Tag Archives: audiobooks

2013 Thriller/Suspense Nominees and Reviews

The following audiobooks were nominated in the Thriller/Suspense Category. This category is being reviewed by Jenn from Jenn’s Bookshelves and Felicia from Geeky Bloggers Book Blog. Would you like to join the crowd? Sign up here.

BoyintheSuitcase

The Boy in the Suitcase by by Lene Kaaberbøl and Agnete Friis and narrated by Katherine Kellgren

Reviews

None currently available

ChalkGirl

The Chalk Girl by Carol O’Connell and narrated by Barbara Rosenblat

Reviews

None currently available

OddApocalypse

Odd Apocalypse by Dean Koontz and narrated by David Aaron Baker

Reviews

None currently available

RedWhiteandBlood

Red, White, and Blood by Christopher Farnsworth and narrated by Bronson Pinchot

Reviews

Geeky Bloggers Book Blog

Audio Specific Review: Y’all Bronson Pinchot did a FANTASTIC job! This is a series that I will be switching over to audio from this point out. I read the first two but pretty much loved Bronson’s narration. The only reason that he did not get a 5 is because of the women voices which took some getting used too. 90% of this book is male voices so it was only a little distracting.

RiseAgain

Rise Again: A Zombie Thriller by Ben Tripp and narrated by Kirsten Potter

Reviews

Jenn’s Bookshelves

A completely engaging and rewarding experience, Rise Again is a must read/listen for any zombie fan. Narrated Kirsten Potter.

2013 Teens Nominees and Reviews

The following audiobooks were nominated in the Teens Category. This category is being reviewed by Orchid from The Haunting of Orchid Forsythia, Krista from Cubicle Blindess Reviews, Melanie from Overreader, and Lucy from  The Reading Date. Would you like to join the crowd? Sign up here.

Diviners

The Diviners by Libba Bray and narrated by January LaVoy

Reviews

Cubicle Blindness

With stories told from an ensemble of characters. Evie O’Neill is the main focus of this epic sized new story from Libba Bray. Set in a historical 1920’s New York City, with a paranormal twist.

Overreader

January LaVoy’s narration is sweet and she handled the tension really well, but there is something a little too plummy about her voice that keeps me at a distance. I felt that this book – which takes place in the world of flappers and mysterious happenings in 1920s New York – should have had a narrator whose voice was younger and a little rawer.

Dodger

Dodger by Terry Pratchett and narrated by Stephen Briggs

Reviews

Overreader

I know Pratchett to be a clever, quick teller of tales, and go into his novels expecting a romp both silly and smart. And Dodger is a superb character. I want to live in a world where I can encounter Dodgers at the most unexpected and delightful times.

Enchanted

Enchanted by Alethea Kontis and narrated by Katherine Kellgren

Reviews

Overreader

Oh, Sunday! Such a classic misunderstood youngest sibling with a secret. She’s the 7th daughter of a 7th daughter in a kingdom where magic is fairly commonplace, so really she shouldn’t need to pour out her troubles to the frog at her local fairy well to make herself feel better. Nevertheless, Sunday does end up sharing her diary with Grumble the talking frog, who they both know is enchanted, but who doesn’t change when Sunday kisses him. Until, one day, he does, but she doesn’t know it.

FaultinOurStars

The Fault in Our Stars by John Green and narrated by Kate Rudd

Reviews

Overreader

The Fault In Our Stars is a gorgeous, emotion-packed, wry, deep, fun book. About kids with cancer.

The Reading Date

Kate Rudd sounds the way I imagined the characters to sound, and expertly handles different ages, genders and accents. Though her interpretation of Hazel and Augustus was spot on, it was also a treat to hear her rendition of Peter Van Houten, and the Dutch accent of his assistant. Rudd puts a lot of emotion and heart into her narration, and the joys as well as the pain were felt even more than in the print edition. The sad parts of the book felt sadder listening to the audiobook, perhaps because I knew what to expect. At the end of the audiobook John Green talks about the book, so that was a nice surprise. I think this is a great starter audiobook for readers that want to try out the audiobook experience, even/especially if you’ve already read the book. I really enjoyed revisiting this book and appreciate it even more.

