Listen & Learn: Kids’ Audiobooks that Highlight STEM Skills

Hear Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math

Kids with a microscope

Kids with a microscope

STEM stands for science, technology, engineering, and math. But STEM thinking goes beyond facts to explore innovation, problem-solving, creativity, persistence, divergent thinking, and assimilation of new ideas. The audiobooks in this list show characters facing real-world problems and using STEM thinking to develop solutions through trial and error. Most importantly, they celebrate the joy of figuring things out and illustrate that failure is often an important step to success. Read more…

Sonja Cole
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.

Audiobooks that Celebrate Age and Aging

Partying Until the End

Climb the stairs

Climb the stairsNow that I’m no longer young, I climb every flight of stairs I can find, memorize whichever numeral strings present themselves, and recite the alphabet backwards for fun. I don’t drink the extra glass of wine or eat the third donut anymore. But here’s the thing about aging—if I did want that donut, I’d eat it guiltlessly, even if you disapproved.

As 92-year-old Jan Morris makes clear in her splendid new memoir, IN MY MIND’S EYE, despite the insult of stiffer joints and occasional lapsing memory, age has compensations, including the right to do as you wish without guilt. I totally believed narrator Jennifer M. Dixon, who dons an excellent facsimile of Morris’s pleasant British voice, and reads with an appreciation that increased my own enjoyment. Sixty-six years ago, the author accompanied Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay to Everest. For the past 47 years, Jan Morris has delighted readers with celebrated history and travel books. Now unable to voyage to the far reaches of the globe, she has produced a “thought diary” from her desk at home in Wales. Its sharp, kind, funny entries are a gift for listeners of many ages. Read more…

Author and audiobook fanatic, Aurelia often falls asleep at night with earbuds still attached. She can also be found at www.aureliacscott.com.

6 Tips for Listening to Audiobooks with Kids

Audiobook Listening for Kids

Audiobook Listening for KidsReading with our ears can have educational benefits at all ages, but my favorite benefit of listening to audiobooks with kids is the priceless connection of experiencing a good story together. If your family has never listened to an audiobook, getting started can feel daunting, so here are some tips to get you up and running. Read more…

Sonja Cole
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.

Bestsellers From Libro.fm Audiobooks

Robin’s Roundup October 26

Lethal White

Libro.fm
How can audiobook listeners help nurture independent bookstores? The next time you visit your favorite indie bookstore, look to see if they are Libro.fm Audiobooks partners. You can do this by asking the bookseller while browsing in the store, or just check out Libro.fm’s website to find a Libro.fm partner near you at Libro.fm/indies. AudioFile wants more listeners to know about the program because getting your downloadable audiobooks from Libro.fm supports your local bookstore.

Here’s the AudioFile spin on Libro.fm Bestsellers, including titles we’re talking about on AudioFile’s new podcast, Behind the Mic with AudioFile Magazine. Read more…

Robin Whitten
Robin is the Founder & Editor of AudioFile Magazine. The AudioFile Blog is her newest project to offer new voices and recommendations for audiobooks.

This Audiobook Lives Up to its Title: Fear

Behind the Mic with Narrator Robert Petkoff

Robert Petkoff

In our newest narrator video, Robert Petkoff gives us his thoughts on recording the book and audiobook everyone is talking about: FEAR: Trump in the White House by Bob Woodward.

“No matter where you are in the political spectrum, once you listen to this audiobook, you are going to want to talk about what is revealed in it.”—Narrator Robert Petkoff

Read more…

We're the editorial team at AudioFile Magazine!

5 Audiobooks Starring Paranormal Beings

Werewolves, witches, zombies, oh my . . .

Pumpkins

PumpkinsI know Halloween is a couple of weeks away, but I’m already excited about carving pumpkins and seeing the neighborhood kids in their ghoulish costumes. Like so many of you, I get in the mood by listening to mysteries, thrillers, and other spooky audiobooks throughout the month of October.

Although I don’t read a lot of horror (okay, so I don’t read horror at all), I do like stories that introduce me to not-quite-human paranormal creatures. I’m not fond of ghosts, but give me a werewolf, witch, zombie, or vampire, and I’m all in.

If you’re not sure where to start on your creepy creature audiobook adventure or if you’re looking for something new to listen to, I’ve got you covered. Get ready to meet your new paranormal BFF. Read more…

Candace Levy
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.

Support Your Indie Bookstore with Libro.fm Audiobooks

Robin’s Roundup August 3

Libro.fm

Libro.fmWe have so many summer visitors in Maine, and I often hear how much they enjoy browsing our independent bookstores. Here in Portland, Sherman’s Maine Coast Book Shops and Longfellow Books are two of my favorites, along with our newest, Print: A Bookstore. Listeners can also get digital audiobooks from these Indie stores through their partnership with Libro.fm Audiobooks.

