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Viewing: Blog Posts Tagged with: Audiobooks, Most Recent at Top [Help]
Results 1 - 25 of 410
1. Audiobook Revenues Reach $1.6 Billion

IBISWorldAudiobook sales are on the rise. From 2008-2013, revenue for the audiobooks is estimated to have grown at an annualized rate of 12 percent to $1.6 billion, according to a new report from IBISWorld.

The increasing popularity of Internet-connected mobile devices among consumers is help drive these sales. From 2013 to 2018, IBISWorld predicts that these numbers will continue to grow. Led by rising disposable income and consumers who are new to adopt audiobooks, revenues should grow “significantly over the next five years,” reports IBISWorld.

“Because audiobooks are relatively cheap discretionary purchases that consumers can afford on tight budgets, the industry has been able to grow during the recession, despite consumers’ low disposable income,” stated Agata Kaczanowska, industry analyst at IBISWorld.

IBISWorld predicts the number of audiobook publishers will rise at an annualized rate of 17 percent to 628 businesses during the five years to 2013.

New Career Opportunities Daily: The best jobs in media.

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2. Freebie Friday: Audiobooks for your Easter basket from Christian Audio

This month’s free download plus a bonus title free until Easter – Two freebies for the Easter season from Christian Audio:

Normal Christian Life_largeNormal Christian Life, by Watchman Nee, narrated by Paul Michael. This month’s free download is a 7 Hrs. 45 Min. classic work which unfolds the path of Christian faith and presents the eternal purpose of God in simple terms


A Spiritual Formation Primer, by Richella Parham, narrated by Karyn O’Bryant. This two-hour audio lays out the basics of Christian spiritual formation, free until Easter.

0 Comments on Freebie Friday: Audiobooks for your Easter basket from Christian Audio as of 3/14/2014 8:57:00 AM
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3. Elevating the Art of the Audiobook: Deyan Institute of Voice Artistry & Technology

Bob Deyan

New media = new methods for a growing industry. Audiobook publishing is booming, with Audio Publishers Association statistics noting

6 million more audiobooks were sold in 2012 than were sold in 2011, representing a 13.5% increase in revenue reported by the publishers who shared data for both 2011 and 2012. The sales growth can be attributed in part to the fact that the total number of titles published in 2012 in the audio format has nearly doubled year over year. The format is thriving with the widest selection of titles ever available—13,255 titles were published as audiobooks in 2012, up from 7,237 the previous year. Publishers continue to increase their output to ensure that the most popular trade titles are released simultaneously in print and audio formats.

Even the Wall Street Journal is sitting up and taking note, in The New Explosion in Audio Books: How They Re-emerged as a Rare Bright Spot in the Publishing Business

As media combine into transmedia formats blending text, visuals, and audio there’s a growing need for trained voices and technical experts. There have long been audiobook narrator workshops, led by industry experts such as Pat FraleyJohnny Heller, Robin Miles, Paul RubenBettye Seitz. In response to this growing need for audiobook artists and technical gurus, Bob & Debra Deyan have announced the creation of the Deyan Institute of Vocal Artistry and Technology, a campus environment where, according to the Institute’s press release,

This believed to be the first of its kind worldwide… Institute’s initial lineup of courses includes introductory intensives and master classes for audiobook narrators, specialized courses for voiceover artists, as well as technical courses on production and post-production for both voice actors competing in the ever-increasing self-recording market and audio engineers alike. Deyan Institute instructors are each acclaimed experts in their respective areas of specialty.

I featured the Deyans in my “Voicing a Cause” blog post after the Audio Publishers Association honored the pair with this year’s Lifetime Achievement Award. For over 20 years, Bob has been dedicated to creating great audios, in partnership with his wife Debra. But the couple has turned their focus to making a positive impact in the world of ALS, or amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease. Now Debra Deyan says,

It’s hard to express how much it means to me to launch this school in honor of my husband, Bob Deyan. Bob is riveted by excellent acting, loves the human voice and particularly the ancient art of storytelling. He spent his life’s work directing actors and preserving the human voice experience for generations to come. It is my vision that Bob’s legacy will live on through Deyan Institute.

Best of luck in your new cause, Bob & Debra!

1 Comments on Elevating the Art of the Audiobook: Deyan Institute of Voice Artistry & Technology, last added: 3/13/2014
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4. Audio Review: How To Train Your Dragon series by Cressida Cowell Narrated by David Tennant from Hachette Audio

Age Range: 8 and up  Grade Level: 3 - 7 Series: How to Train Your Dragon Program Type: Audiobook Version: Unabridged Publisher: Hachette Audio Audible.com Release Date: December 10, 2013 Language: English ASIN: B00HNCMW0E Buy on Amazon Chronicles the adventures and misadventures of Hiccup Horrendous Haddock III as he tries to pass the important initiation test of his Viking clan, the

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5. News you can use: Audiobooks coming to 3M Cloud Library

news clip art

More options for audio. Findaway World, the parent company of  Playaway, has partnered with the 3M Cloud Library to offer 40,000 eAudiobook titles though 3M’s established library download interface & app,  and all eAudio titles will be compatible on all devices. This new enhancement to the 3M Cloud Library will debut at the American Library Assoication’s PLA division conference in Indianapolis next week.  Find out more on this press release.

0 Comments on News you can use: Audiobooks coming to 3M Cloud Library as of 3/8/2014 3:12:00 PM
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6. Freebie Friday: Oscar Wilde classic & an epic fantasy short story


Two free audio goodies – grab them now!

The Importance of Being Earnest, by Oscar Wilde, is available as a free iTunes app from L.A. Theatre Works. Download this free app to any Apple device, and enjoy not only the full play, but also the entire text so you can read it standalone or follow along with the audio. The app also includes an interview with director Michael Hackett, Professor of Theater in the School of Theater, Film and Television at UCLA as well as pop-up annotations that follow the audio. The production stars James Marsters as Jack, Charles Busch as Lady Bracknell, and Emily Bergl as Cecily. A must-have for any educational drama program!

The Jester (A Riyria Chronicles Tale), written by Michael J. Sullivan & narrated by Tim Gerard Reynolds, is a free short story download from Audible. This hour-long production will give you a stand-alone introduction to Sulivan’s action-packed epic fantasy world.

Happy listening!

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7. On writing The Wolves of Midwinter theme song for Anne Rice

Mary Fahl shares how audio production can go beyond the narrator behind a mic, by enhancing the experience with an original musical setting, on Random House Audio’s The Wolves of MidwinterOn the American Songwriter blog, Fahl explains that it all started when the singer-songwriter, and long-time Rice fan, gave a copy of her album Love & Gravity to the novelist before it was released. Fahl was flattered to receive a galley copy of Rice’s newest work in return, via her publicist - it was the 

The Wolves of Midwinter with an inscription that read “For Mary Fahl of the supernatural voice…” “Give this to Mary”, Anne said, “Tell her she’s in the book.”  Some discussion followed and it was decided that it would be a great idea for me to write a song for the audiobook version of the novel.

In Fahl’s blog post, she shares exactly how she met this challenge:

Random House needed the recording in less than two weeks, and with my already packed schedule, I was left with a little more than 6 days to write, arrange, record, mix and master the song. I hadn’t even read the book yet.  As you might imagine, nausea ensued, but I had already committed to the project, and not being one to back out of a promise, I plunged in.

Audiobooks can be magical when the publishers provide a soundscape that enhances and extends the author’s text. Whether it’s the inspired casting of the perfect narrator, or the care involved in crafting a soundscape that includes music or sound effects,  listeners know that production preparation = audiobook awesomeness.


Give a listen to Fahl’s theme song below, and read the whole blog post here: http://www.americansongwriter.com/2014/02/songwriter-u-guest-blog-mary-fahl-approached-anne-rice-write-theme-song-exiles-wolves-midwinter-new-audiobook/


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8. Freebie Friday: A Dr. Seuss audio celebration to download or embed on your website!


Just in time for Read Across America Day, the March 2nd national celebration of Dr. Seuss‘ 110th birthday! Listening Library is offering star-power read-alouds of seven beloved favorites, for your free download. Or schools & libraries have full permission to embed the nifty player widgets on your website – just click on the links below to download or embed . You can even share each of the audios on any (or all!) of your social media accounts. So make this Sunday, March 2nd, a Seuss-tastic day of audio awesomeness – send audio clips of Seuss happiness to everyone you know!

How the Grinch Stole Christmas, read by Walter Matthau
The Bippolo Seed, read by Neil Patrick Harris
Yertle the Turtle, read by John Lithgow
The Cat in the Hat, read by Kelsey Grammer
Green Eggs & Ham, read by Jason Alexander
Horton Hears a Who, read by Dustin Hoffman, Billy Crystal and Mercedes McCambridge
The Lorax, read by Ted Danson

0 Comments on Freebie Friday: A Dr. Seuss audio celebration to download or embed on your website! as of 2/28/2014 7:02:00 AM
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9. TV in Books

I've come across some TV Tie-Ins that I've enjoyed so I thought I should share them with my fellow TV & book lovers!

