Tag Archives: Audiobook

My Latest Bookish Addiction [17] – Audiobooks Give Me Life!

MLBA

In keeping with the theme of my blog, I decided to start bringing you updates of the newest and greatest bookish addictions in my life so I can share with you some awesomely bookish things or discuss if maybe we share the same bookish loves. It seemed like a great way to get a little discussion going in a very relaxed way.

This Edition’s Bookish Addiction? Audiobooks… Again… Again! 

Audiobooks again again? What the heck does that mean?

Well, I’ve now posted about audiobooks being a bookish addiction twice now, so this is the third time but seriously. IT’S RELEVANT. I promise.

Because I went through all of my books that I’ve read so far this year and I’ve ready a grand total of… *drumroll please* 59! (Okay, at that number wasn’t big.)

But guess how many were audiobooks? 41. FOURTY-ONE BOOKS OUT OF FIFTY-NINE. That’s 70% audiobooks this year. What would I do without them!? No, seriously, what would I do? I would be listening to music while I work or drive, which is all well and good, but I would have read… 18 books this year? Huh!? That’s insane.

Audiobooks give me life. I’ve been sooooo busy with candles that I don’t have time to sit and read. I don’t have to read. Hell, I don’t have time to sit. So I listen to audiobooks while I do most things and THANK GOODNESS FOR THAT. So yes, we’re talking about audiobooks for a third time here on this feature that I give little love to. Because we need to!

Instead of rehashing all the wonderful things about audiobooks, let’s skip straight to my favorites from this year!


THE HATING GAME by Sally Thorne.
Narrated by Katie Schorr.
This book was so cute! I loved the tension between the characters, there was some serious snark and serious romance, and the overall feel was just fun! Katie Schorr’s voice is a little high-pitched but I actually thought it added a cuteness to the book, somehow!| Audible

AMY AND ROGER’S EPIC DETOUR by Morgan Matson. 
Narrated by Suzy Jackson.
This was my second Morgan Matson book and I loved the balance between serious and fun. The story was great, I loved the music selections included, and the message was just lovely. I’ve listened to Suzy Jackson before and I like her voice for YA contemporary! | Audible

THE NIGHT CIRCUS by Erin Morgenstern. 
Narrated by Jim Dale. 
This was a re-read for me and it was even more magical the second time around! I adore Jim Dale and his narration. He just has that narrator’s voice!! | Audible

THE QUEEN’S THIEF SERIES by Megan Whelan Turner. 
Narrated by Steve West. 
I picked this up specifically because STEVE WEST. Sigh. I love his voice. But I also did want to read this series so I’m so glad I read it and binged! | Audible

STRANGE THE DREAMER by Laini Taylor. 
Narrated by Steve West. 
Yeah, so? So what if I’ve listened to Steve West narrate like 8 books to me this year? What of it? But no, really. Laini Taylor’s books are just gorgeous and this may be my favorite read so far this year. | Audible

THE SHADES OF MAGIC TRILOGY by V.E. Schwab. 
Narrated by Steven Crossley (book one), Michael Kramer and Kate Reading (books two/three).
Part of the reason I wanted to read these books was because I wanted to listen to more Michael Kramer. I adore his narration and I always need more! The books were also very good haha! | Audible

And my favorite part of any audiobook, the Audible guy! “Audible hopes you have enjoyed this program.” Don’t you just love him?


Of course I can’t let you go without making some recommendations. Last time I just threw out some audiobook recs but I’m digging a little deeper this time — audio beginner or master, there’s something here for everyone! 

FAVORITE NARRATORS

  • Steve West | The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater, The Queen’s Thief series by Megan Whelan Turner, The Crown’s Game duology be Evelyn Skye
  • Fiona HardinghamThe Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater
  • Jim Dale | Harry Potter by J.K. Rowling, The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern, Peter and the Starcatchers by Dave Barry & Ridley Pearson
  • MacLeod Andrews | Lies Beneath by Anne Greenwood Brown, The Reckoners Trilogy by Brandon Sanderson, The Boy Most Likely To by Huntley Fitzpatrick
  • Michael Kramer | The Mistborn Trilogy by Brandon Sanderson, The Wheel of Time series by Robert Jordan, The Shades of Magic trilogy by V.E. Schwab
  • Michael Page | The Gentleman Bastard series by Scott Lynch
  • Neil Gaiman | The Graveyard Book and others by Neil Gaiman

CELEBRITY NARRATORS

  • Wil Wheaton | Ready Player One by Ernest Cline, Armada by Ernest Cline
  • Jesse Eisenberg | The Curse Workers Trilogy by Holly Black
  • Anne Hathaway | The Princess Diaries by Meg Cabot

MY AUDIOBOOK RECOMMENDATIONS

Check out my audiobook list on Goodreads for even MORE recommendations or you can always comment or email me for recs! These are the ones I would start with but I’ve listened to a bunch more than I’ve also enjoyed! What audiobooks do YOU recommend?

The Ocean at the End of the Lane – Neil Gaiman

The Ocean at the End of the Lane – Neil GaimanTitle: The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman
Publishing Info: June 18, 2013 by HarperCollins
Source: Borrowed from Hoopla
Genres: Adult, Magical Realism
Find it on the web: Buy from Amazon // Goodreads
Date Completed: November 7, 2016
Related Posts: Fortunately, the Milk, Stardust, American Gods, Neverwhere, InterWorld (InterWorld #1)

A middle-aged man returns to his childhood home to attend a funeral. Although the house he lived in is long gone, he is drawn to the farm at the end of the road, where, when he was seven, he encountered a most remarkable girl, Lettie Hempstock, and her mother and grandmother. He hasn't thought of Lettie in decades, and yet as he sits by the pond (a pond that she'd claimed was an ocean) behind the ramshackle old farmhouse, the unremembered past comes flooding back. And it is a past too strange, too frightening, too dangerous to have happened to anyone, let alone a small boy.
Forty years earlier, a man committed suicide in a stolen car at this farm at the end of the road. Like a fuse on a firework, his death lit a touchpaper and resonated in unimaginable ways. The darkness was unleashed, something scary and thoroughly incomprehensible to a little boy. And Lettie—magical, comforting, wise beyond her years—promised to protect him, no matter what.
A groundbreaking work from a master, The Ocean at the End of the Lane is told with a rare understanding of all that makes us human, and shows the power of stories to reveal and shelter us from the darkness inside and out. It is a stirring, terrifying, and elegiac fable as delicate as a butterfly's wing and as menacing as a knife in the dark.

