Audiobooks: Lucey’s Portrait of Sargent’s Women | Xpress Reviews

Week ending October 13, 2017

Lucey, Donna M. Sargent’s Women: Four Lives Behind the Canvas. 9 CDs. 10:30 hrs. HighBridge. Aug. 2017. ISBN 9781681687285. $34.99. digital download. biog
How many of us wonder about the lives behind the faces in portraits? What were they like? Lucey (Archie and Amelie: Love and Madness in the Gilded Age) wondered the same thing, and thanks to her excellent research and narrative, we learn about four of the subjects immortalized by the great portraiture artist John Singer Sargent (1856–1925). Along the way, we get glimpses into his life as well. From a Colorado heiress to a Bostonian legend, these women, often in their own voices through their correspondence, are introduced to listeners. Narrator Elizabeth Wiley has a wonderfully melodic voice, and she manages to distinguish the different personae throughout the book in a distinctive manner, but one that is not distracting. The author/narrator combination provides nonfiction storytelling at a high level, keeping the listener’s interest throughout the nearly 11-hour program.
Verdict Highly recommended for medium and large libraries and small libraries with a strong arts readership. [“Will be a lasting addition to academic and arts collections”: LJ 5/15/17 starred review of the Norton hc.]—Gretchen Pruett, New Braunfels P.L., TX

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