The Bro Code for Parents: What to Expect When You're Awesome by Barney Stinson

Ok, so I was sold on this one because Neil Patrick Harris narrates the audiobook. Neil Patrick Harris really needs to narrate more because he is awesome.

Thanks to Netflix, I've recently become a fan of How I Met Your Mother, which after a long marathon, I am caught up on. The book is written by Barney and narrated by Barney, so be prepared for lots of laughs and Barney-appropriate baby advice. It's sure to make you laugh and maybe roll your eyes, but it's all out of Barney love, right? He even has new versions of songs to sing with your kids, new bro-approved stories to tell, and lots of helpful bro advice like when is the best time to conceive your child so you don't miss the Game of Thrones premiere.

A short, fun audiobook that would make a great gift to new and expecting parents who are fans of the show.

4 Comments on TV in Books, last added: 1/17/2013
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10. ALA Midwinter: YALSA Movie Night – “Fat Kid Rules the World”

How far would you go to promote a book you really loved?  Actor Matthew Lillard went to amazing lengths to share one of his favorite teen stories (which also happens to be a Printz Honor Book!):

“OK. So, I first stumbled across FAT KID RULES THE WORLD when I was hired to record the audio version of KL Going‘s award winning novel.  The book blew me away. It was funny and true, and it told the story of a lost kid – Troy Billings, alienated and alone – who finds his purpose in life through the magic of punk rock music.  The book rocked my world.  It was crazy!  It spoke to me, in a deep way because I had been my own version of Troy Billings in high school. I was lost and an outcast and didn’t really fit in anywhere… that is until I found acting, which pretty much changed my life forever.  After I read the book I knew I had to tell THIS story.  I made this movie for everyone who has ever felt like they just didn’t belong… the misfits, the outcasts. the kids that are lost… this movie is for you! “

He raised over $150,000 on Kickstarter to get this movie distributed.  Start to finish is is a true labor of love.  And thanks to the producers, we have a special screening of the just-released-this-week DVD just for YALSA members attending ALA in Seattle (where the movie was filmed!)

Join us at the wonderful Elliott Bay Book Company Sunday January 27th at 7pm to watch the movie I’ve been dying to see all year!   We also have door prizes: Listening Library is providing two CD sets of the audiobook; the movie producers are supplying bumperstickers; and Random House is sending some extra goodies for everyone who attends!  Please feel free to bring a snack or beverage to share.  But just like the public library, we need to clean up after ourselves, and be out before they close the store at 9pm!

bookmark bookmark bookmark bookmark bookmark bookmark bookmark bookmark bookmark bookmark

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11. Best Audiobooks of 2012


Amazing Audiobooks for Young Adults, a list of top teen audios from the American Library Association’s YALSA division, will be finalized during the upcoming Midwinter conference. I’ve copied the (huge!) list of nominations below, plus you’ll want to check out the past lists on the Amazing Audiobooks website:  http://www.ala.org/yalsa/amazing-audiobooks. And here are more  than a dozen links to other Best of 2012 Audiobook lists: http://audiobooker.booklistonline.com/2013/01/16/best-audiobooks-of-2012-3/

I am honored to serve on this year’s committee, where we’ve listened to a terrific bunch of  fiction & nonfiction titles for listeners ages 12-18. You are welcome to sit in on our discussions this weekend, but be advised that the times are subject to change, if we decide on our final list and Top Ten selections early. Plus, the list of titles discussed may vary from the list of nominations (as of Dec 4)  below. Here’s where and when we are meeting:  All meetings take place in the St James room of the Fairmont Olympic Hotel

* Friday: 8:30-5:30pm (with a break for lunch)
* Saturday: 1-5:30pm
* Sunday: 8:30-5:30pm (with a break for lunch)

Amazing Audiobooks for Young Adults, Nomination List as of Dec 4, 2012:

Above World by Jenn Reese. Read by Kate Rudd. Brilliance, 2012. 7 hours, 50 minutes; 7 discs. 978-1-4558-5192-8. Aluna and Hoku are Kampaii (mermaid people) who find out their people are going to eventually die.  They come to the above world to find out more and save their families lives.

The Accused (Theodore Boone series) by John Grisham. Read by Richard Thomas. Penguin, 2012. 5 hours, 30 minutes; 5 discs. 978-1-6117-6064-4.
Future lawyer (and current 8th grader) Theodore Boone is set up as the prime suspect in a computer robbery, and efforts to find the real thief diminish the ongoing problem of Philip Duffey and his disappearance at the beginning of his second murder trial and Miss Petunia’s problem with her spitting llama.

Age of Miracles by Karen Thompson Walker. Read by Emily Janice Card. Books on Tape, 2012. 9 hours, 4 minutes; 7 discs. 978-0-3079-7071-8. The earth starts slowing down in its rotation.  Julia and her family deal with all the environmental consequences of this “slowing.”  While the known world of animals, plants, magnetism, and weather shift, Julia grows up with personal shifts like her father’s affair, her first boyfriend, her mother’s sickness, her best friend’s meanness, and her grandfather’s disappearance.

Alcatraz Versus the Scrivener’s Bones (Alcatraz series) by Brian Sanderson. Read by Ramon De Ocampo. Recorded Books, 2012. 7 hours; 6 discs. 978-1-4618-0833-6. Every Smedry has a talent. Alcatraz Smedry’s talent is for breaking things–which isn’t always a bad thing. Alcatraz must find his father and grandfather in the library of Alexandria while battling the soul-sucking curators guarding the Library.

Almost Perfect by Brian Katcher. Read by Kirby Heyborne. Listening Library, 2011. 10 hours, 40 minutes; 9 discs. 978-0-307-94229-6. With his mother working long hours and in pain from a romantic break-up, eighteen-year-old Logan feels alone and unloved until a zany new student arrives at his small-town Missouri high school, keeping a big secret.

Angelfall by Susan Ee. Read by Caitlin Davies. Brilliance, 2012. 8 hours, 50 minutes; 8 discs. 978-1-4692-2237-0. Penryn Young, her younger sister Paige (who uses a wheelchair), and their schizophrenic mother find themselves pulled into a conflict between angels on the gang-controlled streets of Silicon Valley. They survive, but Penryn’s sister is kidnapped in the process.

Au Revoir, Crazy European Chick by Joe Schreiber. Read by Steven Boyer. Recorded Books, 2011. 5 hours; 5 discs. 978-1-4498-6133-9. Ferris Bueller meets Kill Bill:  On prom night, Perry discovers that Gobi, the dishwater dull Lithuanian exchange student his family has been hosting, is actually a beautiful and deadly assassin on a personal mission to kill the people responsible for her beloved sister’s abduction and death.

Behind the Masks (Dear America Series) by Susan Patron. Read by Cassandra Campbell. Scholastic, 2012. 5 books, 49 minutes; 5 discs. 978-0-5453-9170-2. The town of Bodie, California is being held hostage by the vigilante group 601. Angeline’s lawyer father is murdered but she and her mother refuse to believe that news, Angeline begins her writing career with a local group called The Horribles, and historical mores of the day have an impact on a young Chinese girl and a former prostitute.

The Best Night of Your (Pathetic) Life by Tara Altebrando. Read by Ali Ahn. Recorded Books, 2012. 6 hours, 45 minutes; 6 discs. 978-1-4640-4920-0. In a single afternoon and night, Mary and friends, collectively the “Also-Rans,” participate in an unsanctioned but beloved Senior Week tradition, the scavenger hunt. As they solve clues and pick up weird and wacky items, Mary considers her high school years, her future, and her relationships.

Blizzard of Glass by Sally M. Walker. Read by Paul Michael. Listening Library, 2012. 2 hours, 51 minutes; 3 discs. 978-0-4490-1466-0. In December 1917, a ship carrying munitions for World War I exploded in Halifax Harbor with a destructive force not rivaled until the creation of the atomic bomb. Walker tells the story of the lives of several local families on that fateful morning.

The Blood (Morpheus Road series) by D.J. MacHale. Read by Nick Podehl. Brilliance, 2012. 10 hours, 43 minutes; 9 discs. 978-1-4233-9787-8. Damon has been trying to break down the barrier between the worlds of the living and the dead, and now the final showdown between him and Marshall and Cooper has arrived.

The Book of Jonas by Stephen Dau. Read by Simon Vance. Tantor, 2012. 6 hours; 5 discs. 978-1-4526-0597-5. Jonas comes to America from a war-torn country at age 15. He tries to adapt to his surroundings, but incidents that happened in the days before he left his country have changed him. His story is forever intwined with a young American soldier, whose story is told as well.

Brendan Buckley’s Sixth-Grade Experiment by Sundee T. Frazier. Read by Mirron Willis. Listening Library, 2012. 6 hours, 47 minutes; 6 discs. 978-0-3079-4281-4. Brendan Buckley has the sixth-grade blues. He loves science and has lots of questions about life, but he has problems … such as girls. Will Brendan survive the sixth grade?

