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Narrators Talk About AudioFile's 2022 Best Audiobooks

AudioFile has been celebrating the 2022 Best Audiobooks all month long—including eight excellent interviews with narrators whose work landed them a spot on the Best Audiobooks list. Take a listen to hear about these audiobooks from the narrators' perspectives. Hearing from the talented voices behind these performances shines a light on all the work that goes into making these audiobooks stand out. 

Joniece Abbott-Pratt

First, Joniece Abbott-Pratt joins Robin Whitten to tell us about her emotionally charged narration of NIGHTCRAWLING by Leila Mottley. It's a powerful debut novel and a beautifully crafted listening experience. Listen to hear about the emotional intimacy of the performance, how she prepared to narrate the moving dialogue, and why she felt the story was "like reading silk."

Inside Voice
Lake Bell

Lake Bell joins Michele Cobb to tell us all about her fascinating audio-only project, INSIDE VOICE, which earned a spot on our Best Nonfiction Audiobooks list. Listen to their conversation to hear how Bell developed the idea to explore the power of voice and what went into the production of an audiobook packed full of archival material, recordings of people on the street, and interviews with experts. 

You Don't Know Us Negroes
Robin Miles

Golden Voice narrator Robin Miles joins Robin Whitten to talk about Zora Neale Hurston's YOU DON'T KNOW US NEGROES. Listen to their conversation and hear why Miles thinks Hurston's work is still so relevant to listeners today, her approach to narrating Hurston's audiobooks, and more observations on the rich variety of topics covered in these essays. 

The Bangalore Detectives Club
Soneela Nankani

Listen in as Golden Voice narrator Soneela Nankani talks with Michele Cobb about THE BANGALORE DETECTIVES CLUB by Harini Nagendra, one of the year's best Mystery & Suspense audiobooks. Nankani tells us about how she approached narrating this historical murder mystery set in 1920s colonial Bangalore. It stars a young, determined woman named Kaveri who is seeking the truth. Nankani also earned a spot on the Romance list for her narration of KAMILA KNOWS BEST, and she tells us a bit about that bright and funny rom-com.

All My Rage
Deepti Gupta

Narrator Deepti Gupta tells AudioFile listeners about co-narrating Sabaa Tahir's National Book Award-winning title for teens, ALL MY RAGE. The moving performance by Gupta, Kamran R. Khan, and Kausar Mohammed makes for compelling listening. Listen to hear how Gupta approached narrating this layered contemporary Young Adult novel, and what will stick with her about this audiobook. 

How Do You Live?
Brian Nishii

Narrator Brian Nishii talks about voicing Genzaburo Yoshino's HOW DO YOU LIVE?, a Japanese classic from 1937 with a new translation by Bruno Navasky. It's one of AudioFile's Children & Family Listening Best Audiobooks, and Nishii talks about how it is surprisingly relevant today. Listen for his insights into a story that intertwines the adventures of a young teenager with philosophical conversations with his beloved uncle. 

Even Though I Knew The End
January LaVoy

Golden Voice narrator January LaVoy talks with Robin Whitten about C.L. Polk's fantasy EVEN THOUGH I KNEW THE END, which is featured on our Best Science Fiction & Fantasy Audiobooks list. She talks about the challenge of voicing a story where, as the title implies, we maybe know things won't work out the best for everyone—and she shares what she loves about narrating fantasy stories. Take a listen and learn more about this romantic and fantastical noir mystery. 

Thank You For Listening
Julia Whelan

Golden Voice Julia Whelan joins Michele Cobb to tell us all about the fun and challenges of narrating her own audiobook, THANK YOU FOR LISTENING. One of the year's Best Romance Audiobooks, it's the story of two narrators who fall for one another anonymously as they record a romance audiobook together, each in their own sound booths. It's a treat to hear Whelan talk about narrating her own work, her experiences from the booth that she brought to the story, and what will stick with her about this romance. 

Thank you to all of the narrators who joined us to talk about their work on these fantastic audiobooks. Check out the full list of 2022 Best Audiobooks, and be sure to follow the Behind the Mic podcast for audiobook recommendations all year long. 

Joniece Abbott-Pratt photo courtesy of the narrator; Lake Bell photo by Rich Fury; Robin Miles photo by Jordan Matter; Soneela Nankani photo by Jody Christopherson; Deepti Gupta photo courtesy of the narrator; Brian Nishii photo by Troy Blendell; January LaVoy photo by Todd Cerveri; Julia Whelan photo courtesy of the narrator. 

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