Thursday, August 3, 2017

In the Reign of Terror ~ Heirloom Audio Productions does it again ~ (AnAudio Drama Review)

Once again, Heirloom Audio Productions has come up with another stellar presentation of a G. A. Henty novel, In the Reign of Terror. My Middlest (Being the audio/Henty fan in the family) listened to this book while we were on a lengthy road trip, learning a little bit more about a terrible time in history. As always the production and cast are incomparable!

The story revolves around a young man (Harry, a 16 year old English boy), who is something of an exchange student to France. He was to be a bracing influence on the sons of the aristocratic family with whom he was to reside, while receiving a good French education himself. His father believes in the humaneness of those involved in the French uprising that was gathering speed, and is sure that Harry will be as safe there as he might have been during England's civil war. He had no idea that the French Revolutionists were only guided by a humanistic viewpoint that would allow the godless Reign of Terror to take place, throwing entire families into danger.

Harry finds himself struggling to help his hosts escape sure death, with some degree of success. The story is of dark and dreadful days, and just as with Joseph in Egypt, what man intended for evil, God intended for good, but it wasn't easy, or entirely happy endings.

While I personally don't feel the story is appropriate for those under 12 due to the gruesome concept of the guillotine and violence of the French Revolution in general (we're protective in my household), the story itself is not gratuitous in its violence, and many families may find it acceptable fare for ages 8+).

Bonus content for Audio Club Subscribers

In the Reign of Terror Original E-Book Download
Once again, a beautifully produced ebook version of the story, with a colorful background. *One thing I appreciate about pdf ebooks is the ability to search a specific word or phrase, if there is something one wants to locate in the text!

Official Script Download
A new feature that is interesting. It allows the ability to compare and contrast between the book and the script, showing what it takes to move a story from text to audio production. Kids who enjoy theatre will probably love this feature!

Study Guide and Discussion Download 
As in previous reviews, my high-school-aged son did not use the study guide, as it is intended more upper elementary/middle school use, but I do want to give you an example of how it is laid out.

I especially appreciate that it shows precisely what part of the audio book each portion covers. The screenshot below shows that this page deals with disc one, track three, minutes 9:34-13:34.
Each set of questions has three parts:

  • Listening well (Comprehension questions)
  • Thinking Further (Application questions)
  • Defining Words (Vocabulary)

There are also sometimes

  • Expand Your Learning (Background Historical Details) sections

At the end of the study guide there is a page of extra book resources (Especially suitable for older students), three Bible Studies (When God Means Evil for Good, Resistance to Tyranny, True Manliness), and further historical background, including a compare/contrast of the French Revolution and the American Revolution.

Listen Online Playlist 
(This is a change from previous reviews when MP3s were available to download directly to an MP3 device. I actually found this more difficult, as my son was listening on a road trip, so didn't have access to wifi~ we had to download the tracks to my computer and then have him listen on that (thank heavens for power inverters that allowed my computer to be plugged in to the car while traveling), or upload them to his phone. Either way, I personally did not find this to be a positive change. :( )

Official Soundtrack
Again, a change from before~ no longer a downloadable option, but "listen online"  ~ great if you have wifi, not so great otherwise (We have very limited data on our phones).

Downloadable Cast Poster and "Inspirational Quote" Posters 
Downloadable Desktop Wallpaper

If you simply purchase the CD set, Heirloom Audio Productions does still maintain some free resources including timely and inspirational articles/posts, free downloads of the study guides for each book, and a kids' corner with a variety of activities and printables.

Here's a little bit more about their new...

AUDIO ADVENTURE CLUB(<--- check="" click="" here="" it="" out="" p="" to="">This is set up as a subscription service (similar to Disney's Movie Club).
They are currently offering a $1.00, 90 day trial ~ (After the trial period is up the plan charges $24.97 every three months, and guarantees that three new physical CD sets will be sent three times per year as they are produced) this gives you the 2 CD set of their newest title (not yet available to the public) Mr. Bailey's Heir and access to many MORE resources including the bonus features mentioned above.

Some other resources include

Old Time Radio Vault~ here are some of the programs that can be accessed online

A full Crash Course on the Constitution

Discounts on previously produced Audio Adventures ($24.97 each), Daily Devotionals and "This Day in History," Educational Treasures, including rare history and grammar textbooks from the 1700s and 1800s, and even more resources and articles. 

Not So Nutty Nitty Gritty 
  • Company: Heirloom Audio Productions
  • Product: In the Reign of Terror
  • Ages: Personal opinion,  fantastic for 12+ (Company suggests age 6+) 
  • Price: 
    • $29.97 for 2 physical CD's $19.97 for the download version
    • New Audio Adventures Club~ $1 three month trial including 2 CD set of the NEXT production Captain Bayley's Heir, $24.75 every three months after.
Visit Heirloom Audio Productions on their social media pages: 

You can check out my reviews of other Heirloom Audio Productions:

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