cover image The Three Weissmanns of Westport

The Three Weissmanns of Westport

Cathleen Schine, read by Hillary Huber, Blackstone Audio, unabridged, eight CDs, 10 hours, $29.95 ISBN 978-1-4417-2515-8

Schine’s Austenesque novel of manners translates delightfully to audio, thanks to the witty, character-centric writing and Hillary Huber’s empathetic narration. Huber’s nuanced performance makes the listener feel for elderly, abandoned Betty and her two beleaguered daughters, and the creative character voices (ranging from frail Betty and Yiddish-accented Cousin Lou to Valley Girl Amber, snippy Felicity, and adorable three-year-old Henry) brings the colorful cast to vivid life. Best of all, as expressive as she is, Huber is never histrionic: even when selfish characters like gold digger Felicity present their points of view, Huber plays it straight, allowing the characters’ patently self-serving words to speak for themselves and the listener to judge them, resisting the urge to overplay the obvious hypocrisy. This audio is a pleasure to listen to—a perfect marriage of novel and narrator. A Farrar, Straus & Giroux hardcover (Reviews, Dec. 21). (Mar.)