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The dazzling BBC Radio adaptations of Ursula K. Le Guin’s famous fantasy saga and her ground-breaking science fiction masterpiece – plus bonus material
Ursula K. Le Guin was one of the most revered and influential writers of the 20th Century. Her ‘Earthsea’ books have sold millions of copies and been translated into numerous languages, while her trailblazing novel The Left Hand of Darkness was a landmark in feminist science fiction and ranks among the greatest SF novels of all time. This BBC collection brings together the magical radio retellings of both these seminal classics.
Set on an immense archipelago where magic is a part of life, Earthsea tells the stories of Ged, a young, reckless wizard, and Tenar, taken from her home as a child to become Arha, guardian priestess of the ominous Tombs of Atuan. Meeting for the first time deep within the tombs, their destinies become intertwined, and they unite to bring peace to their troubled world. Years later, their paths have diverged – but when Ged returns to Tenar’s island on a dragon’s back, they are caught up in an epic battle for the future of Earthsea itself. Starring James McArdle, Shaun Dooley and Robert Glenister as Ged, and Aysha Kala, Vineeta Rishi and Nina Wadia as Tenar with Toby Jones and Noma Dumezweni.
The Left Hand of Darkness takes place on an alien world in the grip of an Ice Age. Genly Ai has been sent from Earth on a mission to persuade Gethen to join a planetary union, the Ekumen. But his task is fraught with difficulty. For this is a world whose people have no fixed gender, and Genly’s encounters with the natives are marked by mutual incomprehension and mistrust. In coming to terms with their otherness and their sameness Genly must let go of his fixed ideas about identity, and embark on a dangerous journey across the snow plains with his only ally, First Minister Estraven. The stakes are high to save a world from war. Kobna Holdbrook-Smith stars as Genly, with Lesley Sharp as Estraven.
Also included Ursula Le Guin at 85, in which novelist Naomi Alderman interviews Le Guin, with contributions from Neil Gaiman, David Mitchell and Karen Joy Fowler.
- 01 – Earthsea – Shadow
- 02 – Earthsea – Schooling
- 03 – Earthsea – Lookfar
- 04 – Earthsea – The Ring
- 05 – Earthsea – Dragonfly
- 06 – Earthsea – The Other Earthsea
- 07 – Earthsea – A Bad Thing
- 08 – Earthsea – Tenar
- 09 – Earthsea – Tehanu
- 10 – Earthsea – The Mender
- 11 – Earthsea – The Princess
- 12 – Earthsea – Children of Fire and Earth
- 13 – The Left Hand of Darkness
- 14 – The Left Hand of Darkness
- 15 – Ursula Le Guin at 85