How I Fell In Love With Audiobooks

June is audiobook month, so I thought I would post about how I fell in love with audiobooks.

For some time, I had a job as a bank courier. My job was spent in my car for 8 hours a day visiting bank branches all over my state. Looking for something to listen to I found audiobooks at my local library. So the journey begins.

During those days I listened to many interesting books on CD. Mostly mystery or light fiction type of stories that I could listen to while driving and keep up with the story. While enjoyable, I wouldn’t say that I was in love with the art of audiobooks – or for that matter, had discovered the art of audiobooks.

Fast forward to June 2010, and thanks to Twitter, I leaned that June was dedicated to audiobooks by those of us interested or involved with books in the social media world. So, eager to celebrate with my fellow bookish friends I checked out Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides.

Middlesex is the story of three generations of the Stephanides family. From their roots in Greece and Turkey to their arrival in America and the life that they forged here as Greek immigrants to Detroit, MI.

Their story is filled with interesting characters, secrets, love and family, pain, and ultimately self discovery and acceptance.

What made me fall in love with audiobooks was not so much the story (which is amazing), but rather the narration of the book done by Kristoffer Tabori. Tabori doesn’t give you a typical narration, where it seems like you are being read to, but rather a performance. There are parts of the story where the listener can picture his face all red from effort, or spit flying from his mouth as he energetically delivers a scene. This performance, for me, elevated audiobooks from a convenient way to get more books ‘read’ to an actual performance art.

Tabori’s performance secured him the 2003 Audie Award for Best Unabridged Fiction by the Audio Publishers Association – a prestigious industry award celebrating excellence in audio publishing.

I heartily recommend this title for anyone that has been on the edge about audiobooks. Give it a listen and join me in celebrating audiobook month.

For more information on audiobooks, the Audie Awards, or the audiobook industry, please visit the Audio Publishers Association at: www.audiopub.org.

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22 Responses to How I Fell In Love With Audiobooks

  1. Rita says:

    Well, as you know, I’m not a fan. BUT, after reading this review, I will be placing this title on hold at my library and give it one last go.

  2. mee says:

    Middlesex is my favorite book of all time so I’m glad to hear the audio book is good! I should try it some time.

  3. Beth F says:

    Middlesex (my top read the year it came out) was awesome on audio. Yes — a perfect audiobook.

  4. Samantha says:

    I’m so glad you liked Middlesex! Isn’t Kristoffer Tabori great? He also narrates Richard Yates’ The Easter Parade.

  5. Hi there, I’m finally making my way to your blog (by way of Twitter)! You know, I haven’t read Middlesex, although it’s been on my TBR list for a while now. Judging from your review and the comments above, I think I’ll try the audiobook!

    • Jason G. says:

      Hi Gina and welcome to Brain Candy!
      Please let me know if you do listen to it because I would be interested in your opinion.
      Do you listen to audiobooks at all?

  6. I don’t normally listen to full-length audiobooks. I’ve listened to a few short story collections since it’s easier for me to follow along even with the interruptions that riding public transportation brings. It’ll be interesting to listen to a novel. I’ll definitely stop by with feedback!

  7. Hey there Jason–great post! Hope you don’t mind, but I’m going to link it to our Facebook page (we’re always excited when people fall in love with audiobooks!). Come visit us there, at AudiobookCommunity.com or at AudiofileMagazine.com! Lots of cool audiobook stuff to see 🙂

  8. Amanda says:

    Hi, Jason! You are PL-ing my reading of Jacob’s Room at Librivox, and I followed your signature link here. Gotta admit, I couldn’t get in to Middlesex- and I loved the Virgin Suicides. I just found the immediate incest a little off-putting, I guess. Maybe I’ll try it again..maybe.

    http://deadwhiteguyslit.blogspot.com

    • Jason G. says:

      Hey Amanda thanks for checking out the blog!

      I can understand, and honestly I think a lot of people have a tough time with the incest/gender issues. Just not something that they are used to reading and experiencing so it’s a take or leave it kind of situation.

      Let me know if you do. – Now I’m off to check out your blog!

      Nice choice with Jacob’s Room btw!

      ~J

  9. Audiobook month is turning into a bit of a cool experiment for me. Excellent review of ‘Middlesex’ byt the way. I’d like to hear for myself what this performance actually sounds like.

  10. Jamie says:

    I just started getting into audiobooks! Its nice when you have a long commute to work!

    • Jason G. says:

      Hi Jamie!
      Well welcome to audiobooks! Wait ’til you are sitting in your driveway waiting to hear the end of a chapter or story. It’s coming 🙂

  11. I’m actually listening to this one lately. You’re right–Tabori is some fiend: he switches voices and dialects so convincingly that I think something is wrong with him psychologically. But it’s been slow going on this audio book because I’ve been doing less driving lately (about the only drawback to my fianceé moving in with me, when she used to live a town over).
    One that I’d recommend from my highway days, if you’re into Arthurian romance tales, is Sir Derek Jacobi’s reading of Le Morte d’Arthur. And he’s a knight, too, so there you go.

    • Jason G. says:

      You had me laughing with “he switches voices and dialects so convincingly that I think something is wrong with him psychologically” – and I can see what you’re saying!

      Thanks for the recommendation as I would prob. find this an interesting listen.

  12. Kika says:

    My goodness Jason, I don’t know how many times I’ve started this book, only to put it down. (although, I never really gave it a fighting chance either to be fair) So I think I might hop over to the library and pick up the audio version, I do love it when the reader Puts on a performance, it makes me think of when I was little and hearing the story tellers perform at the library, thanks for the review!

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