About Kylie Conner

Kylie’s favorite reads are usually horror/thrillers, which matches her taste in films as well. When she’s not cracking bad jokes she can often be found curled up with a cup of coffee and her cat, Gideon.

Book Clubbin’: 10 Discussion Questions for Such a Fun Age by Kiley Reid

Welcome to our monthly blog feature, Book Clubbin’!

Sometimes life can get so hectic that you’re lucky if you find time to grab a shower let alone read your book club book in time. If your New Years’ resolution is to read more but you can’t find the time, audiobooks are the answer! So, press play on this month’s pick during your commute, while you’re cooking dinner, or before bed!

January’s pick is Such a Fun Age by Kiley Reid, narrated by Nicole Lewis. This new release has drummed up a lot of buzz in anticipation of its release, that’s for sure! Not only has it become an instant bestseller, but it is also Reese Witherspoon’s January pick for her Hello Sunshine book club. Such a Fun Age tackles the issues of race and privilege through the perspectives of the babysitter, Emira, and her employer, Alix Chamberlain.

Don’t miss this striking debut novel. Check out our discussion questions below, but beware, spoilers ahead.

So take a peek at our questions, and as always, remember there MAY be some spoilers in here!

—————MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS!————

1) Such a Fun Age is told from the perspectives of Alix and Emira. How did these different narrators affect your reading/listening experience?

2) Why didn’t Emira want to share the video from the grocery store?

3) Why do you think Alix is so set on becoming close friends with Emira? Is this linked to guilt she holds from the past?

4) What did you think of Kelley when he was introduced? Were you suspicious of his intentions?

5) After discovering Emira and Alix are linked by someone unexpected, did it change your opinion of either character?

6) Do you think that what happened in high school affected Alix and Kelley differently? Did it leave a lasting impression that carried over to the rest of their lives?

7) How did the events that unfolded in Such a Fun Age ultimately lead to Emira finding her path into a career?

8) How do you think the title, Such a Fun Age, relates to the story?

9) This novel touches on important topics such as: race, classic, identity…etc. Did you notice any other prevalent themes? Did the exploration of any of these themes change your opinions at all?

10) Were you satisfied with how the novel ended? Were you hoping for a different resolution?


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Audiobooks.com Interview with Dani Shapiro, Author of Inheritance

Have you ever uncovered a secret about your family that changed the way you look at both your life and your family in general? This happened to Dani Shapiro, author of the bestselling memoirs Hourglass, Slow Motion, Devotion, and her latest, Inheritance.

We were lucky enough to interview Shapiro and pick her brain on the topics of audiobooks, memoirs, and her podcast Family Secrets.


Audiobooks.com: How do you prepare before narrating your own memoirs? 

Dani Shapiro: I try to put myself all the way into the book so I can be living, breathing, the book during the hours I’m narrating. It’s such an intimate experience to narrate my own memoirs, and I want to impart that same sense of immediacy and intimacy to the reader.


Audiobooks.com: What do readers gain from listening to Inheritance or your other memoirs that they might miss out on by reading the print versions?

Dani Shapiro: That intimacy I’m talking about – I think that’s very particular to great audiobooks. After all, we listen alone – often with ear buds in place, or alone in a car. We’re receiving the voice of the narrator in an unmediated way. What emotion is being conveyed through the voice? We talk a lot about “voice” when it comes to literature, but when we’re talking about an audiobook, we’re literally talking about a voice and all it can contain.


Audiobooks.com: How has uncovering the truth about your paternity shaped how you tell your own story?

Dani Shapiro: Oh, my goodness. How has it not? One of the most interesting aspects of uncovering the truth about my paternity is how, in a way, it was always hiding in plain sight in my creative process. My themes, as a novelist, always revolved around family secrets. As I write in Inheritance, I always knew there was a secret. What I didn’t know: the secret was me. And so I’ve always, always supplied narratives to my own story in an attempt to piece it together, to understand. But it wasn’t until I discovered that something as fundamental as my identity has been kept from me that I was able to hold it all, see it all, understand it all.


