Speaking of Audiobooks: October 2010 Releases

A Secret AffairListening to those old tape cassettes – it seemed like such a good idea when I reported my favorable experience in the September Releases Speaking of Audiobooks column.  But that was before I started listening to the cassette tape audiobooks from my library.  There were definitely more challenges than rewards in listening to worn out tapes where the background noise was high, the echo of other tracks played constantly, and the volume continuously ran from high to low in cycles of less than a minute.  Having two cassette players I tried both thinking (and almost hoping) that the player was the problem but, alas, the worn out audiobook was at fault.  As I gave up on Nora Roberts’ Carnal Innocence before the halfway point (I knew it was too good to waste on such problems), I tried another older romance I’d been excited to find at my library, Sandra Brown’s White Hot only to experience the same problems.  Sadly, I returned both audiobooks to the library unfinished.

Then I discovered I had a fairy godmother of romance audiobooks!  Actually my fairy godmother is a very special friend with a fantastic audiobook library.  She stepped forward and loaned me clear copies of a number of old hard-to-find romances and I’ve been in heaven since listening to a few of these oldies!  I’ll share as I listen to these over the next few months.  You may be inspired to hunt down a used copy or, at least, find a decent copy through your local library.

Leftovers from September

Here are just a few of those surprise audiobooks that failed to make last month’s New Releases column.

Brockmann, Suzanne – Time Enough for Love Narrated by Susan Boyce

Hoyt, Elizabeth – To Taste Temptation Narrated by Anne Flosnik

Hunter, Madeline – Sinful in Satin Narrated by Polly Lee

Kenyon, Sherrilyn – Sins of the Night Narrated by Fred Berman

Kurland, Lynn – Another Chance to Dream Narrated by Ilyana Kadushin

Nash, Joy – The Awakening Narrated by Rebecca Cook

Quinn, Paula – Ravished by a Highlander Narrated by Carrington MacDuffie

Quinn, Paula – Seduced by a Highlander Narrated by Carrington MacDuffie

Silver, Eve – Sins of the Soul Narrated by Savannah Richards

Audiobook Romances on Sale in October


Graham, Heather – Home in Time for Christmas Narrated by Angela Dawe

Howard, Linda – Son of the Morning Narrated by Natalie Ross

Krentz, Jayne Ann – Soft Focus Narrated by Dick Hill & Susie Breck

Lindsey, Johanna – Johanna Lindsey CD Collection 6: The Heir, The Devil Who Tames Her, A Rogue of My Own Various Narrators

Palmer, Diana – Diana Palmer CD Collection: Fearless, Heartless Narrated by Phil Gigante

Rice, Luanne – Summer Light Narrated by Laural Merlington

Roberts, Nora – Inner Harbor Narrated by Guy Lemonier

Steele, Danielle – Toxic Bachelors Narrated by Kyf Brewer

Christmas EveUnabridged

Balogh, Mary – A Secret Affair Narrated by Anne Flosnik

Coulter, Catherine – The Valcourt Heiress Narrated by Anne Flosnik

Crusie, Jennifer – Getting Rid of Bradley Narrated by Elenna Stauffer

Crusie, Jennifer – Trust Me on This Narrated by Angela Dawe

Dodd, Christina – Thigh High Narrated by Natalie Ross

Henry, Patti Callahan – The Perfect Love Song Narrated by Emily Durante

Henry, Patti Callahan – When Light Breaks Narrated by Emily Durante

Kleypas, Lisa – Christmas Eve at Friday Harbor Narrated by Tanya Eby

Laurens, Stephanie – Tangled Reins Narrated by Rosalyn Landor

London, Julia – The Year of Living Scandalously Narrated by Justine Eyre

Macomber, Debbie – 5-B Poppy Lane Narrated by Sandra Burr

Macomber, Debbie – Christmas in Cedar Cove Narrated by Sandra Burr

Macomber, Debbie – The Courtship of Carol Sommars: A Selection from Right Next Door Narrated by Angela Dawe

Macomber, Debbie – Father’s Day: A Selection from Right Next Door Narrated by Angela Dawe

Macomber, Debbie – Those Christmas Angels Narrated by Sandra Burr

Palmer, Diana – Fit for a King Narrated by Tanya Eby

Robards, Karen – Irresistible Narrated by Anne Flosnik

Roberts, Nora – Dance to the Piper Narrated by Marie Caliendo

Roberts, Nora – The Last Honest Woman Narrated by Marie Caliendo

Roberts, Nora – O’Hurley Born: The Last Honest Woman, Dance to the Piper Narrated by Marie Caliendo

Roberts, Nora – Spellbound Narrated by Jeffrey Cummings

Woods, Sherryl – Flowers on Main Narrated by Christina Traister

Recent Listens

I have been most fortunate lately in that nearly everything I have listened to has fallen into the very good to excellent category.  Here are but a few:

Definitely Dead, All Together Dead, From Dead to Worse – Charlaine Harris

Narrated by Johanna Parker

These represent books 6-8 of the Sookie Stackhouse series.  I started listening to this series as a part of my Unofficial 2010 Personal Listening Challenge and it has been a fantastic ride.  Book 7, Altogether Dead, is my favorite of the series to date and I’m already dreading the fact that the last of the series to date, Book 10, is not far away (then I’ll have to start waiting for releases like other fans).  As unlikely as it seems to me, this series just keeps getting better even with the addition of were-tigers, witches, and fairies (to mention a few).  Each new character carries with it a sense of anticipation for some new entertaining adventure.  Narrator Johanna Parker plus author Charlaine Harris equals an absolute audio thrill!

Wicked Intentions – Elizabeth Hoyt

Narrated by Ashford MacNab

I greatly enjoy Elizabeth Hoyt’s writing.  Although she has three audiobooks to date, this is my first listen and that is due entirely to the choice of narrators.  Hoyt’s two previous audios are performed by Anne Flosnik, a narrator I avoid if possible.  But when I saw that Wicked Intentions was narrated by a new-to-me voice, I took the chance and was richly rewarded for it.  Ashford MacNab’s voice is quite pleasant to the ear and utilizes accent and rhythm to distinguish her characters rather than pitch.  At times, this worked well while at other times I had to listen closely to differentiate characters.  Lazarus is an intense and outspoken hero needing the assistance of Temperance, a woman running a home for foundlings in a dangerous section of London. The romance scenario is out of the ordinary (and completely to my taste) and the overall story more meaty than most.  The sensual scenes are beautifully written and MacNab excels in her performance of these passages.  Wicked Intentions is definitely a book I’ll be listening to again.

Summer of Two WishesSummer of Two Wishes – Julia London

Narrated by Natalie Ross

London’s 2009 contemporary (released in audio in 2010) is a moving tale featuring a returning soldier from Afghanistan believed to be dead for three years.  Although devastated by the news, his wife has finally picked up the pieces and is now happily remarried.  Natalie Ross does a superb job of delivering this heart wrenching story of a woman with two husbands and the dilemma they face.  I’m not a fan of love triangles (and admit that I finally looked ahead to discover the chosen one) but with the combination of London’s writing and Ross’ performance, I found myself mesmerized – tears and all.  Ross clearly distinguishes one voice from another and the pacing is perfect as well as the sense that this narrator understands what the listener is feeling at any particular moment.  Although I enjoy both London’s historicals and contemporaries, I prefer her contemporary voice and had this one on my wish list for months.  It lived up to my anticipation and, as an audiobook, this one rates a solid A.

Carnal Innocence – Nora Roberts

Narrated by Tom Stechschulte

Attempting to listen to a bad copy of Carnal Innocence, I just knew there was so much to enjoy that I was missing because of all that extra noise.  Giving up on my library copy, I was delighted when my friend offered to loan me a copy.  I totally fell into the story and in love with Tucker.  Tom Stechschulte’s narration is superb and I believe it’s his interpretation of Tucker that made him so, well, to die for!  There are a number of suspense plots (probably too many for my taste if I had been reading) that, when added to some well written characters, make this unabridged audio version into pure entertainment.  Although released in both CD and cassette tape formats in 1999, it can be difficult to find affordably.  Hopefully your local library’s copy is better than mine although, I must add, that Carnal Innocence was on hold when I returned it to the library.  Even after eleven years, it’s still a popular audiobook.

Recent Additions to my Audio Library

Dead and Gone – Charlaine Harris

Narrated by Johanna Parker

The ninth in the Sookie Stackhouse series, I’m saving this one because I don’t want the series to end (for now).  I have no doubt, however, that this entire series is definite relisten material – deluxe style.

Smoke Screen – Sandra Brown

Narrated by Victor Slezak

If you’ve been around Speaking of Audiobooks the past few months, you probably know I’m crazy about the Sandra Brown/Victor Slezak team.  This one sounds intriguing and I’m betting it’s a personal hit.

Mr. Perfect – Linda Howard

Narrated by Laura Hicks

It’s difficult to find in audio but the book is quite hilarious at times while downright serious at others.  If you have read Mr. Perfect, who of you can forget that morning refrigerator scene?

The Wedding – Julie Garwood

Narrated by Steven Crossley

Years ago, I granted DIK status to a number of Garwood’s Medievals until I tired of her sweet heroines.  However I’ve been told that this is an excellent audio presentation and, if you have listened to Judith Ivory’s The Proposition, you are familiar with Steven Crossley.