The Butterfly Clues by Kate Ellison. Read by Therese Plummer. Brilliance, 2012. 9 hours, 25 minutes; 8 discs. 978-1-4558-9402-4. Lo’s OCD collecting leads her to pick up a butterfly figurine she knows is from the home of a murdered stripper.

Cabin Fever (Diary of a Wimpy Kid series) by Jeff Kinney. Read by Ramon de Ocampo. Recorded Books, 2011. 2 hours, 15 minutes; 2 discs. 978-1-4640-2145-9. After sort-of-but-not-really vandalizing school property, a blizzard hits, trapping Greg inside with his family in the fifth installation of the Diary of a Wimpy Kid series.

The Case of the Cryptic Crinoline (Enola Holmes series) by Nancy Springer. Read by Katherine Kellgren. Recorded Books, 2011. 3 hours, 15 minutes; 3 discs. 978-1-4498-4475-2. Enola Holmes finds herself tangled up in yet another mystery but this time it’s personal!  Not only has someone tossed about her personal belongings and those of her landlady, Mrs. Tupper but they’ve kidnapped the poor old dear as well!

The Catastrophic History of You and Me by Jess Rothenberg. Read by Suzy Jackson. Recorded Books, 2012. 9 hours, 30 minutes; 8 discs. 978-1-4640-3351-3. Brie died of a broken heart … literally. Now in “heaven,” she is about to learn what love and friendship are really about.

Clara’s War by Kathy Kacer. Read by Eileen Stevens. Brilliance, 2012. 4 hours, 42 minutes; 4 discs. 978-1-4558-4917-8.
Thirteen-year-old Clara and her family are moved to Terezin, a ghetto for Jews in Poland during World War II. She is separated from her parents and brother, and she spends close to two years in horrible conditions that are relieved by performing in an opera.

Code Name Verity by Edlizabeth Wein. Read by Morven Christie and Lucy Gaskell. Bolinda, 2012. 10 hours; 9 discs. 978-1-7428-5764-0. The intertwined lives of two young British women are transformed by World War Two.

Cold Cereal by Adam Rex. Read by Oliver Whyman. Listening Library, 2012. 9 hours, 31 minutes; 8 discs. 978-0-4490-1046-4. Scott, a new student who seems to have acquired a leprechaun named Mick, is befriended by twins Erno and Emily, as all three discover the Goodco Cereal Company is perhaps not as “good” as it claims to be.

Come August, Come Freedom by Gigi Amateau. Read by J.D. Jackson. Brilliance, 2012. 5 hours, 4 minutes; 5 discs. 978-1-4692-0628-8. Historical fiction based on the a true story of a young man born into slavery and his desire to be free.

A Confusion of Princes by Garth Nix. Read by Michael Goldstrom. Listening Library, 2012. 9 hours, 44 minutes; 8 discs. 978-1-7393-6828-2. Semi-clueless young Prince Khemri must learn the workings of an intergalactic empire than includes countless other princes, all connected to the Imperial Mind. His chief of Assassins, Hadadd, serves as his guide and protector as the two set out on a secret mission.

Crusher by Niall Leonard. Read by Daniel Weyman. Listening Library, 2012. 978-0-3853-6841-4. Finn Maguire returns home after a shift at his dead-end job to find his father bludgeoned to death and the book he was working on stolen.

Curveball: The Year I Lost My Grip by Jordan Sonnenblick. Read by Luke Daniels. Brilliance, 2011. 5 hours, 8 minutes; 5 discs. 978-1-6110-6147-5. After an injury destroys Pete’s future as a high school baseball star, he immerses himself in photography.  But Pete’s grandfather, his role model in the art, is showing signs of developing Alzheimer’s disease.

Dancing Carl by Gary Paulsen. Read by Nick Podehl. Brilliance, 2012. 2 hours, 21 minutes; 2 discs. 978-1-4692-4070-1. Winter in McKinley, MN revolves around the rinks, playing hockey, skating, but the year Marsh and Willy turn twelve Dancing Carl appears and makes this winter stand out from all the rest.

Dear Teen Me, edited by E. Kristin Anderson and Miranda Kenneally. Read by Julia Whelan and MacLeod Andrews. Brilliance, 2012. 6 hours, 31 minutes; 6 discs. 978-1-4692-5301-5. Several YA authors write letters to their teen selves and give them advice on the important things in life.

The Death Cure (Maze Runner series) by James Dashner. Read by Mark Deakins. Listening Library, 2011. 8 hours, 55 minutes; 7 discs. 978-0-307-70697-3. In the third and final installment of The Maze Runner Trilogy, Thomas and his fellow survivors must complete one more challenge to let WICKED find a cure for “The Flare”.

The Diviners by Libba Bray. Read by January LaVoy. Listening Library, 2012. 18 hours, 15 minutes; 15 discs. 978-0-4498-0875-7. Evie comes to live with her uncle in New York City.  Evie learns she has a special power, while there is a killer loose in the city.  She helps her uncle track the killer down, while learning more about her power and dealing with supernatural beings.  All the while trying to have a great time in the exciting city of New York.

The Drowned Cities by Paolo Bacigalupi. Read by Joshua Swanson. Brilliance, 2012. 9 hours, 48 minutes; 8 discs. 978-1-4558-5810-1. Mahlia and Mouse are bound to each other in the dark, rebel-run world they live in. When Mouse is forced to join one of the rebel groups, Mahlia and her newfound companion Tool risk their lives to get him back.

Drowning Instinct by Ilsa J. Bick. Read by Kathleen McInerney. Brilliance, 2012. 9 hours, 52 minutes; 8 discs. 978-1-4692-0761-2. Jenna has been surrounded by abusive behavior all her life and now she has found someone who truly cares about her, but will that be enough to stop cutting?

Empire of Night by Justin Somper. Read by Daniel Philpott. Recorded Books, 2012. 12 hours, 15 minutes; 10 discs. 978-1-4618-3394-9. Twins Connor and Grace Tempest discover they are “dhampires,” half vampire and half human, and must decide where their loyalty falls.

Enchanted by Althea Kontis. Read by Katherine Kellgren. Brilliance, 2012. 7 hours, 49 minutes; 7 discs. 978-1-4692-0292-1.
Sunday Woodcutter, seventh daughter of a seventh daughter, meets an enchanted, talking frog in the forest. As she tells him stories, he shares his name of Grumble and tells of the life he remembers before he was changed to a frog.

Every Day by David Levithan. Read by Alex McKenna. Listening Library, 2012. 8 hours, 26 minutes; 7 discs. 978-0-4490-1522-3. A wakes up every morning in a different body and life.  A gets used to this, but one day A meets a girl and falls in love.  Can A find a way to stay in one place, one life so they can live and love forever?

Everybody Sees the Ants by A.S. King. Read by Kirby Heyborne. Listening Library, 2012. 7 hours, 44 minutes; 7 discs. 978-0-4490-1473-8. Lucky Linderman has been bullied by Nader McMillian for ten years, but his self-absorbed parents have turned a blind eye. Lucky escapes the torture of his high school peers by retreating into daydreams where he learns combat techniques from his grandfather, a a Vietnam War P.O.W.

Fake Mustache by Tom Angleberger. Read by Jonathan Todd Ross. Recorded Books, 2012. 3 hours, 25 minutes; 3 discs. 978-1-4640-4609-4. Lenny loans Casper money for a fake mustache, but little do they know it will lead to plans for political domination.

The False Prince by Jennifer A. Nielsen. Read by Charlie McWade. Scholastic, 2011. 8 hours, 14 minutes; 7 discs. 978-0-5453-9166-5. Orphaned street thief Sage is purchased, along with other orphaned boys, by nobleman Conner to be trained and schooled as the lost Prince Jaron.

The Fault in Our Stars by John Green. Read by Kate Rudd. Brilliance, 2011. 7 hours, 19 minutes; 6 discs. 978-1-4558-6987-9.
Hazel is ill and meets a boy in a cancer support group and while looking at death, they learn about life and love.

Fighting Ruben Wolfe by Markus Zusak. Read by Stig Wemyss. Brilliance, 2011. 3 hours, 56 minutes; 4 discs. 978-1-4558-4348-0. With their father unemployed and their family losing cohesion, brothers Cameron and Ruben Wolfe get involved in an underground boxing circuit to raise money–and find out what it means to be a Fighting Wolfe.

The Fire Chronicle (Book of Beginnings series) by John Stephens. Read by Jim Dale. Listening Library, 2012. 12 hours, 22 minutes; 10 discs. 978-0-3078-7982-0. Kate is separated from Michael and Emma by a hundred years and they must find the second Book of Beginnings before Kate is lost to them forever.

Flock (Stork series) by Wendy Delsol. Read by Julia Whelan. Brilliance, 2012. 9 hours, 45 minutes; 8 discs. 978-1-4692-0631-8. Katla is a Stork who delivers to souls to newborns, but she is also a senior in high school whose senior year is severly complicated by the arrival of two Norse mythology characters. They want to collect Katla’s new baby sister, and she wants to prevent that — even though that was part of the bargain that saved Katla’s boyfriend, Jack Frost.

