There was a time when I believed that audiobooks were cheating – that books were to be read, not listened to. Well, I found out that I was wrong. And what brought me to this conclusion was motherhood – plain and simple. Very early on in motherhood I found out that I had little (read: no, zero, zilch) time to sit and read a book when my motherhood phases went like this:
- The “Nap when the baby naps” stage, followed by the…
- “He’s standing on his own two feet – better watch!” stage, followed by the…
- “We can’t catch up with him! He’s running so fast! Did he even walk?!?” stage (pant, pant), followed by the…
- “We need to get him up, feed him, get him to school, go to work, get home, eat, get outside, get him ready for bed” stage, followed by the…you get my point.
So whether I was pushing a stroller outside, or in the car on the way to get groceries, or making a meal, I could do these things AND listen to someone tell me a story. Audiobooks kept me connected to stories when I could no longer sit and read a book.
Fast forward to nine years later and audiobooks are something that I still enjoy and that have become an important part of my family’s culture. We listen, think about, and laugh to them. We feel the suspense, share the dread, and also fill up with the hope that the stories inspire. We have one playing in our car at all times and before we’re even buckled in I often hear our son’s voice pipe up with, “Mom, can you turn on [book title]”? At home, we listen to them when building Lego or making a meal or exercising.
Now it goes without saying that a great audiobook depends on a great story. Add a terrific voice to that story and you, the listener, will be transported on a wonderful journey. The following are several of the voice actors that we love to listen to. It was through their voices that we started our journey into audiobooks and have yet to look back (although we will gladly re-listen)! It just so happens that these voice actors also tend to read great stories! But instead of trying to explain what makes them very special, I will let their voices do that. Their voices really do say it all.
(Click on each narrator’s name for a full list of their audiobooks at the library. And in case you don’t already know this, you can borrow audiobooks from us in two formats: CD and electronically through our eAudiobook services, Overdrive and hoopla.)
JIM DALE reading from Harry Potter by J.K. Rowling.
DAVINA PORTER reading from Outlander by Diana Gabaldon.
NEIL GAIMAN reading from Fortunately, The Milk by Neil Gaiman.
JAYNE ENTWISTLE reading from As Chimney Sweepers Come to Dust by Alan Bradley.
JOHN RAFTER LEE reading from Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett.
KRISTOFFER TABORI reading from Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides.
For more audiobook recommendations check out AudioFile – avid listeners, advocates, and reviewers of audiobooks for all ages!
Many great audiobooks await you! Happy listening!