Abby Craden’s narration is a work of art
Damn, this book… Seriously. So. Many. Feelings. I’ve said and written my love for A Whisper of Solace so many times since it was released in April that I don’t think anyone who reads my reviews, even only occasionally, doesn’t already know about it. I don’t see what I can add to my original review, not without saying too much, so I’ll focus on the narration. There’s a reason, many reasons actually, why so many authors of sapphic fiction want Abby Craden to narrate their books. She’s not the only fabulous narrator but she’s obviously in my top 5. I do find certain books better suited to her style, however, and Milena McKay’s are definitely in this category.
Her narration of A Whisper of Solace is exactly what I hope for in an audiobook: it takes a brilliant story and elevates it even higher. Everything is more but never excessive. With Neve Blackthorne, McKay wrote one of the most complex characters and Craden’s talent shines in the voice she lends her, giving life to all the layers the author bestowed on her. I was especially looking forward to hearing Craden voice her. The others too but Neve first and foremost. Then there’s Audrey, her youth, her naiveté, her pain, her love… The contrast is magnificent and poignant.
This story includes quite a few fantastic secondary characters, and to them as well Craden’s narration adds even more substance. Juno Buchanan is one, and I can’t think of a better word than glee as to what her part in the denouement made me feel, a feeling I’m convinced she shares, judging from her tweets (I’m trying so hard not to spoil!). Harlan is another, his young boy voice perfect, tender and strong. Gustavo, Morag, Livia… I love them all, I didn’t want to say goodbye, didn’t want the audiobook to end. And if all this makes me sound like I’m fangirling, so be it. Abby Craden’s narration is a work of art. As much as I loved her in McKay’s other books, The Headmistress and The Delicate Things We Make, she takes this one to another level, full of nuance and texture. Like the book itself, my favourite so far by this author. 5 stars.