One for the Money – Janet Evanovich

Narrated by C J Critt

The first of the Stephanie Plum series, this is also my first Evanovich book.  Sounds like I’ll be highly entertained.

Time for Your Thoughts

What new releases are you looking forward to?

Do you know of any October releases that failed to make this list?

What are the latest additions to your audio library?

And, as always, what are your latest audio successes or failures?

Ending Notes

I’m announcing new romance audiobook releases and other audio tidbits on Twitter during the week.  I don’t cover every new release but attempt to include the more significant titles.  To follow me on Twitter, look for LeaAAR.

For those new to our Speaking of Audiobooks column, be sure to check out our audio archives for further recommendations and discussions.

See you again mid-October.

- Lea Hensley

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42 Responses to Speaking of Audiobooks: October 2010 Releases

  1. Peggy P says:

    Hi Lea, great article as always! Wow, listening to cassettes – it just seems so old timey! Um, that’s a joke because I grew up with 8 tracks and then cassettes so I know whereof I speak!

    Anyway, does anyone have any idea when Deanna Raybourn’s new book Road to Darjeeling will be released in audio? Nothing on Audible right now about it and nothing on Amazon either. Usually her books are on Audible as soon as they are released – the print release is tomorrow, 10/1. I so enjoy these books and want this so bad, the audio productions for her books are always terrific. Man, I hope I don’t break down tomorrow and READ this – can you tell I’m really bad at waiting?!

  2. LinnieGayl says:

    Peggy, I haven’t listened to any of Deanna Raybourn’s books in audio. I may have to give one a try. Does she have a regular narrator?

  3. Lea AAR says:

    LinnieGayl – I don’t know the answer to your question in its entirety but I have listened to one Raybourn book, The Dead Travel Fast. Here’s the review I wrote in an earlier column:

    Narrated by Charlotte Parry
    Gothics – I love them and this one totally fits that bill. Told in first person by the heroine, Charlotte Parry gives Theodora a light Scots lilt that is more than pleasant to the ear and also works to effectively differentiate her voice from that of the Count. Parry’s male characterizations aren’t quite as effective but I accustomed myself to the timbre of Count’s voice shortly after his introduction. Overall, this is a definite audiobook success with well written and delivered suspense, fascinating characters, and a satisfying romance.

  4. Lea AAR says:

    On Twitter, Diana and I were discussing the fact that Sandra Brown’s recent release (of an older audio), Charade, is available as a MP3 download at Brilliance but not Audible. And has Linda Howard’s Mackenzie’s Mountain (also Brilliance) been released anywhere in MP3 format? Isn’t Brilliance owned by Amazon? What goes here?

    OTOH, I’m hoping Charade is released at Audible tomorrow when it becomes available at Amazon.

    • MaryK says:

      Hey, remember when we talked about requesting books from Audible? Well, I did it for One Summer and received this reply:

      Thanks for your request. I’m forwarding your note to our Acquisitions team, and they will look into acquiring the Karen Robards title.

      Corey Thrasher | Senior Manager, Editorial Merchandising
      1 Washington Park, Newark, NJ 07102

      In other news, I just realized that my library has a copy of One Summer on CD! :headdesk: Needless to say, it’s now on my hold list.

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  6. Peggy P says:

    Ahhhh – just checked Audible and there it is – Dark Road to Darjeeling! Also, I see Charade is on the new releases for today, narrated by Natalie Ross.

    The narrator for Raybourn’s Julia Grey series is Ellen Archer – and I like her, her voices for all the characters are distinctive and she reads this at a good pace, not too draggy slow. I hate these narrators who talk so slowly – is it them or is it the direction they are given by the producers or whomever?

    The narrator for The Dead Travel Fast is Charlotte Parry and I thought she was very good also.

  7. TSTBren says:

    Changed my user name around a bit, losing the “gama”… Not that I Twitter a lot, but I changed it there too.

    I’m confused with all the Nora Robert’s new releases as Audible has had the majority, if not all of them for a long time. With the same narrators, I’m pretty sure. I’ll have to look closer at my library now.

    Sticking with what has proved to be addictive genre’s for me, the latest additions to my audio library are fantasy with romance / romance threads and PNR.

    I ran into trouble with my library version of Curse of Chalion after about one hour of listening. I was really enjoying the narrator and the story though so I went to Audible and downloaded it. I’ll be back to it soon!

    I was distracted by actually reading several books :) which led me to listening to Feehan’s Dark Peril, Phil G and Natalie Ross are excellent together, even when doing my usual fast forwarding with this author.

    Started listening to Jeaniene Frost’s Eternal Kiss of Darkness. I haven’t made it far, as the gorgeous 25 year old looking hero sounds like a stiff old man and it’s creeping me out. I’ll try again though.