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Apparently the end of 2016 was filled with Neil Gaiman after listening to two full-length novels and one extra, all on audio. I’ve been in a bit of a reading slump and was looking for something comforting and that I knew would be pleasant to listen to and it doesn’t get much better than Neil Gaiman’s stories and his own narration.

I’m really glad that I waited to read/listen to THE OCEAN AT THE END OF THE LANE and didn’t pick it up right away. Magical realism is a genre that’s been growing on me over the years and I’ve reached a point where I’ve read a few books within the genre of which I’ve grown quite fond. Usually when I experience a genre clash, it’s all about reading the right books and my latest magical realism reads have just really been clicking. I fear if I had read THE OCEAN AT THE END OF THE LANE too soon, the magical experience of everything may have been lost on me and I might not have connected well and I’m so glad that I was really able to appreciate this book!

Alyssa, my friend and master of Gaiman novels, described this one to me as a children’s story for adults, being that the narrator is an adult who is telling the story but it’s about a series of events that happened to him as a child, all around when he was about seven years old, and I think that’s a great way to describe this novel. THE OCEAN AT THE END OF THE LANE felt very much like an adult-oriented book and yet it had the younger, children’s mentality due to its time frame and focus. Despite how well I think Neil Gaiman writes for any age, I feel like I tend not to wholly connect to a book that mixes or crosses ages like that. I don’t often like when adult books dip down into a childlike focus and the mix of mentalities can be a bit too much for me sometimes, and that seems to be why I didn’t totally 100% love this story.

I really did enjoy the magic that occurred throughout the book, though! I love magical realism because it doesn’t have to play into stereotypical creatures or situations that are so often found in paranormal or urban fantasy genres and yet it still connects with real life. That slight blur between the narrator’s home life and the magic of the Hempstock family was just delightful and I love the feeling of it being right on the surface. The little beasties and dangerous magical things are that much more frightening in THE OCEAN AT THE END OF THE LANE as well because the characters don’t know or understand the rules of their world and often time can’t predict how to control, discourage, or manage them. They’re that much harder to get rid of as well when there’s a limited amount of help and not an entirely fantastical community to offer support.

THE OCEAN AT THE END OF THE LANE was a quick read and I loved the overall atmosphere and feel. I don’t like stories that dip into the childhood years as much because it’s just not something I connect with as much as I do young adult or adult novels but I still enjoyed it from start to finish. Neil Gaiman always creates the most wonderful atmospheres that have readers completely believing in these worlds and I loved being totally sucked into the story.

AUDIOBOOK IMPRESSIONS

I borrowed this audiobook from Hoopla (bless you, Hoopla) because I was having an audiobook slump and needed a narrator I could trust who was also a male voice. I just wasn’t in the mood for a female voice after striking out a few times. I love when authors narrate their own books because I just feel you really get things EXACTLY the way they intended, especially parts that were songs (and actually sung)! Neil Gaiman has a wonderful narrating voice as well and his audiobooks are just so pleasant to listen to.

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Kept Me Hooked On: Magical Realism. This is still a new-ish genre to me and I’m finding that I’m enjoying these stories more and more!
Left Me Wanting More: Sophistication. The book was actually plenty sophisitcated, I guess, but I just don’t connect to that childlike mentality as much.

Addiction Rating
Read it

If you’re a fan of Gaiman, looking for a good audiobook, or attempting to get into more magical realism, this is a great place to dive in!

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BOOKS LIKE THE OCEAN AT THE END OF THE LANE

(Click the cover to see my review!)

BONE GAP    THE RAVEN BOYS

Top Ten Tuesday – September 20, 2016: All About Audio

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TOP TEN TUESDAY
September 20, 2016

It’s Top Ten Tuesday, hosted by the wonderful blog at The Broke and the Bookish! This week’s topic was All About Audio! 

I accidentally jumped the gun on this topic a couple weeks ago when I posted about my favorite audiobook narrators (Rats!) so instead, for today’s Top Ten Tuesday, I’m going to compile a sort of hodgepodge of my favorite audiobooks, narrators, and other things audio-related, except in threes instead of tens!

BY BOOK

MY TOP THREE WELL-KNOWN SERIES RECS

  • The Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling | Read by Jim Dale
  • The Magicians series by Lev Grossman | Read by
  • The Stephanie Plum series by Janet Evanovich | Read by Lorelai King

MY TOP THREE BRANDON SANDERSON READS/LISTENS (because I’ve read so many)

  • The Mistborn series | Read by Michael Kramer
  • The Reckoners Trilogy | Read by MacLeod Andrews
  • The Rithmatist | Read by Michael Kramer

THREE AUDIOBOOKS I DNFed WHOSE NARRATORS I ACTUALLY LIKED

  • Glass Sword by Victoria Aveyard
  • An Ember in the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir
  • Invisibility by Andrea Cremer & David Levithan

THREE SERIES I’VE RE-READ AS AUDIOBOOKS

  • Harry Potter
  • The Lunar Chronicles
  • The Grisha Trilogy

THREE SERIES I BINGED AS AUDIOBOOKS

  • The Elemental Trilogy by Sherry Thomas
  • The Conspiracy of Us by Maggie Hall
  • The Mara Dyer Trilogy by Michelle Hodkin

THREE BOOKS I HALF READ & HALF LISTENED

  • A Song of Ice and Fire (series) by George R.R. Martin
  • The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss (I couldn’t stop!)
  • Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas (wanted to hurry up and read!)

MY TOP AUDIOBOOKS EVER

  • The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater
  • Ready Player One by Ernest Cline
  • The Lies of Locke Lamora by Scott Lynch

BY NARRATOR

MY TOP THREE NARRATORS WITH AN ACCENT

  • Michael Page
  • Jim Dale
  • Philip Battley

THREE SURPRISING NARRATOR CHOICES THAT TOTALLY WORKED

  • Will Patton for The Raven Cycle (old southern guy narrating a teen novel)
  • Michael Kramer for The Rithmatist (usually does adult audiobooks)
  • Jesse Eisenberg for The Curse Worker Trilogy (surprise celeb narrator)

MY TOP THREE MALE NARRATORS

  • MacLeod Andrews
  • Steve West
  • Michael Kramer

MY TOP THREE FEMALE NARRATORS

  • Julia Whelan
  • Jorjeana Marie
  • Lorelai King

MY TOP THREE CELEBRITY NARRATORS

  • Wil Wheaton
  • Jesse Eisenberg
  • Anne Hathaway

MY TOP THREE “AUTHORATORS” (AUTHORS WHO NARRATE THEIR OWN BOOKS)

  • Neil Gaiman | The Graveyard Book
  • Adriana Mather | How to Hang a Witch
  • Libba Bray | Beauty Queens

MY TOP FULL CAST/MORE THAN THREE NARRATOR RECORDINGS

  • Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo
  • American Gods by Neil Gaiman
  • As You Wish by Cary Elwes

MY TOP THREE NARRATORS OVERALL

  • MacLeod Andrews
  • Wil Wheaton
  • Michael Kramer

Those are some of my audiobook favorites! It was actually really fun breaking them down into categories. I’ve never done that before!

