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Michael Shannon Narrates Sam Shepard’s Final Audiobook, ‘Spy of the First Person’ — Listen

Knopf Doubleday will release Shepard's final work of fiction tomorrow.

Michael Shannon and Sam Shepard

Invision/AP/REX/Shutterstock, Marion Curtis/StarPix/REX/Shutterstock

Michael Shannon has honored his late co-star, Sam Shepard, by recording the audiobook to Shepard’s final work of fiction. On December 5, Knopf Doubleday will release “Spy of the First Person,” the story of a nearly-immobilized man who looks back on his life while undergoing medical testing.

Shepard died of ALS complications in July at age 73, leaving behind a legacy that includes more than 60 film roles and 55 penned plays. “Buried Child” won him the Pulitzer Prize for Drama in 1979; five years later, Shepard earned a Best Supporting Actor Oscar nomination for “The Right Stuff.”

Read More: Sam Shepard, RIP: 5 Essential Performances That Illustrate His Genius

Shannon, himself a two-time Oscar nominee in that category, appeared with Shepard in films such as “Mud” and “Midnight Special.” In addition, the “Shape of Water” actor performed as several Shepard-created characters onstage. This year alone, Shannon participated in a June reading of “Curse of the Starving Class” at Brooklyn’s Hang a Tale theater company, then, this fall, acted in a five-week run of “Simpatico” at the McCarter Theatre Center in Princeton, New Jersey. That show was presented by Chicago-based A Red Orchid Theatre, which Shannon co-founded when he was 19.

Read More: Sam Shepard Dead: Ava DuVernay, Jeff Daniels, Sasha Grey, and More React

“Spy of the First Person” is Shepard’s second Knopf Doubleday book of 2017; in February, he published a novel — his first — called “The One Inside.” Shepard’s final on-camera role came in October’s “Never Here,” the first feature film from director Camille Thoman. You can listen to a new clip from the audiobook below, as well as over at Entertainment Weekly, which has its own exclusive listen).

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