STAFF PICK: The Woman In The Woods by John Connolly

Post by Miranda Winters-Sayle

Title: The Woman In The Woods
Author: John Connolly
Narrator: Jeff Harding

A young woman is found buried in the Maine woods, her body showing signs that she gave birth shortly before her death. Private detective Charlie Parker is hired to recover the missing child — but he isn’t the only one looking him. Someone else is interested in the whereabouts of the child, and they are leaving a trail of bodies in their wake.

The latest installment to John Connolly’s Charlie Parker series has something for lovers of various genres: mystery, paranormal thriller, and horror. What makes the audiobook even more exciting is that it isn’t a typical “whodunit” mystery — in fact, the reader is made aware of the whereabouts of the child within the first few chapters. The question is: Who will find him first?

I was a little hesitant to listen to this book as a first time Connolly reader. Launching headfirst into the 16th title in a series can be intimidating. However, the author does a fantastic job of giving enough information that I felt like I knew Charlie Parker without being overwhelmed with exposition of the events from previous titles in the series.

Listeners are able to follow both Charlie Parker and his adversary Quayle as they search for the missing child. This was hands-down my favorite part of the novel, as many authors do not allow the reader inside the head of the antagonist. Quayle is the perfect villain: clever, cruel, and absolutely creepy.

Fans of previous Charlie Parker audiobooks will be pleased to know that Jeff Harding continues narrating the series. His tone matches what you would expect from the protagonist in a gritty detective novel that doesn’t disappoint.

The Woman in the Woods.

 

Read more and sample the audio.

SHARE

STAFF PICK: Neverworld Wake by Marisha Pessl

Post by Laura Laidman

Title: Neverworld Wake
Author: Marisha Pessl
Narrator: Phoebe Strole

What if you had the chance to pause time, to redo a day until you get it just right? A day to undo the mistakes of the past? That’s just what Beatrice Hartley and her friends get to do in Marisha Pessl’s Neverworld Wake. It is in this Neverword that they quickly realize that reliving the past is not a gift, but a curse.

A year ago, Beatrice’s boyfriend Jim, the driving creative force of her friend group, died under mysterious circumstances. Though deemed a suicide by the local police, not one of them believed it. Now, Beatrice returns to her hometown to find out just what her friends know, and what they’re hiding from her. It is in the fabulous, isolated manner belonging to her former best friend Whitley that a mysterious figure joins them and explains that time has become stuck in a loop. A loop that can only be broken if they make a cruel and painful choice.

Neverworld Wake starts out as five young adults dealing with reliving the same day over and over and how it affects their relationships with one another and their own psyches. As the story progresses, it takes surprising twists and turns that I never saw coming. Neverworld Wake isn’t just a YA version Groundhog Day. As the plot races forward, the narrative jumps the expected tracks into something so much bigger, and so much better. I never knew what to expect with every passing minute of the narration and the final revelations left me reeling for days.

Told from Beatrice’s perspective, the wonderful Phoebe Strole captures exactly the personality of ‘Sister Bee’ as her friends have always teased her. Sweet, slightly naive, and yet tirelessly working for the friends, her performance perfectly exudes the Beatrice that I pictured as I listened along.

Neverworld Wake is a perfect mix of sci-fi, mystery, and personal drama that I’ve come to expect from Marisha Pessl. While listening to the audiobook, I found myself picturing Neverworld Wake as the next big Netflix hit. With it’s creative blend of Stranger Things and 13 Reasons Why, all while telling its own unique, intriguing story, it wouldn’t surprise me if an adaptation was announced in the future.

Neverworld Wake.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Read more and sample the audio.

New to Audiobooks.com? Get a free audiobook 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 audiobook!

SHARE

LGBTQ+ Authors You Should Be Listening To

Happy Pride Month! Whether you’re marching in a Pride parade or celebrating at home, we’ve got nine great listens by LGBTQ+ authors you’ll love.

 

1. Beyond Trans: Does Gender Matter? by Heath Fogg Davis, narrated by Paul Boehmer

Beyond Trans.

Beyond Trans pushes the conversation on gender identity to its limits. Whether on birth certificates or college admissions applications or on bathroom doors, why do we need to mark people and places with sex categories? Do they serve a real purpose or are they just mechanisms of exclusion? Davis, himself a transgender man, explores the underlying gender-enforcing policies and customs in American life.
Read more and sample the audio.