    Then Ilona Andrews Bayou Moon was released Tuesday and I have spent my listening time totally enthralled with this excellent “rustic fantasy” /romance .

    Renee Raudman does perfectly wonderful women and children voices. She’s brought me to tears and made me LOL with her abilities in those directions. Her peripheral men voices are very good too. But her “hero” voices have had me venting more than once.

    But my oh my, she hits the nail on the head with William in Bayou Moon. She is doing a stunning overall job. I loved this book when I read it last week and now Raudman is making it 10 times better. Audio gold for me!

  8. Maryfranc says:

    Loved Carnal Innocence narrated by Tom Stechschulte. Tucker Longstreet is one of my all-time favorite heroes. I wish Nora Roberts would write a sequel featuring the next generation of Longstreets.

    I will be looking for Charade by Sandra Brown and A Secret Affair by Mary Balogh on Audible.com.

    Currently listening to Bad Blood by John Sanford now. Virgil Flowers cracks me up. Lucas Davenport in the Prey series has married and matured somewhat, while Virgil Flowers is young, sexy, and sort of a loose cannon.

    Looking forward to Nora Robert’s series finale about the wedding planner friends. The other three in the series have been sweet and light.

    Also downloaded A Hellion in Her Bed. So many audiobooks, so little time. What a nice problem to have.

  9. Kaetrin says:

    I am listening to The Unsung Hero courtesy of Brenda (my new best friend who is awesome!) and I’m loving it. I remember enjoying the book when I read it but it wasn’t my favourite Brockmann. I think I like the audio version of Kelly better. And David and Mallory are great – I wonder if they will turn up in another Brockmann story one day? (one can only hope). Other than that, I’ve been having a binge on the In Death series Is it wrong to love Roarke’s voice even when it is being acted by a woman? (I confess I had the same issue in the Outlander books with Jamie too!). I am spoilt for choice at the moment – I have so many audiobooks to listen to it’s hard to know which one to listen to next.

    I did start Elizabeth Hoyt’s Wicked Intentions but stopped after a while. I think it was me – I wasn’t in an “historical” mood I think. I will go back to it when I’m feeling the Regency love and try again.

  10. Lea AAR says:

    MaryK – good to hear that Audible sounds interested in our requests. And One Summer – let us know when it’s your turn!

    Peggy P – Is the Julia Grey series light on romance – heavy on mystery? I know I adored The Dead Travel Fast because of its gothic setting. But the Julia Grey books are rather different aren’t they? And is Dark Road to Darjeeling a Julia Grey book?

    TSTBren – Since I’m not a regular N Roberts fan, this is somewhat of a puzzle to me – they could be total new releases and I wouldn’t know the difference without some research. But I don’t know why so many are now being released in CD after being available at Audible for a time – some rights issue somewhere I’m sure. I know in creating each month’s new release list, I have to go through every “new” book to determine if it is out there in CD format already and it is amazing how many times those “new” books aren’t new and therefore I leave them off the list. But every once in a while I see something like these Roberts books where Audible has had them for a period of time but they’ve been unavailable to non-Audible listeners. Go figure.
    Is Dark Peril a stand-alone?

    Maryfranc – I purchased A Hellion in My Bed too after reading Blythe’s review at AAR. She gave it a B- and the plot seemed like one I would enjoy.

    Kaetrin – I had the same reaction to The Unsung Hero – it worked better for me in audio than print. I loved several of this series to the point of DIK status in print but Unsung Hero came in at about a B. Brockmann’s books vary so greatly in narration that I found myself enjoying Unsung Hero as much or almost as much as my other print favorites in audio. I think the older guys made it a winner in audio.

  11. Peggy P says:

    Maryfranc – I love Virgil Flowers – I thought Bad Blood was the best story yet and- small spoiler here- just about wrecked the car when Diana Gabaldon’s name was mentioned and then laughed for miles over it. Wow – to be name dropped in a John Sandford book, how cool is that?!

    Lea – the Julia Grey books are different from The Dead Travel Fast and really need to be read in order for the past history of the all the characters not just Julia & Nicholas. I love these stories and in the first two there is quite the buildup of sexual tension that I really enjoyed. I think overall I would say this is a 50/50 mix of mystery and romance and I’ve never felt like one was sacrificed for the other. The audio books are outstanding productions and I’m not sure how the story “reads” as I’ve only listened to it but this is one of my top listens and even re-listens! Great character development and growth, humor, mystery, a romance and family members that are uniquely odd and excellent narration, it’s all there!

  12. TSTBren says:

    Lea, your reasoning on the Nora Roberts books was correct. I went and listened to the beginning of the ones mentioned above plus a few others that have recently been on the “new release” list and they start out with “Audible Presents….” So they are new to Brilliance and the CD format.

