The Gap of Time

William Shakespeare's The Winter's Tale Retold: A Novel
Series: Hogarth Shakespeare, Book 1
Length: 7 hrs and 2 mins
4 out of 5 stars (79 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

The Winter's Tale is one of Shakespeare's "late plays". It tells the story of a king whose jealousy results in the banishment of his baby daughter and the death of his beautiful wife. His daughter is found and brought up by a shepherd on the Bohemian coast, but through a series of extraordinary events, father and daughter, and eventually mother, too, are reunited.

In The Gap of Time, Jeanette Winterson's cover version of The Winter's Tale, we move from London, a city reeling after the 2008 financial crisis, to a storm-ravaged American city called New Bohemia. Her story is one of childhood friendship, money, status, technology, and the elliptical nature of time. Written with energy and wit, this is a story of the consuming power of jealousy on the one hand and redemption and the enduring love of a lost child on the other.

©2015 Jeanette Winterson (P)2015 Random House Audio

Critic Reviews

"The performances of Penelope Rawlins, Mark Bazeley, and Ben Onwukwe enhance Winterson's graphic scenes and gritty dialogue with their clarity and flawless pacing." ( AudioFile)
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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

The men are great

I enjoyed the male readers, but I found the female reader almost insufferable. Great storyline, though, and brilliantly written. Worth a read, particularly if you enjoy Shakespeare and The Winter's Tale.

4 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Good story, poor performance

I am a fan of Winterson and think she did well to retell Shakespeare, but the dialog often fell short of my expectations of her writing. The ending also felt rushed.

The hardest thing about this book for me, though, was the female narrator. Her Southern (US) accent and male interpretations were difficult to listen to. I almost couldn't finish the book when it switched from the male narrators to the female.

1 person found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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Nice take

I'm a Winter's Tale scholar, so I'm biased about Winterson's interpretive moves. The literary intrusions are a little taxing, and she gets Bohemia all wrong. She nails the melodrama of Sicilia, however. It's not Shakespeare, but it's quite wonderful.

4 people found this helpful

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Did not capture Shakespeare

This story, especially the part in New Bohemia, was forced and did not capture the emotions that permeate Shakespeare's play. This is only one in the Hogarth series that I found disappointing.

The 2 male narrators are outstanding. The female narrator is horrendous and grating. Her different voices are abysmal.

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A Case for Forgiveness???

As far as adaptations go, this was really well-done. My thoughts is that rape by one's mate is not forgivable. The rape of Hermione was just too graphic and a turn-off. However, Jeanette Winterston is in my heart as a writer and this work, although in the "eye" of Shakepeare, does really work well as a rounding out of her other novels. Soooo connected.

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Loved the story but Narrators were distracting

What did you like best about this story?

I liked the modern version of the story.

How could the performance have been better?

The narration was very distracting. The characters voices depending on who was narrating that section of the book. I wish I would have read this one instead of listening.

3 people found this helpful