my audible collection. Maybe I should listen to A Woman, and then get Earnest, so that I go up in enjoyment, rather than staggering down a little like you unfortunately did.

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