The Freak Observer by Blythe Woolston. Read by Jessica Almasy. Brilliance, 2011. 5 hours, 36 minutes; 5 discs. 978-1-4558-1639-2. Loa struggles to cope with the nightmares and hallucinations of her PTSD, brought on by the deaths of her baby sister and, more recently, her childhood friend.

The Freedom Maze by Delia Sherman. Read by Robin Miles. Listening Library, 2012. 8 hours, 19 minutes; 8 discs. 978-0-4990-1463-9. In 1960, during a visit to her family’s home on the site of a Louisiana sugar plantation, 13-year-old Sophie is magically transported back in time to slavery days. Tanned and dirty, she is mistaken for a very light-skinned slave and discovers what life was like in the big house, the slave cabins, and the fields, before playing a crucial role in the escape of teenaged Antigua.

Friend is Not a Verb by Daniel Ehrenhaft. Read by Fred Berman, Emily Bauer, Elisabeth Rodgers, and Joe Barrett. Brilliance, 2011. 6 hours, 5 minutes; 5 discs. 978-1-4558-5817-0. Henry (Hen) has to deal with his sister’s disappearance, re-appearance, and second disappearance while he learns how to play bass in a band called Dawson’s Freak (a 90s nostalgia band), learns how to fall in love, and learns who he really is.

Getting the Girl by Markus Zusak. Read by Stig Wemyss. Brilliance, 2011. 4 hours, 41 minutes; 4 discs. 978-1-4558-4343-5. The mutual attraction between Cameron and his brother’s ex-girlfriend causes a rift between them, until a near-tragedy reaffirms the strength of the Wolfe family bonds.  Meanwhile, Cam is discovering his talents as a writer.

The Girl of Fire and Thorns by Rae Carson. Read by Jennifer Ikeda. Recorded Books, 2012. 12 hours, 15 minutes; 10 discs. 978-1-4640-4936-1. Princess Elisa, the younger daughter of the King of Orovalle, has been given the Godstone, signifying special powers. Unfortunately, she doesn’t feel special, eats to compensate, and has been given in marriage to King Alejandro to ally his country with her father’s.

The Girl Who Could Silence the Wind by Meg Medina. Read by Cristina Panfilio. Brilliance, 2012. 5 hours, 2 minutes; 5 discs. 978-1-4558-5196-6. Everyone in Tres Montes has always looked to Sonia for their protection and blessings, but it took her leaving her home to find her true strength.

Graffiti Moon by Cath Crowley. Read by Ben MacLaine, Hamish R. Johnson, and Chelsea Bruland. Listening Library, 2012. 6 hours, 5 minutes; 5 discs. 978-0-3079-6819-7. On the night of her graduation, Lucy is on a mission to find Shadow, the graffiti artist whose work she loves.  However as the night ensues, she may find that Shadow is closer than she thinks.

Grave Mercy (His Fair Assassin series) by Robin LaFevers. Read by Erin moon. Recorded Books, 2012. 14 hours, 15 minutes; 12 discs. 978-1-4640-2383-5. The first of the His Fair Assassin series, Grave Mercy follows novitiate Ismae as she serves Mortain, the God of Death, while becoming embroiled in the political machinations of royal court life in medieval Brittany – not to mention falling in love with the dashing Gavriel Duval. Hidden by Sophie Jordan.

How to Save a Life by Sara Zarr. Read by Ariadne Meyers and Cassandra Morris. Listening Library, 2012. 9 hours, 54 minutes; 8 discs. 978-0-3079-6872-2. Jill’s life has already been turned upside down by her father’s death, but now her mother is complicating things further by adopting a baby from Mandy, a teen girl she’s never met before. Mandy’s mother never wanted her, so she’s determined to make a better life for her baby. Both girls must learn to trust each other.

How to Steal a Dog by Barbara O’Connor. Read by Suzy Jackson. Recorded Books, 2012. 4 hours; 4 discs. 978-1-4640-2369-9. Georgina plots to get her family out of despair and homelessness. She steals a dog to try to earn reward money, but instead makes new friends and learns lessons.

I Hunt Killers by Barry Lyga. Read by Charlie Thurston. AudioGO, 2012. 9 hours, 30 minutes; 8 discs. 978-1-6111-3187-1. When murders begin to happen in his small-town, 17-year-old Jazz finds that suspicion falls upon him — not surprising, as he is the son of the notorious mass-murderer Billy Dent, who carefully trained Jazz to follow in his footsteps until Jazz’s “Dear Old Dad” was put behind bars. Can Jazz’s knowledge of the inner workings of a madman’s mind help catch the killer?

Inheritance (Inheritance series) by Christopher Paolini. Read by Gerard Doyle. Listening Library, 2011. 31 hours, 5 minutes; 24 discs. 978-0-7393-7250-0. In this concluding volume, the epic battle to dethrone Galbatorix will take place. Former farm boy Eragon and his blue dragon Saphira have practiced sword fighting and magic and readied themselves for these final battles, but are unsure of their success. Various friends and relatives aid them on their quest as Eragon allies with the dwarves, elves, werecats, and urgals of Alaagesia.

The Isle of Blood (The Monstrumologist series) by Rick Yancey. Read by Steven Boyer. Recorded Books, 2011. 14 hours, 30 minutes; 12 discs. 978-1-4407-3657-5. In this third tale of monstrumologist Pellinor Warthrop and his young apprentice Will Henry, the two travel to Africa in search of a creature that crafts intricate nests of human body parts, the bits and pieces bound by a toxic goo capable of turning anyone unlucky enough to touch it into a murderous monster.

Kill You Last by Todd Strasser. Read by Emily Bauer. Brilliance, 2011. 5 hours, 35 minutes; 5 discs. 978-1-4558-2551-6.
Shelby’s family is under police investigation and with the help of two friends, she figures out who is really to blame and whom she can ultimately trust.

The Last Guardian (Artemis Fowl series) by Eoin Colfer. Read by Nathaniel Parker. Listening Library, 2012. 7 hours, 40 minutes; 6 discs. 978-0-3079-9121-8. Opal Koboi is reanimating fairy warriors on the Fowl Estate, and if Artemis can’t stop her, Armageddon will surely follow.

Liberator (Worldshaker series) by Richard Harland. Read by Adrian Mulraney. Bolinda, 2012. 11 hours, 33 minutes; 10 discs. 978-1-7431-8115-7. After the takeover and the renaming of the Worldshaker by the Filthies, the remaining upper-class passengers (Swanks) work hard to keep the peace and help out, but a saboteur aboard tries to break up the peace.

Lies Beneath by Anne Greenwood Brown. Read by MacLeod Andrews. Listening Library, 2012. 8 hours, 24 minutes; 7 discs. 978-0-4490-1032-7. A murderous family of mermaids wants to pay a old family debt of revenge. The only brother of the siblings unfortunately falls in love with a human and is forced to choose between love and family.

Light From a Distant Star by Mary McGarry Morris. Read by Amy Rubinate. Blackstone, 2011. 13 hours; 11 discs. 978-1-4551-2283-7. The discovery of the body of Dolly Bedelia, her family’s tenant in the apartment attached to their home, bothers Nellie Peck, but she’s even more disturbed by everyone’s assumption that the murderer is her grandfather’s helper, Max Devaney. For 13-year-old Nellie, the ensuring events force her on a journey to maturity.

Long Lankin by Lindsey Barraclough. Read by Anne Flosnik. Brilliance, 2012. 10 hours, 6 minutes; 9 discs. 978-1-4558-5198-0. Cora and her sister come to live with their great aunt and they accidentally awaken an evil that has possessed the town for years.

A Long, Long Sleep by Anna Sheehan. Read by Angela Dawe. Brilliance, 2011. 9 hours, 13 minutes; 8 discs. 978-1-4558-2051-1. Rosalinda Fitzroy has been in stasis for 62 years when she is awakened by a kiss. Everyone she knows has been long dead and though she has been “alive” only sixteen years, she will inherit her parents’ huge interplanetary empire.

The Mark of Athena (Heroes of Olympus series) by Rick Riordan. Read by Joshua Swanson. Books on Tape, 2012. 15 hours, 9 minutes; 12 discs. 978-0-4490-1452-3.Percy, Annabeth, Piper, Jason, Leo, Frank, and Hazel must team up, despite being a mix of Greek and Roman demigods, to stop Gaea from rising and destroying everything on the planet.

The Mark of the Golden Dragon (Jacky Faber series) by LA Meyer. Read by Katherine Kellgren. Listen and Live Audio, 2011. 11 hours; 8 discs. 978-1-5931-6593-2. On her way to serve her sentence in an Australian penal colony, Jacky Faber is swept overboard during a typhoon and lives to continue her lively adventures and her desire to save her beloved Jamie.

