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Publisher's Summary

Full-cast dramatisations of John Fowles' three best-known novels, with star casts.

John Fowles won international acclaim for his innovative, allusive novels The Collector, The Magus and The French Lieutenant's Woman. All were critical and commercial successes, translated into several languages and adapted as feature films. This collection brings together the BBC Radio adaptations of these three modern classics, with stellar casts including Judi Dench, Charles Dance and John Hurt.

The Collector—when a lonely, obsessional office clerk wins a fortune on the football pools, he turns from collecting butterflies to 'collecting' a beautiful art student.... This dark, disturbing dramatisation stars Judi Dench and Nigel Anthony.

The Magus—disillusioned young graduate Nick Urfe accepts a teaching post on an idyllic Greek island. There, he meets the mysterious Maurice Conchis and becomes embroiled in a world of bizarre encounters and psychological tricks. As reality and illusion intertwine, what strange game is Conchis playing with Nick? Tom Burke, Charles Dance and Hayley Atwell star in this eerie, Lynchian drama.

The French Lieutenant's Woman—Lyme Regis, 1867. Gentleman naturalist Charles Smithson is engaged to be married to the respectable Ernestina—but when he falls in love with notorious social outcast Sarah Woodruff, his complacent snobbery is shattered. Narrated by John Hurt, this multi-layered tale of forbidden passions in Victorian Dorset stars Jonathan Firth and Emily Bruni.

Text copyright © John Fowles 1963 (The Collector), 1966, 1977 (The Magus), 1969 (The French Lieutenant's Woman).

The Collector

Miranda—Judi Dench, Clegg—Nigel Anthony, other parts played by Douglas Blackwell, Martin Friend, Jane Knowles and John Rowe. Adapted by David Parker. Produced by Richard Wortley. First broadcast BBC Radio 4, 31st July 1972.

The Magus

Nick—Tom Burke

Conchis—Charles Dance

Lily—Hayley Atwell

Alison—Anna Skellern

Margaret—Josie Taylor

Mitford—David Seddon

Meli—Chris Pavlo

Rowena—Lynsey-Anne Moffat

Anton—Maarten Dannenberg

German Colonel—Bodo Friesecke

Greek resistance fighter/Ticket seller—Andreas Karras

Lily de Seitas—Beth Goddard

Kemp—Rachel Atkins

Briggs—Michael Shelford

Mrs Marks—Elaine Claxton

Benji—Rudi Goodman

Adapted by Adrian Hodges

Produced and directed by Heather Larmour

Harpsichordist: Maggie Cole

Recorder player: Martin Feinstein

First broadcast BBC Radio 4, 20th March-3rd April 2016

The French Lieutenant's Woman

Narrator—John Hurt

Charles—Jonathan Firth

Sarah—Emily Bruni

Ernestina—Kelly Reilly

Mrs Tranter—Elizabeth Spriggs

Dr Grogan—TP McKenna

Mrs Poulteney/Mrs Endicott—Susan Jameson

Sam—Nick Sayce

Mary—Ella Smith

Dairyman/Mr Freeman—Gerard McDermott

Mrs Fairley/Mrs Rogers—Colleen Prendergast

Ostler/Montague—Wayne Foskett

Prostitute—Sophie Roberts

Curate—John Cummins

Dramatised by Graham White

Produced by Peter Kavanagh

First broadcast BBC World Service, 23rd-30th September 2006

©2022 BBC Studios Distribution Ltd (P)2022 BBC Studios Distribution Ltd

What listeners say about John Fowles: The Collector, The Magus & The French Lieutenant’s Woman

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nice

very nice good read and listen
have a n I ce day chump
ok

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The Collector is the only good one

I think the other two stories were very hard to understand. The Magus was absolutely crazy. It went on and on with seemingly no point at all except a man finally learned to love someone. I think. Actually, the story was Soo ridiculous that words cannot explain. In the French Lieutenant I am not sure what happened either. Could be I was dozing. The Collector was the only one I could understand and it was exciting. Hard to believe that this was the same author. The acting was excellent.

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  • SS
  • 04-08-22

Worth Every Penny

"Nick.... Please be kind to me. Don't sit in judgement of everything I do and say, like you always used to. I can't help being who I am."

Alison to Nick in The Magus.

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  • Highlight
  • 01-22-22

TERRIBLE ACTING & DIRECTING TOTALLY DESTROYED THESE CLASSICS

I am absolutely disgusted with all three of these play’s that happen to be some of my favourite’s. I enjoyed them all in book and film form but these BBC Radio performances are abysmal, totally stale, all performances are like listening to paint dry. Will be returning.