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Who are your favorite/least favorite narrators for your favorite book series?

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Showing 101-125 of 604 posts in this discussion
Posted on Apr 4, 2009 1:29:12 PM PDT
Vk says:
I consider Dick Hill, George Guidall, Phil Gigante, Simon Prebbles and Barbara Rosenblatt my favorite voices. Even books I chose that ended up duds, I forged my way through them with these voices.

Posted on Apr 11, 2009 6:48:02 AM PDT
I've listened to 1000 audio audio books, and in my opinion, nothing compares to the expert renderings of Will Patton on the James Lee Burke novels. Each character's voice is unique and the prose of Burke is the most beautiful in all of literature.

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 11, 2009 9:32:06 AM PDT
I miss W says:
I agree that Will Patton's one of the top readers, but have you listened to David Case (aka Frederick Davidson) perform Clavell's Shogun? Every character, even the Japanese women!, have recognizably distinct voices and his Japanese was excellent.

In reply to an earlier post on May 2, 2009 11:55:33 AM PDT
gina says:
Am listening to Jodi Picoult's Change of Heart. The character of Maggie is read by Danielle Ferland. Her voice is simply unbearable. If she was reading the whole book, I could not have gotten through the first 5 minutes.

Her voice is ugly and she has the most awful way of phrasing I've ever heard. It can't possibly be her natural way of speaking, but then why would she put it on. She's only playing one character in the book. Her name is burned in my mind and I will never pick up an audio book with her again.

I may sound harsh, but compared to her voice I'm gentle.

Posted on May 5, 2009 9:31:19 PM PDT
Sondi says:
I agree that Susan Ericksen on J.D. Robb's books is great (to my untrained ear, her Irish accent is good), and also love Richard Ferrone on Sandford's Prey series. I also like Deanna Hurst on Jennifer Crusie's "Bet Me" and Aasne Vigesaa on Crusie's "Welcome to Temptation" was also good. I hated Dan Brown's "The Da Vinci Code" on Audiobook, but I don't know if it was because of the the reader (to me, Paul Michael's french accent was terrible) or if I just hated the book itself. Probably both. Joyce Bean reading Linda Howard's "Drop Dead Gorgeous" was good, but Bean didn't do a NC accent, which the main character was. The accent was more Savannah than Raleigh. Think Scarlett O'hara instead of ...well, Clay Aiken. It was a wash...enjoyed the book, while being distracted by the accent. I enjoyed Bean's reading of Linda Howard's "Death Angel", though.

Posted on May 11, 2009 8:22:53 AM PDT
It is great to get hold of an audio book by one of my favorite authors and a double joy if it is read by George Guidall. I wish there was someway to listen to books by female narrators but my high frequency hearing loss precludes that.

Posted on May 12, 2009 6:32:33 PM PDT
K. Barg says:
Barbara Rosenblat is WONDERFUL! Any book I see with her as the reader I know will be worth listening to. I also like Judy Kaye for Sue Grafton's alphabet series. She IS Kinsey Milhone. Least favorite.....Carol Higgens Clark. I have one book written by her mother Mary Higgens Clark, that I have read as well as listened to. It wasn't quite a monotone, but not far from it! I'll never listen to anything with her as a reader again!

In reply to an earlier post on May 13, 2009 5:53:13 PM PDT
Jonathan Cecil hands down is a winner for me. He brings alive P.G.Wodehouse's characters.

In reply to an earlier post on May 15, 2009 9:05:26 AM PDT
mystery mom says:
Oh, I love the Wodehouse audios tho it's been quite awhile since we listened to any.

Posted on May 15, 2009 3:17:57 PM PDT
I too have listened to nearly all the narrators previously mentioned here. I mourned the loss of Frank Muller. Though I never had the opportunity to know him, The amount of time I spent in the company of his voice made him feel like family. Many of us audiophiles fall into slumber listening to these readers. They Help us face the day by joining us on the morning commute and help us shrug off the day as we return home; and yes, they become indelibly etched into the fabric of our favorite stories.

I think much needs to be said about matching the voice to the material. Some voices just bug me with certain material but elevate the quality of other material. I've read all of Jon Sandford's books in print, mostly because Richard Ferrone's voice annoys me. Simon Prebble did a wonderful job with Johnathan Strange & Mr. Norrell, but a friend shared a snippet of his reading of a trashy romance novel and it scarred me. I find Guidall's voice to be pedantic but it Grew on me in the Gunslinger. I like Dick Hill's narration, but Whoever said he drops the end of his sentences was dead on.

When I first heard Michael Kramer reading Winter's Heart I found his cadence annoying, but as he continued to read the Wheel of Time series, either he got better or he grew on me. His narration of Zen In The Art Of Motorcycle Maintenance is brilliant. Winter's Heart was where I also fell in love at first listen with Kate Reading (Who is actually married to Michael Kramer). She is one of the most flexible narrators working to day and works under several names. Her ability to chose a standard dialect for narrative voice in order to accommodate the character voices is peerless. Her new voice work in narrating the Codex Alera is of great quality and so completely different from the Wheel of Time, that unless one listens VERY carefully, one would be hard pressed to believe it was the same person.

I would be remiss if I did not mention Scott Brick, who's love for reading has set him on a crusade to acquire rights to narrate ALL of the Thomas Covenant books. Many famous actors have also done justice to the work they narrate: Will Patton, Ron Silver (also tragically lost this year), Michael Beck, and many others. Perhaps one of the most notable of a newer generation is James Marsters. His Narration of The Dresden Files by Jim Butcher is extremely impressive and well worth the time it takes to listen.

