So there’s this little-known (ahem) movie in theaters, something about 50 Blinds, or Shades. I’ve only seen the trailer on TV about 50 times . . . this week. Anyway, if you’ve read the books and seen the movies, you might be looking for your next addiction. If that’s the case, we have a special treat for you, Audie Award Finalist MARRIAGE GAMES, the first book in The Games Duet. Thanks to a commanding performance by narrators Sebastian York and Elena Wolfe, MARRIAGE GAMES is a must-listen BDSM audiobook. Adam and Diana face a marriage derailed by indifference and kept on life support with revelations of hidden desires. The narration encloses the couple and the listener in a private negotiation which feels urgent and essential.
by CD Reiss, read by Elena Wolfe and Sebastian York
Flip City Media
AudioFile Earphones Award
Listen to a sound clip and read AudioFile’s full review. And then be sure to queue up the second half of The Games Duet—MARRIAGE GAMES ends on a cliffhanger.
View more Audie Award Finalists in the Erotica category here.
No matter your preferred sub-genre in the mystery/thriller realm, February has a slew of exciting new releases for us crime fiction audiobook junkies. I’ve rounded up a cross-section of these new releases to share, and I’d love to hear what you’re most excited about getting your ears on this month. Let’s take a look:
Deborah Crombie continues her Duncan Kincaid and Gemma James series with installment number seventeen, GARDEN OF LAMENTATIONS (February 7, HarperAudio). Series fans will be delighted to investigate the suspicious deaths in a private garden in Notting Hill as read by Gerard Doyle, who has capably covered the previous four novels in this series.
Historical mystery lovers can head back to the early twentieth century with Charles Todd’s Inspector Rutledge in RACING THE DEVIL (February 7, HarperAudio). Simon Prebble, no stranger to the Rutledge series, once again gives voice as the Scotland Yard inspector investigates a strange automobile accident.
For those who like a dash of paranormal with their crime, Hester Young follows up her amazing 2015 debut, THE GATES OF EVANGELINE, with THE SHIMMERING ROAD (February 14, Penguin Audio). The versatile January LaVoy returns for this second installment in Charlotte Cates’ story as she receives more chilling messages from children in her dreams. But instead of a swamp in Louisiana, Charlie and her partner are headed across the border to Mexico.
Dipping her toes in the mystery waters is Kathleen Kent, best known for her historical novels. THE DIME (February 14, Hachette Audio), however, is set squarely in present-day Dallas with tough-as-nails police detective Betty Rhyzyk. She’s a New York transplant, and Dallas is going to put her to the test. Cynthia Farrell, who is no stranger to the female law enforcement protagonist, narrates.
On the cozier side of the mystery coin, M.C. Beaton is releasing the 33rd Hamish Macbeth mystery, DEATH OF A GHOST (February 21, Hachette Audio). If you’re new to this series, there’s plenty of backlist to keep you busy as you wait for the 34th title to come out on audiobook. Series regulars will be delighted to hear Graeme Malcolm narrate as Hamish and Charlie spend the night in a castle to determine exactly what is haunting it.
This is just a snippet of the rich list of new mystery/thriller audiobooks releasing in February. There is certainly something for every crime fiction fan. Share with us in the comments the titles you’re most excited to hear this month!
Before you are halfway through that super-sized box of Valentine’s candy you might check out AudioFile’s Behind the Mic chat with Mike Chamberlain. You’ll be surprised to hear some of author Gary Taubes’s controversial arguments in THE CASE AGAINST SUGAR.
“I took a moment from time to time with my director to just talk about the facts.” —Narrator Mike Chamberlain
The Case Against Sugar
Gary Taubes, Read by Mike Chamberlain
Random House Audio
Earphones Award Winner
We love the way that Mike Chamberlain brings a directness along with his engagement with each audiobook. Delivering many sobering and eye-opening facts about sugar, Mike compels us to listen. Read our full review and listen to a sound clip here.
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Heroes star Sendhil Ramamurthy is making a large investment in Adi Tantimedh’s debut, HER NIGHTLY EMBRACE. Not only has he given voice to the character in this engaging and entertaining audiobook, he’s also provided the face of Tantimedh’s quirky private investigator, Ravi Chandra Singh, on the audiobook’s cover, AND he’s slated to play Ravi in the television adaptation. While the TV project is still in the adaptation stages, check out the Earphones Award-winning narration.
HER NIGHTLY EMBRACE
Adi Tantimedh, read by Sendhil Ramamurthy
Simon & Schuster Audio
Read AudioFile’s full review and listen to a sound clip here.
Browse all of our newest mystery reviews to find your next great listen!
Valentine’s Day is coming around again, and it’s time to think about falling in love. Not with a person, but with an audiobook (of course). And a love affair with a romance audiobook is sort of a frame story — you’re relishing a captivating love story even as you have a serious crush on the narrator and the addictive performance they’ve just given to you as an additional gift.
Sometimes it’s love at first sight. Richard Armitage’s VENETIA had me at the introductory credits. It’s an elegant abridgment paired with Armitage’s melted butter voice.
by Georgette Heyer, Read by Richard Armitage
Other times, you fall in love with the whole package. Renee Raudman’s readings of Ilona Andrews’s fantasy romances build and weave to a crescendo. With so many memorable characters and scenes, there can’t be one favorite moment.
And then there are the surprises. I don’t know what I expected when I listened to Laura Kinsale’s UNCERTAIN MAGIC, read by Nicholas Boulton, but the exquisite mix of production quality and deeply developed vocal characterization impressed even this picky listener.
by Laura Kinsale, Read by Nicholas Boulton
AudioFile Earphones Award
I imagine you have your own audio crushes, too. Did I say that you should fall in love with an audiobook? I’ve changed my mind. Fall in love with all of them — it’s not cheating to spread your audio love around.