The Wordy Shipmates

Sarah Vowell, Author , read by the author and others. Simon & Schuster Audio $29.99 (
, unabridged, six CDs, 7 hrs., $29.99 ISBN ) ISBN 978-0-7435-7819-6

Vowell’s account of the post-Mayflower Puritans of New England and their influence on contemporary American culture over the centuries is thoroughly enjoyable in print. But hearing her ironic but passionate little-girl voice making history accessible and providing humorous and often trenchant present-day asides, as she did on NPR’s This American Life , is even better. In addition to fleshing out history with extensive quotes from journals and other documents of the time, Vowell has assembled a sizable cast of co-readers, including Eric Bogosian, Peter Dinklage, Jill Clayburgh, Campbell Scott and Dermot Mulroney. Some narrators feel like stunt casting, although there’s a lovely cameo by Catherine Keener, whose calm, self-contained voice is perfect for Anne Hutchinson on trial. Vowell and company (aided by Michael Giacchino’s musical score) make for pleasurable listening. A Riverhead hardcover (Reviews, July 28). (Oct.)

Reviewed on: 12/22/2008
Release date: 10/01/2008
Genre: Audio
Hardcover - 254 pages - 978-1-59448-999-0
Open Ebook - 272 pages - 978-1-4362-9059-3
Paperback - 254 pages - 978-1-59448-400-1
Peanut Press/Palm Reader - 272 pages - 978-1-4362-9060-9
Hardcover - 331 pages - 978-1-4104-1365-9
Open Ebook - 272 pages - 978-1-4406-3869-5
Downloadable Audio - 978-1-4561-0693-5
Downloadable Audio - 978-0-7435-7820-2
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