Audiobooks.com: Your podcast, Family Secrets, gives listeners the platform to share their personal stories about secrets they’ve kept and those that have, in turn, been kept from them. Why were you compelled to create this podcast, and how have other people’s stories influenced how you think about your own experiences with your family?

Dani Shapiro: The podcast grew organically out of having written Inheritance. After I finished the final draft of the book, I was on the phone one afternoon with a friend, an early reader – the great Buddhist mindfulness teacher Sylvia Boorstein – and reading Inheritance prompted Sylvia to tell me a riveting story of her own family secret. She’s a great storyteller, and as she was talking, I found myself wishing I was recording her. And then I had the thought: hey, what about a podcast? I had no idea what I was doing, at first. I had a lot of help. But what I quickly learned is that storytelling is storytelling. I absolutely love the form of Family Secrets. I love sitting down with my guests and guiding them through their stories – “holding” their stories is the way I think of it, by writing scripts that allow their stories to be their most coherent and powerful.


Audiobooks.com: How does recording a podcast differ from recording an audiobook? Did your experiences with narrating your own memoirs help with the process of creating your podcast?

Dani Shapiro: Recording the podcast is quite different from recording an audiobook, in that it’s a conversation. A highly-produced conversation, but nonetheless, it’s a dialogue. The one similarity is that I’m using my speaking voice – an instrument I had never really paid much attention to before. It turns out I have a good voice for this sort of thing – not something I’d ever considered.


Audiobooks.com: Since creating the podcast, have you enjoyed taking a step back from your writing or are you itching to get behind the keyboard again?

Dani Shapiro: Between touring for Inheritance and the podcast, I haven’t had much time for my own writing, and for right now, that’s okay. I’ll know when it no longer feels right. These have been huge changes in my creative life, and as I always tell my students, when you’re a writer, you are your own instrument. We have to be respectful of that instrument, and the way it changes over time.


Audiobooks.com: What can we expect from season 3 of Family Secrets?

Dani Shapiro: I’m almost finished recording season 3 which will launch in early February! We have some absolutely amazing guests this coming season. I feel like the stories keep deepening, evolving, and becoming more nuanced. Finding great guests is shockingly easy. ∎


New to Audiobooks.com? Get your first book free, PLUS a bonus book from our VIP selection when you sign up for our one-month free trial. Digital audiobooks make audible stories come to life when you’re commuting, working out, cleaning, cooking, and more! Listening is easy with our top-rated free audiobook apps for iOS and Android, which let you download & listen to bestselling audiobooks on the go, wherever you are. Click here to get your free audiobooks!

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Book Clubbin’: 10 Discussion Questions for The Dutch House by Ann Patchett

Welcome to our monthly blog feature — Book Clubbin’!
Sometimes life can get busy, we get it! That’s why listening to an audiobook can allow you to read so much more than you already do! Press play on your current listen during your commute, while you’re cooking dinner, or after the kids go to sleep — the possibilities are endless!

Every month we pick a popular book club pick and set up some discussion questions to get you and your book club going. This month, we’ve got questions for The Dutch House by Ann Patchett. This book has been taking the world by storm, and news traveled fast when it was announced that Tom Hanks would be narrating Patchett’s latest release. Already a smash hit, The Dutch House was selected as 2019’s Book of the Year by publications such as The TimesGuardianDaily TelegraphWashington Post, and more. Plus, it was Jenna Bush Hager’s October choice for her book club, Read with Jenna.

So take a peek at our questions, and as always, remember there MAY be some spoilers in here!

—————MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS!————

1) What allows Maeve and Danny’s relationship to persevere throughout everything they go through together?

2) Why do you think Andrea was so spiteful toward Maeve and Danny? Would you go as far as to label her as an “evil stepmother?”

3) Academy award-winning actor, Tom Hanks, narrates the audiobook for The Dutch House. Do you think that celebrity narrators add to the experience of listening to an audiobook or take away from it?

4) Even after finishing medical school, Danny still feels drawn to working with construction and building houses. Why do you think this is?