Inheritance

Inheritance by Christopher Paolini and narrated by Gerard Doyle

Reviews

Overreader

It’s not Gerard Doyle’s fault – I’ve enjoyed his narration of the Eragon series, he’s great with tension and emotion and all the funny names involved. But this book didn’t need to be 31 hours long.

2013 Solo Narration – Male Nominees and Reviews

The following audiobooks were nominated in the Solo Narration – Male Category. This category is being reviewed by Melanie from Overreader, Michele from my book, my life, and Trish from Love, Laughter, Insanity. Would you like to join the crowd? Sign up here.

Absolutist

The Absolutist by John Boyne and narrated by Michael Maloney

Reviews

Overreader

Tristan is at once knowable and intriguing, a man struggling with his identity, his actions, his relationship with his family, and his place in the war. He’s only 21, but after enlisting at 17 and serving several years in the trenches “over there,” his soul is an old man’s. But his heart is still as precariously confused and frightened as it was when his father kicked him out at 16 for transgressions that clearly have to do with his unreciprocated feelings towards his best friend.

my books, my life

This is a story of friendship, pushed to its limits. My heart broke a little at the conclusion of this one, and I am still thinking about it weeks later. It’s a novel that makes you examine your own moral compass a little more closely.

Love, Laughter, and a Touch of Insanity

Michael Maloney’s narration of The Absolutist is at times quiet and subdued but the narration also contains a vast emotional range and perfect pacing. For me Maloney’s exacting narration of The Absolutist was the winner of the group.

BeautifulRuins

Beautiful Ruins by Jess Walter and narrated by Edoardo Ballerini

Reviews

Overreader

Ballerini is a new-to-me narrator, and I enjoyed him ever so much. The Italian accents were charming, and his handling of many different Hollywood types (producer, writer, actors) felt spot-on.

my books, my life

Beautiful is really the perfect word to describe this book. The tales that are told are poignant and honest. Mistakes are made, people are flawed, and lives don’t quite work out the way they are planned.

Love, Laughter, and a Touch of Insanity

 Edoardo Ballerini brings Beautiful Ruins and the cast of characters to life. Ballerini’s Italian accents are spot-on (though I did have some troubles believing the British accents) and each character was nearly perfectly depicted. Beautiful Ruins and Edoardo Ballerini provided an excellent listening experience.

BeingThere

Being There by Jerzy Kosinski and narrated by Dustin Hoffman

Reviews

Overreader

Kosinski’s deadpan portrait of Chance’s life is relentless in its take-down of media and politics. Hoffman’s understated affability suited the narration brilliantly. He has a friendly, trustworthy tone – “laconic and matter-of-fact,” as a reporter describes Chance – and leaves the listener free to snap up the parody throughout.

my books, my life

This book is actually very clever, and the more I think about it, the more I like it….It’s a satire about the political world that works just as well in 2013 as it did in 1971.

Love, Laughter, and a Touch of Insanity

 Dustin Hoffman’s narration of Being There fits well with the tone of the book–his narration is controlled and matter-of-fact but I found it boring and tiresome. The audio was almost a DNF for me but I had to remind myself that it was less than three hours. It was a long three hours.

TheEndoftheAffair

The End of the Affair by Graham Greene and narrated by Colin Firth

Reviews

Overreader

This is up for the Solo Narration – Male category of the Audies awards, and it’s my sacred duty as an #ArmchairAudies reviewer to give you the skinny on why I kept forgetting to do my job so I could listen to this book. (Good thing it was only 6.5 hours long.)

Love, Laughter, and a Touch of Insanity

 Colin Firth’s voice is incredibly luxurious and dreamy. This is a book I feel I should read rather than listen because the writing is so rich (and I’ve since bought the book to read), but listening to Colin Firth narrate for six hours was a pleasure. His narration was subdued but passionate, measured but paced appropriate, and man oh man that accent.

