Speaking of Audiobooks: February 2011 Releases and Shadowfever Giveaway (Contest Closed)

s ConsortOh yes, we’ve definitely started 2011 with a bang!

Our 2011 Listening Challenge is up and running and, as far as I can tell from comments and emails, we have at least twenty committed to the challenge!  I’m certain there are more participating quietly or still making up their mind about joining in.  Remember that you can start at any time and, for easy reference, we’ll have the basics of the 2011 Listening Challenge here throughout the year.

Our Fever Watch Party has inspired many to join in the fun of listening to Karen Marie Moning’s Fever series with the release of the final in the series, Shadowfever, last week.  Our interview with Phil Gigante gave us a look into the production of audiobooks and I don’t know if any of us who read Phil’s comments will ever listen to his books in the same manner again!  Below, you’ll find a mini review of Shadowfever.

Now to continue the Fever Series party, we are giving away two Shadowfever audiobooks in CD format. The same rules apply as in our recent Fever Series giveaway.  Enter your name in the contest by commenting on this column by 11:59 p.m. on Sunday, January 30th. We ask that you specify in your post that you are entering the contest since we want our posts to include our regular Speaking of Audiobooks discussion posts as well.  Due to the cost of postage, the giveaway is open only to listeners in the U.S. and Canada.  You will be entered only once if you make multiple comments (and we hope you will) and if you review for another Web site or blog, please refrain from entering.  Two winners will be notified by email on Monday morning, January 31st, and will have 24 hours to respond.  Another winner will be selected on Tuesday morning if a winner has not responded.

You may have noticed our Romance Audiobook Message Board lurking out there over at AAR’s main site.  We’re taking care of some navigation issues and will announce it formally once all is in place.

Next up?  A group listen!  Please share with us an audiobook you think would make a good group listen.  It doesn’t have to be a new audiobook – it can be an older title.  So far we have tackled Diana Gabaldon’s Outlander series and Karen Marie Moning’s Fever Series as group listens.  Maybe we can choose something a little simpler this time!

Leftovers from January

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

Adrian, Lara – Shades of Midnight Narrated by Hillary Huber

Arthur, Keri – Deadly Desire Narrated by Angela Dawe

Arthur, Keri – Embraced by Darkness Narrated by Angela Dawe

Brown, Sandra – Love Beyond Reason Narrated by Renee Raudman

Deveraux, Jude – Days of Gold Narrated by Davina Porter

Deveraux, Jude – Mountain Laurel Narrated by Richard Ferrone

Hart, Megan – Precious and Fragile Things Narrated by Laura Fortgang

Williams, Dee – Hopes and Dreams Narrated by Kim Hicks

Audiobook Romances on Sale in February

Includes new formats of existing audiobooks


Brown, Sandra – Exclusive Narrated by Tanya Eby

Brown, Sandra – Tempest in Eden Narrated by Renee Raudman

Robb, J.D. – Strangers in Death Narrated by Susan Ericksen

A Discovery of WitchesUnabridged

Brown, Sandra – Tempest in Eden Narrated by Renee Raudman

Gerritsen, Tess – Presumed Guilty Narrated by Jennifer Van Dyck

Harkness, Deborah – A Discovery of Witches Narrated by Jennifer Ikeda

Jeffries, Sabrina – Don’t Bargain With the Devil Narrated by Justine Eyre

Kleypas, Lisa – Because You’re Mine Narrated by Rosalyn Landor

Kleypas, Lisa – Somewhere I’ll Find You Narrated by Rosalyn Landor

Laurens, Stephanie – Four in Hand Narrated by Ashford MacNab

Palmer, Diana – Lord of the Desert Narrated by Amy Kaechele

Robb, J.D. – Treachery in Death Narrated by Susan Ericksen

Roberts, Nora – In Dreams Narrated by Justine Eyre

Singh, Nalini – Archangel’s Consort Narrated by Justine Eyre

Recent Listens

We’re now featuring an occasional mini-review written by a fellow Speaking of Audiobooks listener.  Thanks to Melinda for her contributions today.

Shadowfever – Karen Marie Moning

Narrated by Natalie Ross and Phil Gigante

A warning – reviewing Shadowfever equals series spoilers. Although I have attempted to keep those spoilers slight and to a minimum, you’ll find a few here.