 

 

2. They Both Die At The End by Adam Silvera, narrated by Bahni TurpinRobbie DaymondMichael Crouch

They Both Die At The End.

A little after midnight, Death-Cast calls Mateo Torrez and Rufus Emeterio to give them some bad news: They’re going to die today. Mateo and Rufus are total strangers, but, for different reasons, they’re both looking to make a new friend on their End Day. The good news: There’s an app for that. It’s called the Last Friend, and through it, Rufus and Mateo meet up for one last great adventure — to live a lifetime in a single day.
Read more and sample the audio.

 

 

3. The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue by Makenzi Lee, narrated by Christian Coulson

The Gentleman's Guide to Vice and Virtue.

Henry “Monty” Montague doesn’t care that his roguish passions are far from suitable for the gentleman he was born to be. But as he embarks on his grand tour of Europe, his quests for pleasure and vice are in danger of coming to an end. Not only does his father expect him to take over the family’s estate upon his return, but Monty is also nursing an impossible crush on his best friend and traveling companion, Percy.
Read more and sample the audio.

 

 

4. A Line in the Dark by Malinda Lo, narrated by Jennifer Lim

A Line In The Dark.

Jess Wong is Angie Redmond’s best friend. And that’s the most important thing, even if Angie can’t see how Jess truly feels. Being the girl no one quite notices is OK with Jess anyway. But when Angie begins to fall for Margot Adams, Jess can see it coming a mile away. As Angie drags Jess further into Margot’s circle, Jess discovers more than her friend’s growing crush. Secrets and cruelty lie just beneath the carefree surface of this world of wealth and privilege, and when they come out, Jess knows Angie won’t be able to handle the consequences.
Read more and sample the audio.

 

 

 

 

5. Oola by Brittany Newell, narrated by Michael Crouch

Oola.

An insouciant music school dropout and aimless young writer fix on one another, grab hands and fall head-first down love’s rabbit hole. The pair find themselves mansion-sitting all summer, drinking the liquor cabinets dry and emptying wardrobes to play dress-up. But when they play house in a Big Sur cabin, boredom breeds an idea that could extinguish their love and even destroy them both.
Read more and sample the audio.

 

 

6. Girl Mans Up by M-E Girard, narrated by Emma Galvin

Girl Mans Up.

Pen wants to be the kind of girl she’s always been. So why does everyone have a problem with it? Dressing like a girl and listening to her folks will show respect. Taking orders from her friend Colby will show loyalty. But respect and loyalty are empty words. Old-world parents, disintegrating friendships, and feelings for other girls means that in order for Pen to be who she truly wants to be, she’ll have to man up.
Read more and sample the audio.

 

 

7. Argonauts by Maggie Nelson, narrated by Maggie Nelson

Argonauts.

At its center is a romance: the story of Nelson‘s relationship with the artist Harry Dodge. This story, which includes her account of falling in love with Dodge, who is fluidly gendered, as well as her journey to and through a pregnancy, is an intimate portrayal of the complexities and joys of (queer) family-making.
Read more and sample the audio.

 

 

 

 

8. A Brief History of Seven Killings by Marlon James, narrated by Ensemble Cast

A Brief History of Seven Killings

On 3 December 1976, just weeks before Bob Marley was to play the Smile Jamaica Concert to ease political tensions, seven gunmen from West Kingston stormed his house. Marley survived and went on to perform at the free concert. Not a lot was recorded about the fate of the seven gunmen, but much has been said, whispered and sung about in the streets of West Kingston.
Read more and sample the audio.

 

 

9. Under the Udala Trees by Chinelo Okparanta, narrated by Robin Miles

Under the Udala Trees.

Under the Udala Trees is a deeply powerful debut about the dangers of living and loving openly. Ijeoma comes of age as her nation does; she is 11 when civil war breaks out in Nigeria. Sent away to safety, she meets another displaced child, and they fall in love. They are from different ethnic communities. They are also both girls. When their love is discovered, she learns to hide this part of herself. But there is a cost to living inside a lie.
Read more and sample the audio.

