NPR logo Lenny Henry, Narrator, Friend of Neil Gaiman

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Lenny Henry, Narrator, Friend of Neil Gaiman


Meet Lenny Henry, big in Britain..

Listener Gavin Bruce took the BPP to task today for not knowing who Lenny Henry was when we played a clip of Henry's audiobook recording of Neil Gaiman's Anansi Boys (this month's BPP Book Club selection). Bruce wrote:

You didn't seem to recognize Lenny Henry's name or voice on the show today (he's the narrator of your talking book version). I wanted to mention that he is actually a very very very famous person, one of the most well-known and talented people in the UK for at least 20 years. You might want to learn more about him.

Right you are, Gavin! You can find out everything you might want to know about Henry on his website. He's not only a very accomplished comedian, he's also a friend of Neil Gaiman's, and, according to Gaiman, was at least in part the inspiration for Anansi Boys:

There's definitely a part of me that feels that Lenny Henry's reading of ANANSI BOYS will be in some odd way the definitive text, but that's because Lenny was there when I came up with the idea, and much of the time while I was writing it, I was hearing Len's voice in the back of my head.

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Gaiman also said this about Henry in an extensive interview about Anansi Boys for About.com:

On the one hand he's a very private, quiet, scholarly, reserved person, and on the other hand is an absolutely wild, outgoing, over-the-top, huge, funny dude. And both of these things are true. And I love the fact that both of these things are true.

After the jump, links to ever-so-slightly blue, absolutely hilarious Henry clips.

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