Me the People by Kevin Bleyer. Read by Kevin Bleyer. Random House, 2012. 12 hours; 10 discs. 978-0-4490-0913-0. The author/narrator undertakes the project to rewrite the US Constitution to make it a true statement of laws from “we, the people” instead of the obvious failure it is in its present form.

Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs. Read by Jesse Bernstein. Listening Library, 2011. 9 hours, 42 minutes; 8 discs. 978-0-4490-1385-4. Jacob travels to a remote island off the coast of Wales, tracking a mysterious message whispered to him by his grandfather as he breathed his last breath at the hands of the “monsters.”

A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness. Read by Jason Isaacs. Brilliance, 2011. 4 hours, 1 minute; 4 discs plus 1 bonus disc with digital content. 978-1-4558-2249-2. Conor, coping with his mother’s progressing cancer, is visited at night by a monster who wants to tell and hear stories.

Monstrous Beauty by Elizabeth Fama. Read by Katherine Kellgren. Macmillan, 2012. 8 hours; 7 discs. 978-1-4272-2217-6. Hester is a contemporary teen whose soul links her to 300 years of cursed women. The curse began with a mermaid who gave up her fins for love of a man. Now Hester loves the same man.

Notes from the Dog by Gary Paulsen. Read by Nick Podehl. Brilliance, 2011. 2 hours, 41 minutes; 3 discs. 978-1-4558-0908-0. Finn meets new neighbor Johanna, who is being treated for breast cancer, and his life changes in one summer more than he could have ever imagined or hoped for.

The Notorious Benedict Arnold by Steve Sheinkin. Read by Mark Bramhall. Listening Library, 2012. 6 hours, 51 minutes; 6 discs. 978-0-4490-1498-1. From birth to death, this covers the rise to hero and the fall to traitor that was the life Benedict Arnold.

October Mourning by Leslea Newman. Read by Emily Beresford, Luke Daniels, Tom Parks, Nick Podehl, Kate Rudd, and Christina Traister. Brilliance, 2012. 1 hour, 20 minutes; 2 discs. 978-1-4692-0636-3. A collection of poems that seeks to tell a fictionalized account of Matthew Shepard’s life and murder.

Out of Sight, Out of Time (Gallagher Girls series) by Ally Carter. Read by Renee Raudman. Brilliance, 2012. 7 hours, 47 minutes; 7 discs. 978-1-4558-7972-4. Cammie has amnesia when she wakes up in the Swiss Alps in a convent. She returns to the school run by her mother that trains girls to be international spies, but her memory does not return until events of derring-do and heart-stopping danger “unstop” her mind.

Perfect by Ellen Hopkins. Read by multiple narrators. Simon & Shuster, 2011. 8 hours; 7 discs. 978-1-4423-4493-8. This companion novel to Hopkins’s Impuse explores what lies beneath the surface of a group of affluent teens who appear to have it all, revealing hard truths about sexuality, abuse and addiction. Written in chapters that alternate between characters.

Personal Effects by E.M. Kokie. Read by Nick Podehl. Brilliance, 2012. 9 hours, 8 minutes; 8 discs. 978-1-4692-0637-0. Haunted by the death of his brother, TJ, Matt uncovers secrets about TJ’s life as a soldier when three foot lockers are delivered to the house.

Pirate Cinema by Cory Doctorow. Read by Bruce Mann. Books on Tape, 2012. 978-0-3078-7959-2. Trent’s artistic passion is sampling movies downloaded from the Internet and recombining them into his own creations.  But in a slightly in the future England, such “piracy” can result in a family’s loss of the ‘net–and a prison sentence.  Running away to London, Trent finds like-minded friends and spearheads a campaign to change the law.

The Princess of Iowa by M. Molly Backes. Read by Shelby Lewis. Brilliance, 2012. 12 hours, 39 minutes; 11 discs. 978-1-4558-5201-7. Though Paige has grown up knowing she will be a princess her senior year, life doesn’t always turn out the way we expect and in Paige’s life, this could be a good thing.

The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater. Read by Will Patton. Scholastic, 2012. 11 hours, 9 minutes; 10 discs. 978-0-5454-6593-9. Blue has rules, and one of them is to stay away from Raven Boys, rich students at Aglionby, the local private school. But when she sees one of them in a ritual with her psychic mother that indicates he is either her true love or that he will die this year, she finds herself pulled into his and his friends’ quest to find a lost Welsh king.

Rebel Fire (Young Sherlock Holmes series) by Andrew Lane. Read by Daniel Weyman. Macmillan, 2012. 7 hours, 30 minutes; 6 discs. 978-1-4272-1360-0. 14-year-old Sherlock Holmes discovers John Wilkes Booth, deranged and injured after his assassination of Lincoln, in England. He follows him to the United States and foils the plans to rebuild the Confederacy and the plans of the U.S. Army to exterminate the neo-Confederates.

The Rise and Fall of Senator Joe McCarthy  by James Cross Gilbin. Read by Elisabeth Rodgers. Brilliance, 2011. 9 hours, 50 minutes; 8 discs. 978-1-4558-5843-3. The story of Senator Joe McCarthy: who he was, how he achieved a position of almost unlimited power, and how the American system of government ultimately brought him down.

The Seamstress by Sara Tuvel Bernstein. Read by Wanda McCaddon. Tantor, 2011. 13 hours; 10 discs. 978-1-4526-0598-2. Arrested by soldiers from the Hungarian Army, Sara [Seren] is brought to Ravensbruck concentration camp where she, her sister Esther, and two friends are subjected to the vile treatment meted out to Jewish prisoners by the German guards.

See You at Harry’s by Jo Knowles. Read by Kate Rudd. Brilliance, 2012. 5 hours, 49 minutes; 5 discs. 978-1-4558-8958-7. The four siblings endure humiliation through their restaurant father’s attempts to promote the family business, including photos of them wearing “See You at Harry’s” t-shirts, to the addition of their three-year-old brother Charley’s face on the ice cream truck. Beginning middle school, 12-year-old Fern is mortified when classmates pick up the ‘see you at Harry’s’ chant; 14-year-old Holden struggles with admitting he’s gay; 18-year-old Sarah works at the family restaurant; and 3-year-old Charley keeps the family laughing … until the day he dies and each family member feels a different sort of guilt.

Seraphina by Rachel Hartman. Read by Mandy Williams. Listening Library, 2012. 13 hours, 15 minutes; 11 discs. 978-0-3079-6894-4. Seraphina’s heritage as daughter of a human father and a dragon mother has been kept hidden, but now that she’s the assistant to the music master at court, she must be even more careful to hide the few bands of scales on her body. As dissension rises between humans and dragons, her unusual abilities draw her into the center of the conflict.

The Serpent’s Shadow (Kane Chronicles) by Rick Riordan. Read by Katherine Kellgren and Kevin R. Free. Brilliance, 2012. 11 hours, 29 minutes; 10 discs. 978-1-4558-0845-8. In this final (for now) installment of the Kane Chronicles, siblings Carter and Sadie lead the House of Life and an assortment of Egyptian gods in a final battle against the serpent Apophis and the forces of Chaos.

Shadows (Ashes trilogy) by Ilsa J. Bick. Read by Katherine Kellgren. Brilliance, 2012. 13 hours, 16 minutes; 11 discs. 978-1-4558-5849-1. The story of Alex’s struggle to survive her own demons as well as the Changed continue in this second installment of the Ashes trilogy.

Shine by Lauren Myracle. Read by Elizabeth Evans. Brilliance, 2011. 8 hours, 59 minutes; 8 discs. 978-1-4558-7960-1. Cat severed ties with her friends a few years ago, but when one of her former friends, Patrick, is the victim of a hate crime targeting him for being gay, Cat is determined to find out who’s responsible.

Ship of Souls by Zetta Elliott. Read by Benjamin L. Darcie. Brilliance, 2012. 3 hours, 33 minutes; 3 discs. 978-1-4558-8638-8. Living as a foster child after his beloved mother dies, D is taken in by Mrs. Martin, a white, elderly foster mother. When she also takes in a crack baby, D spends more time away from his Brooklyn home but is luckily befriended by two other African American students at his school, Hakeem and Nyla. A bird watching trip in Prospect Park leads the three on a supernatural journey that ends at the African Burial Ground in Manhattan.

Son by Lois Lowry. Read by Bernadette Dunne. Books on Tape, 2012. 8 hours, 11 minutes; 7 discs. 978-0-4490-1448-6. In this sequel to The Giver, young Claire is assigned her role as a birth mother, gives birth to “product” number 36, but then is decertified and sent to the fish hatchery. She accidentally hears of her son, number 36, and develops an unusual interest in him, which leads to her willingness to give up everything to spend time with him.

Spies of Mississippi by Rick Bowers. Read by Peter Jay Fernandez. Recorded Books, 2011. 2 hours, 45 minutes; 3 discs. 978-1-4498-5102-6. The Mississippi State Sovereignty Commission was created in Mississippi to keep its 200 years of segregation a way of life during the tumultuous Sixties and the rise of the Civil Rights Movement.