SHARE

June is Audiobook Month Staff Picks

Featured

The Audiobooks.com team is sharing our top listening recommendations in celebration of June is Audiobook Month! Check out this post (as well as our Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram pages) every weekday to find out which audiobooks we can’t stop talking about.

 

Steph’s pick: The Disaster Artist: My Life Inside The Room, the Greatest Bad Movie Ever Made by Greg Sestero and Tom Bissell, narrated by Greg Sestero

Disaster Artist.

As a struggling actor with a lack of confidence and funds, Greg Sestero’s luck seems to change when he meets Tommy Wiseau at a San Francisco acting school. Wiseau’s mysterious, and seemingly endless, supply of cash allows him to pour $6 million of his own money on a cinematic disaster called The Room. The hilarious, inspiring, and true story of their struggles, triumphs, and unique relationship makes this story a must-see and read.
Read more and sample the audio.

 

 

 

Lauren’s pick: Find Your Extraordinary: Dream Bigger, Live Happier, and Achieve Success on Your Own Terms by Jessica Herrin, narrated by Jessica Herrin

Find Your Extraordinary.

It is possible to take your life from ordinary to extraordinary. The secret? Cultivating the entrepreneurial spirit inside you – the spirit that allows you to embrace your individuality, to look not just at what is but at what could be, to believe in yourself beyond reason and to step up to creating your own definition of happiness and success – a version of success in which work and family life happily co-exist – instead of chasing a cookie-cutter version.
Read more and sample the audio.

 

 

 

 

Shamir’s pick: Iron Gold by Pierce Brown, narrated by John CurlessTim Gerard ReynoldsJulian Elfer, and Aedin Moloney

Iron Gold.

Honor and betrayal fuel a caste-shattering revolution. Ten years after the events of Morning Star, Darrow and the Rising are battling the remaining Gold loyalist forces and are closer than ever to abolishing the color-coded caste system of Society for good. But new foes will emerge from the shadows to threaten the imperfect victory Darrow and his friends have earned.
Read more and sample the audio.

 

 

Nick’s pick: Emergency by Neil Strauss, narrated by Neil Strauss

Emergency.

Emergency traces Neil‘s white-knuckled journey through today’s heart of darkness, as he sets out to move his life offshore, test his skills in the wild, and remake himself as a gun-toting, plane-flying, government-defying survivor. It’s one man’s story of a dangerous world and how to stay alive in it.
Read more and sample the audio.

 

 

 

Graeme’s pick: The Girl With All The Gifts by M. R. Carey, narrated by Finty Williams

The Girl With All The Gifts.

Melanie is a very special girl. Dr Caldwell calls her “our little genius.” Every morning, Melanie waits in her cell to be collected for class. When they come for her, Sergeant keeps his gun pointed at her while two of his people strap her into the wheelchair. She thinks they don’t like her. She jokes that she won’t bite, but they don’t laugh.
Read more and sample the audio.

 

 

Daniel’s pick: The Girl With Seven Names by Hyeonseo Lee, narrated by Josie Dunn

The Girl With Seven Names.

As a child growing up in North Korea, Hyeonseo Lee was one of millions trapped by North Korea’s secretive and brutal communist regime. Her home on the border with China gave her some exposure to the world beyond. As the famine of the 1990s struck, she began to realize she had been brainwashed her entire life. This is her story of struggling to avoid capture/repatriation and guiding her family to freedom.
Read more and sample the audio.

 

Candice’s pick: Bored and Brilliant: How Spacing Out Can Unlock Your Most Productive and Creative Self by Manoush Zomorodi, narrated by Manoush Zomorodi

Bored and Brilliant.

Has your smartphone become your BFF? Do you feel bored when you’re not checking Facebook or Instagram? Bored and Brilliant: Rediscovering the Lost Art of Spacing Out explains the connection between boredom and original thinking, and explores how we can harness boredom’s hidden benefits to become our most productive selves.
Read more and sample the audio.

 

 

Pam’s pick: My Lovely Wife in the Psych Ward by Mark Lukach, narrated by Josh Bloomberg

My Lovely Wife in the Psych Ward.

A heart-wrenching yet hopeful memoir of a young marriage redefined by mental illness. Mark and Giulia fell in love at 18, married at 24, and were living their dream life. When Giulia was 27, she suffered a psychotic break that landed her in the psych ward. Eventually, she recovered, but a second and third breakdown ensued. Pushed to the edge of the abyss, everything they once took for granted was upended.
Read more and sample the audio.

