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Over the last few years, audiobooks have begun to grow in popularity and become more accepted as a main form of reading. And with that acceptance, comes the knowledge that some books are actually better via audiobook. While the stories stand on their own through a physical read, the audio just brings a little more to the table for these 7 books.
The Alloy of Law (Mistborn Era Two #1) by Brandon Sanderson
Set 300 years after the events of the wildly fantastic Mistborn series, The Alloy of Law introduces us to a new group of uniquely magical characters and their fight to fix their corrupt world. Narrated by Michael Kramer, a god among audiobook narrators, The Alloy of Law and the whole Era 2 series is brought to life through his vast collection of accents. This is particularly perfect considering Wayne, arguably the best comedic sidekick in any fantasy book, adopts and dismisses numerous accents through the course of the story. If anyone knows the power of a proper accent, it’s Wayne and Michael Kramer.
Illuminae (The Illuminae Files #1) by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff
Kady Grant and Ezra Mason have just broken up, had their home attacked by a rival corporation, and are now trapped on separate ships while fleeing from the battlecruiser bent on their annihilation. Things can’t get any worse, right? Narrated by a full cast and enhanced by background sound effects, the audiobook version of Illuminae brings to life all the ways things get so much worse for Kady and Ezra. Author’s personal opinion: Illuminae is the best audiobook of all time.
Throne of Glass by Sarah J Maas
The first book in the epic series of Celena Sardothian, the young assassin who was betrayed and thrown in a labor mine, released a year later to compete in a tournament to become the King’s Champion, and starts a chain of events that will reshape the land of Adarlan. There is not a narrator out there whose voice so exquisitely embodies the character as Elizabeth Evans does for Celena. From haughtiness to rage to devastation, Evans hits every tone and emotion with perfection and brings the story of Celeana to life in a way that only an audiobook can.
Sleeping Giants (The Themis Files #1) by Sylvain Neuvel
Told entirely through interview and video transcripts, Sleeping Giants is the story of Rose Franklin and how her discovery of a giant robot hand hidden in rural South Dakota irrecoverably changes her life and the course of Earth’s history. Read by a full cast, the narration gives you the sense that you are sitting in a windowless room with the nameless interrogator who has collected these files just for your listening.
My Plain Jane (The Lady Janies #2) by Cynthia Hand, Jodi Meadows, and Brodi Ashton
A satirical retelling of Jane Eyre featuring Charlotte Brontë and a group of slightly inept ghost hunters, My Plain Jane is a hilarious tale of friends, ghosts, and love. While the story is rife with biting satire and hilariously ridiculous moments, much of the humor falls flat on the page. However, when narrated by Fiona Hardingham, the jokes land spectacularly and you will find yourself laughing through your read.
Red Rising (Red Rising Saga #1) by Pierce Brown
The first book in the epic sci-fi saga of a lowly miner who rises far above his station and takes on the tyrannical government who killed his wife and subjects his people to life underground on Mars. Brown’s writing is fantastic on its own accord, but narrator Timothy Gerard Reynolds brings such depth to the story with his voice. At times gravely and broken or affluent and fierce, the narration draws the reader into the dark depths of emotion throughout this brutally masterful series.
The Last Namsara (Iskari #1) by Kristen Ciccarelli
Asha is the fiercest dragon slayer in the kingdom of Firgaard and when given the chance to escape a terrible arranged marriage by killing the most powerful dragon, she is confident she will be victorious. But long hidden truths come to light that threaten to destroy her world and she must figure out who to trust before she loses the one thing she never thought she’d have: love. Narrated by Doctor Who’s Pearl Mackie, The Last Namsara benefits greatly from her smooth, hypnotic voice. The novel has dragon myths scattered throughout and Mackie’s natural storytelling voice adds a fantastic layer to the experience of reading this book.