TheTaoofPooh

The Tao of Pooh by Benjamin Hoff and narrated by Simon Vance

Reviews

Overreader

Hoff’s book has been out for 20 years, and I remember flipping through it once in a while, but I’d never gone front to back with it before. It’s interesting, and cleverly assembled to make points about Taoism using the familiar tales of beloved Pooh Bear. Rescuing Roo from the river, finding the “North Pole,” hunting heffalumps, and just being with Piglet and Christopher Robin all serve to illustrate the benefits of not over-thinking life, taking it as it comes, and trusting that solutions to problems will surface when needed.

my books, my life

Like always, Vance does an excellent job. His voices for those beloved characters are spot on. This is an enjoyable listen.

Love, Laughter, and a Touch of Insanity

 It is no secret that Simon Vance is a well-loved and highly sought-out voice narrator. Had this one been longer than 3 hours I think that Vance would have been my pick for Male Narration winner, but I finally had to factor in the duration into my decision. Vance’s narration is charming and witty and his character depictions are absolutely delightful and believable. I know that when I read the book I’ll carry Vance’s voice with me–and that’s certainly not a bad thing!

2013 Solo Narration – Female Nominees and Reviews

The following audiobooks were nominated in the Solo Narration – Female Category. This category is being reviewed by Susie from Miss Susie’s Reading & Observations and Flannery, Tatiana, and Catie from The Readadventurer. Would you like to join the crowd? Sign up here.

BoyintheSuitcase

The Boy in the Suitcase by by Lene Kaaberbøl and Agnete Friis and narrated by Katherine Kellgren

Reviews

MissSusie’s Reading and Observations

I just love the timbre of her voice. She also does all the different eastern European accents very well. A job well done!

CalltheMidwife

Call the Midwife: A Memoir of Birth, Joy, and Hard Times by Jennifer Worth and narrated by Nicola Barber

Reviews

MissSusie’s Reading & Observations

Nicola Barber narration is very well done, going from British to Irish to Cockney accents all seamlessly.

JulietinAugust

Juliet in August by Dianne Warren and narrated by Cassandra Campbell

Reviews

MissSusie’s Reading & Observations

Cassandra Campbell’s narration is very good with softness when needed, she was able evoke the emotion I believe the author was trying to convey.

UnseenGuest

The Unseen Guest: The Incorrigible Children of Ashton Place by Maryrose Wood and narrated by Katherine Kellgren

Reviews

MissSusie’s Reading and Observations

Katherine Kellgren’s range is so unbelievable that at times you wonder if there is more than one voice narrating, but no it is all Katherine.

WonderfulWizardofOz

The Wonderful Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum and narrated by Anne Hathaway

Reviews

Reading Through Life

It’s still a very interesting story, it just isn’t completely the same story as that of the movie. And if you’re going to read this book – or particularly if you’re planning on reading it to a child – think about using this version. Anne Hathaway shines in this audiobook. I’m not usually one for dramatic readings of books, but the characters in The Wonderful Wizard of Oz definitely deserve that treatment to bring themselves and the story to light, and Hathaway does great justice to it all. The range of her voice and the many unique characterizations that she has created for this book were a large part of why I was so enthralled with it and wanted to read it all at once. She made the story and the characters spring off the page and come to life, in a fun and whimsical, yet ultimately respectful, way.

MissSusie’s Reading and Observations

I can see why this book was nominated; as much as I am not a fan of Audible’s celebrity A-list (because the real A-List is all the great narrators who do this for a living), but Anne does bring many voices to the mix maybe at times too many because some of them don’t seem to belong in the land of Oz but what do I know I’ve never been there!

2013 Short Stories/Collections Nominees and Reviews

The following audiobooks were nominated in the Short Stories/Collections Category. This category is being reviewed by Carina from Reading Through Life. Would you like to join the crowd? Sign up here.