 

Andrew’s pick: Red Rising by Pierce Brown, narrated by Tim Reynolds

Red Rising.

Darrow spends his life willingly, knowing that his blood and sweat will one day result in a better world for his children. But he and his kind have been betrayed. 
Darrow will be forced to compete for his life and the future of civilization against the best and most brutal of Society’ s ruling class. There, he will stop at nothing to bring down his enemies… even if it means he has to become one of them to do so.
Read more and sample the audio.

 

Michelle’s pick: You All Grow Up And Leave Me by Piper Weiss, narrated by Brittany Pressley

You All Grow Up And Leave Me.

A highly unsettling blend of true crime and coming-of-age memoir. Piper Weiss was 14 when her middle-aged tennis coach, one of New York City’s most prestigious instructors, killed himself after a failed attempt to kidnap one of his teenage students. Now, 20 years later, Piper examines the event as both a teenage eyewitness and investigative reporter, hoping to understand the childhood memories that haunt her to this day.
Read more and sample the audio.

 

Colin’s pick: Kitchen Confidential by Anthony Bourdain, narrated by Anthony Bourdain

Kitchen Confidential.

Most diners believe that their sublime food was created by a culinary artist of the highest order. More likely, writes Anthony Bourdain, that elegant concoction is the effort of a team of “wacked-out moral degenerates, dope fiends, refugees, a thuggish assortment of drunks,sneak thieves, sluts, and psychopaths.” Bourdain is obscenely eloquent, unapologetically opinionated, and a damn fine storyteller.
Read more and sample the audio.

 

Pete’s pick: City of Stairs by Robert Jackson Bennett, narrated by Alma Cuervo

City of Stairs.

The city of Bulikov once wielded the powers of the gods to conquer the world, until its divine protectors were killed. Into this broken city steps Shara Thivani, one of her country’s most accomplished spies. But as Shara pursues the killer, she starts to suspect that the beings who ruled this terrible place may not be as dead as they seem — and that Bulikov’s cruel reign may not yet be over.
Read more and sample the audio.

 

Kaleisha’s pick: Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi, narrated by Dominic Hoffman

Homegoing.

Homegoing begins with the story of two half-sisters, separated by forces beyond their control: one sold into slavery, the other married to a British slaver. Written with tremendous sweep and power, Homegoing traces the generations of family who follow, as their destinies lead them through two continents and three hundred years of history, each life indeliably drawn, as the legacy of slavery is fully revealed in light of the present day.
Read more and sample the audio.

 

 

Zac’s pick: Shoe Dog by Phil Knight, narrated by Norbert Leo Butz

Shoe Dog.

For the first time ever, Nike founder and CEO Phil Knight shares the inside story of the company’s early days as an intrepid start-up and its evolution into one of the world’s most iconic, game-changing, and profitable brands. In 1962, fresh out of business school, Phil Knight borrowed $50 from his father and created a company grossing $8,000 in his first year. Today, Nike’s annual sales top $30 billion.
Read more and sample the audio.

SHARE

STAFF PICK: Lies You Never Told Me by Jennifer Donaldson

Post by Laura Laidman

Title: Lies You Never Told Me
Author: Jennifer Donaldson
Narrator: Jorjeana Marie and Dylan Calderon

Two people hold secrets that could not only tear apart their lives, but the lives of those they care about most. Told in dueling perspectives, Lies You Never Told Me by Jennifer Donaldson follows Gabe, an Austin native whose latest toxic relationship isn’t ready to let him go, and Elyse, a talented young actress in Portland who finds herself falling for exactly the wrong kind of man. Separated by thousands of miles, Gabe and Elyse’s lives are about to come crashing together in a way that will leave them both changed forever.

I was immediately sucked in by the premise of this book. Just like the secrets the protagonists hold, the story itself unfolds slowly before the reader until you’re left racing through the minutes, unable to press pause until every detail is unveiled. Listening to Gabe navigate through the ending of his relationship with an obsessed woman who won’t let him go while meeting a new woman who is everything he needs is heart wrenching and, at times, terrifying. But it’s Elyse who truly held my attention throughout the audiobook. The layers of her life unfurl themselves in a dizzying display that keeps racing forward until her story left me wide-eyed with shock.

