This retelling presents a condensed version of Dickens's work for young listeners. Smoothly written, it has been considerably shortened from the original. It recounts the main events but lacks Dickens's signature word craft. Jonathan Keeble is an authoritative guide through Oliver's orphan narrative. Keeble's commanding voice presents a series of interrelated vignettes, each separated by period music. His characters each have memorable voices, especially Fagin, who is a bombastic villain fully brought to life. With such voices, Keeble offers a performance, more than a narration. His changing tone and pace draw attention to dramatic events. Keeble's vivid narration makes Oliver's story accessible for young listeners.
The subject of countless adaptations, Oliver Twist is an essential read or listen, and this version is both exciting and accessible for children ages 8 to 13. Roy McMillan uses Dickens’ original words in the main text, simplifying and clarifying them at certain points. Oliver’s journey to London is narrated with ceaseless energy by Jonathan Keeble; his reading is infused with a delicious knack for storytelling.