No catches, no fine print just unconditional book loving for your children with their favourites saved to their own digital bookshelf.
New members get entered into our monthly draw to win £100 to spend in your local bookshop plus lots lots more...Find out more
Browse audiobooks narrated by Tracy-Ann Oberman, listen to samples and when you're ready head over to Audiobooks.com where you can get 3 FREE audiobooks on us
'Jack & Millie' is the brainchild of Jeremy Front who, with his sister Rebecca Front had been improvising these two characters for years - and now they've been brought to life in a new show... The second series of this new comedy show is written by Jeremy Front (writer of the Charles Paris mysteries for Radio 4) and stars Jeremy Front and Rebecca Front as Jack & Millie Lemman - an older couple who are fully engaged with contemporary life whilst being at war with the absurdities of the modern world... The show also features Millie's frenemy Shirley - played by Tracy-Ann Oberman, Jack's all-too-easygoing friend Harry (Nigel Lindsay), their high-pressure son Melvin (Harry Peacock) and their high-maintenance (and Catholic) (and French) daughter-in-law Delphine (Jenny Bede - most recently heard in Tom Neenan's 'The Hauntening' and an episode of 'John Finnemore's Double Acts' alongside Mathew Baynton). In the first episode, Jack & Millie are back and ready to deal with Harry's bongos, Delphine's chicken, Shirley's bombshell and a cleaner with flashbacks, while in episode 2, Jack meets an unwanted old friend, Melvin gets hot under the collar, Delphine makes a French joke and Shirley and Millie get an unexpected buzz... In episode 3, Jack & Millie's TV binge comes to an abrupt end when they have to face a mindfulness pillow, a Tudor sallet and some hot yoga and in episode 4, Millie feels like a natural woman while Jack feels like a man grappling with a keyboard, a saucepan and some shonky decking... The show comes from Pozzitive, proud producers of Cabin Pressure, Thanks A Lot, Milton Jones!, Agendum, Jeremy Hardy Speaks To The Nation, The Brig Society, The Castle, Armando Iannucci's Charm Offensive, Shush! & Kevin Eldon Will See You Now...Show more
Slices of 19th-century London life from the pen of Charles Dickens Here are ten gloriously comic stories from Sketches by Boz, Charles Dickens' earliest collection of short pieces in which he honed his literary genius. Each tale is dramatised with a full cast. ©2021 BBC Studios Distribution Ltd (P)2021 BBC Studios Distribution Ltd Cast and credits Written by Charles Dickens Directed by Sally Avens Starring Nicholas Farrell as Boz The Tuggses at Ramsgate The nouveau riche Tugg family discover that money cannot buy you love. Cast: Christopher Hancock, Frances Jeater, Colleen Prendergast, Julian Rhind-Tutt, Sean Baker, Tracy-Ann Oberman First broadcast BBC Radio 4, 1 September 1998 The Bloomsbury Christening The arrival of a bouncing baby boy is wonderful news - but not for miserable misanthrope Nicodemus Dumps. Cast: Alison Reid, Geoffrey Whitehead, Robert Harper, Charlie Simpson, Elaine Pyke First broadcast BBC Radio 4, 8 September 1998 The Great Winglebury Duel Alexander Trott finds it is possible to become betrothed in even the most trying circumstances. Cast: Peter Gunn, Julia Deakin, David Timson, Kim Wall and David Antrobus First broadcast BBC Radio 4, 15 September 1998 The Private Theatricals of Mrs Joseph Porter A household becomes obsessed with amateur dramatics - with farcical results. Cast: Geoffrey Whitehead, Frances Jeater, David Antrobus, Jane Holm, Shirley Dixon, Charles Simpson First broadcast on BBC Radio 4, 22 September 1998 Mr Watkins Tottle All Mr Tottle wants is to enter the blessed state of matrimony - but the course of true love never did run smooth. Cast: David Collings, John Hartley, Jenny Howe, Patience Tomlinson, Christopher Scott First broadcast on BBC Radio 4, 29 September 1998 Love and Oysters Meeting an oyster seller sparks disruption for orderly John Dounce. Cast: David Calder, Samantha Spiro, Siriol Jenkins, Elizabeth Conboy, David Allister, loan Meredith First broadcast BBC Radio 4, 5 July 1999 The Steam Excursion A boat trip on the Thames proves the undoing of 'paragon of perfection' Percy Noakes. Cast: Marston Bloom, Shirley Dixon, Joanna Monro, Jeremy Swift, Becky Hindley, Ben Crowe, Stephen Critchlow First broadcast BBC Radio 4, 12 July 1999 