Book Nerd; Audio Book Style

By 7:19 AM , , , , , , , ,

If you are friends with me, or read my blog, then you probably know I've worked at a library for many years. (this will be my 13th, AND LAST! year)

I'm a book nerd.

I adore reading. Always have. As a young girl my nose was constantly in a book. Little Women, The Secret Garden, A Little Princess, the Anne books (L.M. Montgomery I heart you!) Betsy-Tacy, the American Girl books (the originals, Kirsten, Samantha, Felicity and Molly- and I read Addy and Josephina when they were published.) Boxcar Children, any and all Nancy Drew books, The Mixed Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler, Chronicles of Narnia, The Hobbit... the list could go on and on. My love for reading has only continued through the years. The one thing that has changed though, is the time I have for reading. A lot of that has gone out the window, so most days I try and at least use my thirty minute lunch break to soak a few pages of a novel in. (I think you should know that I am a pure, unashamed, novel-reader. And, not like, literary masterpiece novels. Young Adult mostly, adventure/dystopia or light romance... that's my thing. I am totally okay with that and you should be too.)

So let's get down to it. AUDIO BOOKS. Those brilliant, wonderful creations!

My mom read aloud to us a LOT when we were younger. Partly, because we were home schooled and it was part of the curriculum, but mostly? Because my mom loved to read. And loved books. So many hours of my childhood were spent drawing, coloring or crafting while mom read books to us. Novels or biographies. Sometimes for school, sometimes just for fun. And audio books? Its kind of like being a kid again. Except now I'm driving to and from work or errands, doing laundry or cooking in the kitchen as I soak in a good book. Dozing when I get the rare nap. Editing photos. Its a adult version of playing like a kid again. I love them.

All that to say, if you like audio books, or are interested in trying them out... here are a few of my favorites due to narrator (this is a HUGE factor.) and story. (they are all amazing as paper, read and turn the pages books too, FYI)

The ENTIRE Harry Potter series. The Harry Potter series are excellent. Its that simple. And the audio versions are perfect. Jim Dale, the narrator, is my favorite narrator, hands-down. British, distinguished, perfect voices for all the characters... the Harry Potter series are my all-time favorite audiobooks. And you can borrow and listen to them free via the Ohio E-book Project

The Fault in Our Stars by John Green

John Green is a Young Adult genre staple/god. He's huge on the interwebs. He has a whole fan-base that call themselves the Nerdfighters. 

“Saying 'I notice you're a nerd' is like saying, 'Hey, I notice that you'd rather be intelligent than be stupid, that you'd rather be thoughtful than be vapid, that you believe that there are things that matter more than the arrest record of Lindsay Lohan. Why is that?' In fact, it seems to me that most contemporary insults are pretty lame. Even 'lame' is kind of lame. Saying 'You're lame' is like saying 'You walk with a limp.' Yeah, whatever, so does 50 Cent, and he's done all right for himself.”-John Green

He's a pretty cool guy. I've read a few of his books. Unfortch, they weren't around when I was in my angsty emo faze. (dang, I'm getting old) I would have adored him then. Reading Looking for Alaska as a emotionally stable 24 year old just isn't the same. I still enjoyed it, but I didn't feel all the feels if you know what I mean. So when the internet and book blogs started blowing up due to this little blue and white novel, a cancer book, written by the YA king I thought that I should maybe give it a try. And I did. But via the audio edition. 

And it was good. Really good. A delightful narrator who voiced Hazel-Grace and Gus to a T. Interesting story-line, sarcastic, a bit too smart and sharp at times(but then, isn't everything in the teen years that way?) Made even better by an interview with John Green at the end where he speaks about why and how he came about writing this particular title.

I highly recommend it. Okay? Okay. (a little TFIOS reference for those of you who have read it.)

Whew. Okay. The rest of these recs are gonna be more concise. Doesn't mean I love them any less. Just for efficiency's sake.

Blood Red Road by Moira Young.
Futuristic, post apocalyptic world... strong but flawed heroine. Cage-fighting. Crazy villians. Mystery... its good. 

 Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins
Yeah, yeah. Have you been living under a rock? Everyone and their grandma has read this already. But the audio book is good. I would even argue its more fun to listen. Great narrator and quick pace. Its a fun one to listen to while doing some chores around the house. Catching Fire is also enjoyable on audio. And I kind of disliked Mockingjay as a whole.... but you can listen to that too if you'd like.

Is Everyone Hanging out without Me? (and other concerns) by Mindy Kaling
I love Mindy. I loved her on early episodes of The Office. I loved her blog (when she used to update it) I loved the few articles I've read with her over the years. She's funny without ever being too crude or obnoxious. Sarcastic, adorable. She is who she is and what that is is awesome. The audio version of this blows reading it out of the water because... Mindy reads it. Yeah. Win. Basically, its random essays and observations she's made about life, relationships and stuff. Entertaining and light.

Other honorable mentions:
Someday, Someday Maybe- by Lauren Graham (Lorelia Gilmore/Sarah Braverman to you TV watchers) read by the author. 
A Wrinkle in Time- by Madeline L'Engle (I recommend the version read by her as well!)
The Perks of Being a Wallflower- by Stephen Chbosky

And a few I'm looking forward to trying out....!
Eleanor and Park by Rainbow Rowell (I've heard AMAZING things about this one)
The Maze Runner by James Dashner

...and I'm currently listening to A Game of Thrones by George R. R. Martin- really enjoying it so far. Descriptive and a quicker pace than I expected- I like the world he's building as well as the different viewpoints of all the characters.



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