Someone who wants a basic intro to the play would like this. But really not for any afficionado of Shakespeare.
This is the worst of the Shakespeare plays that I have listened to.
The sound quality is not that great - there is a constant hum in the background. Also, the male actors' voices are quite similar and so you have a difficulty in identifying the speaker.
Big problem with this is that it is NOT unabridged. Whole scenes have been deleted or abbreviated. The cover says that it is unabridged, so not sure if that is simply being deceptive or what it is referring to.
For a Shakespeare lover hoping to get a faithful, full version of the play, this is not it.
However, the actress speaking the part of Cleopatra does a great job.
This is perhaps the best audiobook I have read so far. The shortcoming of audiobooks are that if they are serious reading, then you would want to read the book, not listen to it. If it is light reading, then it's hard to pay attention and hard to care, as I am listening in the car.
What I have found is that listening to Shakespeare is perfect in audiobook form, as these are dramatic works and so you gain by listening instead of reading. And just listening is in some ways superior to watching the play because your imagination can, in most instances, do a better job of visualizing the scene.
In this particular audiobook, the sound quality is great. But more than anything else, it is very well acted. In particular, Anton Lesser does an excellent job of voicing Hamlet. He brings manic energy to the role and really gives a great personal interpretation of the Danish prince that made me rethink my interpretation of certain scenes.
Lesser did a superb job - perhaps THE best Hamlet I have enjoyed. Of course, this is the first audio-only Hamlet I have heard... but that is the point: there is a unique advantage to audio only, especially for the tragedies and histories.
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