Sentiment The Crumpton sisters are delighted when an MP's daughter arrives at their finishing school - until a romantic attachment comes to light. Cast: Patience Tomlinson, Jane Booker, Gerard Murphy, Tilly Gaunt, Harry Myers, Elizabeth Conboy, Michael Mueller First broadcast BBC Radio 4, 19 July 1999 The Boarding House The respectability of Mrs Tibbs' residential establishment is threatened by a mysterious new lodger. Cast: Imelda Staunton, Annette Badland, Christopher Hancock, Tracy-Ann Oberman, Stephen Critchlow, Peter Gunn, Jason O'Mara First broadcast BBC Radio 4, 26 July 1999 Horatio Sparkins The snobbish Maldertons are thrilled when their unmarried daughter receives the attentions of the gentlemanly Mr Sparkins. But who exactly is he? Cast: David Haig, Tessa Worsley, Sarah-Jane Holm, Adrian Schiller, Julian Rhind-Tutt, Patrick Barlow First broadcast BBC Radio 4, 2 August 1999Show more
A BBC trio of horse-racing dramas Scripted by Dave Sheasby (the co-writer of The Blackburn Files), these three cracking comedy dramas bring the world of horse-racing alive, from the agony and ecstasy of risking it all on a likely-looking thoroughbred to the thrill of having a share in a potential equine superstar... In One Flat Summer, newly redundant clothing salesman Ken Warburton finds himself adrift and lured by the temptations of serious gambling after an old acquaintance offers him a promising partnership. Betting on the horses has always been Ken's hobby, but now it's a full-time job. The stakes are raised by a big win at Newmarket - but can his success last? And what of the cost at home? Gerard McDermott stars as Ken, with Gillian Bevan, Anthony Ofoegbu and Janet Maw. Sequel Sharing Fatman sees Ken's wife Margaret taking the reins to find an absorbing new hobby that will steer Ken away from gambling and fill their retirement. Could owning a horse be the answer? Trainer Karen French warns them both about the downsides - but when they make a connection with Mr Fatman at the horse sales, the Warburtons throw caution to the wind... Starring Gerard McDermott as Ken and Gillian Bevan as Margaret, with Tony Rohr, Tracy-Ann Oberman, Rachel Atkins and Fine Time Fontayne. Also included is standalone play Apple Blossom Afternoon, which won a Giles Cooper Award. Ted's down at the betting shop, just like every Saturday. But this one's a bit special: it's his 55th birthday. This particular anniversary isn't like any of the others, so he indulges in a dream accumulator bet - but will Apple Blossom oblige? Malcolm Hebden stars as Ted. One Flat Summer and Sharing Fatman directed by David Hunter Apple Blossom Afternoon directed by Tony Cliff One Flat Summer Ken - Gerard McDermott Margaret - Gillian Bevan Curly - Anthony Ofoegbu Christine - Rachel Atkins Dad - Keith Marsh Janice - Andrea Pickering Tanker - Stephen Thorne Super Yankee - David Brooks Shop assistant - Tracy-Ann Oberman Bank manager- Hugh Dickson Rita - Janet Maw Donald - Ioan Meredith Julia - Carolyn Jones Tam - Tom Georgeson Nigel - Christopher Wright Tomlinson - John Rowe First broadcast BBC Radio 4, 21 August-25 September 1997 Sharing Fatman Margaret - Gillian Bevan Ken - Gerard McDermott Eddie - Tony Rohr Karen - Tracy-Ann Oberman Christine - Rachel Atkins Edward - James Taylor Auctioneer /Gerald- Stephen Critchlow Dave - Harry Myers Madge - Angela Wynter Donald - Fine Time Fontayne Julia - Becky Hindley First broadcast BBC Radio 4, 7 May-11 June 1999 Apple Blossom Afternoon Ted - Malcolm Hebden Jane - Marlene Sidaway Dave - Ray Ashcroft Wesley - Louis Emerick Povey - Colin Meredith Billy - Philip Whitchurch Tannoy - Christine Cox First broadcast BBC Radio 4, 14 June 1989Show more
All three series of the BBC Radio 4 comedy drama about the collision between the old and the new in the Jewish community of Hillfield Abraham Fine lives a settled, comfortable life as Rabbi of Hillfield’s Orthodox synagogue. But his world is turned upside down when a new Reform synagogue opens, led by a female Rabbi, Su Jacobs. Young, single, trendy and full of new ideas, she soon sets about modernisation: introducing her congregation to the delights of the Internet, putting ‘executive boxes’ with TV screens in the pews and offering coffee and croissants during the services – much to Rabbi Fine’s consternation. Fortunately, his wife Sadie is less resistant to change, and is quick to befriend Su and endeavour to keep the peace between her and Abraham. Written by Barry Grossman, this culture-clash comedy stars David de Keyser as Rabbi Abraham Fine and Tracy-Ann Oberman as Rabbi Su Jacobs, with Doreen Mantle as Sadie. Guest stars include Warren Mitchell, Geoffrey Whitehead and Nadim Sawalha. Production credits Written by Barry Grossman Produced by John Fawcett Wilson Music: Max Harris First broadcast BBC Radio 4: 12 November-3 December 1999 (Series 1), 22 September-27 October 2000 (Series 2), 13 February-20 March 2002 (Series 3)Show more