Starters by Lissa Price. Read by Rebecca Lowman. Listening Library, 2012. 10 hours, 20 minutes; 8 discs. 978-0-3079-6836-4. Callie attempts to save her ill younger brother by going to work for Prime Destinations, where her young body will be rented by an Ender for a few weeks, during which time the 150-year-old Ender can re-experience youth and agility. This new “job” exposes Callie to Prime Destinations’s real plans, which extend far beyond simple “renting” young bodies like hers. Murder, brain surgery, bombs, desperation, and love sweep Callie along.

Steve Jobs: The Man Who Thought Different by Karen Blumenthal. Read by Sean Runnette. Macmillan, 2012. 5 minutes, 53 seconds; downloadable. 978-1-4272-2566-5. This biography of Steve Jobs takes him from birth to his death last year.

Strawberry Girl by Lois Lenski. Read by Natalie Ross. Brilliance, 2011. 4 hours, 37 minutes; 4 discs. 978-1-4558-3492-1. Birdi’s family, the Boyers, move to the farm next door to the Sleators where the Boyers plan to raise strawberries and ship them north on the railroad, a new concept to the Sleators who have squatted on the land for years and let their scrawny cattle run wild. Florida of the late 1930s and early 1940s is so backwoods that the people are proud of the their “cracker” culture, or lack thereof. The Boyers face outright hostility from the Sleators, a grass fire, livestock poisoning, the school teacher getting beat up, and the daily hard work of bringing strawberries or any crop to the table.

Stupid Fast by Geoff Herbach. Read by Fred Berman. Recorded Books, 2011. 8 hours; 7 discs. 978-1-4618-1640-9. Felton Reinstein already has a lot to deal with in his life besides unpopularity: his dad’s suicide ten years earlier, his mom’s sudden weirdness, a little brother who’s a piano prodigy, and his best friend’s news that he’ll be spending the entire summer in Venezuela. As if that isn’t enough, the summer he turns sixteen, Felton hits puberty and it hits back, hard, with height and hair and muscle and blazing speed–and suddenly, Felton Reinstein, nerd extraordinaire, turns into a top football prospect.

Sun and Moon, Ice and Snow by Jessica Day George. Read by Jessica Roland. Brilliance, 2011. 7 hours, 12 minutes; 6 discs. 978-1-4558-5855-2. A white bear offers a woodcutter money for his daughter’s company. She ends up learning about patience, compassion, and friendship and falling in love.

Superman Versus the Ku Klux Klan by Rick Bowers. Read by Johnny Heller. Recorded Books, 2012. 3 hours, 30 minutes; 3 discs. 978-1-4640-4022-1. This nonfiction work recounts the creation of the Superman character by two Jewish boys and how the character developed through comics, newspapers, and radio shows. Then the account changes to the rise and fall and rise again of the Ku Klux Klan until the Superman franchise hits on the scheme of pitting Superman against the Klan in 16 episodes of the radio show.

Take My Advice (Yours Truly, Lucy B. Parker series) by Robin Palmer. Read by Shana Dowdswell. Brilliance, 2012. 5 hours, 14 minutes; 5 discs. 978-1-4558-5879-8.
Lucy B. Parker takes the job of writing the advice column at school, and she proves to be a success at it, while she can’t take her own advice. Her problems run the usual teen girl gamut,  from asking a boy to a dance to getting her first period to living with her blended families.

Tempest by Julie Cross. Read by Matthew Brown. Macmillan, 2012. 11 hours; 9 discs. 978-1-4272-1502-4. Nineteen-year-old Jackson Meyer is a rich kid with a great girlfriend. His life is normal—except for the fact that he can time travel. Although it’s not normal time travel—he can go to the past, but his actions have no affect on the future. That is, until mysterious men barge into his girlfriend’s dorm and shoot her. Watching his girlfriend gasp for breath, Jackson unwillingly time travels two years into the past, to 2007, but this time, he’s actually there and he can’t return to his present.

Three Times Lucky by Sheila Turnage. Read by Michal Friedman. Penguin, 2012. 8 hours; 7 discs. 978-1-6117-6136-8.
A murder brings police to the little town of Tupelo Landing, North Carolina, and into the lives of Mo Lobeau, her colorful foster parents Lana and The Colonel, and their friends and neighbors.   Is The Colonel, who has suffered from amnesia for twelve years, somehow involved in a crime?  And will Mo ever find the Upstream Mother who abandoned her as a baby at the height of a hurricane?

Tiltawhirl John by Gary Paulsen. Read by Todd Haberkorn. Brilliance, 2012. 3 hours; 3 discs. 978-1-4692-4129-6. A young runaway spends time in a labor camp picking beets until he and the owner tangle, causing the teen to flee until he’s picked up by a carny ride operator named Tiltawhirl John, who learns that sometimes a runaway needs to return home.

Titanic: Voices From the Disaster by Deborah Hopkinson. Read by Mark Bramhall and Peter Altschuler with additional voices. Listening Library, 2012. 4 hours, 55 minutes; 978-0-4490-1505-6. This nonfiction account of the sinking of Titanic is woven of the testimony of survivors and witnesses, including a nine-year-old, a stewardess, a high school senior, a seaman, a mother, and many others.

True Legend by Mike Lupica. Read by Prentice Onayemi. Pengin, 2012. 7 hours; 6 discs. 978-1-6117-6100-9. Drew Robinson is such a great basketball player that, even as only a high school junior, he has people looking out for him, from a good friend who drives him everywhere to an older man who’s smoothing his way to the pros, including finding a job for Drew’s mother. But a washed-out former playground legend helps Drew get a grip on his life.

The Underdog by Markus Zusak. Read by Stig Wemyss. Brilliance, 2011. 3 hours, 16 minutes; 3 discs. 978-1-4558-4353-4.
The youngest siblings in the Wolfe family, Ruben and Cameron, establish themselves as inseparable partners in (fairly minor) crime as they scout out possible girlfriends and nearly give the neighbor’s Pomeranian a heart attack.

Vanish (Firelight series) by Sophie Jordan. Read by Therese Plummer. Brilliance, 2011. 7 hours, 44 minutes; 7 discs. 978-1-4558-6172-9. Jacinda, her twin, Tamra, and their mother must flee back to their “pride” when Jacinda shows her true self to the boy, Will, she loves, who is a member of a family who hunts her people. The draki then decide that Jacinda must marry the pride’s heir apparent, Cassian, who Tamra wants.

Warriors Don’t Cry by Melba Pattillo Beals. Read by Lisa Renee Pitts. Tantor, 2011. 13 hours; 10 discs. 978-1-4526-0494-7. The memoir of Melba Pattillo Beals tells of 1957 when nine African American students became the first to integrate Central HS in Little Rock, Arkansas, where they were met with harassment, name calling, and physical attacks on a daily basis, yet were told not to resist or retaliate to avoid further dissension.

The Watch that Ends the Night by Allan Wolf. Read by Michael Page, Phil Gigante, Christopher Lane, Laural Merlington, and Angela Dawe. Brilliance, 2011. 10 hours, 16 minutes; 9 discs. 978-1-4558-2937-8. Many different characters based on some true stories, from a range of passenger classes, as well as SOS telegraphs and other items, tell the story of the sinking of the Titanic.

What Dies in Summer by Tom Wright. Read by Chris Patton. Blackstone, 2012. 7 hours, 30 minutes; 7 discs. 978-1-4551-5893-5.
Jim (Biscuit) spends his summer in Dallas, Texas, with his cousin Lee Ann (L.A.). They find the body of a brutally murdered girl in the weeds, and they learn unbearable family secrets. Biscuit falls in love, while L.A. tries to overcome demons, real and psychological.

When You Were Mine by Rebecca Serle. Read by Sarah Grace. Brilliance, 2012. 7 hours, 53 minutes; 7 discs. 978-1-4558-1896-9. With a nod and a wink to Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet, Searl’s story of Rosaline and her next door neighbor Rob touches on the high points of that tragedy. Rose has one memorable date with Rob when, after years of childhood friendship, he finally shows a real interest in her. But that next night her cousin Juliet, who’s just returned to town, manages to captivate Rob at the Fall Back Dance, and Rose sees her love become infatuated with the wrong person as Rob and Juliet being their tragic journey.

Witches! by Rosalyn Schanzer. Read by Jessica Almasy. Recorded Books, 2012. 2 hours, 25 minutes; 2 discs. 978-1-4640-4314-7. In this multiple award-winning account of the “disaster” in Salem, Massachusetts, in the 1600s, events and consequences are explained in a clear, nuanced account.

Wonder by R.J. Palacio. Read by Dianna Steele, Nick Podehl, and Kate Rudd. Brilliance, 2011. 8 hours, 12 minutes; 7 discs. 978-1-4558-4420-3. A fifth grade boy who has a facial anomaly has to navigate school for the first time. It’s a difficult journey to make friends, deal with bullies, and learn just how much he is needed in the world.