In reply to an earlier post on May 15, 2009 4:33:19 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on May 31, 2009 12:13:51 PM PDT
Melusine62 says:
Nice post, InkStainedSword! I will check out the narrators you mentioned. It is true audiobooks are lifesavers and yet the narration is so important that the quest for the right narrator is a neverending one. Have long used audiobooks to lighten chores and help fall asleep; now that I'm using a CPAP machine which can make drifting off a bit of a challenge, the audibooks are more important than ever. I find informative non-fiction great for chores (having fun now listening to Animal, Vegetable, Miracle when I cook) but for falling asleep, fiction is a must--nothing beats a bed-time story! Thanks again to whoever started this thread!

Posted on May 16, 2009 10:13:25 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on May 17, 2009 8:50:45 PM PDT
Arianwen says:
One of my favorite readers of young adult fiction is Alyssa Bresnahan. My least favorite: Barbara Caruso. She should stick to reading for very young children's books, since she sounds like a kindergarten teacher.

Posted on May 18, 2009 6:40:35 PM PDT
Luz Marquez says:
So i have a question. I have had my fair share of great readers and i wondered how can i find out what other books they have narrated, can anyone tell me how i can find out.

In reply to an earlier post on May 18, 2009 6:51:44 PM PDT
fan says:
There are a number of ways. You can go to Amazon's Audiobook page and search on the narrator's name. That will get you a list of what is presently available for purchase. Another way is to go to the WorldCat library site and put the narrator name in the author search. Depending on what else the individual has done, you may get films there too, although you can do an advanced search and limit the search to sound recordings. Also some narrators have their own websites and list their work, you can Google them and look around a bit. Good luck.

In reply to an earlier post on May 18, 2009 7:00:57 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on May 18, 2009 7:01:47 PM PDT
Melusine62 says:
A really easy way to find other books they've narrated is to go to the Seattle Public Library's website, which you can easily Google if you are not familiar with it. You don't have to belong to the library to use the website, just to check out materials. You search by putting the narrator's names under the Keyword search, which you can then sort by CD, by audiotape, or by all sound recordings. That's how I find them (and also where I check them out!).

Posted on May 18, 2009 7:43:17 PM PDT
My favorite is Lisette Lecat who does the No. 1 Ladies' Detective series. She has the perfect tone and the accents are delightful. My least favorite is the ubiquitous Scott Brick. He makes every character including the women sound like a snarky 25 year old man.

In reply to an earlier post on May 18, 2009 8:16:35 PM PDT
Debbie Winn says:
Another source for finding other books by a particular narrator is to go to If you know of a book that your favorite narrator has read, search for that. Audible will have a link in that book's info with the narrator's name. Click on the narrator name and it will list other books audible has by that narrator. It may not be a complete list, but it will get you started.

Posted on May 25, 2009 12:51:40 PM PDT
L. Sandlin says:
Michael Beck reading John Grisham...he was the first I heard read Grisham & I hope he continues for a long time. I did enjoy Grisham reading one of his own books, but for the most part I do not enjoy the authors reading their own books.

Posted on May 26, 2009 11:35:19 AM PDT
M. Williams says:
Question for the experts? I wanted to get the Charlie and the Chocolate Factory audiobook to listen to with my kids... which reader is better Roald Dahl or Eric Idle? Thanks!

Posted on May 27, 2009 8:03:50 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on May 27, 2009 8:08:31 PM PDT
Mandy K says:
Two readers that I just can't get enough of are: John Rubinstein, who can be heard on Jonathan Kellerman's Alex Delaware series; and Judy Kaye, of Sue Grafton's Kinsey Millhone series. John Rubinstein is also an actor - I was watching a rerun of Criminal Minds, and Mr. Rubinstein played a school principal in one episode. I sat bolt upright on my couch when he started speaking - I would recognize that voice anywhere! It was amazing to put a face with such a familiar voice!

In reply to an earlier post on May 27, 2009 10:14:35 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on May 27, 2009 10:17:36 PM PDT
Thanks Ink Stained Sword for mentioning James Marsters reading the Dresden Files. I've read all of the books in the past, and just bought the last two published from audible after you mentioned the reading for the series is good. Oh yes, you are right. I love Dresden, and I am so happy that James Marsters voice matches the voice I hear when I read the books. Jim Butcher's words in James Marsters voice has gotten me through some very rough times lately. Like most everyone I love Kate Reading also, and I have a horrible feeling we may have lost her as well as so many other shining voices recently.

In reply to an earlier post on May 28, 2009 9:12:40 AM PDT
Libros Lover says:
James does a great job with this series. He characterizes everyone from Bob to Thomas beautifully.

Posted on May 29, 2009 9:21:41 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on May 29, 2009 12:34:59 PM PDT
Barbara Rosenblatt is superb. Her voicing Mrs. Polifax in that series by Dorothy Gilman is just marvelous. Susan Erickson's reading of J.A. Jance's Joanna Brady series is outstanding. Her voice cuts through any traffic and road noise and she's deft with intonations. Kate Reading can't be beaten when it comes to female characterizations such as her Fannie Flagg books> I like the Robert B. Parker books immensely but the audio books read by Joe Mantegna (an excellent film and stage actor) turn me off with the constant usage of "He said, she said." Another reader we enjoy so much is Tony Roberts, Woody Allen's old sidekick, who does a great job on the Stuart Woods' Stone Barrington books.

Posted on May 30, 2009 1:47:02 PM PDT
crankygirl says:
I love Barbara too! Carrington Macduffie and Tom Weiner are easy on the ears.

Posted on Jun 2, 2009 6:52:38 PM PDT
sf mommy 99 says:
Davina Porter is excellent in the Outlander series (Diana Gabaldon)
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