    I much prefer to see what Brilliance or any other audiobook publishers consider the “new” releases than to miss one because it had been out in a different format in the past. So keep up the good work!

    I really don’t get the need for books like Soft Focus which came out in unabridged format 11 years ago to now be cut into an Abridged format?

    Even though Gigante and Ross sound fabulous together I wouldn’t pick up Dark Peril as an introduction or reintroduction to Feehan’s Dark series. In my OCD I feel it plays off of the other books set in South America too heavily.

    Peggy your comment about the 8 track tapes made me smile, I remember getting a portable 8 Track player when my oldest (she’s 33) was a baby and thinking I was so lucky to have such a wonderful device I could take with me anywhere I went. LOL

    MaryK I requested One Summer and Carnal Innocence when you posted the e-mail link. I’m happy to hear they are aware of the requests. The more requests made for these nearly extinct gems the better I’d think.

    Maryfranc I agree with a sequel to Carnal Innocence! But I’ve always thought it should be Cy’s story. Then Tucker doesn’t have to have aged much :) and heaven knows there would be plenty to build a story on with Cy’s background.

    Kaetrin I know exactly what you mean about Roarke’s voice, even though done by a woman. LOL I feel the same about almost all of Anna Fields SEP men and most especially her Cooper from Head Over Heels!

    I just had a unique experience with an Audible.com book. I was happily listening along and nearly to the halfway point in Bayou Moon when I was startled by the words “This is the end of the CD, the audiobook continues on the next CD”. Anyone else ever have that happen with an Audible download? Something that got missed in editing?

  13. melinda says:

    I actually have some questions related to audiobooks but not necessarily this column. However, this column is the one feeding my habit – no, not feeding, driving me. It’s audible.com and other sources doing the feeding!

    Question 1: I am trying to figure out how to ask this – I want to find a place/destination/website that I can use to figure out what audiobooks exist. This column is the one driving me to find favorite books, authors and narrators that are not (yet?) at audible.com or my library. Does such a site exist? I hunted down Susan Andersen’s Head over Heels read by Anna Fields because of this column – got cassettes, had to buy a cassette player and then forked over some more to get a gadget to aid the conversion to mp3, because I know this one will be a re-listen! But I’m finding myself with 6 tabs open in Firefox searching for other sources of audiobooks every time I read this column. I need lists!!

    Question 2: how is everyone organizing their libraries? I have (most of) them in iTunes, and I also use Bookpedia to organize my books in general, with a list of the audiobooks. But for my “looking for” books, I am just wandering around the internet for hours, aimlessly.

    Question 3: related to question 2, do ISBN numbers exist for downloaded MP3s? I’ve just been looking up any generic ISBN for the book if I can’t find one. I thought about using fictiondb.com to organize, but they are asking for ISBN numbers and I don’t have them on every audio download.

    And TSTBren: I have found MANY editing issues in audio books – in a lot of the SEP/Anna Fields, there is a sentence repeated as though they started up a little too early. And when I digitized the Susan Andersen, I found exactly the same on the cassettes – almost every cassette started with the last sentence or 2 of the previous cassette! I was able to cut them in my digitized version. And these were not repeats – they were even read a little differently, as though she started a new session and re-read a sentence or 2!

    And Lea – thank you so much for doing this! This is such a great resource. Are The Powers That Be considering added a forum for audio and/or posting audio-specific reviews? It seems I read that in the column before. I love this column, but I have a hard time searching for things I’ve read in it when I can’t recall what the blog title was…

  14. melinda says:

    After spending more time reading through older columns, I see that “list/location” request is definitely a FAQ here, as well as the Forum and Reviews requests. Hear us, Oh Powers That Be!

  15. Lea AAR says:

    melinda – these are exactly the types of questions we want here! I don’t have answers for all (any answer won’t be complete – I’m wondering about many of these same things) but will contribute what I can and hopefully others will too. This is a discussion of all things relating to romance audiobooks each and every time – the topic serves the purpose of getting everyone’s thoughts rolling and hopefully, then, contribute their latest audio experiences or wonderings.

    Question 1 – I hope someone knows the answer to this one because I don’t! How I wish there was one source for audiobooks. The closest I have come (and it is not perfect) is Amazon. If you do an advanced search by author and audio format, you will likely see some evidence of past audiobooks (even if there are no copies to be found) and often, future releases. Of course, although Audible is an Amazon company, their new releases are not included in Amazon’s.

    My best take is that the audiobook industry (much like eBooks) is developing so quickly that no one has taken the time (who has the ability – if that is even possible) to make such a listing. And if you’re out to make a buck on new sales, who cares about a cassette tape made 18 years ago that never even addressed the topic of digital rights?

