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Books where audio is better than print?

 
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Kayne



Joined: 31 Mar 2007
Posts: 890

PostPosted: Thu Jun 21, 2012 11:58 am    Post subject: Books where audio is better than print? Reply with quote

I was just looking at the Audiobook Poll and one of the questions asked for a book you liked better in audio than print. This surprised me because I always thought I would like all print better than audio. The audio has always just been a way for me to continue reading while driving LOL! But recently I was surprised as I listened to an audiobook narrated by Lorelei King. The storytelling was so lively and fun. I had tried to read the author before but lost interest yet the audio sucked me in. Do you have any books you have found that are better in audio than print?
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baseballmom5



Joined: 27 Nov 2007
Posts: 159
Location: Sunny Florida

PostPosted: Thu Jun 21, 2012 1:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

What book was it???
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Salaisuus



Joined: 30 Jul 2010
Posts: 55

PostPosted: Thu Jun 21, 2012 4:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I love audiobooks, but for me it is always better when there is an accent that I would not hear in my head as I am reading. The In Death books are especially good as audio, I think, because the voices are done so well and the expressions are so much more alive and obvious than when I am reading.

I also really enjoy the Stephanie Plum books better as audio. I really love the narrator for the first 10 or so. I took a couple of years to warm up to the latest narrator, whoever she is, and I enjoy her now, too.

I do find it more difficult to keep track of first-person stories when they are audios, because you sometimes can't tell when the main character is thinking and when he or she is speaking out loud, since it is all "I" and "me."

I do not recommend any of the Dark series by Feehan as audios. You have to sit through all that Carpathian language stuff and sometimes it is very tedious, especially since they are just saying blather and then repeating it all right afterward in English. I find it annoying in print, too, but at least in print I can skip it. ;)

I also really like Linda Lael Miller's books in audio. I enjoy her writing but find it a little bland. As an audio, though, the books feel a bit more lively and I appreciate the humor much more.
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Kayne



Joined: 31 Mar 2007
Posts: 890

PostPosted: Thu Jun 21, 2012 5:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

baseballmom5 wrote:
What book was it???


The one I just listened to is an older Stephanie Plum book by Janet Evanovich called Plum Lovin'. I had tried reading some of the Plum books and kept setting them down. The narrator made the difference for me. This book did not get great reviews so I would not go as far as to recommend it but I was looking for a lighter fare audiobook for a long ride, my library had it so I tried it and was pleasantly surprised.
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MrsFairfax



Joined: 27 Mar 2007
Posts: 1069

PostPosted: Fri Jun 22, 2012 6:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Salaisuus wrote:
I love audiobooks, but for me it is always better when there is an accent that I would not hear in my head as I am reading. The In Death books are especially good as audio, I think, because the voices are done so well and the expressions are so much more alive and obvious than when I am reading.


Totally agree, but it's ruined Susan Erickson as a narrator for anything else for me. I was listening to her performance of a Meg Gardiner book and lo and behold, the weird neighbor with the annoying pet monkey was Peabody!
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Niftybergin



Joined: 27 Mar 2007
Posts: 1092

PostPosted: Fri Jun 22, 2012 11:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I listened to The Help on audio because I'd read an article or blog or comment somewhere in which someone complained that the dialect in the book was really hard for her to read. I know I have the same problem -- I blame it on my inner English major; I barely got through Poe's The Gold Bug in 11th grade AmerLit -- so I tried the book in audio.

Wow! It was amazing! First of all, it was the first book I'd ever listened to that had 3 narrators. (Actually, there was a 4th, but that person read only a very small segment of the story.) Usually, books only have 1 narrator, so having 3 was a treat. One of the narrators was Octavia Spencer. She played Minny in the movie, but she read the part of Abilene in the audio book.

In general, I think that audio books heighten the emotional resonance of a book for me. The funny parts are funnier, the tension is more tense, the sarcasm and other intonations that can add meaning to a bit of dialogue come through more clearly. My problem with audio books, though, is that I get impatient. As a reader, I may skim or even skip sentences or paragraphs or even whole sections that don't interest me. As a listener, though, I can't -- it makes me feel kind of imprisoned, and I hate that.

The other problem I have with audio books is that I can't listen to sex scenes outloud. I have no problem reading them -- even the most graphic ones -- but listening to them makes me cringe and automatically reach out to turn down the volume. The first audio book I ever tried was a Laurell K. Hamilton Meredith Gentry book. It was years before I tried another audio book!! I was almost scarred for life.

