Why Isabel Wilkerson’s CASTE Is a Must-Listen

On Caste by Isabel Wilkerson

On Caste by Isabel Wilkerson

Pulitzer Prize-winning writer Isabel Wilkerson’s powerful new work of nonfiction, CASTE: The Origins of Our Discontents, examines how caste, or a hereditary class system, underlies the oppression of Black people and other people of color in America. Racism certainly exists, she posits, but the country’s caste system, developed in Colonial Virginia to differentiate indentured immigrants from African slaves, is the root of the problem. A caste system permanently empowers those in the top group and permanently dehumanizes those at the bottom, setting them forever apart as “other.” It explains why President Andrew Jackson felt fine about his horse’s reins made from the flesh of American Indians. It explains why a white guest at a party full of liberals assumed that a Black man they didn’t know was a server who would get them a drink. The Black man was then Senator Barack Obama. 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.

Loved NEW KID? Check Out These Listen-Alike Audiobooks for Ages 8+

New Kid Listen Alikes

New Kid Listen Alikes

Lots of people loved NEW KID, the graphic novel written and illustrated by Jerry Craft. It was the first graphic novel to win the Newbery Medal. One thing that makes the audiobook so special is the full cast and scene-setting sound effects that really bring the illustrations to life and make listeners feel like they are experiencing a movie. If you are looking for more immersive audiobooks about friendship and family for ages 8 and up, here are a few of my recommendations. 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.

Interview with Romance Author & Audio Producer Lauren Blakely

Lauren Blakely and Shane East
Lauren Blakely and Shane East
Lauren Blakely (l) and Shane East

In the last decade, author Lauren Blakely has produced more than 50 of her own audiobooks, collecting acclaim for her work: BIRTHDAY SUIT was a 2020 Audie Awards finalist for Audio Drama, and WANDERLUST was a 2019 Audie finalist in the Romance category. I was excited to talk with Lauren and get the behind-the-scenes scoop about being an audio producer as well as an author, and to learn more about her brand-new audiobook, A GUY WALKS INTO MY BAR.

AudioFile: Can you talk about your journey from writer to producer? 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!

SYNC Audiobooks for Teens 2020 Is Here!

SYNC Summer Audiobooks for Teens

SYNC Summer Audiobooks for Teens

AudioFile is pleased to announce the launch of our 11th annual SYNC Audiobooks for Teens program! This summer we are partnering with OverDrive and audiobook publishers to share 13 weeks of FREE young adult audiobooks. Visit AudiobookSYNC.com to register and browse the full list of summer listening for teens, and to learn more about Sora, the student reading app used to share audiobooks this season. Teens can download two free audiobooks each week now through July 29 — the perfect way for your teens to get a jump on their summer reading, explore new genres, or start a stay-at-home book club with their friends. We encourage teachers, librarians, and parents to check out the full list of audiobooks and get your teens listening.  Read more…

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Narrator Robin Miles on THE CITY WE BECAME

Narrator Robin Miles

Robin Miles gives voice to everything New York in N.K. Jemisin’s THE CITY WE BECAME, a fantastical celebration of the city’s spirit. Channeling a bit of that spirit in the video below, Robin shares how the audiobook represents New York’s resiliency.

“We’re a hodgepodge of different cultures, incomes, languages, sensibilities, but we band together, and when we do, we are so much greater than the sum of our parts.” — Narrator Robin Miles

Read more…

We're the editorial team at AudioFile Magazine!

Let Audiobooks Transport You to Mysterious Places

Let Audiobooks Transport You

Let Audiobooks Transport You

Living in NYC, in the pandemic’s epicenter, under a stay-at-home mandate, I find myself thinking about the things I am missing most: Once I get past hugging and playing with my grandchildren, my mind goes to traveling. Getting on airplanes was a regular part of my pre-Covid work life. The last flight I took was back from Atlanta on the 6th of March. Then everything shut down. Unlike many folks who find travel a nuisance, I have always loved the entire experience, from the flight itself to being in a place with new sites, sounds, foods, and people.

Now, like everyone else, my wings have been clipped, and I am relying on audiobooks to transport me to new places. Below is a selection of audiobooks that take us to intriguing locations around the world. These listens engage us in mysterious doings and reveal the real people and customs that are less visible to tourists. And one of the keys to doing so is the power of the narrator to perform different accents, making the experience feel more genuine. 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).

Here’s to You, Girlfriend: 5 Audiobooks for Women’s History Month

Here's to You, Girlfriend

Here's to You, Girlfriend

Women make history in large and small ways every month of every year, including Women’s History Month in March. The third month of the year is also when I celebrate the memory of my mother. Dramatic, kind, brave, with a flair for rule-breaking and attentive listening, she was always proud of being accepted as a white woman at a Black Panther rally where she got to shake hands with Angela Davis. In that spirit, here’s to all the cool women in your life, the ones who look like you and the ones who don’t. 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.

Fantasy Romance on the Rise: 3 Must-Hear Series

Fantasy Romance On the Rise 3 Must Hear Series

Fantasy Romance On the Rise 3 Must Hear Series

Kristen Ashley’s THE BEGINNING OF EVERYTHING: The Rising, Book 1 has fourteen narrators. If I had been able to mention every one of them in my original AudioFile review, that would have been a third of my word count right there. But here, dear listener, I am not so limited, so prepare to hear much more about this full-cast audio and its fabulous narrators. 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!

5 New Multicast Audiobooks We’re Loving

5 New Multicast Audiobooks

5 New Multicast Audiobooks

Let’s talk about audiobooks performed by more than one narrator. You may ask, what kinds of audiobooks call for multiple voice actors? The first that come to my mind are audio editions of plays, which usually require a full cast of performers. The second are novels that have been turned into audiodramas, such as E.B. White’s CHARLOTTE’S WEB.

Collections of short stories are a natural for multiple performers, and of course, fiction told from multiple viewpoints is another great choice for two or more narrators. Nonfiction can also benefit from a collaborative effort; THE ONLY PLANE IN THE SKY by Garret M. Graff is a particularly powerful example.

Today’s Take 5 celebrates some recent audiobooks that feature multiple narrators. As always, I recommend audiobooks from a variety of genres—I’m sure you’ll find at least one audiobook that fits your own listening style. 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.

Audiobooks & ALA Awards

Robin’s Roundup Jan 31

Hey Kiddo Narrators
Hey Kiddo Narrators
Narrators Zoe Krosoczka, Jaiden Meltzer, and Jarrett J. Krosoczka

We’re in the midst of winter award season with the Golden Globes, Grammys, and Oscars getting a lot of focus. But in our AudioFile world, the American Library Association youth media awards—just announced January 27—and the upcoming Audie Awards—finalist announcements coming next Monday, February 3—are holding our attention. The 2020 Odyssey Award for the best audiobook produced for children and/or young adults went to HEY, KIDDO: How I Lost My Mother, Found My Father, and Dealt with Family Addiction, the graphic memoir by Jarrett J. Krosoczka, performed by an ensemble of actors. Our Q&A with Krosoczka gives a real behind the scenes look at the production, and we have a Behind the Mic podcast episode about the audiobook as well. Read more…

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