Words in the Dust by Trent Reedy. Read by Ariana Delawari. Scholastic, 2011. 978-0-5454-7282-1. Zulaikha hopes. She hopes for peace, now that the Taliban have been driven from Afghanistan; a good relationship with her hard stepmother; and one day even to go to school, or to have her cleft palate fixed.

A World Away by Nancy Grossman. Read by Jessica Lawshe. Listening Library, 2012. 10 hours, 42 minutes; 9 discs. 978-0-4490-1044-0. Eliza Miller has lived the “plain” life of the Amish for 16 years. Now she wants to experience life outside her community and live like the “English,” going to movies, talking on the phone, and riding in fast cars. Once she is there, will she ever be able to go back?

Worldshaker (Worldshaker series) by Richard Harland. Read by Adrian Mulraney. Bolinda, 2012. 10 hours, 2 minutes; 8 discs. 978-1-7431-8091-4. Just as 16-year-old Col is being named the heir to the title Supreme Commander of the juggernaut Worldshaker, he discovers that all he knew about the “Filthies” on the bottom deck is a lie. Turning his back on his upperclass upbringing, he helps the Filthies stage a revolution.

2 Comments on Best Audiobooks of 2012, last added: 1/23/2013
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12. Revisiting a favorite: HATTIE BIG SKY, by Kirby Larson (ages 9-13)

I love historical fiction. I can absorb the feel of a particular point in history, and truly gain an understanding of the events. I'm thrilled that a sequel to one of my favorites, Hattie Big Sky, is about to be released. So I'd like to share excerpts from my original post in 2009.

We're thrilled that Kirby Larson is visiting the Bay Area for the release of Hattie Ever After. You can see her at Book Passage, in San Francisco, or Rakestraw Books in Danville.

In 2009, my 10 year old and I really enjoyed reading/listening to Hattie Big Sky, by Kirby Lawson - a story that shows what it would have been like to try to "prove" a homesteading claim in Montana. We can't wait to find out what happens next in the sequel Hattie Ever After, being published next week.

Hattie Big Sky
by Kirby Lawson
Delacorte Press, 2006
2007 Newbery Honor Book
ages 9 - 13
available at your local library and on Amazon
Sixteen-year old Hattie Brooks has been an orphan from a young age, bouncing from relative to relative. One day, out of the blue, she receives a letter from her long-forgotten uncle giving her his homestead claim in eastern Montana. He writes,
"You will think I have never thought of the niece in Iowa. But this letter will show you I have. If you come out here to Vida, you will find my claim. I trust you've enough of your mother's backbone to meet the remaining requirements. If you do - an you have one year to do it - 320 Montana acres are yours."
The pull is strong - Hattie has never had a place to call her own, and this is her chance. She dives right in, not realizing what's at stake. When she arrives, she finds out that she must plant 40 acres, and build 480 rods of fence in order to "prove" her claim.

This book will appeal to girls who like historical fiction like the Little House books, Julie of the Wolves, or Island of the Blue Dolphins. Kirby Lawson, the author, has developed characters that I really cared about and could feel for. Hattie could not survive without the help and support of her neighbors, Perilee and Karl Mueller. But the year is 1916, and the United States is consumed with supporting the troops fighting in World War I. In this small Montana community, many are suspicious of Karl because of his German accent. Hattie is torn - she knows that Karl is a good man, but should she risk her own safety to stand up to him?

We're **thrilled** for the release of Hattie Ever After. Larson follows Hattie's journey, seeing where this young girl's dreams will take her. If you're excited for the sequel, take a look at Kirkus Review's starred review. I completely agree: Larson writes "historical fiction with heart."

This review was originally written in 2009 for this blog - one of my early reviews! And yet, Hattie Big Sky is a book that's stayed with me year after year. The review copy came from my public library. If you make a purchase using the Amazon links on this site, a small portion goes to Great Kid Books (at no cost to you!). Thank you for your support.

Review ©2009 Mary Ann Scheuer, Great Kid Books

1 Comments on Revisiting a favorite: HATTIE BIG SKY, by Kirby Larson (ages 9-13), last added: 2/15/2013
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13. How Do You Listen?

If you've read my blog, you know I love audiobooks. I'm an avid audiobook listener and have been for several years now. I recently was appointed to an audiobook assignment that will have me listening to a lot of audiobooks in the next few months and it got me thinking about how I can fit all this listening in. I've spent the last year spending every free minute of my time reading physical books, it feels a bit odd to switch over to listening.
I typically listen to audiobooks in my car, but with about a 10 minute drive to work each way, that doesn't give me a lot of listening time. I also listen as I get ready each morning-I have lots of audiobooks loaded onto my phone and listen as I eat breakfast, get dressed and do my makeup each morning. I also try to listen as I get ready for bed and I love the feature on my Audible App on my phone that lets me set a timer to fall asleep listening to one of my audiobooks. Sometimes I might have to rewind a little bit to get to a part I remember, but I can usually listen to about 15-30 minutes each evening.
I've also been known to listen while I clean or do laundry-it really makes doing chores around the house I dislike go much faster. I sometimes try to listen while I'm cooking, but I often end up pausing my book a lot so I can read the recipe for what I'm making-I'm not a great cook. :)
I even listen to audiobooks when I'm grocery shopping-another thing that goes much faster while listening!
But I don't think I'm going to do that much cooking, cleaning, shopping and driving in the next few months to cover all of the audiobook listening I need to get done. Sure, I could sit and listen, but I like to multitask.
So I'm curious what you do while you're listening to audiobooks. How do you spend your listening time?

30 Comments on How Do You Listen?, last added: 3/5/2013
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14. Janis Ian Wins Grammy for Best Spoken Word Album

Musician Janis Ian beat out First Lady Michelle Obama, former President Bill Clinton, political commentator Rachel Maddow and talk show host Ellen DeGeneres for the “Best Spoken Word Album” Grammy award.

Ian narrated her own book for the win.

Audible released the audiobook edition of her nonfiction book, Society’s Child: My Autobiography, in June 2012. The hardcover print version of this book actually came out back in July 2008.


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15. 60% of Audiobooks Sold Are Now Digital

According to the Audio Publishers Association, audiobooks are now a billion dollar part of the publishing industry.

Taking results from two studies of the audiobook industry, the association noted that 3.8 million more audiobooks were sold in 2011 compared to the year before–generating a 2.6 percent rise in revenues. Here’s more from the report:

The total number of titles published in the audio format has doubled over the past seven years and publishers continue to increase their output to ensure that the most popular trade books are available in audio at the time the print book is released. Adding to the positive outlook is a 3.2% decrease in returns of audiobooks from 14% last year to just 10.8% this year. Returns as a percentage of overall gross sales have never been this low … The study shows that for audiobooks, the digital download format has eclipsed the CD format with slightly more than 60% of all audiobooks sold today being digital.

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16. Audible & Center for Fiction Establish Christopher Doheny Award

Audible and The Center for Fiction have established the Christopher Doheny Award, honoring the memory of an employee who died of cystic fibrosis.

The winner will receive $10,000, publication and promotion of their book both in print and audio formats. This award recognizes writers whose fiction or nonfiction manuscripts that focus on the topic of serious illness. You can email DohenyAward [at] audible [dot] com for more information.

Here’s more from the release: “The winner of the Christopher Doheny Award will demonstrate high literary standards while exploring the impact of illness on the patient, family and friends, and others. In recognition that authors frequently need support during the writing process, both manuscripts in process and completed manuscripts will be eligible.”

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17. Granta Best of Young British Novelists List Gets Audiobook

Audible has released an 11 hour and 43 minute audiobook edition of Granta‘s Best of Young British Novelists list.

We also collected free samples of the Best of Young British Novelists list, 20 different novels to explore. Here’s more about the Audible production:

Every 10 years, Granta Magazine dedicates a special issue celebrating the 20 best British novelists under the age of 40 … Audible invited all these young novelists to read their work – some of them did, and some of them chose to have their stories professionally narrated – and the result is an exciting blend of literary talent and spoken-word: These distinctive voices and the sense of place that permeate every story create a listening experience you will not soon forget.


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18. Freebie Friday


Nine free audiobook downloads – classics & current favorites. Load up your MP3 player or phone with these goodies!

From Random House Audio: The “Try Audiobooks” promotion has something for every type of audiobook listener – and their promotional ideas are a great model for libraries to replicate ;-) .  Grab A Week in Summer by Maeve Binchy; The Cult of the Garage by Chip Heath & Dan Heath; Clan Rathskeller by Kevin Hearne; Lee Child’s Second Son, read by his partner in crime Dick Hill ; and Jack London’s classic The Call of the Wild, read by Luke Daniels, the tile that inspired my Voices in My Head column “It’s on the Tip of My Tongue.” Here’s the promotion’s website where you can download all five: http://www.tryaudiobooks.com/

From Naxos Audio: Two free classic downloads. The Call of the Wild  read by William Roberts will gives you a chance to compare how two different fine narrators can interpret a title when paired with the Random House freebie, plus Northanger Abbey beautifully read by Juliet Stevenson.  Naxos also has a free nonfiction children’s title, Famous People in History, Volume 1, along with a supplemental informational booklet. Grab all three here: http://www.naxosaudiobooks.com/m4b.htm

And this month’s free download from Christian Audio is The Cross and the Switchblade by David Wilkerson and John & Elizabeth Sherrill, read by Paul Michael – still a best-seller fifty years after its first publication. Click here to download.