Astray

Astray by Emma Donoghue and narrated by Khristine Hvam, James Langton, Robert Petkoff, Suzanne Toren, and Dion Graham

Reviews

Reading Through Life

Astray is more about the characters and their struggles than about plot development, and even though most of the stories are set quite a bit in the past, there’s a timeless quality to the conflicts presented in the book that really struck me.

IAmAmExecutioner

I Am an Executioner: Love Stories by Rajesh Parameswaran and narrated by Lina Patel and Neil Shah

Reviews

Reading Through Life

You can really feel the emotions of the characters through the stories, even when they’re doing things that you wish they wouldn’t. I found myself, in a few stories, wanting to reach through my headphones and tell them, “no! don’t do that!” or “do this!”, which isn’t often how I feel when I’m reading a book. Usually, I’m happy to be a passive reader, but something about these stories made me feel as though I was emotionally invested in what happened.

SlouchingTowardsBethlehem

Slouching Towards Bethlehem by Joan Didion and narrated by Diane Keaton

Reviews

Reading Through Life

I was thoroughly unimpressed with the narration of this book, and I’m not sure how it managed to be nominated for an Audie award. It was painfully clear throughout the seven hours of this audiobook that Keaton hadn’t rehearsed much, if at all.

Bordertown

Welcome to Bordertown: New Stories and Poems of the Borderlands by editors Holly Black and Ellen Kushner and narrated by Cassandra Campbell, MacLeod Andrews, Holly Black, Ellen Kushner

Reviews

Reading Through Life

I really loved that there were all kinds of different narrators and other characters, that there was quite a bit of diversity apparent from the outset. I’ve read so many books, particularly fantasy works, that are supposed to stretch our minds but that are really all the same: stories about mostly white, mostly middle- or upper-class, average characters. Instead, Welcome to Bordertown included characters from different nationalities and sexualities, and from varying life experiences.

WhenitHappenstoYou

When It Happens to You: A Novel in Stories written and narrated by Molly Ringwald

Reviews

Reading Through Life

I loved – and hated – the nuanced characters and the ways in which they interacted with each other. She found a way to interlink the characters through the different narratives, while at the same time, giving each of the primary characters a distinctive voice of their own. The fluidity with which Ringwald shifted between perspectives and the way in which she managed not to trivialize any of their issues pulled me into their stories and made me want, desperately, for everything to work out in the end.

2013 Science Fiction Nominees and Reviews

The following audiobooks were nominated in the Romance Category. This category is being reviewed by Bob from The Guilded Earlobe. Would you like to join the crowd? Sign up here.

14

14 by Peter Clines and narrated by Ray Porter

Reviews

The Guilded Earlobe

Peter Clines novels are always highly visual, with intricately detailed action that comes across splendidly in audio. If there is any justice in the world, 14 is a novel that should make Peter Clines a household name among not just horror fans, but fans of good stories, expertly told. Clines has created a novel with characters to cheer for, twists to be honestly shocked by and stunningly vivid horrors that will make your dreams uncomfortable.

AgathaAandtheAirshipCity

Agatha H and the Airship City by Phil Foglio and Kaja Foglio and narrated by Angela Dawe

Reviews

The Guilded Earlobe

This latest edition of the Girl Genius series is a highly original Steampunk tale so full of crazy adventures and wondrously horrifying creations that the pure enjoyment of the books just busts out of the cracks. There are some frustrating moments along the way, but Agatha H and the Clockwork Princess isn’t a rollercoaster ride, it’s a Runaway Spinning Cup Carousel of Death and Delights romp through a vivid alternate world.

AgeofMiracles

The Age of Miracles by Karen Thompson Walker and narrated by Emily Janice Card

Reviews

The Guilded Earlobe

The Age of Miracles isn’t an easy ride. Karen Thompson Walker’s slow boil apocalypse is a melancholy, almost anti-coming of age tale that is equal parts gripping and frustrating. While it left me ultimately unsatisfied and uneasy, the path to this final destination was lavishly and intricately created.

