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Browse audiobooks narrated by Joss Ackland, listen to samples and when you're ready head over to Audiobooks.com where you can get 3 FREE audiobooks on us
Autumn, 1646. The English Civil War is raging, and there’s trouble ahead for Sir John and Lady Anne Firebasket. There’s a Roundhead platoon camping out in the barn, a perplexed priest hiding behind the panelling and, unbeknown to the Firebaskets, their scullery maid Mercy is actually a disguised aristocrat (and Royalist spy) named Melissa Fortescue-Bottomley. While Mercy steels herself to carry out a deadly mission, pious steward Tobias Thynne rails against the Devil’s vegetables and Father Francis takes to the rooftops in a borrowed nightgown for a rendition of ‘Ave Maria’. With the whole household suffering from severe domestic derangement, it’s a bad time for General Cromwell to show up – and then news arrives that the fugitive King Charles has also decided to pay a visit... As confusion reigns, Sir John takes to drink, Lady Anne takes to her bed and the New Model Army take up their muskets. Will Firebasket Hall survive the hostilities? Scripted by Sue Limb (Gloomsbury, The Wordsmiths at Gorsemere), The Sit Crom features a wealth of comedy acting talent including Joss Ackland as Sir John Firebasket, Miriam Margolyes as Mercy and Alun Armstrong as Captain Arise Higgs. Produced by Jonathan James-Moore Music by Colin Sell Cast Sir John Firebasket – Joss Ackland Lady Anne Firebasket – Denise Coffey Tobias Thynne – Clive Merrison Mercy, alias Melissa – Miriam Margoyles Father Francis/Old Thomas – Nickolas Grace Slow Ned/King Charles – Chris Emmett Gazebo Fogg – Jack Klaff Captain Arise Higgs – Alun Armstrong Posthumous – Nicky Henson Lettice – Jane Whittenshaw Counter Tenor – Peter Hayward General Cromwell – Bert Parnaby Colonel Thundery – Peter Howell The New Model Army – The cast First broadcast on BBC Radio 4, 6 October-10 November 1990Show more
Its genesis a real attack on the Greenwich Observatory in 1894, Conrad's novel offers an ironic meditation not only on anarchy and revolution, with all the deception and intrigue they imply, but also on loyalty - to friends and family, to country and ideals.'They swarmed numerous like locusts, industrious like ants, thoughtless like a natural force, pushing on blind and orderly and absorbed, impervious to sentiment, to logic - to terror, too, perhaps.'Considered one of Conrad's most political works, The Secret Agent is set against the dismal backdrop of a drab and alienating London, and tells the story of the bombing of Greenwich Observatory by a group of anarchists.Shopkeeper, spy and reluctant anarchist Mr Verloc becomes embroiled in this terrorist plot, exploiting his mentally disabled brother-in-law Stevie in the process, leading to tragic circumstances.Show more
A masterpiece of satire, this classic has entertained and enlightened readers the world over with its sly and ironic portrayal of human life from the vantage point of Screwtape, a highly placed assistant to "Our Father Below." At once wildly comic, deadly serious, and strikingly original, C. S. Lewis gives us the correspondence of the worldly-wise old devil to his nephew Wormwood, a novice demon in charge of securing the damnation of an ordinary young man. The Screwtape Letters is the most engaging and humorous account of temptation-and triumph over it-ever written.Show more
On its first appearance, The Screwtape Letters was immediately recognized as a milestone in the history of popular theology. Now, in it's 70th Anniversary Year, and having sold over half a million copies, it is an iconic classic on spiritual warfare and the power of the devil.This profound and striking narrative takes the form of a series of letters from Screwtape, a devil high in the Infernal Civil Service, to his nephew Wormwood, a junior colleague engaged in his first mission on earth trying to secure the damnation of a young man who has just become a Christian. Although the young man initially looks to be a willing victim, he changes his ways and is 'lost' to the young devil.Dedicated to Lewis's friend and colleague J.R.R. Tolkien, The Screwtape Letters is a timeless classic on spiritual warfare and the invisible realities which are part of our religious experience.Show more
