Two Plays For Voices

Version: Unabridged
Author: Neil Gaiman
Narrator: A Full Cast
Genres: Science Fiction & Fantasy, Fantasy, Science Fiction, Fiction & Literature
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Published In: September 2002
# of Units: 2 CDs
Length: 2 hours
Ratings:
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Overview

"The joy for me is knowing that somebody can have this strange audio experience. They're getting something as good as you get from radio." - Neil Gaimen

Produced by the Sci-Fi Channel and Seeing Ear Theatre - these two plays are adapted for voice by Neil Gaiman from two of his short stories (both stories can be found in Smoke & Mirrors).

SNOW GLASS APPLES: Once upon a time there lived a young princess with skin as white as snow, with hair as black as coal, with lips redder than blood. Most people think they know what happens to this young unfortunate girl. Most people are wrong. Tony-award winning actress Bebe Neuwirth (Chicago, Sweet Charity, and TV's Cheers) stars as a wise Queen who wants nothing more than to reign over her kingdom peacefully but is forced to match wits with an inhuman child who has an unnatural taste for blood.

Full Cast List:
Bebe Neuwirth as the Queen ; Martin Carey as the Huntsman; Mark Evans as the Prince; Merwin Goldsmith as the Lord of the Fair; J.R. Horne as the Archbishop & Friar; Alissa Hunnicutt as the Maidservant; Randy Maggiore as a Soldier; Kate Simses as the Princess; Nick Wyman as the King

MURDER MYSTERIES: In this mystery noir set in heaven's City of Angels before the fall, the first crime has been committed. It is an awful one. While the angelic hosts labor to create the world and its workings, one of their number is mysteriously slain by one of their own. Raguel, Angel of Vengeance, is mandated by Lucifer to discover both motive and murderer in this holy dominion that had so recently known no sin.

Full Cast List:
Brian Dennehy as Raguel ; Anne Bobby as Tink's Friend ; Christopher Burns as Saraquael ; Thom Christopher as Lucifer ; Ed Dennehy as Zephkiel ; Michael Emerson as Narrator ; Traci Godfrey as Tinkerbell Richmond ; Evan Pappas as Phanuel

Reviews (10)

very good

Written by justin on July 20th, 2009

  • Book Rating: 5/5

Good short stories and well read with good production values. I recommend. Not for Children!

Nice, short stories, well produced

Written by Rick O on June 17th, 2009

  • Book Rating: 4/5

Somewhere in the dusty corners of my brain, I'm convinced that I'd read another adaptation of the first story: "Murder Mysteries", maybe in comic book form? At any rate, it was great to hear performed in the old radio-drama style, with the full cast and the foley effects. The riff on Snow White, "Snow, Glass, Apples" was the more entertaining of the two, as the pacing was faster and there was less introspection. Both were worth hearing, and both Brian Dennehy and Bebe Neuwirth did excellent jobs narrating. Thanks to their short length and immersive production, the pair of stories is a good "audiobook starter kit" to give to people to try to get them hooked on the format.

ummm ... my review???

Written by Dana Livermore from Dover, NH on April 9th, 2008

  • Book Rating: 4/5

Neil Gaiman is one of my recent discoveries and I have yet to find a story of his I have not liked. These plays are fun and inventive, though with less "Douglas Adamsish" humor than, say Anansi Boys, but I like the twist on a familiar tale and idea that each represent. At times the sound effects were less than effective, but the actors were top notch. I wish there were more than two.

Two Plays for Voices

Written by Regan Wann on January 29th, 2008

  • Book Rating: 4/5

This is a selection of two stories from a larger work (I think they're both from Fragile Things) that have been dramatically fleshed out for audio. I really enjoyed these versions and thought they were excellent listens. Short, but really enjoyable.

Short, but worth every second.

Written by C. Allison from Kankakee, IL on November 19th, 2007

  • Book Rating: 5/5

This was a suprise for me. Honestly, I tend not to go too much for the "redefined" fantasy. But, this was a good one. My chief complaint would be that it was so short. Both, stories were rather haunting-in a chilling way. The imagery of the beating heart in the "Snow White" story really was powerful. The author used perspective masterfully, and brought the conclusion of the story to a satisfying ending. The second story used an excellent plot structure, that had a hard-hitting conclusion. There are few that can use "Heaven" as an adequate stage for commentary on earthly things. As cautioned in previous reviews, these are not stories for children. Albeit short (only two cds), these are highly recommended.

Interesting catch

Written by Marty Dixon on June 20th, 2007

  • Book Rating: 4/5

This set consists of two fairly short stories, but they were pretty interesting. Snow Glass Apples was a great twist on a classic story, and I thought it was done with a very clever vein. Murder Mystery had an interesting plot, but the very end left me a bit lost. However, both are certainly worth listening to. The one note I would have would be that there are some "adult" situations described in both stories. I think it is unfortunate, as those segments really don't add much to the story. Just something to be aware of if you listen to these on a drive with your children.

