Tease: Heroes

Heroes. There’s a reason many contemporary romance covers feature the male protagonist. Perhaps you picture a hero like Rhett Butler from GONE WITH THE WIND, with his swagger, his air of invincibility, and his overpowering machismo. Or maybe your idea of a hero is John Cusack as Lloyd Dobler from the movie Say Anything. His focused courtship culminates in intimate knowledge of his girlfriend’s insecurities and needs.

Whether you’re drawn to strong alpha males or sensitive types, the hero is often the hook of the romance.

Romance in audiobook form gives listeners a sensory experience that makes the hero vividly real. Hearing the timbre of his voice, the rough humor in his quips, the intensity of his emotions is living the romance beyond the impact of words on a page. Casting choices, too, play an enormous role in our hero worship. Selecting a male narrator for a romance—as in ALL CHAINED UP and THE BEAST—can be a response to a robust cast of male characters or indicate that the hero’s perspective will receive greater emphasis.


All Chained Up

ALL CHAINED UP: Devil’s Rock, Book 1
by Sophie Jordan | Read by Christian Fox
Harper Audio/Blackstone Audio

The Beast

THE BEAST: Black Dagger Brotherhood, Book 14
by J.R. Ward, read by Jim Frangione
Penguin Audio/Books on Tape

With female narrators—BECAUSE OF MISS BRIDGERTON, FLAWLESS, ONE NIGHT CHARMER, and THE STUDY OF SEDUCTION—listeners are sometimes seeing the hero from the heroine’s point of view, allowing them greater perspective on his character. In either case, what separates good narrators from great ones is the ability to realistically voice characters of the opposite gender.

Because of Miss Bridgerton

by Julia Quinn, read by Rosalyn Landor
Harper Audio/Blackstone Audio


by Heather Graham, read by Saskia Maarleveld
Brilliance Audio


by Maisey Yates, read by Lillian Thayer
Harlequin Audio/Blackstone Audio


THE STUDY OF SEDUCTION: Sinful Suitors, Book 2
by Sabrina Jeffries, read by Beverley A. Crick
Tantor Media

Check out this month’s audiobook heroes—they’ll melt your heart and make you laugh.

Solve: Dark Matter

Is this a dream or real life? Can Jason get back to his real life, or is this it? This novel explores how the person we become is defined by the events we encounter.

Dark Matter
by Blake Crouch, read by Jon Lindstrom
Random House Audio

Narrator Jon Lindstrom narrates Blake Crouch’s mind-bending thriller in rich appealing tones. Want to be sure it’s worth your listening time? Read our full review and listen to a sound clip HERE.

Browse our newest mystery reviews any time to find your next great listen!

Behind the Mic: How Women Decide

Narrator Susan Boyce goes Behind the Mic with AudioFile Magazine and tells us a little of what surprised her in narrating HOW WOMEN DECIDE.

All the lessons I learned while narrating it, I think I’m carrying forward in my life—Narrator Susan Boyce

by Therese Huston, read by Susan Boyce
Earphones Award Winner

We learned more about decision-making and gender and how to view decisions and their pitfalls in new ways. Narrator Susan Boyce engaged us throughout. To listen to a sound clip and read our full review, click here.

Susan BoyceTo find more books narrated by Susan, click here

Best Audiobooks 2016AudioFile
2016 Best Audiobooks
Award Winner


Solve: Killer Look

Behind the scenes of New York’s fashion industry—models and mayhem! Manhattan DA Alex Cooper and Detectives Mike and Mercer take it on.

Killer Look
by Linda Fairstein, read by Barbara Rosenblat
Penguin Audio

“I’m a diehard New Yorker (via London) and always look forward to learning more fascinating stuff about my city with every new Fairstein that crosses my microphone. Alex and Mike have become good friends over the years, and I almost expect to run into them when at dinner at some of Linda’s favorite watering holes.” —Narrator Barbara Rosenblat

Is Barbara one of your favs? Browse her recent audiobooks here!

We think narrator Barbara Rosenblat is just plain amazing in Linda Fairstein’s eighteenth Alexandra Cooper novel. She knows these characters inside and out and listeners will, too. Read our full review and listen to a sound clip here.

Browse our newest mystery reviews any time to find your next great listen.

Behind the Mic: Sunday’s on the Phone to Monday

Talented narrator Julia Whelan shares her warm and heartfelt praise for Christine Reilly’s debut novel, SUNDAY’S ON THE PHONE TO MONDAY. As AudioFile Magazine goes Behind the Mic,  Julia lets us in on why she felt this project was truly a special one.

“It is a beautiful story. It is about family, love, mental illness, finding love in mental illness, and loss.”—Narrator Julia Whelan

Sunday's on the Phone to MondaySUNDAY’S ON THE PHONE TO MONDAY
by Christine Reilly, read by Julia Whelan
Earphones Award Winner

Julia Whelan’s performance of beautiful lyrical writing, and a family story that connects so clearly with listeners, is a winning combination. Julia Whelan sweeps listeners into the lives of the Simone family until the final tearful moment. To listen to a sound clip and read our full review, click here.

Julia WhelanTo find more audiobooks narrated by Julia, click here.

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