Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Let me introduce... Audio books

I've had several friends ask about audio books. Some have never listened to one, and others might have tried but didn't like it. For audio books, the narrator is extremely important and can make or break an author's work. I advise listeners to listen to at least the first CD before deciding if a book isn't for you. Sometimes it takes that long to get acclimated to a narrator's voice/style/tone. For those of you who would like to try one out (Check out your local library!), here are some I  recommend:

For kids and family:

Percy Jackson series by Rick Riordan  (Narrator: Jesse Bernstein)
Fans of Greek mythology will enjoy this series about demigods. Even if you've seen the movies, still listen to the books, because they have completely different plots. Narrator Jesse Bernstein has a lot of enthusiasm and will be able to capture and keep your attention.
#Action #Adventure #Quests

Kane Chronicles series by Rick Riordan (Narrators: Kevin R. Free & Katherine Kellgren)
This series has the same author as the Percy Jackson series, but this time readers learn about Egyptian gods and the magicians that call on the gods. The main characters are a brother and sister, so there are two narrators. Both do a phenomenal job. They have tons of enthusiasm and give various dialects for the different characters.
#Action #Adventure #Magic

Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling (Narrator: Jim Dale)
This would be a perfect series for your first audio book especially if you are a fan of the original books and/or movies. Narrator Jim Dale does a phenomenal job giving voices to all the different characters. (I love when he does Delores Umbridge in book 5!)
#Magic #Adventure

For teens and young adults:

The Uglies series by Scott Westerfeld (Narrator: Carine Montbertrand)
Westerfeld creates a futuristic dystopian society. It was my first dystopian novel that I read (or well, um, listened to), so it took me a while to accept the world and narrator. Now, I think she is the perfect voice for Westerfeld's main character, Tally. Carine Montbertrand does a great job channeling her inner teen. She gets Westerfeld's lingo down that is introduced in the second book. By the end of the series, I felt sad that I wouldn't get to hear her read any more for this character/series.
 #Post Apocalyptic #dramatic #dystopian

The Chaos Walking series by Patrick Ness (Narrator: Nick Podehl)
I have a confession. The only reason I lasted so long in this series was because of narrator Nick Podehl. The story was unique, but Nick Podehl's animated narration made it much better. I love the twang to his voice too. Now, when I hear him narrate any other story, all I can think of is him yelling "Viola"! (Listen to the book, and you'll be thinking the same thing!)
#New Planet #dramatic

For adults:

The Stephanie Plum series by Janet Evanovich  (Narrator: Lorelei King)
This is another series I highly recommend for new audio book listeners. I actually got my husband hooked on this series. You don't have to read the series in order, so make sure you get the ones narrated by Lorelei King. The first few books in the series had a different narrator, but Loreli King does a better job with the different character voices.  I love how she voices the characters of Lula and Ranger!
#comedic #romantic #mystery

The Charley Davidson series by Darynda Jones (Narrator: Lorelei King)
For fans who love the Stephanie Plum series and also love paranormal  elements, then the Charley Davidson series is perfect for you. The narrator is the same as the Stephanie Plum series. (Yeah, Lorelei King is that good. She makes the list twice!) She has the enthusiasm and energy to make a great story even better. Plus, Darynda Jones' characters and plot are fun to read/listen to.
#comedic #romantic #mystery #paranormal

The Cheshire Red Reports series by Cherie Priest  (Narrator: Natalie Ross)
I love narrator Natalie Ross in this series. Her voice is a bit deeper than some narrators, and it totally fits Cherie Priest's main character. It's low and can be seductive in the right situations. Only bad thing, there are only two books so far. Hopefully there will be more. There were enough items left undone in the plot to warrant more books.
#Vampire #mystery