    Question 2 – I’m just about in the same place as you. My audiobook library is on iTunes or Audible (both unsatisfactory in my opinion) with a separate list of CDs/tapes of older books. As with my print library, I keep a Word document with all the pertinent facts, my grade, thoughts on narration, etc. but I’m not good about keeping this up. Now that we have so many SOA columns, I’m finding a great need to just organize all that has been written here and am working on it but getting it to you all is another subject all together. Our recent column on Our Valued Archives was a beginning attempt to do so.

    Question 3 – I don’t know but I don’t think so. I do want to be proven wrong on this assumption.

    Thanks for the positive comments about the column – they are always appreciated. I see SOA as a resource that needs better organization but technical issues keep me from doing all that I want to do. Many of the ideas we have discussed in the past are being considered but if our system can support it (with me not knowing much about DOS) is another question. I’d love to have a reviews area but the audio reviews from SOA are quite different than those on the main AAR site so I think they would need to be handled in a different manner.

    Of course, I’d love to see an audio forum but I’ve not yet had that discussion with my editor. Once again, I don’t know about capacity or other such details. I will say this though – the more comments we have on our SOA columns, the more likely we are to see extras. I have wonderful support from the management of AAR and I think they will consider other audio features if they see readers’ enthusiasm for such. But, in the end, it may come back to technical issues. Sorry I can’t speak more clearly on that but you are seeing here a right-brained person talking about left-brained issues!

  16. Lea AAR says:

    Another thought about libraries. I have a large shelf on Shelfari but am unsatisfied with the growing number of things you can’t do compared to that which you once were able to do. I would be more than willing to place my audio library on a public site such as this if we agreed on one. Then we could all share our audiobook libraries and, possibly, have discussions within our group. But, I think features such as seeing one’s library by author, alphabetical, tags, or genre is important and if Shelfari can support such features now, I don’t know about it. Listing a book as an audiobook on Shelfari is now nothing but a personal note. I think I would need a separate shelf just for my audiobooks. I do know we would need to set up our own group as well. Anyone know?

  17. MaryK says:

    How about goodreads.com? Here’s an audiobook page.


    I don’t use goodreads so can’t answer any questions about it. I’ve just been circling it for a while.

    ***I just looked up Bayou Moon on goodreads, and while it shows CD versions, it doesn’t list an MP3. I’m not sure how that would work.***

    @TSTBren – Thanks for the report on Bayou Moon. I saw it come up on Audible and have been wondering about it.

  18. TSTBren says:

    Melinda I well remember all those doubled up lines with the audio cassettes, like we were so slow witted that we’d forget where we were and what we’d just heard in the time it took to flip over or change out a tape. LOL

    Ditto what Lea said as far as Amazon being the best place I’ve found so far to search for audiobooks. I like the fact that even if Amazon doesn’t have it there is still a record of it, if the book was ever sold through them.

    As far as organization goes I have an Excel spreadsheet with all my audiobooks listed on it with the authors name and whether it’s an MP3 or an Audible.com book. What I’d like to get added to it someday are the names of the narrators for each book.

    I use iTunes to keep the actual audiobooks organized. I prefer it because it allows me to name and number the books the way I want to, even the Audible.com books. I enjoy listening to series of books and I’m very particular about them showing up in the proper order under the authors name, both in iTunes and on my iPod. :)

    As for online organizing, about a year ago I joined Goodreads. I followed a group of romance readers from Amazon over there and was pleased with the ability to create and name unlimited bookshelves and the ease of adding books to them. We “friended” each other and I enjoy following their reviews and comments as I know whose tastes are the most like mine. There is also an easy way to compare bookshelves and see how your ratings match up with your “friends” and how many books you have in common etc.

    BUT even there you have the issue of having your audio books dumped in with your regular books. Not good when you loved the book but hated the audio. Or when the audio enhanced the book or you want to comment praise/vent on the narrator….

    What I’m thinking would make an excellent workaround for any of us audiobook lovers is to make our bookshelves and categories up of only our audio books. In my case I would set up a new account with my new user name from here and then just add my audiobooks to that account. Then I could friend anyone who did the same with their audiobooks and we’d know we were comparing apples with apples.

    I did a quick search and there are two groups at Goodreads that discuss audiobooks but they are by no means romance fans, so we’d have to start our own group for sure. LOL

    But the ability to organize, rate and then review by narration etc are all there if we twist it our way. And by forming a group you can set up any number of threads or discussions or do group listens or whatever else you can think off.

  19. TSTBren says:

    MaryK if I wasn’t so windy I would have seen your post pop up about Goodreads! :)

    I enter my Audible books there as the MP3 version. If I do an All Audiobook account I’ll have a shelf named Audible so I know where the MP3′s came from.

    You can have your books on any number of different shelves. So I could then refine them down more by genre etc.

  20. TSTBren says:

    I promise I’m done after this comment, but I have to add ….