As the point of view switches throughout the book between Gabe and Elyse, so does the narration. This switching narration makes Lies You Never Told Me all the more engrossing. Jorjeana Marie’s soft, determined Elyse is met perfectly by newcomer Dylan Calderon’s compassionate and sometimes impulsive Gabe. The back and forth flow of storytelling keeps the plot crisp and quick, and helped me feel closer to both protagonists as I listened to the book.

I was honestly a bit surprised by how much I enjoyed this book, and more so how it stuck with me for days after I completed it. I found myself returning to parts of the story to look for clues I missed along the way, and to revisit the moments that really tugged at my heart. I may have a second complete listen in my near future!

Lies You Never Told Me.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Read more and sample the audio.

New to Audiobooks.com? Get a free audiobook 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 audiobook!

SHARE

The Other Side of the Castle: 6 Fairy Tales as Told by the Villains

For centuries, fairy tales have delighted the young and the old. Passed down through fireside fables and aged storybooks, these stories have been told and retold, yet they continue to captivate readers. As the tales typically go, good triumphs while evil is punished. Yet, nothing is ever what it seems. There are stories untold even in the most classic and familiar tales. Step into the shoes of some of the most infamous villains with these new spins on classic fairy tales.

 

1. All the Ever Afters: The Untold Story of Cinderella’s Stepmother by Danielle Teller, narrated by Jane Copland

As rumors about the cruel upbringing of beautiful newlywed Princess Cinderella roil the kingdom, her stepmother, Agnes, who knows all too well about hardship, privately records the true story. The story of their relationship reveals that nothing is what it seems, that beauty is not always desirable, and that love can take on many guises. Read more and sample the audio.

 

 

 

2. Girls Made of Snow and Glass by Melissa Bashardoust, narrated by Jennifer Ikeda

Frozen meets The Bloody Chamber in this feminist fantasy re-imagining of the Snow White fairy tale.
After the death of her mother, Mina forms a plan: win the king’s heart and become queen. The only catch is that she’ll have to become a stepmother to fifteen-year-old Lynet. Girls Made of Snow and Glass traces the relationship of two young women doomed to be rivals from the start. Read more and sample the audio.

 

 

3. Caroline: Little House, Revisited by Sarah Miller, narrated by Elizabeth Marvel

In this novel authorized by the Little House estate, Sarah Miller vividly recreates the beauty, hardship, and joys of the frontier in a dazzling work of historical fiction, a captivating story that illuminates one courageous, resilient, and loving pioneer woman as never before—Caroline Ingalls, “Ma” in Laura Ingalls Wilder’s beloved Little House books. Read more and sample the audio.

 

 

 

4. Forest of a Thousand Lanterns by Julie C. Dao, narrated by Kim Mai Guest

Forest of a Thousand Lanterns reimagines The Evil Queen legend as a tale of one peasant girl’s quest to become Empress. Growing up in a forgotten village on the edge of the map, Xifeng longs to fulfill the destiny promised to her by her cruel aunt, the witch Guma, who has seen glimmers of Xifeng’s majestic future. But, in order to achieve greatness, Xifeng must embrace the darkness within her. Read more and sample the audio.

 

 

5. Hiddensee: A Tale of the Once and Future Nutcracker by Gregory Maguire, narrated by Steven Crossley

Hiddensee recreates the backstory of the Nutcracker, re-imagining how this entrancing creature came to be carved and how it magically guided an ailing little girl named Klara through a dreamy paradise on a snowy Christmas Eve. It also brings to life the mysterious godfather Drosselmeier, the ominous, canny, one-eyed toymaker who presents the Nutcracker to Klara, his goddaughter. Read more and sample the audio.

 

 

6. Queen of Hearts by Colleen Oakes, narrated by Moira Quirk

Dinah, the future Queen of Wonderland, has not yet seen the dark depths of her kingdom; she longs only for her father’s approval and a future with the boy she loves. But when a betrayal threatens her throne, she is launched into Wonderland’s dangerous political game. Queen of Hearts brings to life the epic origin of Wonderland’s infamous villain. Read more and sample the audio.

 

 

 

New to Audiobooks.com? Get a free audiobook 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 audiobook!

SHARE