Author Alex Gino narrates their newest middle-grade audiobook with cheerful vivacity. Sam and TJ are two nonbinary kids looking for a project subject who isn't a dead straight cisgender white man (DSCWM) when they stumble on the history of a mostly forgotten queer photographer. With help from their LGBTQIA+ community, they campaign to put Alice Austen on the map. Gino's voicing... Read More
Juliet Stevenson's performance of this novel about a post-WWII bookshop is vocal virtuosity. Stevenson enlivens a multitude of characters through a spectrum of dialects spanning from plummy to country. Each persona flourishes in the mind's eye--from Evie Stone (the farm lass in Jenner's THE JANE AUSTEN SOCIETY) to noted playwright Samuel Beckett. Evie, newly graduated from... Read More
Narrator Catherine Ho delivers a stellar performance of this fast-paced caper audiobook. She perfectly inhabits Ava Wong, a frazzled wife and mother who is on hiatus from her law career, as well as Winnie Fang, Ava's former shy classmate from 20 years ago, who's now rich and full of confidence. Winnie's been running a global fake handbag scheme, in which Ava becomes entangled.... Read More
James Naughton has narrated several of the late Barry Lopez's audiobooks: He performs in a deep, calm, resonant tone. His pace, timing, and emulation of the author's voice--intimate, self-analytical, philosophical--seem to enter the mind of the famed writer and naturalist. Naughton is a master of cadence. He delivers these valedictory essays like prose poems, and they remain... Read More
Narrator Eric Jason Martin adds gusto to this mini-memoir, which spans much of author Bill McKibben's lifetime. Listeners first see him as a proud American teen who guides tours on the Revolution in his hometown of Lexington, Massachusetts. But as he grows older, he observes continued racism--including inequality of income, housing, education, and more--and cries out WHY?... Read More
Sedaris's latest update on his family and society brings the funny. Still, there's growing depth and empathy in his writing and delivery. Sure, shooting guns with his sister and visiting his nonagenarian father bring laugh-out-loud moments. But profound reflections also pepper his writing as his tone and delivery match his heartrending observations. Sedaris chronicles the... Read More
Science writer Ed Yong (I CONTAIN MULTITUDES) is an enthusiastic guide through the world of animal senses--many very different from our own. Yong's British voice and his narration, warm with humor and curiosity, engage, and his interest in and excitement about the wonders of nature are infectious. You, too, will wish that you could attach a microphone to a blade of grass and... Read More
Ayesha Dharker, a Bombay-born British actor, performs this darkly comic audiobook smartly and sensitively. She gives every character their due. Her intonations, whether for Brits or Indian immigrants, are subtle and unique. Her portrayal of the conflicted heroine, Dr. Yasmin Ghorami, is apt, capturing all her angst. Perhaps her most eloquent renditions are of Yasmin's Bengali... Read More
Golden Voice narrator Julia Whelan gives a thoughtful performance of a novel that focuses on a fundamental question: Would you want to know how long you're going to live? One night a box is delivered to everyone age 22 and older. The box contains a length of string that tells the recipient how much longer they will live. Would you open the box? Whelan introduces listeners to... Read More
AudioFile Golden Voice Bahni Turpin turns A.J. Verdelle's reflections on her relationship with Nobel Prize-winning author Toni Morrison into a song of praise and wonder. Morrison, born Chloe Wofford, first entered the author's life after the publication of Verdelle's novel, THE GOOD NEGRESS. They built a friendship based on their shared love of language and literature and their... Read More
Narrator Will Damron displays a skillful range in this thriller. Harry perfects pickpocketing and cracking safes at a young age--skills born of necessity because his loving but poor family struggles to make ends meet. Need evolves into a lifestyle as Harry continues his nighttime burglaries to create a life of travel and academia. But when Harry falls in love with Miranda, his... Read More
Suzanne Toren's voice has an irresistible storytelling quality in this engaging performance. As the wise, mysterious narrator, she recounts how the once lovely village of Stone-in-the-Glen survives a series of disasters, including a terrible fire that destroys the library. In addition, the village's enigmatic mayor is promoting fear and distrust in the community. Ultimately,... Read More
This stand-alone thriller from bestselling author Berry features a new protagonist, Nick Lee, a field operative for UNESCO who comes to Belgium to see his one-time fiancée, Kelsey. She's now a nun working on the restoration of a panel that was long assumed to be missing from the famed fifteenth-century Ghent Altarpiece. Nick arrives minutes after a fire destroys the panel, and... Read More
Joel Leslie narrates a historical outlaw romance. Marian Hayes, Duchess of Clare, just shot and likely killed her husband and isn't the least bit sorry. Luckily, she has Rob Brooks, a far more experienced criminal, on hand to help her through the aftermath. Leslie perfectly captures Marian's difficult and prickly personality, which she wields like a bludgeon, but he also does... Read More
Marin Ireland offers an adroit and heartfelt performance of Emma Straub's clever new novel, which repurposes the time-travel trope to explore what makes life meaningful. On her fortieth birthday, Alice realizes that her perfectly fine single, professional, happy life doesn't feel so satisfying anymore. Plus, her dad is dying. But what to do? Why, go to sleep and wake up on your... Read More
Lucy Liu, Dennis Boutsikaris, and other talented performers rivet listeners with this sequel to ELECTION. Perrotta revisits alpha female Tracy Flick, now a middle-aged assistant principal at Green Meadow High. Liu as Flick sounds no-nonsense yet girlish as she voices Traci's midlife frustration and hope for a promotion. Boutsikaris, as retiring Principal Weede, has a... Read More
Narrator Stacey Glemboski captures this novel about family and responsibility with her stellar performance. Leaving her husband behind in Brooklyn, Louisa takes off for her parents' summer beach house in Maine with her three kids. At the same time, Kristie heads out from Pennsylvania to Maine with little money to unpack the truth about her father. Both women will spend an... Read More
Kimberly Farr's and Mark Bramhall's expressive performances align with this imaginative story about the power of female relationships and the toxicity of silence. The women in this alternate history are dragons. Farr's warmth adds further nuance to fictional memoirist Alex Green as she looks back upon the impact the Mass Dragoning of 1955 had on her resilient mother, her... Read More
Melinna Bobadilla's engaging narration of this magical intergenerational novel makes for worthwhile listening. Luz Lopez, who has special abilities as a tea-leaf reader in 1930s Denver, finds herself going back in time to understand her Indigenous Chicano family's journey through traumatic circumstances. This story of love, loss, and survival is passionately narrated.... Read More
Julia Whelan's quiet, graceful narration is the perfect match for Nina LaCour's flowing prose in this stunning, layered story about two queer women who are slowly finding their way to each other--and themselves. After her girlfriend's sudden death, 16-year-old Sara leaves her hometown on the Russian River, looking for a new start in L.A. At the same time, L.A. native Emilie is... Read More
Excellent narration from a bevy of capable narrators enhances Maggie Shipstead's incisive collection of 10 short stories. Plots are varied: An actress emerges from a Scientology-type religious movement in the titular story, narrated by Alex McKenna; a Hollywood father and his two daughters clean out his late father's home in "Angel Lust," narrated by George Newbern; and a love... Read More
Bahni Turpin powerfully narrates this compelling story about loss, love, and the many brave and complicated choices we make each day. Feyi Adekola lost the love of her life in an accident and fled her hometown for the anonymity of New York City. There, she slowly builds a new life with her best friend, Joy, and a growing art career. Five years later, Feyi meets a new man, and... Read More
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