Audio Review: The Dead Side of the Mic

(BBC Audiobooks)

CHARLES Paris, actor and reluctant detective, finds himself lodging with his ex-wife and their pregnant daughter, which makes a new job on BBC Radio Rep even more attractive. Naturally, things don’t go exactly to plan when a young female studio manager is found murdered in an editing suite at Broadcasting House, forcing Charles to step in to investigate.

A remarkably accessible whodunit, even for someone who has never encountered Simon Brett’s thespian sleuth before, with Bill Nighy defining the lead role with a combination of dramatic verve and perfectly pitched humour. Supported by Suzanne Burden as Frances and featuring Charlotte Green as herself, the play takes advantage of its BBC setting but doesn’t allow it to consume the story.

The production values are first-rate, and the pace bubbles along with a genuine sense of intrigue, keeping the listener engrossed throughout. An excellent audio, and one which would even encourage repeat listening.

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