5 Questions with Narrator Johnny Heller

5 Questions with Johny Heller

5 Questions with Johny Heller

As they say on TV, my next guest needs no introduction. Give a great big welcome to audiobook narrator extraordinaire Johnny Heller. Johnny was honored as an AudioFile Golden Voice in 2019, and I truly think it’d be hard to find an audiobook fan who hasn’t listened to at least one of Johnny’s many performances, which span the genres from kids’ stories to serious nonfiction.

I know I’m not alone when I praise Johnny’s ability to perfectly establish the mood and setting of an audiobook, and I love the way he distinguishes characters through vocal tics and pacing. Finally, he’s a master at delivering humor and seems to know just when to punch it up or let it slide just under the surface for a slow impact.

The following audiobook recommendations highlight Johnny’s versatility as a voice actor. Let me know which ones speak to you. Read more…

Candace is a full-time freelance book editor as well as a book reviewer and journalist. When she’s not working, you'll inevitably find her listening to an audiobook while cooking, walking, making lace, or taking photographs. She was honored to be the 2016 Audio Publishers Association's Audiobook Blogger of the Year.

5 Audiobooks for Library Card Sign-Up Month

5 Audiobooks for library card sign up month

5 Audiobooks for library card sign up month

In these days of home-based and virtual schooling and weekends staying at home, we rely more and more on the resources offered by our local libraries. Besides free access to audiobooks and ebooks, most libraries also provide language courses, movies, and even digital newspapers and magazines. Many libraries offer curbside pickup for non-digitized materials, including puzzles and games.

September is officially Library Card Sign-Up month, and if you don’t already have a card, now’s the perfect time to get one. Librarians will help you find your next audiobook (and will explain the entire process, from downloading to listening) and can also suggest resources for homeschooling and for lifelong learning.

Today’s recommended audiobooks celebrate public libraries through novels and true stories. Take a moment to discover all the programs and materials offered by your local library, sign up for a free card if you don’t already have one, and then queue up one of the following audiobooks. Read more…

Candace is a full-time freelance book editor as well as a book reviewer and journalist. When she’s not working, you'll inevitably find her listening to an audiobook while cooking, walking, making lace, or taking photographs. She was honored to be the 2016 Audio Publishers Association's Audiobook Blogger of the Year.

5 Audiobooks for National Dog Day

5 Audiobooks for National Dog Day

5 Audiobooks for National Dog Day

Happy National Dog Day! Today’s holiday is all about celebrating our furry friends in all their varied splendor. More than giving us an excuse to shower our pets with extra love and treats, today is also a time to honor how important dogs are to our lives, both as home companions and as assistants to help us work and get through everyday life. Read more…

Candace is a full-time freelance book editor as well as a book reviewer and journalist. When she’s not working, you'll inevitably find her listening to an audiobook while cooking, walking, making lace, or taking photographs. She was honored to be the 2016 Audio Publishers Association's Audiobook Blogger of the Year.

Earphones Award-Winning Mystery Audiobooks: What Makes a Winner?

Earphones Award-Winning Mystery Audiobooks - What Makes A Winner?

Looking for your next mystery/thriller audiobook? Why not choose an Earphones Award winner? You may wonder what it takes for an audiobook to earn that designation.

The award is given by AudioFile to truly exceptional titles that excel in narrative voice and style, characterizations, suitability to audio, and enhancement of the text.

QuantumIn the review of QUANTUM by Patricia Cornwell, narrator January LaVoy is described as a “vocal shape-shifter.” That phrase so brilliantly sums up what Earphones Award-winning narrators are able to do. I was introduced to the term “shape shifter” by my grandkids watching Disney’s Moana. The demigod, Maui, uses his magic staff to instantly change from one form to another. Golden Voice LaVoy creates listening magic by using her voice to seamlessly shift from one character to another. And her performance in QUANTUM did indeed garner an Earphones Award. Read more…

A mystery writer, audiobook reviewer and Audies judge. Ellen is currently the program chair of Sisters in Crime-NY and has published two crime short stories: Crossing the Line (Family Matters); Taking the Brooklyn Bridge Back (Where Crime Never Sleeps).

5 Audiobooks to Travel the World — From Home

5 Audiobooks to Travel the World - At Home

5 Audiobooks to Travel the World - At Home

It’s summer in the Northern Hemisphere, which normally means spending a week at the beach, taking a family road trip or train trip, or booking a vacation to a foreign country. This year, most of us will be doing our traveling from the safety of our armchair or garden—and with the help of an absorbing audiobook.

The most travel I’ve done over the last several months is a quick walk around the neighborhood. Still, I haven’t stopped dreaming of new adventures, though I’m not sure where my wanderlust will take me in the years to come.