11 Outstanding Audiobook Narrators

It’s no secret that I love listening to audiobooks. It was something that took me a little while to figure out because I had to realize that you can’t just pick up any old audiobook and narrator by chance. Once I found my groove of voices I liked to listen to, I essentially kept coming back to the same narrators and then after that, actively sought them out, even if it wasn’t a book that I was initially interested. What’s neat about that is that I got to have the audiobook experience as well as pick up a totally unique read that I might have otherwise missed!

I tend to fall a little bit in love with my audiobook narrators. Some narrators are just so pleasant to listen to that I look for books JUST because they narrate them and especially when some of these male voices portray my book boyfriends, well… I develop a little crush. I’ve noticed that I tend to listen to more male narrators than female (I don’t know if that’s related or not) but I do have some female favorites too! Here are my recommendations for voice actors that totally nail it in the personality, performance, and overall experience!

Note: Each featured narrator includes links to audiobooks that I’ve listened to from them. They have way more that they’ve done but these are the books that I’ve listened to!

audiobook narrators

MACLEOD ANDREWS

LIES BENEATH | THE RECKONERS TRILOGY | THE BOY MOST LIKELY TO | HELLHOLE | WILL GRAYSON, WILL GRAYSON

MacLeod Andrews might be my all-time favorite audiobook narrator. If not, he’s certainly in the tops. I just love his narration and he has one of those voices that just really brings the characters to life. He puts so much personality into each character and really brings a different tone to each book that he narrates. I just love listening to his voice and I think he does an amazing job with every book. I have started picking books JUST because he narrates them and I’ve got a long list of even more that I want to hear!

MICHAEL KRAMER

THE MISTBORN SERIES | THE RITHMATIST

Michael Kramer is best-known (in my book) for narrating Brandon Sanderon’s books. I started the audio for MISTBORN because the books were long and I was afraid that I was going to take a long tim to read it. I had also picked it up on sort of a whim because I was waiting for Patrick Rothfuss’s books but they weren’t available at the time so I grabbed MISTBORN from the library instead. I LOVE his narration, his voices, his attitude. It’s totally just the best. I wish he narrated more YA because that’s what I read more of but maybe I’ll have to check out more adult just to listen to him!

MICHAEL PAGE

THE GENTLEMAN BASTARD SERIES

The only thing I’ve listened to from Michael Page so far is The Gentleman Bastard series (all three books so far) and GOSH I just love him. He brings such life to the characters and gets to do some epic swearing and I LOVE it. I love his British accent and he’s just so much fun to listen to. I’m seeking out other things that he narrates but haven’t tried them yet.

NICK PODEHL

THE KINGKILLER CHRONICLE | WILL GRAYSON, WILL GRAYSON

I looooved Nick Podehl narrating THE NAME OF THE WIND and THE WISE MAN’S FEAR. He narrates some YA and I’ve been looking for those too! I actually picked out WILL GRAYSON, WILL GRAYSON despite my ambivalence for John Green just because Nick Podehl and MacLeod Andrews narrated and it was really enjoyable! Sometimes favorite narrators can totally make a book.

STEVE WEST

THE SCORPIO RACES | AN EMBER IN THE ASHES | THE CROWN’S GAME

Steve. West. Ladies and gentlemen, hoo boy, he can make a girl fall in love. I listened to THE SCORPIO RACES as my first read and I can’t ever read the print version again. He IS Sean Kendrick, all broody and gorgeous. I’ve listened to the audiobook three times and I plan to keep listening every fall (and I can’t wait for my next listen IT’S COMING UP).
On the flip side, an amazing narrator cannot save a book if it’s not working. I bought AN EMBER IN THE ASHES because Steve West (AND Fiona Hardingham, who also co-narrates THE SCORPIO RACES) were the narrators for it and I was sure I’d love the book AND the narration. I said Steve West could narrate the phone book and I’d love it. WELP. I didn’t finish EMBER. I just wasn’t connecting with the book but it wasn’t the narrator’s fault. Just an important lesson!
I also haven’t listened to THE CROWN’S GAME yet (I read the ARC) but I bought the audio to prepare for the re-read before book two comes out! I just loved the book and hello, Steve West.

JULIA WHELAN

THE CONSPIRACY OF US | FORGOTTEN

I listened to FORGOTTEN before I even paid attention to audiobook narrators — I just grabbed whatever looked interesting from the library — but looking back, I totally did enjoy Julia Wheelman’s narration! I rediscovered her when listening to Maggie Hall’s books, THE CONSPIRACY OF US and MAP OF FATES and I’m dying for more of that series but I’ll settle for more books narrated by Julia Whelan until then!

WIL WHEATON

READY PLAYER ONE | ARMADA

Wil Wheaton is totally the best. He’s SO energetic and so much fun. I get so excited listening to him narrate and he brings such energy to each book. I totally fell in love with READY PLAYER ONE and still want to do a re-read, listening to the audio again because it was just that good. Of course I grabbed ARMADA on audio because Wil Wheaton was narrating that too and it was awesome! There were actually a lot of mixed reviews on the book but I had so much fun listening that I was totally hooked.

 

JORJEANA MARIE

THE BOY MOST LIKELY TO | THE DARKEST CORNERS | WINK, POPPY, MIDNIGHT

Jorjeana Marie is a new favorite of mine! I first heard her in WINK, POPPY, MIDNIGHT and when I got to listen to THE DARKEST CORNERS, I started catching on. When I picked up THE BOY MOST LIKELY TO (for MacLeod), I realized how much I really like her narration and I’m looking forward to more from her!

LORELAI KING

THE STEPHANIE PLUM SERIES | FIRST GRAVE ON THE RIGHT

FIRST GRAVE ON THE RIGHT was another random library grab and that was the first time I heard Lorelai King. I ended up switching to audio for Stephanie Plum somewhere along the way and even though I have ups and downs with the series (mostly positive but sometimes things get silly), I’ve always loved the narration! Lorelai King does a really, really good job at giving all of these characters different voices and she’s so consistent at it too. Always keeping in tone with the books, she does a really great job at keeping the fun in them too!