5) Do you think the setting of Philadelphia was integral to the story or could this have taken place somewhere else?

6) The story is told from the perspective of an adult Danny Conroy. Do you think this impacted how the story was told? Do you think it would have been more effective from another character’s perspective?

7) The Dutch House takes place over a span of five decades. Do you think this amount of time was necessary? Could the same message have been conveyed in a shorter period of time or could Patchett have stretched it out even longer?

8) What do you think the Dutch House represents for Maeve and Danny? And why do they continue to revisit it?

9) Is there a place that resonates with you the same way the Dutch House resonates with Maeve and Danny?

10) Is there a specific character or storyline that you wish you could follow after the audiobook ends to see what happens next?


New to Audiobooks.com? Get your first book free, PLUS a bonus book from our VIP selection when you sign up for our one-month free trial. Digital audiobooks make audible stories come to life when you’re commuting, working out, cleaning, cooking, and more! Listening is easy with our top-rated free audiobook apps for iOS and Android, which let you download & listen to bestselling audiobooks on the go, wherever you are. Click here to get your free audiobooks!

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Audiobooks.com Interview with Sophie Kinsella, Author of The Shopaholic Series

Sophie Kinsella’s Confessions of a Shopaholic debuted in 2003 and since then has snowballed into an extremely popular and successful series that not only boasts 10 books in its line-up, but also has a movie adaptation of the first book starring Isla Fisher, Hugh Dancy, Krysten Ritter, Joan Cusak, and John Lithgow – to name a few.

Now, Kinsella has released the 10th book in the series, Christmas Shopaholic, where Becky is faced with the daunting task of hosting the big family holiday celebration at her place. With every step she takes to make everything perfect she worries if she can really pull this off.

We were able to catch up with Kinsella recently to ask her a few questions about her latest release and what she sees on the horizon for both Becky and the Shopaholic series.

Audiobooks.com: What do you look for in an ideal audiobook narrator?

Sophie Kinsella: I love to hear characterful voices. When I write, my books are all first person and so the voice is very clearly in my head. I love it when an audiobook narrator taps into the narrative voice I have had in my head when writing.

Audiobooks.com: What do readers gain from listening to the audiobook that they miss out on if they just read the print version?

Sophie Kinsella: When I read books that I like, I often whip through them very quickly, and think afterwards that I’ve missed some of the subtlety and wit of the writing. With audiobooks you have the opportunity to luxuriate in the writing.

Audiobooks.com: In Christmas Shopaholic, Becky’s family has long-standing holiday traditions. Does your family have any similar, fun traditions that you’ve kept up over the years?

Sophie Kinsella: We play a brilliant game where you have to put on hats and gloves and scarves and eat a chocolate bar with a knife and fork. We also read ‘Twas the night before Christmas every Christmas Eve before we put out mince pies and sherry by the fire for Father Christmas to find.

Audiobooks.com: Becky is tasked with hosting the holiday festivities and chaos ensues. Did you draw on your own personal experiences with hosting family over the holidays? And if chaos ensues, how do you deal with it?

Sophie Kinsella: I don’t know what you mean – there is never any chaos when I host Christmas… Seriously, I think it’s easy to panic over Christmas arrangements but I’m lucky that we as a family are all quite forgiving of each other – and a box of candy and a small glass of sherry will always smooth things over!

Audiobooks.com: In this installment of the Shopaholic series, in typical Becky-fashion, she strives to host the perfect holiday get-together and get everyone the perfect gifts. What do you think it is about Becky that causes your readers to have such a soft spot for her?

Sophie Kinsella: It absolutely thrills me that Becky has such an enduring appeal. I think she feels real to a lot of my readers – she certainly feels real to me! She has grown and matured over the years, even though she is the same Becky and still gets into trouble. And although she has flaws, she also has many qualities which are inspiring – her optimism, her good-heartedness, her ingenious solutions to problems, and her relationships with her family and friends. She always tries her best, even if her best usually backfires.

