These four works show Samuel Beckett at his most penetrating. Both Krapp's Last Tape (1958) and Not I (1972) are among the most striking pieces written for the theatre in the 20th century. An old man sits at a table, playing back old tapes made when he was younger, mixed glimpses of past feelings. In Not I, we have just a mouth expressing memories and torment in a torrent of words.
That Time and A Piece of Monologue are less well-known, but express the Beckettian concerns of introspection, memory, and hopelessness in different ways, yet always with sympathy for the human condition. Though written for the stage, these four monodramas are even more penetrating in the enclosed, intimate medium of the audiobook.
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Of course it's genius
Could we have more Beckett like Ill Seen Ill Said, Company and Worstward Ho, and numerous other short texts and short stories.
- Mike Thomas