InvicibleTheLostFleet

Invincible: The Lost Fleet by Jack Campbell and narrated by Christian Rummel

Reviews

The Guilded Earlobe

Invincible is a rollicking good listen, full of action and a touch of humor. By creating some interesting new angles Campbell breathes new life into a series that really wasn’t even close to death. The Lost Fleet is easily my current favorite continuing science fiction series, and one of the few that seems to just keep getting better.

Pure

Pure by Julianna Baggott and narrated by Khristine Hvam, Joshua Swanson, Kevin T. Collins, and Casey Holloway

Reviews

The Guilded Earlobe

Pure is full of tragic beauty, and Baggott does a great job setting up the theme of finding pride in our scars, both real and metaphorically. While there were moments where I found myself enjoying the settings more than the plot, the novel comes together well with a satisfying ending.

2013 Romance Nominees and Reviews

The following audiobooks were nominated in the Romance Category. This category is being reviewed by Dee from Dee’s Book Blog, Laurie from Fetch Me My Fainting Couch, Purls Before Wine, Felicia from Geeky Bloggers Book Blog, and Hot Listens. Would you like to join the crowd? Sign up here.

DontCryforMe

Don’t Cry for Me by Sharon Sala and narrated by Kathe Mazur

Reviews

Dee’s Book Blog

Unfortunately, even a good narration by Kathe Mazur couldn’t make up for my dislike of the story.

Fetch Me My Fainting Couch

The audio was read capably but completely without emotion by Kathe Mazur. In all honesty, I’m a bit surprised this production is up for an Audie Award.

MaddnessofLordIanMackenzie

The Madness of Lord Ian Mackenzie by Jennifer Ashley and narrated by Angela Dawe

Reviews

Hot Listens

Angela Dawe’s tone, pace and approach were precisely what the story demanded.

Fetch Me My Fainting Couch

This is a romance worth reading if you’re a fan of sensual historical romances and are looking for something a little different.

Dee’s Book Blog

While I didn’t really enjoy this book on my initial read several years ago, I found the audiobook to be much more enjoyable.

NeverSeduceaScot

Never Seduce a Scot by Maya Banks and narrated by Kirsten Potter

Reviews

Hot Listens

An outstanding introduction to Maya Banks, brought to perfection by Kristen Potter.

Dee’s Book Blog

Solid narration from Potter makes Bank’s Never Seduce a Scot enjoyable – enjoyed her female voices, but some work is needed on the male ones.

ScandalousDesires

Scandalous Desires by Elizabeth Hoyt and narrated by Ashford McNab

Reviews

Hot Listens

Ashford MacNab is fantastic! The overall sense of anticipation, darkness and mystery are nicely conveyed without neglecting for a moment the intense sensuality of the novel.

Fetch Me My Fainting Couch

Ashford McNab reads the dialogue with a lovely accent that immediately took me out of my world and plunked me down in historical London. She voiced Mickey with all the decadent, arrogant and irresistible charm worthy of such a devilish hero.

Dee’s Book Blog

Would work well as a stand-alone or as a series installment. Enjoyed the narrator and will be seeing out more by her in the future.

Witness

The Witness by Nora Roberts and narrated by Julia Whelan

Reviews

Hot Listens

Julia Whelan was amazing! Her portrayal of 16-year-old Liz’s was right on target, and equally fantastic was her interpretation of 28-years-old Abigail.
Her command of the different accents and voices was impressive and a tremendous show case of her talent.

Dee’s Book Blog

Julia Whelan’s narration of Robert’s The Witness is well-deserved. Since this is the first book I have listened to, I can’t rank yet – but I have a feeling she is going to be a strong contender for the category.

Fetch Me My Fainting Couch

I have no complaints about the narration and can see why this one is up for an Audie award this year. Julia Whalen completely deserves it.