Audiobooks.com: And more personally from your own perspective, what is it about Becky and her story that makes you want to keep returning to it again and again?

Sophie Kinsella: I love Becky like no other character! She’s the only heroine I’ve created that I keep returning to. I just love writing in her voice and seeing the world through her eyes. She’s so optimistic and can-do and has her own special logic.

Audiobooks.com: Where do you see Becky and her family in 10 years?

Sophie Kinsella: I’m sure Becky will have given up shopping and she and Luke will be a sensible ordinary couple… or not!∎


New to Audiobooks.com? Get your first book free, PLUS a bonus book from our VIP selection when you sign up for our one-month free trial. Digital audiobooks make audible stories come to life when you’re commuting, working out, cleaning, cooking, and more! Listening is easy with our top-rated free audiobook apps for iOS and Android, which let you download & listen to bestselling audiobooks on the go, wherever you are. Click here to get your free audiobooks!

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Season of the Witch: Old School vs. New Age Witches

When it comes to what’s playing in my headphones, you can usually bet on it being a horror audiobook or at least something with a dark and chilling vibe. As my current audiobook comes to an end (Ninth House) and I queue up my next listen (The Remaking), I think it’s safe to say that I’m a little obsessed with witches.

Can you really blame me? There’s been a total uptick in the witch’s presence in pop culture as a whole. From TV series like The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina, A Discovery of Witches, and the Charmed reboot to the remake of the 1977 film, Suspiria, and countless audiobooks focusing on these magical beings (The Furies, Toil & Trouble, Gideon the Ninth…etc) – witches are having a serious moment.

This got us thinking…what are the major differences between old school witches in classics like Macbeth and Grimm’s Fairy Tales, and new age witches in audiobooks today?

We’ve compared old school vs. new age vampires before, but we thought culturally, we had to pay our respects to the powerful witch – she’s been around forever, you know? Let’s compare…

Old School vs.

New Age

Physical looks
We all know those classic depictions of hag-like witches with hooked noses, warts, moles, and even beards (a la The Weird Sisters in Macbeth). And let’s not forget the most infamous characteristic of all – green skin, which was most famously depicted in the 1939 film adaptation of The Wizard of Oz. Now-a-days the witches that are leading the charge for this resurgence of witchy content just look like regular, everyday people! They’re teenagers who just learned that they come from a long line of witches or they’re 11-year-olds whojust got their letter to Hogwarts!
Evil Motives
Double, double, toil, and trouble…witches are often associated with classic depictions of covens surrounding cauldrons and putting curses on unsuspecting townsfolk – usually curses that last through many generations. New age witches are real people and no person is 100% evil or 100% good, but most of the witches of today are fighting for what they think is right and using their magic to protect others.
All Black Garb & Pointy Hats
Every year around Halloween the image of the witch pops up and what is she wearing? A black cloak and a big pointy hat. The history of the witch’s hat seems to be a murky one, but I think it’s safe to say that we can attribute its popularity to The Wicked Witch in The Wizard of Oz as well. The “witchy aesthetic,” as some call it, can be seen in the covers of audiobooks that center around witches. Audiobooks like Basic Witches and The Babysitters Coven feature astrological symbols, plants, dreamy pastel colors, and even pentagrams.
Outsiders
For as long as there have been witches, there have been people who have been afraid of their powers. This would put them on the fringe of society. With hashtags like #witchesofinstagram amassing over three million posts, and countless brands marketing to millenials seeking that witchy aesthetic, I think it’s safe to say that witches have totally gone mainstream.
Flying on Broomsticks
This one has always been my favorite characteristic when it comes to witches because if I could just grab any old broom and get from point A to point B, that would be fantastic! For our #witchesofinstagram, broomsticks are a thing of the past. While they sometimes may levitate (shout out, A Discovery of Witches) I think new age witches will probably just take the bus.

In conclusion, the witch is an elusive character and always has been, but with their new age counterparts and their move to the mainstream I think that we will continue to see the morphing of what it means to be a witch as time goes on. They’ve already got me under their spell, what about you?