    MaryK I’m 3/4 through Bayou Moon and still loving Raudman and the whole story.

    Bedroom scenes are very limited and subtle if your still easing your way into listening to them. :)

  21. MaryK says:

    Well, it was all useful wind. :) I don’t know anything about actually using Goodreads.

    Definitely still easing. Lea was twittering about listening to Sarah McCarty. I’m not sure I’d survive that! O_O

  22. melinda says:

    Bren, I think Renee Raudman is such a good narrator (what did I just listen to by her??) that even though the bedroom scenes are subtle, I might have to listen! LOL – I’m one of those listeners who has no trouble at all listening to them! OK – once, when the narrator sounded 10 years old I did – yuck.

    I’ve been a Shelfari member for a while but didn’t do Goodreads because it seemed redundant. Today I thought maybe Fictiondb.com might be my answer, but ran into the ISBN thing and I guess there are no ISBNs for mp3 downloads! If there is a corresponding Audio CD ISBN, sometimes I use that in my desktop db, otherwise I just use any ol’ same title-author ISBN.

    Ya know, Google Docs has an online spreadsheet app and docs are share-able. Maybe that could factor in somehow…

  23. melinda says:

    Lea, maybe you could get reader-volunteers to go through each column (one volunteer per column?) and extract a list of each audiobook, including from comments. You could come up with a db format that is comprehensive – title, author, narrator, as well as any info like format, source, publisher, ISBN, year published, date of blog column. I’ll volunteer to do one. Then we could merge them and add on…

    just a thought.

  24. Lea AAR says:

    MaryK – ha! I haven’t made it through one yet or had the courage to start. But I do think I’m going to give it a good try. I’ve had Tucker’s Claim for a year now.

    I’m hyped about possibly having a group at Goodreads (or another if it is decided by all). I think TSTBren’s idea of having our shelves for our group limited to audiobooks makes a lot of sense.

    Also, for all those listeners who borrow their audiobooks from the library, let me say that these libraries are books you have read/listened to – not just that you own. So everybody that has listened to an audiobook can be involved. I do know some of my friends on Shelfari only have about 6 books on their shelf but it allows them to be involved in discussions, etc.

    Here is my link to my Shelfari shelf in case anyone wants to take a look at what we are talking about. I promise – it is very easy to do and I’m sure Goodreads is similar in user friendliness. Also, if we created shelves on Shelfari limited to audiobooks it would work similarly. I’m just a little aggravated with it lately.

    TSTBren – do you mind if we have a look at your shelf?

  25. Lea AAR says:

    Melinda – great idea! Thank you for your offer. If anyone else wants to volunteer to help in a similar manner, you can volunteer here or email me at afriendatheart at cox dot net.

    I know some of our limitations at SOA are due to the fact that I am the only one who writes and researches for the actual column. Of course, you all provide much more of the meaty subject matter than I do. But any help behind the scenes to help, organize, write reviews, research would be so appreciated and just make SOA all that much better.

    Thanks again.

  26. MaryK says:

    I’d be happy to pull data from one of the columns. Where would we enter it?

  27. TSTBren says:

    Just back from watching Boise State romp their opponent (college football) with our two oldest children and the grandkids. :)

    Very impressed with Shelfari’s bookshelf display!! Yes, it does look like you could get it to work the same way as Goodreads if you only entered your audio books.

    I believe all my info is public so this should show my various bookshelf designations. Still a work in progress after a year.

    I try to separate out the audiobooks with their own shelves but you can’t give separate reviews which is a bummer as they are my main interest.


  28. Lea AAR says:

    MaryK – I don’t know where we would enter or what the exact data would be. I guess you could say this is a brainstorming session and all of your thoughts are wanted. If I went forward at this moment, I think we’d be looking at a Word document that I made up and sent to you all for you to complete the answers, fill in the data, and return to me. But I also don’t operate much beyond Word (with the exception of the coding I do for AAR) so if anyone has another suggestion on how we may gather data, please speak up. Once again, remember, you can email me if you want.

    TSTBren – Goodreads looks pretty good too. Wonder if Shelfari or Goodreads is best for seeing a shelf. And it looks as though you can see your books alpha by author? Title, most recently – are those types of views available as well? I also like how easy it is to see your review. On Shelfari, it’s a pop up review with a path to follow for a complete review which I have yet to figure out how to do easily. What do you mean by saying you can’t give separate reviews? Meaning you can’t give a print review and then an audio review of the same book? If so, Shelfari is the same. I must include my audio reviews in my print reviews.

    I checked Shelfari and it looks as though I’ve been complaining about things that have been fixed or I just didn’t utilize in the first place. You can sort by title, author, date added, or review. But it did one of its maddening unexplained things this morning – I sorted by author – great. Moved around Shelfari a bit and then returned to my shelf. It still states that it is sorted by author but is actually sorted by date added. I had to sort back to date added) and then sort to by author once again.