An intriguing murder mystery exploring the desire of the artist to remain illusive and anonymous behind work which is heavily codified and seemingly impenetrable. When a brilliant young art historian flies in the face of the received wisdom regarding the work of the reclusive Anderson Perrine, the artist feels a distinct invasion of his privacy. He sets about laying a series of false trails but her pursuit of him is unrelenting and he is obliged to take radically evasive action. Starring Hattie Morahan, Joss Ackland, Miche Doherty, Mark Lawson and Robin Read, with Aine McCartney, BJ Hogg and Mark Lambert. Written by Mark Lawson. Directed by Eoin O'Callaghan and produced in Belfast for Radio 4.Show more
Samuel West stars as Richard II, with Joss Ackland as John of Gaunt in a gripping production of Shakespeare's lyrically tragic history. BBC Radio has a unique heritage when it comes to Shakespeare. Since 1923, when the newly formed company broadcast its first full-length play, generations of actors and producers have honed and perfected the craft of making Shakespeare to be heard. In the acclaimed BBC Radio Shakespeare series, each play is introduced by Richard Eyre, former Director of the Royal National Theatre. Revitalised, original and comprehensive, this is Shakespeare for the new millennium.Show more
Nostromo is the only man capable of the decisive action needed to save the silver of the San Tome mine and secure independence for Sulaco, Occidental province of the Latin American state of Costaguana. Is his integrity as unassailable as everyone believes, or will his ideals, like those which have inspired the struggling state itself, buckle under economic and political pressures?Nostromo is an extraordinary illustration of the impact of foreign commercial exploits on a young developing nation, and the problems of reconciling individual identity with a social role. Conrad peoples his imaginary Latin American state with a multi-national cast of fully-rounded characters to achieve striking realism and create a novel that he called 'my largest canvas'.Show more
'Who could tell what forms, what visions, what faces, what forgiveness he could see in the glow of the west!'Jim is a well-bred young romantic who takes to the seas with hopes of adventure and the aspiration to prove his mettle. When the boat he sails in threatens to sink, Jim abandons ship in fear in order to save himself, leaving the other passengers to their fate. However, the ship does not sink and guilt-ridden Jim admits to the maritime court of inquiry that he deserted the boat and is consequently stripped of his sailing papers. Blighted by his own cowardice, Jim's subsequent self-exile to a remote Malaysian trading post gives Conrad the opportunity to explore the question of moral identity and through his hero, he embodies the values and deterioration of the declining empire of late Victorian Britain. With its rich descriptions of an unknown, exotic world and beautifully constructed prose, Lord Jim is considered one of Conrad's greatest works.Show more
Joss Ackland, Roger Allam and Leslie Phillips star in this BBC Radio 4 full-cast dramatisation of Victor Hugo’s classic novel.When poverty drives Jean Valjean to steal a loaf of bread from a baker’s window, it is an action that will haunt him for the rest of his life. A citizen of post-revolutionary France, he is sentenced to nineteen years’ hard labour. On his release, his fortunes change and he becomes a respectable businessman and member of society - and yet his past continues to dog him in the form of the sadistic Inspector Javert, who seems determined to pursue Valjean to the grave. A student uprising is gaining momentum in Paris, and barricades are being built around the city. Valjean’s adopted daughter, Cosette, has fallen in love with the young revolutionary Marius, and the lives of all three are in peril unless they can flee to safety. Some of the most significant moments in 19th Century history form the backdrop for Victor Hugo’s powerful story, in which love and heroism march in the face of poverty and social injustice.Show more