Series 7-11 of the BBC radio drama about Frank Twist and his team of legal eagles, starring David Schofield Frank Twist and Sarah Gold run The Agency, a paralegal firm based in sunny Manchester. With the help of their team of freelancers, they operate a round-the-clock advice service, going into police stations across the North West to offer help and support to those in custody. In these 26 episodes, their clients include the good, the bad and the ugly: from a teenager pulled in for texting an indecent photo of his girlfriend to a man detained for suspected arson at a primary school. There’s also the high-powered lawyer and her daughter caught with drugs after a house party, the naked young woman arrested for protesting against the fur trade, the judge accused of rape, the football hero with feet of clay and the local gangster’s son who gets into some serious trouble. On top of the challenges they face professionally, Frank and Sarah must also navigate their problematic personal lives. Recovering from a stroke, Frank is preparing to make a momentous decision about his future, and his complicated relationship with Sarah comes under further strain when buried truths are brought to light... Witty, sharp and full of twists, Tom Fry and Sharon Kelly’s thrilling legal drama stars David Schofield as Frank, with Kathryn Hunt and Sally Dexter as Sarah. Created by Tom Fry and Sharon Kelly Written by Tom Fry and Sharon Kelly, Nuala O’Sullivan (Series 7 Episode 2), Lizi Patch (Series 7 Episode 4), Philip Meeks (Series 8 Episode 2, Series 10 Episode 4), Michael Livesey (Series 8 Episode 5, Series 11 Episode 3) Produced and directed by Gary Brown Music by Carl Harms Starring David Schofield as Frank TwistShow more
The first six series of the popular radio drama set in a Manchester legal practice, starring David Schofield Frank Twist and Sarah Gold lead a maverick team of freelance paralegals operating in the mean(ish) streets of Manchester. Their agency operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week, dispatching legal representatives to set free burglars, muggers and even some innocent people who find themselves on the wrong side of a cell door. Frank and Sarah have a history, and a child, but now their relationship is purely business, and in these 30 episodes, they and their colleagues deal with cases ranging from shoplifting to attempted murder. Among their clientele are a suspected rapist, a young teacher accused of having an affair with a sixth-former, a girl arrested for assaulting a police officer and a local councillor who’s been caught selling drugs. In addition, Sarah and Frank themselves become the subjects of police interest when they’re called into Manchester Central for questioning – and that’s just the start of their Kafkaesque journey... Created by Tom Fry and Sharon Kelly, these gripping dramas combine complex crime stories with witty humour. David Schofield stars as Frank Twist, with Gina Bellman, Tracy-Ann Oberman, Kathryn Hunt and Caroline Burns Cooke as Sarah Gold. Written by Tom Fry and Sharon Kelly, Elizabeth Heery (Series 4 Episode 3, Series 5 Episode 4), Eve Steele and Ed Jones (Series 4 Episode 4), Eve Steele (Series 5 Episode 2), Lizi Patch (Series 6 Episode 2), Nuala O’Sullivan (Series 6 Episode 4) Produced and directed by Susan Roberts (Series 1), Gary Brown (Series 2-6) Music by Carl HarmsShow more