  29. TSTBren says:

    Exactly, you can’t have a print review and an audio review. I lump mine together too but it’s not what I want. And when I compare shelfs to others shelfs it doesn’t differentiate between books I’ve added as audio and books I’ve added as print. Which is what I want.

    I did find I can choose to have my books displayed by cover, but they’re not as vibrant and they’re not sitting on a pretty shelf. :)


    Then I can re sort the various shelves I’ve named on the left in the ways your mentioning, author, date added, reviews etc.

    I haven’t worked extensively with all the ways to re sort but if I remember correctly Goodreads also has a tendency to go back to default settings when I don’t want it to!

    I’m thinking Spreadsheet (the Google docs Melinda mentioned are easily shareable) to compile the information we could pull from here. It’s coming up with a layout that would work with all the info that keeps boggling me. I’ve worked very little with Excel and the like.

  30. I really like the colors here on your blog. did you design this yourself or did you outsource it to a professional?

  31. I love the way you write and also the theme on your blog. Did you code this yourself or was it done by a professional? I’m very very impressed.

  32. melinda says:

    I like using Word tables because they don’t mess with number formats – when you use excel, you have to be careful about dates, ISBNs, other numbers like that. I’ll have a look at the Google docs to see how that works. I’m open to either one.

    for data to collect, I’m thinking:
    Blog Title/ link
    release/publish date (maybe just year?)
    format (cassette, mp3, cd)
    source (if any) OR maybe a check box: on audible.com (yes or no, or checkmark)
    review links?
    “notes” where other stuff could be entered

    • MaryK says:


      I’d want to include listener comments made about the titles, like TSTBren’s comment about Raudman doing an unusually good job with Bayou Moon.

  33. melinda says:


    I set up a draft Word processing doc that anyone with the link can see and edit. Obviously I’ll have to delete it after a day or so since this is a public blog comment and our buddy “Link Building Services” can access it and do anything as well. It’s just a test.

    It is possible to build your own Word doc, then cut and paste it into a public Google doc.

    I tried to TinyURL it but when it opens it adds a # sign to itself which somehow makes the TinyURL invalid.

  34. TSTBren says:

    Melinda that looks like the perfect format for the list several of us would like to see called .. Audiobooks We Know Existed At One Time … but are now either hard to find or can’t be found at all. A data base we could all contribute to.

    And then send it to Audible with a petition signed by as many people as we can find begging them to reproduce them. :)

    It’s also an excellent format to pull the book info from each of the columns. But I’m with MaryK in wanting to know who recommends an audiobook and why.

    I realize we can’t get too detailed (that’s what Goodreads or the like would be for) but maybe columns with the posters name and whether they liked or didn’t like the book because of what they consider good/bad over all narration or good/ bad hero/heroine voices.

    What I keep picturing is a master list of books from each column and then those clear overlays (like you can make a presentation with) with each posters name and the boxes about the above things checked (if they commented on the book) that would go over the master list allowing us to see each persons opinions.

    I can see it in my head but I can’t quite pull it together. :) At this point just getting all the books pulled and listed in Melinda’s format from each of the columns would be a good start.

  35. melinda says:

    First, I see it as a searchable/sortable list of all the books from the blog – because I often will see something here and later want to find it.

    Second, if we mark it ‘audible.com’ yes or no, that might show whether or not it’s relatively easy to get. Putting “library” isn’t necessarily helpful since each library may be different BUT with ILL maybe it would be helpful, knowing it was out there if your library uses ILL. So… I dunno, I still like knowing if it’s on audible without having to look.

    Third – this discussion has been pretty USA centric cuz that’s where I am. I know there are readers in other countries – but if you (from outside the US) would contribute a note perhaps when your info is different, maybe that would help?

    Next (to get out of numbering) – to get a list of hard to find, you simply sort it on the audible/yes or no, take all the “no” listings and… maybe the comments will show if available? Finding it on ebay isn’t that helpful since it’s likely to be gone pretty quickly. I think having the note reflect “often found on ebay or amazon” or “very hard to find” might suffice.

    Last – I don’t know if posting the link here is the best way, but then how do we share it?

  36. MaryK says:

    If we had a Google Group, I think we’d all be able to access documents in the group.

  37. Lea AAR says:

    Will each of you willing to help with this project (even if you have not been a part of this discussion) please send your email address to me? Mine is afriendatheart at cox dot net.

    Lots to think about and brainstorming still to do.

    Please continue this discussion here as well since it is good to hear you all build your train of thought. I’m subscribed to this blog and receive all discussion by email.

    And I need to talk with my AAR editor.

    Keep the ideas coming – please!

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