Nice Production...

Written by Anonymous on November 16th, 2005

  • Book Rating: 4/5

Large cast and sound effects make for a very nice production. The 1hr average length is excellent for a quick commute and great for a quick return. I found the Murder Mysteries story the more mature of the two. Snow glass apples was an interesting fairy tale with a vampiric edge. Both are for a mature audience.

Haunting Perfection

Written by Nestra on May 3rd, 2005

  • Book Rating: 5/5

I've read Snow Glass Apples before, but had forgotten about it since it was a few years ago. Listening to it again was just as enjoyable. This is a great twist on a classic fairy tale with a lovely shade of gothic horror thrown in. Murder Mysteries was, if possible, even better. The sound effects add a haunting quality that made me want to shake my head to clear out the images when I was forced to take a break from listening. The story is poignant - a thought-provokingly different spin on the subject of angels. Excellent stories, excellent narration.

Two Plays for Voices

Written by Anonymous from West Dundee, IL on February 23rd, 2005

  • Book Rating: 5/5

Any fan of Neil Gaiman knows that his view of the world of fantasy is most definitely different from the way Disney presents it. His take on 'Snow White' in this audio is a truly eerie story certain to give any listener pause. Familiar characters are turned upside - no 'happily ever after' formulas here. The second piece is one I would describe as a sort of 'noire' story of angels and murder. I highly recommend this book for those looking for stories that challenge your imagination.

Two Plays For Voices [uab]

Written by Anonymous on November 25th, 2004

  • Book Rating: 4/5

Well done, and well presented. Enjoyed the twist in "Snow Glass Apples." "Murder Mysteries" is compelling, and the twist is even less expected. Be aware, that these stories are NOT appropriate for children.

Author Details

Author Details

Gaiman, Neil

Neil Gaiman grew up in England and, although Jewish, attended Church of England schools, including Ardingly College, a boarding school in West Sussex (South of England). During the early 1980s he worked as a journalist and book reviewer. His first book was a biography of the band Duran Duran. He moved from England to his wife's hometown in the American midwest several years ago. He and his family now live in a renovated Victorian farmhouse where (he says) his hobbies are writing things down, hiding, and talking about himself in the third person. More about him and his books below.

A professional writer for more than twenty years, Neil Gaiman has been one of the top writers in modern comics, and is now a bestselling novelist. His work has appeared in translation in more than nineteen countries, and nearly all of his novels, graphic and otherwise, have been optioned for films. He is listed in the Dictionary of Literary Biography as one of the top ten living post-modern writers.

Gaiman was the creator/writer of the monthly cult DC Comics series, "Sandman," which won him nine Will Eisner Comic Industry Awards, including the award for best writer four times, and three Harvey Awards. "Sandman #19" took the 1991 World Fantasy Award for best short story, making it the first comic ever to be awarded a literary award.

His six-part fantastical TV series for the BBC, "Neverwhere," was broadcast in 1996. His novel, also called "Neverwhere," and set in the same strange underground world as the television series, was released in 1997; it appeared on a number of bestseller lists, including those of the Los Angeles Times, the San Francisco Chronicle, and Locus.

Stardust, an illustrated prose novel in four parts, began to appear from DC Comics in 1997. In 1999 Avon released the all-prose unillustrated version, which appeared on a number of bestseller lists, was selected by Publishers Weekly as one of the best books of the year, and was awarded the prestigious Mythopoeic Award as best novel for adults.

American Gods, a novel for adults, was published in 2001 and appeared on many best-of- the-year lists, was a New York Times bestseller in both hardcover and paperback, and won the Hugo, Nebula, SFX, Bram Stoker, and Locus Awards.

Coraline (2002), his first novel for children, was a New York Times and international bestseller, was nominated for the Prix Tam Tam, and won the Elizabeth Burr/Worzalla Award, the BSFA Award, the HUgo, the Nebula and the Bram Stoker Award.

2003 saw the publication of bestseller The Wolves in the Walls, a children's picture book, illustrated by Gaiman's longtime collaborator Dave McKean, which the New York Times named as one of the best illustrated books of the year; and the first Sandman graphic novel in seven years, Endless Nights, the first graphic novel to make the New York Times bestseller list.

In 2004, Gaiman published the a new graphic novel for Marvel called 1602, which was the best-selling comic of 2004, and 2005 saw the Sundance Film Festival premiere of "MirrorMask," a Jim Henson Company Production written by Gaiman and directed by McKean. A lavishly designed book containing the complete script, black and white storyboards, and full-color art from the film will be published by William Morrow in early 2005; a picture book for younger readers, also written by Gaiman and illustrated with art from the movie, will be published by HarperCollins Children's Books at a later date.

In Fall 2005, Anansi Boys, the follow-up to American Gods, was published.