JIM DALE

HARRY POTTER | THE NIGHT CIRCUS | PETER AND THE STARCATCHERS

I actually knew Jim Dale’s voice from Pushing Daisies (who are my fellow Pushing Daisies fans!?) and I was SO SURPRISED when I heard him as I started THE NIGHT CIRCUS! I didn’t know his name so I didn’t realize that was the same voice! I was so excited and then found out that he narrates the Harry Potter series too and promptly started my re-read of the series on audio.

NEIL GAIMAN

THE GRAVEYARD BOOK | STARDUST | AMERICAN GODS

THE GRAVEYARD BOOK was my first Neil Gaiman book EVER and I had no idea that he narrated (some of) his own books! I just love his voice and it’s always so special when an author narrates their own books because you know exactly what they meant and exactly their intonation for each character. He just does such an amazing job (and the British accent doesn’t hurt). I’ve been planning to read NEVERWHERE for a long time and I’m excited to listen to another audio!


What are some of your favorite audiobook narrators? Do we share any of the same favorites? Which would you recommend? I’m always looking for new favorites!

Elantris – Brandon Sanderson

Elantris – Brandon SandersonTitle: Elantris by Brandon Sanderson
Publishing Info: May 30, 2006 by Macmillan, Tor Books
Source: Audible
Genres: Adult, Fantasy
Find it on the web: Buy from Amazon // Goodreads
Date Completed: April 12, 2016
Related Posts: Mistborn: The Final Empire (Mistborn #1), The Well of Ascension (Mistborn #2), The Hero of Ages (Mistborn #3), The Alloy of Law (Mistborn #4), Legion (Legion #1) & Legion: Skin Deep (Legion #2), , The Emperor's Soul, The Eleventh Metal (Mistborn #0.5), , Firstborn, Shadows of Self (Mistborn #5), The Bands of Mourning (Mistborn #6), Calamity (The Reckoners #3), , Perfect State, Mistborn: Secret History (Mistborn #3.5), Shadows for Silence in the Forests of Hell, The Rithmatist (Rithmatist #1), Warbreaker (Warbreaker #1), The Way of Kings (The Stormlight Archive #1), Snapshot

Elantris was the capital of Arelon: gigantic, beautiful, literally radiant, filled with benevolent beings who used their powerful magical abilities for the benefit of all. Yet each of these demigods was once an ordinary person until touched by the mysterious transforming power of the Shaod. Ten years ago, without warning, the magic failed. Elantrians became wizened, leper-like, powerless creatures, and Elantris itself dark, filthy, and crumbling.
Arelon's new capital, Kae, crouches in the shadow of Elantris. Princess Sarene of Teod arrives for a marriage of state with Crown Prince Raoden, hoping -- based on their correspondence -- to also find love. She finds instead that Raoden has died and she is considered his widow. Both Teod and Arelon are under threat as the last remaining holdouts against the imperial ambitions of the ruthless religious fanatics of Fjordell. So Sarene decides to use her new status to counter the machinations of Hrathen, a Fjordell high priest who has come to Kae to convert Arelon and claim it for his emperor and his god.
But neither Sarene nor Hrathen suspect the truth about Prince Raoden. Stricken by the same curse that ruined Elantris, Raoden was secretly exiled by his father to the dark city. His struggle to help the wretches trapped there begins a series of events that will bring hope to Arelon, and perhaps reveal the secret of Elantris itself.
A rare epic fantasy that doesn't recycle the classics and that is a complete and satisfying story in one volume, Elantris is fleet and fun, full of surprises and characters to care about. It's also the wonderful debut of a welcome new star in the constellation of fantasy. lf.

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Ever since I read MISTBORN a couple years ago, I’ve been obsessed with Brandon Sanderson’s writing. His books launched me into the world of adult fantasy when I had been reading nearly exclusively young adult and I’ve been on a mission ever since to gobble up the rest of his books. Every book I’ve read (and every novella) has been enjoyable and I simply cannot get enough. I took advantage of an Audible deal that had Brandon Sanderson audiobooks on sale so I picked up ELANTRIS and WARBREAKER (which I also hope to read soon) and decided to start with ELANTRIS since it was Sanderson’s first published novel and it’s a stand alone.

ELANTRIS was such a good, solid read. At times it felt a bit lengthy and I was anxious for things to get moving but that could also be because I was listening to the audiobook so it did take me significantly longer than if I was reading it in print. I was “warned” ahead of time that the beginning was a lot of set up and character development and the true action and twists didn’t occur until closer to the end so I was all right waiting for that. I also didn’t mind because the characters were just so enjoyable! Since it’s not as action packed as some of his later books, ELANTRIS is able to really dig into characters and let their personalities shine! Raoden was truly as personable as he was made out to be and I loved Sarene’s independence and strength. Each character really brought the book to life and it was so easy to connect with each and every one of them.

The concept of Elantris and its fall was incredibly interesting. For most of the book, no one really knows why the once godlike inhabitants of Elantris fell and why the Shaod continues to take people, turning them into the “creatures” that the cities fear and quarantine. The world-building and background surrounding these questions impressed me and as always, the big reveal was so satisfying. I was really hoping for a bit more history of the magic system because it was so interesting and complex and I’m always anxious to dig into why and how it works! There is an explanation but I’ve been spoiled with the details that Sanderson includes in subsequent books and so I was seeking so many more details about AonDor! I also hoped for a bit more of digging into the creation myths of the Cosmere but since it was Sanderson’s first published work, there was still so much more to come to play around with what this world was, what drove its magic, and how it connected within the Cosmere. I know ELANTRIS was a stand alone (well, it does have a short story but it’s more of a companion to the novel than a continuation) but I would love to learn so much more about this world! I immediately went digging into the Coppermind (the Wiki for Sanderson’s complete works — it’s incredibly detailed!) to get any more info that I possibly could! All it did was make me want another book detailing this planet’s history even more.

For those of you who aren’t familiar with Sanderson yet (since I’m finally writing a review for a book that’s not a sequel in a series), the Cosmere is Sanderson’s universe and most of his adult works take place on a different planet in the Cosmere. ELANTRIS is the first book set in the Cosmere and takes place on the planet Sel. Each Cosmere-set series is independent of the others but they all take place in the same universe and therefore share the same (incredibly detailed) history. I won’t get into it because a lot of this was explained with MISTBORN: A SECRET HISTORY, which is meant to be read after the 6th book in the Mistborn series and it could be a little spoilery to say more about the Cosmere since I only just discovered it this far into my Sanderson journey. I will say, though, that I’m constantly impressed with the world-building and I’m obsessed with books that are not series that connect. Sanderson is such a craftsman when it comes to connecting the Cosmere books and it may not always be in the most obvious way but when you make that connection, it’s so incredibly satisfying and it is such a delight to observe as a reader!