Dramatisations and readings of novels and short stories by Nobel laureate Doris Lessing - plus a bonus documentary, Open Book, examining her life and career One of the most celebrated and important authors of the 20th Century, Doris Lessing was awarded a Nobel Prize for the 'visionary power' of her fiction, which spans a variety of genres and explores themes such as racism, feminism and social and political upheaval. This collection includes the radio productions of three of her acclaimed novels and four short stories, as well as a fascinating discussion of her life and work. The Good Terrorist - Olivia Vinall stars in this adaptation of Doris Lessing's satire of incompetent revolutionaries in a London squat. Lucy Grange - Exiled from the sophistication of her homeland, stylish Lucy seeks solace and comfort, and learns 'to accept the second-rate'. Read by Estelle Kohler. The Grass is Singing - In this powerful exploration of racial politics in 1940s Rhodesia, adapted from Doris Lessing's first novel, a white woman's troubled relationship with her black houseboy comes to a violent end. Starring Alison Pettit and Tracy-Ann Oberman. Flight - A laughing, teasing granddaughter and a dovecote full of strutting birds are an old man's only escape from his cold family home. Read by Jack Klaff. The Golden Notebook - Susannah Harker stars in this dramatisation of Doris Lessing's ground-breaking novel about marriage, motherhood, mental breakdown and communism. The Death of a Chair - A lived-in chair is bought at auction, where it begins its final journey towards discovery and destruction. Read by Barbara Marten. Open Book: Doris Lessing Mariella Frostrup talks to Doris Lessing about her long and extraordinarily varied writing career.Show more
Penguin presents the audiobook edition of Foursome by Jane Fallon, read by Tracy-Ann Oberman. Rebecca, Daniel, Alex and Isabel have been best friends since university. Rebecca married Daniel, Alex married Isabel and, for twenty years, they have been inseparable. But all that is about to change... When Alex walks out on Isabel, Rebecca thinks things can't get any worse. But then she finds out the reason why and she's left harbouring a secret she'd rather forget... And there's more upheaval to come in Rebecca's life as her emaciated, neurotic, self-obsessed colleague, Lorna - her arch nemesis at work - suddenly becomes a regular feature in her social life. Rebecca's once-happy foursome is now a distant memory and with hearts broken and friendships fractured, it seems that change is never a good thing. Or is it?Show more
Jack & Millie is the brainchild of Jeremy Front who, with his sister Rebecca Front had been improvising these two characters for years - and now they've been brought to life in a new show... This new comedy show written by Jeremy Front (writer of the Charles Paris mysteries for Radio 4) and starring Jeremy Front and Rebecca Front as Jack & Millie Lemman - an older couple who are fully engaged with contemporary life whilst being at war with the absurdities of the modern world... The show also features Millie's frenemy Shirley - played by Tracy-Ann Oberman, Jack's all-too-easygoing friend Harry (Nigel Lindsay), their high-pressure son Melvin (Harry Peacock) and their high-maintenance (and Catholic) (and French) daughter-in-law Delphine (Jenny Bede - most recently heard in an episode of "John Finnemore's Double Acts" alongside Mathew Baynton). Jeremy Front, Rebecca Front ,Tracy-Ann Oberman, Nigel Lindsay, Sue Kelvin, Adam G Goodwin and Llewella Gideon star in the first episode - "Death And The Maven" -, where Film Club Leo dies suddenly, Jack & Millie have to make a choice between good behaviour and cheesecake... in this new comedy starring Jeremy and Rebecca Front In Episode 2, entitled "Special Lunch" and starring Jeremy Front, Rebecca Front, Harry Peacock, Jenny Bede and Tayla Kovacevic-Ebong, Jack & Millie have a son. And Melvin has an app. And Melvin's wife, Delphine has a dog. And Daniel Craig has both his eyebrows. A Special Lunch turns into a Totteridge tale of decking, Bond, beef tomahawks and a married lifetime's-worth of verbal sparring... Show 3, and Jeremy Front, Rebecca Front, Tracy-Ann Oberman, Nigel Lindsay, Rebecca Gethings, Naz Osmanoglu and Luke Sumner star in "Deliver Us From Ebay" - Jack & Millie discover the 11th Commandment - Thou shalt not try and please a son's scary ex-girlfriend. And what's really in the mysterious neighbour's packages...? Episode 4 stars Jeremy Front, Rebecca Front, Tracy-Ann Oberman, Nigel Lindsay, Harry Peacock, Jenny Bede and Lauren O' Rourke in "The Kids Are Alright" - All grandkids make mistakes. But only Jack & Millie's do it quite so loudly and on video... And in the bonus Pilot edition, "Kafka Died At 39", a phone, a strudel & Franz Kafka combine to make Jack & Millie's day rather complicated in this new comedy about an older couple getting to grips with a French daughter-in-law, gassy beer, Eye-Closing Leon and a married lifetime's-worth of verbal sparring... The show comes from Pozzitive, proud producers of Cabin Pressure, Thanks A Lot, Milton Jones!, Jeremy Hardy Speaks To The Nation, The Brig Society, The Castle, Armando Iannucci's Charm Offensive, Shush! & Kevin Eldon Will See You Now...Show more
