Top Ten Books that are Better on Audio

I’m a huge fan of audiobooks, though I’m very picky about my audiobooks. Some books, however, just beg to be listened to. These are my favorites:

ravenboys1. The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater (narrator: Will Patton) – I originally tried this in print. Didn’t work. Years later, revisited on audio and fell completely in love.

2. Howl’s Moving Castle by Diana Wynne Jones (Jenny Sterlin) – Ditto.

3. Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell by Susanna Clarke (Simon Prebble) – Ditto.

4. Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo (multiple narrators) – I’m not sure if it was purely the reread that made this more enjoyable, or the audio, but I suspect the latter.

lolita5. Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov (Jeremy Irons) – I adored the book long before I listened to the audio, but listening to the audio helped me to wade through all the thick language and really get more from the book.

6. anything by Thomas Hardy – Pretty much ditto. I like Hardy, but I find him much easier to listen to. Especially when Alan Rickman narrates.

7. nonfiction – Sooooo…this is a category of books rather than a single book, but I claim it counts, because 95% of nonfiction works better on audio for me.

audio8. The Screaming Staircase by Jonathan Stroud (Miranda Raison) – Reading the book in print = good. Listening to it on audio = creepy chills running up and down my spine phenomenal. I just wish Raison had continued to narrate the rest of the series!

9. Gentlemen and Players by Joanne Harris (Steven Pacey) – Honestly, I can’t say why this particular audiobook captured me so completely, but the experience of listening to it the first time has stayed with me, and every fall, I’m compelled to listen to it at least once. The print version is great, too, but I prefer the audio.

10. the Dublin Murder Squad series by Tana French (multiple) – Each of these is read by a different narrator, and I haven’t enjoyed every production. I always listen to these books, though. There’s something about them that is so much more enjoyable on audio, even when the performance isn’t my favorite. I think perhaps it might just be the genre, because I tend to like thrillers and mysteries on audio generally.


Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish.

About Amanda

Writing. Family. Books. Crochet. Fitness. Fashion. Fun. Not necessarily in that order. Note: agender (she/her).
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16 Responses to Top Ten Books that are Better on Audio

  1. Kailana says:

    There are a couple on here that I really should try on audio since reading them didn’t work for me… One day I will get to everything. lol


  2. Tina says:

    Yess!!! The Raven Boys and Six of Crows! My absolute favorite at the moment!!!


  3. Got My Book says:

    I wasn’t a huge fan of Will Patton’s female voices, but still really liked The Raven Boys. I also struggled with Calcifer’s voice but loved Howl’s Moving Castle. But I’m the opposite with Non-Fiction; I really prefer print for NF.

    My TTT: “Dear Audiobook Producers: I Really Want These”


    • Amanda says:

      I just didn’t like Patton’s voice for Gwenllian, so I didn’t like the last two as well. I didn’t mind Calcifer at all, though, and I’m not a huge nonfiction person – audio makes it so I can actually read more of it!


  4. Darren says:

    Loved the Six of Crows & Lockwood series on audio!


  5. Akilah says:

    I enjoyed Howl’s Moving Castle on audio, but I found the narrator’s voice too melodic or something because I just kept getting sleepy and couldn’t continue to listen to it as I drove during a road trip.

    I agree with you on nonfiction, especially memoirs and material that I find super dry. I couldn’t get into Unbroken on paper, but once I started listening to it in the car, I was hooked.


    • Amanda says:

      I listen to all my audiobooks on 1.5-2x speed, so didn’t have the lulling issue with Howl. I think I’d fall asleep with almost any audiobook at regular speed. I have no idea why they read so slowly! I like them to be at normal talking speed.


      • Akilah says:

        Ah, this was the CD, not an mp3. I have tried speeding it up before, but they sound breathless to me, hahahaha. I am glad for the option. Maybe that, too, depends on the reader?


  6. I agree so much that non-fiction works great in audiobook form. I love nf and I listen to the majority of the nf books I read.

    Here’s my TTT


  7. Kristen M. says:

    Yep, I’m listening to The Raven King right now and have done the whole series on audio. Once I did the first, I couldn’t imagine going through the rest without hearing the Ronan growl. 😉 I would add Ready Player One with Wil Wheaton narrating. It was perfect.


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