ELANTRIS was a book that really stuck with me and I keep thinking about it long after I’ve finished! It didn’t have quite as many historical details or action as some of the first Sanderson books I’ve read but I actually enjoyed that because it’s great to see how Brandon Sanderon’s writing style has changed, evolved, and can differ from story to story. I love that the books can feel so unique and yet still have a typical Sanderson feel that I can identify with. I can’t wait to continue my Cosmere binge later on this year!

AUDIOBOOK IMPRESSIONS

Source: Purchased from Audible during a sale
Narrator: Jack Garrett
Performance: More books narrated by Jack Garrett, please!

I’m always iffy trying out a narrator that I haven’t listened to before, especially with a favorite author AND an audiobook that’s literally 28.5 hours long. That’s over a full day of my life listening to one person’s voice so it gets intimidating to pick someone new! I’m really glad that I not only liked Jack Garrett but ended up loving him! His narration really embodied each character and each person had their own unique voice. I’m always so impressed with how many different voices a voice actor can do and with a detailed cast of characters, Jack Garrett had no issue making each voice quite unique. His female voices were softer and more feminine but not over the top. Accents were well placed and the general performance of everything was just top notch. I don’t know what other books he’s narrated but I will definitely be seeking out more!

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“The View from Goodreads” is a featured section in my reviews that I decided to incorporate! I tend to update my Goodreads status a LOT when I read — reactions, feelings, notes — so I thought it would be fun to share the sort of “reading process”! All status updates are spoiler-free (no specific plot points will be revealed) but will contain reactions to certain pages and/or characters!

elantris goodreads

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Raoden // Character Obsessions: Answers, leading, duty, giving.
Raoden was amazing. I loved how he really was so incredibly likable and most of all, I loved that he was so concerned about his people, no matter where he ended up. He wanted to make sure everyone had a purpose and that purpose made them feel useful in a place that might otherwise consume all of their hope. He was a fantastic character to follow and that is one of the sad parts about ELANTRIS being a stand alone… I’d love to spend more time with these characters!
Sarene // Character Obsessions: Damning the man, equality, investigations, justice.
Sarene was strong, independent, and in control. She didn’t care about gender “norms” and just wanted what was fair and right for all, regardless of gender, class, or status. I loved her constant push to empower the women in this book and total disregard for what Arelon considered appropriate. She was an amazing female character and I loved how she dominated this book.

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Kept Me Hooked On: Fantasy stand alones. There are so many fantasy series and I don’t often read a fantasy stand alones! I did become a bit greedy and wanted more of this world but it’s also so nice to have this wrapped up and I don’t have to wait years for more books or spend more time continuing a series.
Left Me Wanting More: Details. As I mentioned, the only thing I really craved more of were some details — how Sel connected in the Cosmere, more of its creation story, more info on AonDor and Aons, and how the magic system worked. These are the reasons I think I crave more of a sequel/continuation but the book really is a fantastic stand alone.

Addiction Rating
Buy it!

I just love Brandon Sanderson and there isn’t a book of his yet that I won’t recommend.

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BOOKS LIKE ELANTRIS

(Click the cover to see my review!)

THE NAME OF THE WIND    THE WINNER'S CURSE

The Good Girl – Mary Kubica

The Good Girl – Mary KubicaTitle: The Good Girl by Mary Kubica
Publishing Info: July 29, 2014 by Harlequin
Source: Audible
Genres: Adult, Mystery/Thriller
Find it on the web: Buy from Amazon // Goodreads
Date Completed: March 13, 2016
Related Posts: Pretty Baby

One night, Mia Dennett enters a bar to meet her on-again, off-again boyfriend. But when he doesn't show, she unwisely leaves with an enigmatic stranger. At first Colin Thatcher seems like a safe one-night stand. But following Colin home will turn out to be the worst mistake of Mia's life.
When Colin decides to hide Mia in a secluded cabin in rural Minnesota instead of delivering her to his employers, Mia's mother, Eve, and detective Gabe Hoffman will stop at nothing to find them. But no one could have predicted the emotional entanglements that eventually cause this family's world to shatter.
An addictively suspenseful and tautly written thriller, The Good Girl is a propulsive debut that reveals how even in the perfect family, nothing is as it seems.

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I had been hearing about THE GOOD GIRL and Mary Kubica’s books for a while now (I still remember those giant banners from BEA 2014!) and when this audiobook was on sale through Audible, I knew I couldn’t pass it up. I didn’t know what I was in the mood for when choosing a new audiobook one day and I’m always in the mood for a mystery/thriller so I decided to start this one!

I really wasn’t sure what to expect from THE GOOD GIRL. I didn’t know if it was supposed to be another GONE GIRL (I feel like I had heard some comparison like that somewhere along the way) or if it was more mystery or if there was any sort of twist at all. In a way, that was a good thing because I had a few less expectations and I was able to just read (listen to) the book without trying to push it on a certain path. It was also a bit of a bad thing at times because I really wasn’t sure what the point of the book was. I felt engaged the whole time but I started to expect a twist somewhere because while the action was moving forward, I wasn’t quite sure what the end goal was to this story and why it needed to be told. (Not that I didn’t think there was a purpose — I just wasn’t sure what it was!)

THE GOOD GIRL has alternative POVs but it also has alternating timelines with each POV as well — there will be a POV switch and a time frame switch from before Mia was abducted to after. I thought this was really interesting and it really made for a well-rounded story while still leaving big clues out since the perspectives are from Mia’s mother, the detective working the case, and interestingly enough, Mia’s abductor and not Mia. The reader is able to follow the mystery along since Mia is suffering from selective amnesia and PTSD following her kidnapping and return home.

I was actually incredibly interested in Colin, the guy who was hired to kidnap Mia. I thought it was super interesting to get POV chapters from him instead of Mia that detailed how the kidnapping went down and how his decisions really affected the story. I ended up finding myself feeling quite sympathetic towards him and enjoying his POV and I wasn’t sure at first if I was supposed to. As the book goes on, the reader discovers exactly how big his role is in Mia’s story and why it’s important for him to have POV chapters and not Mia.

I was both happy with and a little disappointed by the ending. There’s a little piece of information that really brings the whole book together and made me say, “AH. There it is.” I was glad that everything really came together and that nugget of information really brought that “point” of the book to light and explained why this story was so important. The reason I was a little disappointed was because this happened literally right at the end. It was the very last chapter of the book so I was getting ready to say, “Okay, nice story but meh” so at least that really did tie everything together! I guess I was also hoping for something more… sinister? I can’t help it — as much as I hate Amy Dunne characters because they’re awful people, it’s so incredibly fascinating to watch that trainwreck go down. I will say this is not a light read and it has its dark moments but it doesn’t have that flash of legitimate antisocial personality disorder like GONE GIRL does and in a way, I was hoping for it because such bad behavior just makes those shocking moments all the more shocking!