A distraught woman writes a letter to Osama bin Laden after her four-year-old son and her husband are killed in a massive suicide bomb attack at a soccer match in London. In an emotionally raw voice alive with grief, compassion, and startling humor, she tries to convince Osama to abandon his terror campaign by revealing to him the desperate sadness-"I am a woman built on the wreckage of myself"-and the broken heart of a working-class life blown apart. But the bombing is only the beginning. While security measures transform London into a virtual occupied territory, the narrator, too, finds herself under siege. At first she gains strength by fighting back, taking a civilian job with the police to aid the antiterrorist effort. But when she becomes involved with an upper-class couple, she is drawn into a psychological maelstrom of guilt, ambition, and cynicism that erodes her faith in the society she's working to defend. And when a new bomb threat sends the city into a deadly panic ("It was a panic like the darkest dream and the more people ran out onto the streets the bigger the panic got like a monster made of human beings") she is pushed to acts of unfathomable desperation-perhaps her only chance for survival. A surreal vision made brilliantly, viscerally powerful and undeniable, 'Incendiary' is Chris Cleave's stunning first novel.Show more
On 23 July 1961, filming started on 'Whatever Happened To Baby Jane?' at the Producers Studio, Hollywood. It was a film that industry insiders thought would never be made, as its two female stars had an ongoing feud as famous and as long lasting as both of their glittering screen careers. Bette Davis 'the actress' and Joan Crawford 'the movie star' both arrived on set determined to prove everyone wrong, including each other. . . Tracy-Ann Oberman's first radio play tells the story of the making of a legendary film, of the creation of two iconic stars and of the origins of a deep-seated hatred that spanned five decades.Show more
Descended from Melusina, the river goddess, Jacquetta has always had the gift of second sight. As a child visiting her uncle, she meets his prisoner, Joan of Arc, and recognizes her own power in the young woman accused of witchcraft. They share the mystery of the tarot card of the "wheel of fortune" before Joan is taken to a horrific death at the hands of the English rulers of France. Jacquetta understands the danger for a woman who dares to dream. Married to the Duke of Bedford, English Regent of France, Jacquetta is introduced by him to a mysterious world of learning and alchemy. Her only friend in the great household is the Duke's squire Richard Woodville, who is at her side when the Duke's death leaves her a wealthy young widow. The two become lovers and marry in secret, returning to England to serve at the court of the young King Henry VI, where Jacquetta becomes a close and loyal friend to his new queen. Drawing on years of research, Philippa Gregory tells the story of the Woodvilles who achieve a place at the very heart of the Lancaster court, though Jacquetta can sense the threat from the people of England and the danger of royal rivals. Not even their courage and loyalty can keep the House of Lancaster on the throne. Henry the king slides into a mysterious sleep; Margaret the queen turns to untrustworthy favorites for help; and Richard, Duke of York threatens to overturn the whole kingdom for his rival dynasty of the House of York. Jacquetta fights for her King, her Queen, and for her daughter Elizabeth Woodville, a young woman married to a neighbor for whom Jacquetta can sense an extraordinary and unexpected future: a change of fortune, the throne of England, and the white rose of York. A sweeping, powerful story based on history and rich in passion and legend, The Lady of the Rivers tells the story of the real-life mother to the White Queen. Philippa Gregory is writing at the height of her talent.Show more
Check out the latest activities in our KidsZone.