We love audio dramas! Different than ordinary books on tape, where a narrator reads a story aloud in a mostly monotone voice, an audio drama makes a story come alive through real-life sounds, music, and a variety of different voices. An audio drama is filled with adventure and excitement, keeping listeners on the tips of their toes.
From Adventures in Odyssey to Focus on the Family’s Radio Theatre, we have a small collection of audio dramas that we love to listen to on a rainy day or in the car on a long trip. We are excited to add another story to our radio drama collection, Beric The Briton by Heirloom Audio Productions.
Beric the Briton
Beric the Briton is based on the book Beric the Briton by G.A. Henty. Heirloom Audio Productions brings this G.A. Henty classic to life as we listen in to the story of the Roman Invasion of Great Britain. Follow Beric as he embarks on a great adventure during the time of the Roman Empire. From chief of his tribe to a Roman gladiator, Beric ultimately finds himself in a Roman colosseum defending the life of a young girl, Ennia. Go with Beric as he goes about the difficult task of organizing an army of Britons for success against the Romans. Learn too about forgiveness and loving your enemy.
Beric the Briton is recommended for kids ages 6 to adult and contains a set of two CDs, featuring two and a half hours of fast-moving adventure. I received the physical CD set as well as a few special bonuses that come with the purchase of the family four pack package. Included in the bonuses is:
- Beric the Briton MP3 download
- Beric the Briton E-Book by G.A. Henty
- official MP3 soundtrack
- printable cast poster
- 50 page study guide and discussion starter
- inspirational verse poster with the quote, “I will gladly die for Him who died for me”
- unlimited access to the Live the Adventure Letter e-newsletter
- fun behind-the-scenes videos of the cast creating Beric the Briton
The study guide and discussion starter is a wonderful companion to the CDs. Each section of the CD has a corresponding section in the study guide to help children understand the storyline, encourage deeper thinking, and define some of the larger vocabulary used in the story. It also includes a nice biography of G.A. Henty, the author of the story, the Roman Emperor Nero, and Queen Boadicea.
Thoughts and Usage
The kids and I gathered in the living room together to listen to this two and a half hour audio adventure. We listened to one CD one afternoon and listened to the second CD the following day. My son colored while he listened. After hearing the first CD, my son couldn’t wait to hear the rest of the story.
We all enjoyed this audio drama. The storyline was exciting and engaging. You feel as if you are right there with Beric as he goes on his exciting adventure.
I think the study guide that accompanies the CD is a great addition. I didn’t use it while we listened to the CD because I knew that would take some of the fun away from the experience. We did go over a few of the study questions after we had listened to the entire story, though. Going over the study questions was a great way to evaluate listening comprehension. Because the story was presented in such a vivid visual way, my son really did retain quite a lot of information, which was great! The study guide also contains three great topical Bible studies; one on the importance of studying history, one on the commandment “Thou Shalt Not Kill”, and the last one is about Jesus Christ being the only way to eternal life. Lastly, there is a section at the end of the study about “the significance of the colosseum in Christianity.”
The production was top quality, very realistic, and impressive. If you like Adventures in Odyssey and Focus on the Family Radio Theatre, you can expect the same kind of quality from Heirloom Audio Productions.
Beric the Briton is, so far, our favorite Heirloom Audio Production. We’ve been reading from Jesus Freaks: Martyrs: Stories of Those Who Stood for Jesus: The Ultimate Jesus Freaks and this production went right along with the stories we’ve been reading. Obviously, Nero is known for his horrible and torturous persecution of Christians. It was a horrible time and we get a glimpse into some of what happened in this story. However, what stood out to me was this quote from Ennia who, when faced with death, refused to recant and instead proclaimed, “He gave His life for me – it is not much that I should give mine for Him.”
A moving story, Beric the Briton stands out with its profound theme of dying to self and living for Christ. Filled with great character building qualities, I’d definitely recommend this to anyone looking for a fun way for their kids to learn and experience history.