Behind the scenes of Close to Home
by Cara Hunter
Close to Home is full of voices. The first-person narration by DI Adam Fawley, the blog posts and news stories, and the Twitter feeds from people who have very little real insight into what’s really going on but are offering their opinions anyway. So when Penguin said they were going to do an audio version of the book my first thought (after being thrilled, of course) was, ‘Blimey, that’s going to be some acting job’.
But little did I know that they were actually planning a full cast recording. Like an actual radio drama. Penguin had literally never done an audiobook that way before so it was all a bit overwhelming. But so much fun. The audio team went back to the text and worked out they had a total of 37 different speakers. The two main narrators were played by well-known actors, and they cast people whose work I really admire. Emma Cuniffe took the main third-person narration, and Lee Ingleby read Adam Fawley (being a fully paid-up Line of Duty devotee I confess to a bit of a fan-girl moment when I heard that).
But that still left the team with a lot of empty slots – so how to find people to fill them all? Answer – send an email round Penguin staffers. Which is exactly what James Keyte, the Audio Editor, did. And apparently it was a riot – dozens of people wanted to take part, including the Managing Director of the Audiences and Audio division. And this is where I confess that I did one of the Twitter accounts myself (see if you can guess which!). I didn’t have much to say, but the director took it very seriously, going through several takes until I was reading it exactly the way he wanted.
I haven’t heard the end result yet, but I can’t thank the audio team enough for rising to the huge challenge of pulling the whole thing together. Next up? Casting for In The Dark…
Have you listened to the Close to Home audiobook? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!