In the meantime, as I wait for the pandemic to run its course, I’ve indulged in some virtual vacations by listening to audiobooks that transport me far from home. This summer’s motto is, Have earbuds, will travel! Read more…

Candace is a full-time freelance book editor as well as a book reviewer and journalist. When she’s not working, you'll inevitably find her listening to an audiobook while cooking, walking, making lace, or taking photographs. She was honored to be the 2016 Audio Publishers Association's Audiobook Blogger of the Year.

Double your Listening Pleasure: Audiobook Mysteries with Two Narrators

Audiobook Mysteries with Two Narrators

Audiobook Mysteries with Two Narrators

If you haven’t already taken up AudioFile’s Listening Challenge 2020, please allow me to call your attention to the initiative. Throughout the new year, AudioFile is suggesting a dozen listening challenges to help listeners develop their audiobook reading interests and awareness. All 12 challenges were posted on Twitter during the first days of 2020, and the AudioFile Twitter feed is reminding us of a challenge each month throughout the year.

You can join in the fun any time! To encourage you do so, I have some suggestions for Listening Challenge #3: Listen to an audiobook performed by two narrators. Read more…

A mystery writer, audiobook reviewer and Audies judge. Ellen is currently the program chair of Sisters in Crime-NY and has published two crime short stories: Crossing the Line (Family Matters); Taking the Brooklyn Bridge Back (Where Crime Never Sleeps).

9 Kids’ Audiobooks about Race and Justice

9 Kids' audiobooks about race and justice

9 Kids' audiobooks about race and justice

It should be obvious now that we ALL need to be having conversations with our children about antiracism and how unjustly Black people have been treated in America. This collection of fiction and nonfiction audiobooks from authors and/or narrators of color shows Black people as heroes of their own stories. These audiobooks are all perfect for family listening to spark important discussions about fairness in America, a concept which all children inherently understand. Read more…

As a former middle school librarian and author of Booktalking Around the World: Great Global Reads for Ages 9-14, Sonja’s mission is to get kids excited about books.

5 Audiobooks with Love in the Spotlight

5 Audiobooks with Love in the Spotlight

5 Audiobooks with Love in the Spotlight

The Kardashians, Will and Kate, Harry and Meghan, Will and Jada . . . what do they have in common? Being in the spotlight. As they say, fame isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. Being royal, going viral, or dodging paparazzi can be a painful tradeoff for fame and fortune. Let’s run the tape on five romance audiobooks with fame and celebrity themes.

Take A Hint, Dani BrownJump right in with hot title TAKE A HINT, DANI BROWN by Talia Hibbert, read by Ione Butler. Ph.D. student Danika Brown and security guard and former professional rugby player Zafir Ansari go viral thanks to a romantic photo of Zafir carrying Dani to the elevator. They make the best of it with a fake romance to benefit Zafir’s charity, but will a viral moment lead to a forever relationship? Narrator Ione Butler plays up the sarcasm and the genuine romance with a light English accent. Read more…

Caitlin is a librarian from Connecticut who enjoys great narrators and happy endings. She has been reviewing audiobooks for Audiofile Magazine since 2006, and she has had the privilege of judging numerous Audie Award categories since 2009. Her favorite authors are Jane Austen, Georgette Heyer, and whatever she's listening to right now!

Beyond Reviews: Favorite Mystery Narrators and Authors Talk about Their Craft

Listening to our Favorite Narrators and Authors Talk About Their Craft

Listening to our Favorite Narrators and Authors Talk About Their Craft

In these turbulent times, I find comfort in focusing on the silver linings—the positive, unanticipated benefits. For me this has included connecting with family and friends more often (even if it’s virtual); the quiet of Brooklyn due to the extreme drop in traffic; the amazing streamed entertainment, interviews, and educational programs available; and the time to actually listen.

If you are a fan of audiobook mysteries and thrillers, you might really enjoy hearing and (in many cases) seeing your favorite narrators and authors discuss their craft. The interviews and discussions are enlightening and will connect you to these talented folks on a whole different level. Read more…

A mystery writer, audiobook reviewer and Audies judge. Ellen is currently the program chair of Sisters in Crime-NY and has published two crime short stories: Crossing the Line (Family Matters); Taking the Brooklyn Bridge Back (Where Crime Never Sleeps).

Boost Your Spirits with New Romance Audiobooks

5 Romances to Kick Off Summer

Boost Your Spirits with New Romance Audiobooks

Boost Your Spirits with New Romance Audiobooks

Consider this: Audiobooks can be a great morale booster. The intimacy of hearing a narrator tell you a story, especially one with a guaranteed happy ending, can be comforting beyond measure. Cheer up your days with these new romances. Read more…

Caitlin is a librarian from Connecticut who enjoys great narrators and happy endings. She has been reviewing audiobooks for Audiofile Magazine since 2006, and she has had the privilege of judging numerous Audie Award categories since 2009. Her favorite authors are Jane Austen, Georgette Heyer, and whatever she's listening to right now!