Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Richard Armitage: New audiobook recasts 'Hamlet' as a thriller

Mark Kennedy AP Drama Writer
POSTED:   05/20/2014 06:00:46 AM MDT

(Eds: 'Hamlet: Prince of Denmark' available for download beginning Tuesday. With AP Photos.)
NEW YORK (AP) — The hero of a new audiobook is introduced as he lies in bed, tying to sleep on a frigid day in 1601.

He's the heir to the Danish throne, a tall handsome man of 27 with "a pale, finely chiseled face" and "mournful eyes that were the pale gray-blue of the sea in autumn."

"To hell with the throne," the young man says, pulling the sheets over his head when a court jester comes to awaken him. "I want to sleep. Forever."

Not familiar with this guy? You should be. His name is Hamlet.

Audible Inc., the world's largest seller of downloadable audiobooks, has followed the success of their recent novelization of "Macbeth" with a new thriller about the moody prince of Elsinore.

"Hamlet: Prince of Denmark," co-written by Shakespeare expert and novelist A. J. Hartley and British mystery writer David Hewson, was released Tuesday, narrated by "The Hobbit" actor Richard Armitage.

It's a fresh, contemporary take on Shakespeare's tragedy, one not afraid to create new characters or cut long soliloquies. We get a noirish Hamlet, who, when asked by Laertes if he's ready to fence, blurts out: "I've been ready all my life."

The writers admit they're a little nervous about the reaction they'll get for this "Game of Thrones"-like portrait of a slightly bipolar Hamlet who never utters the line "To be or not to be."

 READ MORE HERE: http://www.lcsun-news.com/portal/las_cruces-sunlife/ci_25798021/new-audiobook-recasts-hamlet-thriller?_loopback=1

Online: http://www.audible.com/mt/Hamlet

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