THE GOOD GIRL was a good read and I’ll probably pick up another Mary Kubica book but it wasn’t as thrilling as I had hoped. The moments in between the action were a bit slow for me, especially the chapters with Mia’s mother because I just didn’t care as much about her backstory or personal life. I’m interested to pick up other Mary Kubica books but I’m also hoping for a bit more of a twist!

AUDIOBOOK IMPRESSIONS

Produced by: Blackstone Audio
Narrators: Lindy Nettleton, Johnny Heller, Tom Taylorson, and Andi Arndt
Source: Purchased on sale from Audible.com

Honestly, I was totally surprised to hear Lindy Nettleton kick off the story… with a British accent. The book takes place in the Chicagoland area so I didn’t understand at first but then we do find out that she’s from the UK and moved here when she was a teenager but still has a strong accent. It really wasn’t all that appealing to me since it seemed out of place in a Chicago atmosphere even though I know it was actually accurate.
I really enjoyed Colin’s POV (narrated by Tom Taylorson, who also narrates in PRETTY BABY which is good news for me if I pick up the audio for that book too) and his voice was really enjoyable to listen to. I think that’s also why I ended up being sympathetic towards him — an audiobook’s narrator really affects how I feel towards a particular character!
It was a bit awkward to hear exchanges between Eve and Gabe (Nettleton and Heller) because their voices are just so different that I just feel like they were hard to capture from the other person’s POV. I felt like Nettleton didn’t do a very good American accept and Heller didn’t do the best British accent but things like that don’t usually bother me too much unless they don’t seem to be trying at all.
Overall, the narration was pretty good with Taylorson being my favorite narrator of the bunch and I’d actively seek out other books narrated by him! I will probably not listen to something with Nettleton’s narration again unless it’s a favorite author.

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“The View from Goodreads” is a featured section in my reviews that I decided to incorporate! I tend to update my Goodreads status a LOT when I read — reactions, feelings, notes — so I thought it would be fun to share the sort of “reading process”! All status updates are spoiler-free (no specific plot points will be revealed) but will contain reactions to certain pages and/or characters!

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Eve // Character Obsessions: Mia’s case, family, appearances 
Eve was sort of a weird character for me. She loves her family and yet they’re still quite distant. She keeps up with appearances and yet she’s not overly focused on status. She sort of floats somewhere in the middle where you know she comes from money and maybe wasn’t the best mother but she’s not a horrible person. I ended up feeling pretty ambivalent about her but I didn’t really like her overall character either.
Colin // Character Obsessions: Survival, money, taking care of business
I ended up being really sympathetic towards Colin. He’s the antagonist here and yet I found myself rooting for him more and more. His voice felt genuine and you could tell he was just in a hard spot, had a hard life growing up, and was doing these things for the money and to help his mother. That’s not an excusable reason to kidnap someone but that’s also a part of why the story went the way it did.

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Kept Me Hooked On: Adult thrillers. I don’t really too many adult age-range novels anymore since I’m heavy into YA but it’s refreshing to pick up something different every once in a while!
Left Me Wanting More: Twist. There was a little twist but it came so late that a bit of disappointment had already set in.

Addiction Rating
Try it

I did enjoy this one! Not my all-time favorite and probably other go-to recs before this one but it was a solid, well put-together book and I’m sure I’ll read more Mary Kubica in the future!

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BOOKS LIKE THE GOOD GIRL 

(Click the cover to see my review!)

GONE GIRL    THE PASSENGER

My Latest Bookish Addiction [16] – Audiobooks (Again!)

MLBA

In keeping with the theme of my blog, I decided to start bringing you updates of the newest and greatest bookish addictions in my life so I can share with you some awesomely bookish things or discuss if maybe we share the same bookish loves. It seemed like a great way to get a little discussion going in a very relaxed way.

This Edition’s Bookish Addiction? Audiobooks… Again! 

I’ve already celebrated audiobooks as My Latest Bookish Addiction but I must must share my love for them again. My original post on audiobooks is already over a year and a half old and oh, how things have changed since then! I have a lot more titles to recommend, favorite narrators, and audiobook habits since my original post so the topic bears repeating!

Audiobooking has become a way of life for me. In my original post, I was already becoming a seasoned audiobook listener but now I’m at the point where I crave a good audio and I’m always on the hunt for more fantastic stories with amazing narrators! There’s just something an audiobook that really lends that extra “oomph” to a book — there’s another layer of performance being able to hear a narrator voice the characters, put action sequences in motion, and add a general tone to a story.

I wouldn’t say that I’m a picky listener but I am choosy. There’s not much that I’ll immediately nix as far as an audiobook option except for a few less-than-thrilling narrators that I’ve run into but I’ve definitely had more amazing experiences than poor. Whether it’s for the better or worse, a narrator can really make or break a book for me. But I’ve also learned that a narrator also can’t save a book for me. Two of my favorite narrators of all time voiced a new book and I swore I could listen to them read the phone book… But I ended up DNFing the audio and returning it to Audible, feeling confident about my decision. I’ll usually finish most audios because I can always speed them up or just listen mindlessly if I’m not thoroughly enjoying. This was one of the rare cases where it just felt like a waste of time.

I feel like audiobooks offer a lot of perks for a reader! It may be challenging for some to focus on listening (I know I have to focus sometimes) but if you’re hesitant about trying some, think about this!

  • You can listen to a book while driving, cleaning, cooking dinner, working out, etc. Ever get annoyed that you have to stop reading when you get in the car to go places? Not anymore! I always have an audiobook running so I’ll pop it on during my drive to work, while I’m making dinner, or doing chores. It feels nice that I’m still making progress with a current read.
  • Audiobooks bring a whole new level of performance to a book. Sure, I can do voices in my head… But if anyone talks with an accent, let’s be honest. I try to do it in my head and slowly it just becomes me reading in my own voice again. The voice actors for audios really do a great job giving each character a different voice and most are great at different accents when needed! They also bring heightened emotions, especially in cases like Wil Wheaton’s narration of Ernest Cline’s books!
  • They’re excellent ways to experience your favorite books in new ways.love re-reading and I often times will pick up the audiobooks of my favorites to experience them in a whole different way! It’s almost always a positive experience and really fun to re-read like that.
  • They bring a more personal connection to the book. I have some favorite narrators that sort of made me fall in love with them — I mean, the characters — a little bit more than I might have just reading the words on the page. Hearing the emotion in a character’s voice or just hearing a character’s voice brings a more personal connection to a story and it tugs on my heartstrings that much more.
  • They can make okay books good or even great. Okay, I’ll be honest. If I had just read ARMADA, I’m not sure I would have loved it. But Wil Wheaton is such a good narrator that he really brought so much to the story and I felt like I was almost watching a movie instead of listening to a book. His enthusiasm is amazing and it really got me into the book when I might have felt some lulls if I had read in print.