Martin Jarvis stars in this BBC radio satire set in the competitive world of advertising Happiness... is a career in advertising. Or is it? Activist turned ad writer Ken Handley isn't so sure. Back in the day, he used to hitch-hike and attend peace protests. Now, he finds himself writing copy for the Conservative Party and extolling the virtues of products he hates - while also coping with a drunken boss, strait-laced colleagues and an overactive mind. Over three series, we follow his exploits and moral dilemmas as he grapples with the challenges of winning accounts, presenting to clients and dealing with the women in his life. A pitch for a motorway services chain drives him round the bend, a seven-foot squirrel nearly sends him nuts, and he faces his own emergency when he's coerced into a Samaritans campaign. On the domestic front, Ken's got a divorce and a new home to contend with - but things start looking up when leggy model April comes on the scene... Written by Guy Jenkin (Drop the Dead Donkey) and Jon Canter (Posh Nosh), this sardonic advertising sitcom stars Martin Jarvis as Ken, with a cast including Imelda Staunton, Lesley Manville, Joss Ackland and Miriam Margolyes. Production credits Script and commercial concepts by Guy Jenkin Commercials by Jon Canter Produced by Geoffrey Perkins (Series 1) and Pete Atkin (Series 2 & 3) First broadcast BBC Radio 4, 18 January-22 February 1982 (Series 1), 7 February-13 March 1984 (Series 2), 7 October-11 November 1986 (Series 3) Cast Ken Handley - Martin Jarvis Sarah - Sheila Steafel Sandy - Christopher Godwin Freddie - Lockwood West Hitchhiker - Vincent Brimble Portley - Richard Bebb Runcie - Simon Jones June - Wendy Richard Johnnie - Patrick Barr Murray - Gary Cady The General - Bill Fraser Mr Sandell - John Blythe Barman - Geoffrey McGivern Virgil - Marc Smith Mr Sandell:- John Blythe Cindy- Heather Bell Katie- Miranda Forbes Director- David Gooderson Ravi - Ahmed Khalil Deborah - Rosalind Ayres Ambrose - Paul Jesson Janet/Receptionist/Researcher - Stacey Tendeter Mr Cheater/Mr McCafferty - James Griffiths Angus - Michael Jenner Derek - David Peart Stella - Imelda Staunton Stella's Heavy - Jim Carter Subjects - David Peart & Michael Jenner Leo Gale - Glyn Owen Christina - Jo Manning Wilson Receptionist - Maggie McCarthy George - Peter Tuddenham Corners - Don Henderson Benny - Karl Howman Lesley - Pauline Siddle Andy - Chris Emmett Film director - Scott Cherry Tone - Jeremy Clyde Doregan - Lesley Manville Elvira - Moir Leslie Kip - Joseph Marcell April - Shelley Thompson Hedley - Robert Longden Artiste - David Learner Larry Childs - William Hootkins Loretta-Jane Duff - Toni Coyne Dawn/Masseuse - Sally Watts Sally/Choirboy - Jane Leonard Len - Roger Sloman Val/Veronica - Liz Crowther Alf - Roger Hammond Till lady - Avril Clark Doorman - Richard Durden Barman - James MacPherson Policeman - Graham Blockey With the voices of Joss Ackland, Miriam Margolyes, James Griffiths, John Shrapnel, David Tate, James Griffiths, Sally Grace, Enn Reitel and Anton RodgersShow more
'The reaches opened before us and closed behind, as if the forest had stepped leisurely across the water to bar the way for our return. We penetrated deeper and deeper into the heart of darkness.'At the peak of European Imperialism, steamboat captain Charles Marlow travels deep into the African Congo on his way to relieve the elusive Mr Kurtz, an ivory trader renowned for his fearsome reputation. On his journey into the unknown Marlow takes a terrifying trip into his own subconscious, overwhelmed by his menacing, perilous and horrifying surroundings.The landscape and the people he meets force him to reflect on human nature and society, and in turn Conrad writes revealingly about the dangers of imperialism.Show more
The Chronicle is an epic anthology of the most interesting and revealing diaries and journals written during the last 500 years, providing a fascinating and intriguing record of life as witnessed by some history's most colourful characters. From Samuel Pepys to Alan Bennett, Dorothy Wordsworth to Barbara Castle and Oliver Cromwell to Evelyn Waugh. The Chronicleis one of the most ambitious productions ever commissioned as an audiobook. It contains 120,000 words from over 150 diarists and letter writers, and is performed by an outstanding cast of 30 actors in a dramatised setting with music and soundtrack, with a combined total running time of just under 12 hours. Available in four parts. Arranged in the form of a calendar, it is a daily record of British life from 1st January to 31st December, and provides a vivid and entertaining portrait of the life and times in which the writers lived. Narrated by Joss Ackland; Jenny Agutter; James Bolam; Tony Britton; Charles Dance; Eleanor Bron; Maureen Lipman; John Sessions; Robert Powell; Donald Sinden; Imogen Stubbs; David Suchet; Harriet Walter; Timothy West; plus full supporting cast.Show more
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