graphic depicting books with set of headphones around them, text says Audiobook Reviews

2013 Favorites — Audiobooks

I read and listened to a lot more books in 2013 than I wrote reviews for. I think 2013 was even worse for that than 2012. But I did try to keep a list of top favorites as I went along, so at least the list itself was pretty much compiled when I finally got around to writing this post. Links will go to my review if I wrote one, either here on the blog or on LibraryThing (baystateRA).

The books on this list weren’t all published in 2013; they’re just the ones that really wowed me this year. This list of favorite audiobooks (in the order I listened to them) will be followed tomorrow by my list of favorite books read in 2013.

HoundedHounded by Kevin Hearne (Brilliance Audio, 2011)
I heard about Luke Daniels’ wonderful audiobook narration of the first book in the Iron Druid Chronicles from Bob at The Guilded Earlobe, and purchased it for myself this year on his recommendation. I see on the author’s Web site, that the series is up to six already! If you’re looking for a smart and funny urban fantasy series, try this one.

Night Strangers on CD cover imageThe Night Strangers by Chris Bohjahlian (Random House Audio, 2012)
This psychological horror story bombed as a library book club selection this past October, but could that be because the members of the group didn’t listen to the amazing audiobook narration by Alison Fraser and Mark Bramhall?

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cover image of How the Light Gets InHow the Light Gets In by Louise Penny (Blackstone Audio, 2013)
I’m just one of many who have fallen in love with the sequence of novels (of which this is the ninth) about Chief Inspector Armand Gamache, his team, his family, and his friends in Three Pines, but you don’t have to like mysteries to fall under the spell of Ralph Cosham’s narration.

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cover image of Doctor Sleep on MP3-CDDoctor Sleep by Stephen King (Simon & Schuster Audio, 2013)
Narrated to perfection by Will Patton, the audiobook edition of Doctor Sleep, Stephen King’s sequel to The Shining is a marathon listen (at 18 and a half hours long) but an intensely satisfying follow-up about the life of little Danny Torrance, all grown up. For fans of psychological fiction with a heavy dose of horror.

cover of NOS4A2NOS4A2 by Joe Hill (Harper Audio, 2013)
Narrated by Kate Mulgrew, the audiobook edition of this creepy story about Christmasland, the fantasy world where the vampiric Charlie Manx brings children he steals, is amazing, despite my quibble about her pronunciation of “Haverhill,” a town in Massachusetts. Joe Hill is more literary than his father, Stephen King, I think, but also stays true to his roots in the horror genre by not hesitating to show readers the very worst of human nature.

13 thoughts on “2013 Favorites — Audiobooks”

    1. I listened to Joe Hill’s earlier novel, Horns, on audio, too, and it was excellent also. Happy New Year to you, too! My bookish resolution is to organize a book bloggers’ meet-up at the Boston Book Festival this year, so save the date if you can!

    1. I didn’t realize the scary/creepy theme there until you mentioned it! I think I’ve been picking my audiobooks for their strong plots and choosing to read in print if I think there’s going to be a lot of descriptive passages or that I’ll need to flip back through pages a lot to see earlier references, etc.

  1. The Iron Druid Chronicles by Kevin Hearne was one of my favorite series / audiobook discoveries of 2013. Narrator Luke Daniels is amazing. 🙂

  2. Thanks for stopping by my site and mentioning your post of 2013 favorites, Laurie. I somehow missed it in my reader feed.

    I’m intrigued by The Night Strangers and I’ve certainly listened to audios and been able to determine they wouldn’t have worked nearly as well for me had I read the text version. Would you say the book leans toward literary or is it more straight genre (thriller/suspense)? Is the narration pretty evenly divided between the two narrators?

    1. It definitely leans towards literary/psychological. The author uses the second-person voice to put readers into the head of the traumatized pilot/main character. Over all, Mark Bramhall did more of the narration, because there were fewer parts of the book from the perspective of the pilot’s wife.

  3. I just finished reading NOS4A2 and loved it! One heck of a creepy tale, and I agree that Joe Hill is much more literary than his father. Although I do love a good Stephen King novel, Joe Hill’s work was a wonderful surprise and I’ll need to pick up his other two works sooner rather than later! He did write a comic book that ties into NOS4A2, entitled Wraith, and I just downloaded that one. Can’t wait to dive into it!

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