So what do you think? Any of these reasons convince you to pick up an audiobook? Which ones would you agree with?


Of course I can’t let you go without making some recommendations. Last time I just threw out some audiobook recs but I’m digging a little deeper this time — audio beginner or master, there’s something here for everyone! 

FAVORITE NARRATORS

  • Steve West | The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater
  • Fiona HardinghamThe Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater
  • Jim Dale | Harry Potter by J.K. Rowling, The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern, Peter and the Starcatchers by Dave Barry & Ridley Pearson
  • MacLeod Andrews | Lies Beneath by Anne Greenwood Brown, The Reckoners Trilogy by Brandon Sanderson
  • Michael Kramer | The Mistborn Trilogy by Brandon Sanderson, The Wheel of Time series by Robert Jordan
  • Michael Page | The Gentleman Bastard series by Scott Lynch
  • Neil Gaiman | The Graveyard Book and others by Neil Gaiman

CELEBRITY NARRATORS

  • Wil Wheaton | Ready Player One by Ernest Cline, Armada by Ernest Cline
  • Jesse Eisenberg | The Curse Workers Trilogy by Holly Black
  • Anne Hathaway | The Princess Diaries by Meg Cabot

MY AUDIOBOOK RECOMMENDATIONS

Check out my audiobook list on Goodreads for even MORE recommendations or you can always comment or email me for recs! These are the ones I would start with but I’ve listened to a bunch more than I’ve also enjoyed! What audiobooks do YOU recommend?

The Legend of Sleepy Hollow – Washington Irving

The Legend of Sleepy Hollow – Washington IrvingTitle: The Legend of Sleepy Hollow by Washington Irving
Publishing Info: September 9, 2014 by Audible Studios
Source: Audible
Genres: Adult, Classics
Find it on the web: Buy from Amazon // Goodreads
Date Completed: September 11, 2014

    In the secluded Dutch territory of Sleepy Hollow, nebbish schoolmaster Ichabod Crane competes with the town hero for the hand of Katrina Van Tassel, the 18-year-old daughter and sole child of a wealthy farmer. As Crane leaves a party at the Van Tassel's farm one autumn evening, he is pursued by the Headless Horseman, an apparition said to be the ghost of a Hessian trooper snuffed out by a stray cannonball during the Revolutionary War.

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I’ve been a big fan of the Sleepy Hollow TV show ever since it originally aired (one of the few shows I’ve actually watched from the beginning) so when I heard that one of the stars of the TV show Tom Mison narrated THE LEGEND OF SLEEPY HOLLOW for a free Audible audiobooks, I immediately went to download it. (I mean, have we heard his voice, friends?)

Obviously I have a basic understand of what THE LEGEND OF SLEEPY HOLLOW is about but I’ve never actually read the original book. For whatever reason, we always used to watch the cartoon around Halloween-time when I was in elementary school so I was pretty well-versed on how it went, but since I was getting a free audiobook, I figured now would be a good time to listen to this classic and actually get the original story written by Irving.

As excited as I was to listen to Tom Mison narrate the book, I have to say I was less than impressed. True, Washington Irving had a fantastic way at describing things but I felt like that was about 75% of the book. I had great visuals on what the characters looked like, what the setting looked like, and how food tasted/smelled/looked, but there was very little plot to the book and that was a bit frustrating. I was honestly over halfway done before any real plot even began to take shape and the ending was a bit of a let down. (Not like I didn’t know how it ended but there have been so many adaptations that I didn’t know which ones were the most accurate.) Overall, it was just a very dull story and the action didn’t really happen until the very end and it really wasn’t much.

Actually, the thing that I enjoyed the most was my personal connections to the legend. I really enjoyed remembering watching the cartoon as a kid and the feelings connected to it as well as pinpointing spots in the original story to plot lines in the Sleepy Hollow TV show. I love what the writers are doing with the TV show and expanding the legend into what I really hoped it would be when I picked up the audiobook.

The narration was quite good too. I just love British male narrators and Tom Mison has an excellent voice. I felt like his diction was a tiny bit overdone at times, but it was very pleasant to listen to for an hour and a half. If I’m listening to a slightly dull story, at least it was from a good narrator.

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Kept Me Hooked On: Classics. I don’t often read classics so this was a fun way to do it! I also liked how short it was haha. I wasn’t really enjoying the story so much so it was nice to know that it was on the shorter side.
Left Me Wanting More: Action & Suspense. For such an exciting concept and re-told tale, I felt like there really wasn’t much there. I do like all of the possibilities it holds with the somewhat open ending so maybe that’s the real winning concept here!

Addiction Rating
Try it

If you want to listen to the audiobook, it’s free. Tom Mison was a really great narrator and the audio is short if you’re afraid you won’t like it! Worth a shot, right?

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BOOKS LIKE THE LEGEND OF SLEEPY HOLLOW

(Click the cover to see my review!)

 this dark endeavor    unspoken

 

My Latest Bookish Addiction [11] – International Editions

MLBA

In keeping with the theme of my blog, I decided to start bringing you updates of the newest and greatest bookish addictions in my life so I can share with you some awesomely bookish things or discuss if maybe we share the same bookish loves. It seemed like a great way to get a little discussion going in a very relaxed way.

This Edition’s Bookish Addiction? International Editions

Way back before I was a blogger (and even after), I wasn’t the kind of person who actually kept books once I was done reading them. I borrowed a lot from my sister, some from the library, and the only books I really bought at full price were ones I was going to keep for sure. Some secondhand books I ended up reading and just selling back to the used bookstore. Nowadays, well… You’ve seen my shelves. They’re filled with all of my favorites and then some. I do go through and pass along or giveaway books that I don’t feel the need to keep, but if I have a favorite, boy, do you bet that book is staying on my shelf and even in multiple formats.

Some books I just have in both hardcover and paperback — like when I already had the paperbacks of If I Stay and Where She Went, but purchased the hardcovers when I met Gayle Forman so I could have her sign them. Other books, I’ve basically just started collecting in all forms and any editions I can get my hands on. I’ve purchasing both paperbacks and hardcovers of The Lunar Chronicles and The Grisha Trilogy, but that obsession didn’t start until Macmillan did this cool thing where they had a special page of blogger acknowledgements in the paperback. I mean, how could I NOT purchase a book that my blog’s name is in!?