AudioFile is working with Libro.fm to help tell more listeners about the program and support the independent bookstores we love. You don’t have to visit Maine—you can find an indie near you: Libro.fm/indies.

Here’s the AudioFile spin on Libro.fm Bestsellers—first some fiction, followed by nonfiction picks: Read more…

Robin Whitten
Robin is the Founder & Editor of AudioFile Magazine. The AudioFile Blog is her newest project to offer new voices and recommendations for audiobooks.

Aurelia’s Audio Adventures: I Hereby Resolve

Audiobooks to Support One’s Best Intentions

Finish

I tend not to make resolutions because they remind me of raising my hand in fifth grade while praying Please don’t call on me, please don’t call on me. I wanted to be one of the kids who knew the answer, but rather than studying fractions or Latin declensions, I preferred to read novels about dreamy young women who become celebrated geniuses without appearing to labor.

FinishBut that only took me as far as being told, “You really could be a B student in this class, instead of a C, if only you would believe in your abilities and focus for the next 53 minutes.” An admonition that brings me to Jon Acuff’s engaging reading of his own START and FINISH. They’re motivating, often witty how-to books that assume you have a brain. Listening, I imagine him earnestly covered in chalk dust, as was Mrs. Samsell at the end of every math class.

Once begun on getting my act together, I seek the company of inspirational heroes. Nelson Mandela’s DARE NOT LINGER, beautifully performed by Adrian Lester, is a collection of speeches that comprise his second (and unfinished) memoir. They lift and encourage and dazzle so much that I’ve listened more than once. Read more…

Author and audiobook fanatic, Aurelia often falls asleep at night with earbuds still attached. She can also be found at www.aureliacscott.com.

Tease: Best of Romance

How well do you know this year’s best audiobooks?

Chasing Down a Dream

Chasing Down A DreamAudiofile Magazine is proud to present its 2017 Best Romance Audiobook list. These fifteen audiobooks represent a snapshot of this year’s best listening. Many reviewers helped make this list possible — thanks to all of them for being wonderful listeners. Since it’s impossible to choose a favorite from among these stellar titles, I thought I would prepare a little quiz for you as an introduction to the titles (see the end of the post for the answers!). And don’t forget to Love Your Listening!

Best of Romance Audio Quiz

1. Twelve of the titles are part of a series. Which 3 titles are standalone audios?

2. Of the historicals, one is set in the reign of King George IV of England, one during King Edward I of England’s reign, and one during King George III of England’s reign. Which is which?

3. Of the paranormals, one is set in a magical upstate New York and one is set in a magical Houston, Texas. Which is which? 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!

Solve: Crime in Small Bites

Investigate these 10 short story crime audiobooks and get hooked on listening

Craig Johnson - Wait for Signs

When I tell people how much I enjoy listening to audiobooks, I often receive the response, “I can’t listen to audiobooks. I can’t pay attention.” I thought the very same thing at one time. Now I constantly want someone to be telling me a story.

Craig Johnson - Wait for Signs

Listening to audiobooks is a skill, just like reading print books. Even though we eagerly listened to adults telling us stories as small children, somewhere along the way, we lost the knack for listening—personally, I blame it on television, but that’s a different blog post. Never fear, though. Listening skills can be dusted off and honed back into shape. One of the ways I recommend people work on their listening skills is with short audios, and lucky for us, there are great short works of crime fiction available.

About once a year now, I listen to Craig Johnson’s WAIT FOR SIGNS. This collection of Walt Longmire shorts is described by Johnson as the stories between the novels. He develops his well-loved characters in funny, heart-warming, and engaging short stories. It’s probably my favorite collection to recommend to someone just starting to listen to audiobooks. I often recommend it as the introduction to the Longmire series as well. When you’re confident listening to these short stories, you can move on to his novellas—THE HIGHWAYMAN and SPIRIT OF STEAMBOAT. Same great style, in a slightly longer format. By the time you finish these two, you’ll be ready to listen to the novels. All of Johnson’s work is narrated by George Guidall. There hasn’t been one time I’ve attended a book event for Craig Johnson when at least one member of the audience hasn’t gushed about how much they love the series on audio. There’s a good reason for that. Read more…

A freelance book and audiobook reviewer, I have also written numerous interviews of authors and narrators. Story entrances me and if I'm not reading for myself I love having a story told to me. In addition, I'm an avid photographer, where stories are in the images!