Other good ones I've listened to were The Hunger Games, Outlander (unabridged), and Breaking Dawn.

I'm not a fan of the JD Robb books on audio -- even though I love the books -- because I can't stand the voice given to Peabody. Nails down a chalkboard.


(Incidentally, funny story about audio books and sex scenes: During the last few years of her life, my grandmother, who had Alzheimers, came to live with my parents. Mom took G'mother out shopping one day, and on the drive, Mom was listening to a book on tape. As they were nearing the house on the drive back, the story got closer and closer to a sex scene. Mom could tell what was coming, and she was so anxious about it because G'mother was in the car. So she started driving faster and faster, and pulled into the garage JUST as clothes were coming off and body parts were getting kissed and things were really heating up. She turned off the ignition and felt this tremendous sense of relief. Whew! At which point, my G'mother looked over at my mother and said in consternation, "Why did you do that? Now we'll never know if he found her nipple or not!" So Mom turned the car back on and they sat in the garage for another few minutes and listened to the sex scene to its eventual climax.)
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HEAreader



Joined: 20 Feb 2011
Posts: 159

PostPosted: Fri Jun 22, 2012 6:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

At the risk of sounding stupid, are audio books always word-for-word from the print or are some shortened?
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Niftybergin



Joined: 27 Mar 2007
Posts: 1092

PostPosted: Fri Jun 22, 2012 6:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

HEAreader wrote:
At the risk of sounding stupid, are audio books always word-for-word from the print or are some shortened?


There's abridged -- shortened -- and unabridged -- word for word.
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HEAreader



Joined: 20 Feb 2011
Posts: 159

PostPosted: Fri Jun 22, 2012 7:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
There's abridged -- shortened -- and unabridged -- word for word.


That's the word I was looking for Smile. And that's why I've never checked out an audio book. The ones I might have been interested in were abridged, and I thought that would take away from my enjoyment of the book.
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Niftybergin



Joined: 27 Mar 2007
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 22, 2012 7:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've never listened to an abridged, but I've not heard good things about them. The unabridged are expensive to buy, but you can rent them or borrow from the library. (And I think you can download them, too, but I've never looked into that. Seems expensive.)
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MrsFairfax



Joined: 27 Mar 2007
Posts: 1069

PostPosted: Sat Jun 23, 2012 8:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Audible used to be bad about offering abridgements, but I don't see them very often anymore.

Many libraries use Overdrive , which lets you download books. There's a search engine on their site to help you find libraries and booksellers that use the service.

Outside of romance, books that were better on audio:

The Help, as noted above.
The Anansi Boys by Neil Gaiman, read hilariously by Lenny Henry. I don't think I'd have finished the book, but it's my favorite audio ever. You really have to hear Henry as four elderly Jamaican ladies arguing to believe it.
The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows, read by multiple narrators.
Mudbound by Hilary Jordan, read by multiple narrators

I do about half my reading on audio and like lots of books in that format, but these were definitely better for the performance.
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Kayne



Joined: 31 Mar 2007
Posts: 890

PostPosted: Sat Jun 23, 2012 12:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

HEAreader wrote:
At the risk of sounding stupid, are audio books always word-for-word from the print or are some shortened?


The only abridged audiobooks I've read were the Nora Roberts Bride Quartet Series and they worked for me. I got them from Walmart.
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Salaisuus



Joined: 30 Jul 2010
Posts: 55

PostPosted: Sat Jun 23, 2012 10:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

MrsFairfax wrote:

Totally agree, but it's ruined Susan Erickson as a narrator for anything else for me.


I have this problem, too, though usually with other narrators. I did hear Susan Erickson for the first time when listening to Garden Spells by Sarah Addison Allen and then spent the first 30 minutes of the first In Death book trying to remember where I'd heard her before.

It is also very disturbing to hear a narrator and then have them call themselves some other name when you have heard them narrate several other books under a different name. I once wrote to Brilliance Audio to inform them that I found this so distracting that I missed the first 20 minutes of the book and had to relisten. ;)

I also listened to The Host by Stephenie Meyer and I'd never heard that narrator before. Then years later I am listening to the Others series by Christine Warren, and it's the same narrator. I spent the entire first book being jolted by memories of The Host as I heard the narrator's inflections of certain words and things like that. I'm on the third book now and mostly have adjusted.

I have finally learned look up the narrator's name in my library's catalog so I can see what else I might have heard by the same narrator ahead of time. It does not help a lot with the distraction for the first 20-30 minutes but at least I do not spend all that time also wondering where I've heard the voice before.

edited to correct Garden Spells
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