Then my lovely friend Amy from Tripping Over Books bought me the Spanish editions of Cinder and Scarlet for my birthday back in March… And a new obsession flourished. The international editions of this series are so gorgeous and I MUST own them all.

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There are a few places to go to get some international editions like Fishpond and The Book Depository which ship for free internationally, but they don’t really have a wide selection of international versions. AbeBooks actually has a pretty great selection, but of course, if you want an international edition, you’re going to have to pay more for it! Since AbeBooks is less of a distributor straight from their warehouse and more like Half.com or the area of Amazon where users are able to list and sell their own books. Some sellers offer free shipping, but most of those are for American editions or if they are international, the book itself starts to get costly. I haven’t made any purchases from AbeBooks yet, but I’ve been eyeing these books for a while now, still not ready to let go of my money with all the things I have going on at the moment. I may look into making a purchase soon though!

Some International Editions I’m Dying For!

THE LUNAR CHRONICLES

  Cinder (Crónicas Lunares, #1)  Cinder (Lunar Chronicles, #1)

Italian, another Spanish edition, Portuguese 

Scarlet (Cronache lunari, #2)  Scarlet (Crónicas Lunares, #2)  Wie Blut so rot (Luna-Chroniken, #2)  Scarlet (Saga Księżycowa, #2)

Italian, Portuguese, German, Polish

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THE GRISHA TRILOGY

The Gathering Dark (The Grisha, #1)  Grischa: Goldene Flammen (Grischa, #1)  Tenebre e ghiaccio (The Grisha, #1)

Les Orphelins du Royaume (Grisha, #1)  Cień i kość (Trylogia Grisha, #1)

UK, German, Italian, French, Polish

Grischa: Eisige Wellen (Grischa, #2)  Szturm i grom (Grisza, #2)  Sol e Tormenta (The Grisha, #2)

German, Polish, Portuguese

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HARRY POTTER

Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone (Harry Potter, #1)  Harry Potter und der Stein der Weisen (Harry Potter, #1)  Harry Potter e la pietra filosofale (Harry Potter, #1)

Harry Potter en de Steen der Wijzen (Harry Potter, #1)  Harry Potter à l'école des sorciers (Harry Potter, #1)

Original UK, German, Italian, Dutch, French

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Okay, REEEEEEL it in here, B. I could honestly show you each and every  international cover I want but this would be ONE LONG POST (like it wasn’t already).

NOTEABLE OTHER AWESOME INTERNATIONAL EDITIONS: Tamara Ireland Stone’s Time Between Us has some GORGEOUS international covers! I’ve also seen some really neat ones for Just One Day by Gayle Forman and the international covers of Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell aren’t as snazzy but I love it so much that I’d end up collecting those someday too!

So tell me! Do you ever buy international editions of books for your personal collection? Do you have a special source to purchase them? Which ones do you already have in your personal library and which ones are you currently drooling over? I must know!

My Latest Bookish Addiction [10] – Audiobooks

MLBA

In keeping with the theme of my blog, I decided to start bringing you updates of the newest and greatest bookish addictions in my life so I can share with you some awesomely bookish things or discuss if maybe we share the same bookish loves. It seemed like a great way to get a little discussion going in a very relaxed way.

This Edition’s Bookish Addiction? Audiobooks

I’ve been loving audiobooks for a while now, but I think it’s about time that I gush about the to their fullest extent. I was nervous to try audiobooks when I first tried listening. What if the narrator was awful? What if they couldn’t hold my attention? What if I got bored or annoyed or mad?

In all honesty, any one of those is a very real possibility, but that’s why I try to do some good research before picking a new audiobook. Sometimes a breathy narrator ruins the experience for me… On the flip side, a fantastic narrator can totally make the listening experience that much more amazing!

I feel that audiobooks should be selected just as carefully as your regular reads. The fact that you’re listening to a book and it’s being read by someone else just throws one more factor into your reading experience. I’ve been trying to pick my reads more carefully nowadays because I’ve finally come to grips with the very sad but real fact that I can never possibly read all of the books I want to… BUT audiobooks do help with that.

I’m a multi-book reader. That’s not a term, I know, but what I mean is that I read more than one book at time and audiobooks are a great way for me to read multiple books at once. I always have a physical copy that I’m reading and sometimes I throw in an ebook in there, but recently I’ve started adding a constant stream of audiobooks to the mix. I have a semi-long commute to work so they’re great for the long drives and who would have ever thought I could read while I was driving!? I love being able to read at a time when “traditional” reading isn’t quire possible. Depending on the production of the audio and how engaging the narrator is, I can even picture it as sort of a movie in my mind which is great to keep my attention and to further pull me into the book.

Looking for a good audiobook? Here are just a few of my favorites — both for the content of the book and some excellent narrators as well!

Ready Player One by Ernest Cline: Ready Player One was one of the earlier audiobooks I listened to and I LOVED it. Wil Wheaton narrated this masterpiece and aside from the great content of the book (sci-fi, dystopia, pop culture of the 80s), the production quality was fantastic! Wil Wheaton does a great job of narrating and I was HIGHLY entertained the entire time. I’ve been itching to re-read this on audio ever since I finished it because it was THAT good.

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The Scorpio Races by Maggie Steifvater: The audio for this book was amazing. This was the first audio production that I had listened to that incorporated more than one narrator. Since the book alternates between the voices of both Sean and Puck, the narrators alternated chapters as well. Listening to this book was just fantastic and it absolutely enhanced my reading/listening experience! SO many readers have fallen in love with this audiobook and I’m so glad I listening to the suggestions to pick this one up on audio first!

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The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern: I was in a YA kick when I started The Night Circus and honestly, I wasn’t 100% sure if it was YA or adult when I first started it because so many of my fellow YA bloggers were raving about it! I turned the audio on and to my surprise, the narrator was Jim Dale! (He also narrates the Harry Potter audiobooks, but I knew his voice as the narrator for Pushing Daisies.) The story was magical and listening to it somehow made it even easier to picture! Everything felt so vivid and like I was right in the action.

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The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman: The Graveyard Book was my first Neil Gaiman book which I selected thanks to the help of Alyssa (a major Gaiman fan) and because I wanted to listen to a good book for Halloween-time. This book was fantastic on audio. Neil Gaiman narrates the book himself and I was utterly swept away on this literary journey. His voice is just perfect for narration and I’ve pretty much made a promise to myself to listen to any of his books that he narrates! If you have the opportunity to listen to Neil Gaiman narrate, I highly recommend it!

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Some other great audio that I’ve listened to:

How do you feel about audiobooks? Is there anything holding you back from trying them? Are they a constant in your life? Do you have any personal favorites? I want to hear it all!