Top 5 Tuesday #19: Fav Audiobooks

Top 5 Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by Shanah, the Bionic Book Worm.

This week’s topic:

Top 5 favorite audiobooks

I really like this week’s topic. I’ve come a long way with audiobooks. It’s a format that took a while for me to get used to because of how I read and learn. I’m a visual learner, so physical books and e-books work best for me. I’m better able to remember what I read in those formats and, whenever I drift off into a daydream about the story, it’s easier to locate where I stopped reading.

It’s not the same with audiobooks. Learning by only listening is hard for me because I’m easily distracted by something else (or am thinking of something else, most often daydreaming…about something else). That’s why I slowly introduced myself to this format. I started first with books I’ve read numerous times — the Harry Potter books — so it wouldn’t matter if I missed something while listening because I knew the story so well. I gradually moved on to books I’ve never reread before trying books I’d never read before. I realized that fast-paced mystery and thriller audiobooks held my attention best, but I have to work harder to pay attention when listening to detailed books such as autobiographies and other nonfiction.

Audiobooks aren’t my favorite format, but they are useful. They allow you to read a book faster and are great for when you’re doing dull tasks at work or home. Here are my 5 favs.

the Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling, narr. by Jim Dale

I enjoy Jim Dale’s narration. He actually appears twice on this list. If you are a Harry Potter fan, I encourage you to try the audiobooks. Although I don’t like all the voices Dale uses for the characters, I think he does a great job evoking their personalities and charming listeners. These days whenever I feel like rereading one of the books, I more often turn to the audiobook.

You by Caroline Kepnes, narr. by Santino Fontana

Oh my gosh! If you read and liked this book, then you’ve GOT to try the audiobook. Fontana does a great job evoking Joe in his narration. When I first listened to the audiobook, as soon as it started, I was like “OMG! That’s Joe!” It was so wonderful (and creepy) to hear the narration closely match how I imagined Joe’s voice. Even if you haven’t read the physical book, I highly suggest you try the audiobook.

Oh! You is a thriller (I guess) about a guy stalking a girl. It’s told from the guy’s perspective and is told in second-person, hence the title.

The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern, narr. by Jim Dale

I almost swooned when I first listened to the audiobook of The Night Circus. Again Dale worked his magic and emphasized the charm the story casts on readers. He helped to bring the story and the quirky circus and characters to life for me. Dale’s narration easily swooped me up in The Night Circus. Now I’m debating whether to reread it again by audiobook or physical book.

The Night Circus is a fantasy, historical-fiction novel about a peculiar circus that’s only held at night where the protégés of two magicians compete to see who is best.

The Other Boleyn Girl by Philippa Gregory, narr. by Ruthie Henshall

I didn’t expect this audiobook to be as good as it was. I’d first read the story shortly after the movie release and enjoyed it but hadn’t fully reread it since then. But last year I decided to try the audiobook (probably because I ran out of podcasts to listen to at work). I was surprised that I enjoyed it because some audiobooks of books I enjoyed in physical form turned out to be horrible (thinking of the Percy Jackson series). But Henshall did a great job. Part of why I enjoyed this audiobook is because I love Henshall’s accent. Oh man! She could talk to me all day.

The Other Boleyn Girl is a historical-fiction novel about the Boleyn siblings at the court of King Henry VIII of England; however, it mostly focuses on Mary Boleyn, sister of Anne Boleyn, who was Henry’s second wife and mother of Queen Elizabeth I of England.

The Girl With All the Gifts by M.R. Carey, narr. by Finty Williams

This is one of the first audiobooks I listened to that wasn’t a reread, and I loved it! Williams did such a great job with the narration that she easily pulled me into the story and kept my attention. And I loved all the voices she uses for the characters too. I actually attempted to read the physcial copy of this book first but only made it about 3 or 5 pages in before giving up. I wasn’t in the mood at the time. But while listening to the audiobook, I kept wishing that I’d read the physical book first. I could tell that I would have loved Carey’s prose, but it’s hard for me to pay close attention to that when listening to an audiobook. Anyway, I highly recommend it especially for this time of year.

The Girl With All the Gifts is a sci-fi, horror novel is about a smart, little girl who’s trying to understand why others fear her and the other kids at her school….okay, I don’t know how to describe this in a sentence without giving away one of the plot points.

That’s it for me.
Let me know if you’ve listened to any of these.

19 thoughts on “Top 5 Tuesday #19: Fav Audiobooks

  1. oh I really liked you in book form, but I bet it’s better in audio form- wish I’d thought of that! I’d like to give that a try at some point! I’d really like to try night circus and girl with the gifts in audio form as well. Other Boleyn girl sounds good as well!

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  2. ‘You’ sounds really intriguing and creepy – I might have to give it a try! And I’m definitely planning to listen to the Night Circus, you’re the second person I’ve seen recommend the audiobook of that (though I notice another commenter mentioned the timeline so it’s good to be aware of that – I’ve been confused by time jumps in audiobooks before!)

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    1. Yes try it. It’s a good to show how to use writing in the second person effectively because that helps to make it creepy.
      Regarding Night Circus, in that case might be best to try physical book first.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I love the Jim Dale version for HP. I never really listened to any of them fully myself, but my husband had them all as books on tape a bajillion years ago and I would sometimes catch him listening to them. That narration is so lovely.

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  4. Jim Dale did an amazing job with HP!!! I love his voice! I also listened to the Night Circus by him. I loved his narration but I had trouble following the timeline in audio format, I think I would have liked it better if I had read a physical copy.

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    1. Oh I can see how the Night Circus could be confusing on audio. I actually didn’t realize the difference in timeline when reading the physical copy until I was about midway through the book, I think.

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