Happy listening!


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19. Free Public Domain Audiobook Site Gets Update

librevoxLibriVox, the free public domain audiobooks website, has received a “major facelift” thanks to donations and a grant. You can now browse free audiobooks by AuthorTitleGenre/Subject and Language.

The site now counts 7,000 projects, recorded by dedicated volunteers around the world. Follow this link to visit the new and improved site:

In 2005, Hugh McGuire asked: “Can the net harness a bunch of volunteers to help bring books in the public domain to life through podcasting?” The LibriVox site has recently undergone a major facelift, making it far easier to browse and find great public domain audiobooks. In addition, the underlying software that helps thousands of volunteers contribute to LibriVox has been completely rebuilt. This rebuild project was funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, and donations from the public.

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20. Bryan Cranston To Narrate ‘The Things They Carried’

audible_logo._V400592310_Producers Tom Hanks and Gary Goetzman will work together with documentarian Ken Burns to curate an audiobook collection for Audible called Playtone.

The series is named after the three creators’ film and television production company, featuring a wide range of books–you can see the complete list of titles below.  The series will include Tim O’Brien’s The Things They Carried narrated by Breaking Bad star Bryan Cranston. Check it out:

Other books in the Playtone line are the classic war memoirs With the Old Breed by E.B. Sledge and Helmet for my Pillow by Robert Leckie. These two memoirs, which inspired Playtone’s award-winning HBO miniseries The Pacific, are narrated by the actors who portrayed Sledge and Leckie in the series, Joseph Mazzello and James Badge Dale, and both feature introductions by Hanks. Finally, celebrated documentarian Burns (The Civil WarThe Dust Bowl) has handpicked a selection of audiobooks covering the past 150 years of American history that has inspired his own work, personally recording introductions to each.


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21. Bryan Cranston Reads Free Chapter of ‘The Things They Carried’


Breaking Bad star Bryan Cranston has narrated the audiobook edition of Tim O’Brien’s The Things They Carried. You can listen to the first chapter for free online at this link.

Producers Tom Hanks and Gary Goetzman will work together with documentarian Ken Burns to curate an audiobook collection for Audible called Playtone.

The series is named after the three creators’ film and television production company, featuring a wide range of books.  


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22. World’s Creepiest Reading of Goodnight Moon

percyOn SoundCloud, Graywolf Press has released a recording of Benjamin Percy reading Goodnight Moon in his incredibly distinctive voice.

We’ve embedded the audio clip below, Percy manages to make the reading of Margaret Wise Brown‘s book both chilling and hilarious at the same time. Check it out:

Bedtime stories are supposed to settle the mind and calm the nerves. Benjamin Percy’s rendition of Goodnight Moon, however, will keep you up at night. If you’ve ever heard Percy, the author of Red Moon and The Wilding, read, you know that he has a voice like no other. His storybook reading is enough to give you nightmares. Happy Halloween from Graywolf Press! Don’t forget to check under the bed.

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23. Fascinating! Origins of recording the oral tradition, lost & now found


New Sounds, Old Voices“, written by Jacob Mikanowski in this week’s New Yorker, holds interest for recording techies and audiobook historians alike. Mikanowski follows the research path of Carl Haber, of the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and winner of the MacArthur genius grant for his work on sound restoration. Haber and his team have developed a technology which can more or less photograph the earliest methods of recording sound and translate into digital audio – from disintegrating wax cylinders to the  phonautograph, or “speech writer.” The most interesting part of the article, for me, is Haber’s work with Milman Parry’s recordings – here’s a quote form the article (and you can see the inspiration for ALA’s Odyssey Award):

Since receiving the MacArthur grant, Haber has been working on restoring a collection of sounds that might shed light on the origins of the Western literary tradition. In 1933, a young Harvard scholar named Milman Parry travelled to Yugoslavia in hopes of solving the Homeric Question: How were the Iliad and the Odyssey composed? Classicists had debated for over a century whether the epics were written by a single, literate author or improvised in stages by numerous musicians and bards elaborating on a series of set themes. Parry believed that the answer could be uncovered by analyzing the work of living bards, mainly found among Bosnia’s Muslims, who still sang tales of heroes and wars, especially during the thirty nights of Ramadan.

In my book Audiobooks for Youth: A Practical Guide to Sound Literature, the first chapter looks at the history of children’s audiobooks. When doing the research, I became fascinated with the science of sound recording – and articles such as Mikanowski’s show that new discoveries are still in store. What might future researchers discover in those moldering reel-to-reel & cassettes in the basement ;-) If you’re interested in that first chapter, you can read it online here: http://www.alastore.ala.org/pdf/9780838911570_excerpt.pdf

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24. Magic Marks the Spot (The Very Nearly Honorable League of Pirates) by Caroline Carlson-Audiobook Review

Rating: 5/5

Genre: Adventure

Release Date: 9/10/2013

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About the Book: Hilary Westfield has always dreamed of being a pirate. But when her application to The Very Nearly Honorable League of Pirates is rejected because she's a girl and Hilary discovers that her parents will be sending her off to Miss Pimm's Finishing School to become a proper lady, Hilary knows she must do something! When she sees an ad for a pirate crew, Hilary knows she must apply! Hilary and her talking gargoyle set out on an adventure on the high seas looking for treasure and encounter a terrible villain of the high seas!

GreenBeanTeenQueen Says: I love a good rollicking fun filled adventure and The Very Nearly Honorable League of Pirates is the start to an adventurous series that is sure to delight middle grade readers.

Hilary is a spunky main character-just the sort of girl you would expect to sneak her way out of finishing school and join up with pirates. She's joined by a talking gargoyle who is very witty and has a soft spot for romance. The banter between the two characters is charming and hilarious and I loved the uniqueness of Hilary's sidekick being a talking magical object. Hilary has a delightful cast of characters around her-her governess who might just be up for some for adventure, her school roommate who aspires to be an actress, Jasper the pirate captain and his crew, her admiral father who wants to get rid or pirates and even the proper Miss Pimm. All the characters are well fleshed out and have a distinct personality.

The plot is fast paced and full of adventure. There are some great surprises and twists along the way and I loved how the author was able to weave the characters and storylines together. The ultimate bad guy is an interesting twist and I think it opens a lot for future volumes in the series. The writing is wonderfully funny and charming and Augusta is a very well drawn world in which magic is special-but currently being stolen-and pirates are determined by a Very Nearly Honorable League. It's a little bit historical and a little bit fantasy and a lot of action and adventure and fun.

What I especially loved about this one was Hilary herself. She wants to be a pirate and she won't give up on this dream. And she doesn't pose as a boy to make this dream come true. I feel like the girl-disguised-as-a-boy theme is often overdone and I was pleased that that didn't happen in this book but instead Hilary decides she won't take no for an answer and she'll be honest about who she is.

I first learned about this book thanks to the delightful Katherine Kellgren who narrates the audiobook, so I knew I had to listen to this one. I'm so glad I did! Kellgren is once again excellent and gives a rousing narration and you can tell she's having a blast telling this story. The writing is witty and the jokes come across wonderfully on audio. At the end of each chapter, the story is interspersed with letters and newspaper articles and Kellgren is given a chance to flex her narration skills by adding a breadth of voices to these sections. I especially loved her Miss Pimm voice and thought it had a great nod to Maggie Smith's Dowager Countess on Downton Abbey (I'm not sure if this was the intent but I loved it and thought it was perfect!) Kellgren gives Hilary a high energy and it balances well with Jasper's gruff pirate voice, Miss Greyson's (Hilary's governess) quiet sensibility, and her best friend from finishing school Claire, who is overly excitable and dramatic. This audiobook Katherine Kellgren doing what she does best-bringing a delightful cast of characters to an engaging story to make an excellent treat for the ears. I can't wait for the next book in the series.

Book Pairings: Bloody Jack by L.A. Meyer,  Etiquette and Espionage by Gail Carriger

Full Disclosure: Reviewed from audiobook I purchased at Audible.com

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25. How To Put Your Audiobook on Spotify

Do you want to share your audiobook with the 20 million users listening to streaming music on Spotify?

Author Craig Seymour self-funded an audiobook edition of his memoir, All I Could Bear: My Life in the Strip Clubs of Gay Washington D.C. earlier this year. Inspired by a GalleyCat article with SoundCloud advice for writers, he decided to upload the audiobook to both SoundCloud and Spotify.

Spotify has very few audiobooks, so we conducted an email interview with Seymour to find out how he added his book to the music service. He provided some step-by-step instructions.


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