New to Audiobooks.com? Get your first book free, PLUS a bonus book from our VIP selection when you sign up for our one-month free trial. Digital audiobooks make audible stories come to life when you’re commuting, working out, cleaning, cooking, and more! Listening is easy with our top-rated free audiobook apps for iOS and Android, which let you download & listen to bestselling audiobooks on the go, wherever you are. Click here to get your free audiobooks!

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Worth the Wait — Most Anticipated Upcoming Listens!

Getting way too excited for an upcoming audiobook release is something we are all too familiar with here at Audiobooks.com. Now, you can join in on our excitement with the all-new “Most Anticipated” feature!

With this new feature you can add any of these titles to your Wishlist or, if you don’t have an account with us, simply select “Let me know when available” and enter your email address. You will then be notified when this title is available for your listening pleasure!

We’ve rounded up some highly anticipated listens that are due to be released in the coming months, from sequels to thrillers to heartfelt memoirs that you’ll definitely want to be notified about. Click here to view our full ‘Most Anticipated Upcoming Books’ book list.

Me by Elton John, narrated by Elton John, Taron Egerton
Expected release: October 2019

This highly anticipated first and only official autobiography from pop sensation, Elton John, is getting major buzz. In Me, John dives into his past, his rise to fame, and how he got to where he is today. The audiobook is narrated by John himself as well as Taron Egerton who portrays John in the recently released biopic, Rocketman.

Read more →


Olive, Again by Elizabeth Strout, narrated by Kimberly Farr
Expected release: October 2019

Advance praise for Olive, Again has landed this upcoming audiobook on the radar of some major publications where it has been named as one of the most anticipated books this fall. Following Elizabeth Strouts Pulitzer Prize-winning novel, Olive Kitteridge, Olive, Again, gives us more from the character that captured the attention of millions. Follow Olive as she tries to not just figure out her own life, but the lives of others in her town of Crosby, Maine.

Read more →


The Starless Sea by Erin Morgenstern, narrated by Dominic Hoffman
Expected release: November 2019

If you are one of the lucky ones who got lost in Erin Morgensterns fantastical bestseller The Night Circus and loved every minute of it, then hold on to your hats because she’s back with another immersive listen, The Starless Sea. In this upcoming release, we follow Zachary Ezra Rawlins as he discovers a magical realm beneath the world. As he uncovers more about this mysterious world, he also begins to unravel the mysteries of his own life.

Read more →


The Andromeda Evolution by Daniel H. Wilson, Ph.D, Michael Crichton, narrated by Julia Whelan
Expected release: November 2019

Fifty years ago, Michael Crichton released The Andromeda Strain, which not only made him a household name, but also spawned the creation of a new genre, the technothriller. Now, Daniel H. Wilson helps to keep this relevant and resonant story going with the follow-up, The Andromeda Evolution. You’ll definitely want to be among the first to know when this audiobook is out.

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The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes by Suzanne Collins, narrated by TBD
Expected release: May 2020

After almost a decade since Mockingjay, the final of the Hunger Games series, was released, Suzanne Collins has announced that she will be releasing a prequel titled The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes. This new addition to the series will revisit the world of Panem sixty-four years before the events of The Hunger Games, starting on the morning of the reaping of the tenth Hunger Games.

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If It Bleeds by Stephen King, narrated by TBD
Expected release: May 2020

How does he do it? Stephen King just released The Institute in September of 2019 and he has already announced his next release! If It Bleeds will be a collection of novellas: Mr. Harrigan’s Phone, The Life of Chuck, Rat, and the title story If It Bleeds. Dubbed as master of short fiction and the king of horror, this one is bound to be a chilling listen.

Read more →


New to Audiobooks.com? Get your first book free, PLUS a bonus book from our VIP selection when you sign up for our one-month free trial. Digital audiobooks make audible stories come to life when you’re commuting, working out, cleaning, cooking, and more! Listening is easy with our top-rated free audiobook apps for iOS and Android, which let you download & listen to bestselling audiobooks on the go, wherever you are. Click here to get your free audiobooks!

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