This final book in the Fever Series totally captivated, thrilled, and surprised me to the very end.  At first, I was wary of committing myself to a series with no guarantee of a satisfying romantic ending.  Let me say – it definitely satisfied!  With so many twists and turns I rarely found myself bored with this 20 hour tale.  My one criticism is the amount of time spent in Mac’s head – at times it seemed excessive.  But I found that paying attention to all those many thoughts made the story all the richer.  As a romance diehard, I relished the romance I had longed for.  The chemistry between the leads is strong and the emotional impact of their romance is even stronger.

Natalie Ross narrates the majority of Shadowfever and excels at it.  Ross didn’t join the Fever Series until the fourth book, Dreamfever, and I had become quite fond of Joyce Bean’s portrayal of Mac in those earlier audios.  Adjusting to Ms. Ross’ performance of Mac in Dreamfever required a little extra concentration but that was due more to the fact that Mac sounded different.  Ross hits her stride in Shadowfever and I’m becoming more of a Ross admirer with each of her performances.  Phil Gigante performs the male roles with panache and perfection.

I highly recommend this entire audio series.  I don’t think I’ve ever had such a fast paced, keep-you-guessing, gratifying ride.

– Lea Hensley

Let Sleeping Rogues LieLet Sleeping Rogues Lie – Sabrina Jeffries

Narrated by Justine Eyre

Anthony, a rakehell of the highest level, has to mend his roguish ways when his older brother dies, leaving Anthony the family title and his daughter an orphan.  Anthony vows to do anything to gain guardianship of his young niece – even teach “rakehell” lessons at a girls’ school!  Our lovely, bluestocking heroine, Madeline, is a teacher at said school.  Forced into employment after her physician father was run out of their village in disgrace, Madeline uses the excuse of being a naturalist to deceive Anthony and involve him in her schemes to help her father and, in return, agrees to let him try to seduce her.  If you follow carefully, you find there is a connection between Anthony and Madeline that only she is aware of.  It’s convoluted and requires great listening skills and a few small leaps of faith.

Narrator Justine Eyre has a wonderfully crisp upper-crust British accent that suits Regency very well. I could easily imagine the characters when she gave them voice, from Anthony’s fellow profligates to the wicked uncle and all the characters in between, including housekeepers and footmen. She does make a rather ho-hum story more entertaining than merely reading it. Still, I wouldn’t elevate her to favorite narrator status, possibly because of that stiff-upper-lip accent that somehow makes me feel as if all the characters are somewhat formal, cold, and controlling.

There were some unique situations in the story – nitrous oxide parties and railing religious zealots among them – but I still had a hard time believing a scientifically-curious bluestocking interested in human behavior would be so easily and quickly led to ruin, even in a rather stock Regency plot.

Narration B+

-  Melinda

Thigh High by Christina Dodd

Narrated by Natalie Ross

When Jeremiah “Mac” MacNaught goes undercover in New Orleans for the bank he owns, he’s got a major lust-on for his bank’s employee Nessa Dahl but he’s also convinced she’s behind the annual Mardi Gras robberies, something he finds detestable. Nessa is working hard to help her eccentric great-aunts get out of debt, which is hard to do when her immediate boss is almost as difficult to work for as the bank’s owner.  She’s assisting Mac (in disguise as the insurance inspector) in solving the robberies.

I rate narrator Natalie Ross a cut above run-of-the-mill, and her southern accents are generally good. I really enjoyed her narration of a Linda Howard favorite, After the Night, also set in Louisiana. She articulates Thigh High’s characters with age and gender-appropriate voices, even if I do have a quibble with some pronunciations and out-of-place or overdone local accents (I lived in south Louisiana).  But these aren’t just characters, they are Characters.  That being said, when a narrator is faced with the aunts from Arsenic and Old Lace, how else could she go about creating them in audio?

Christina Dodd is a new-to-me author and I wondered if her style in writing this Romantic Suspense was intended to be beyond-quirky comedy, or more like Linda Howard, whose realistically drawn characters are often in extremely humorous situations. I did laugh out loud a few times, but generally, the story veered sharply away from realism with the antics of heroine Nessa’s aunts.  Was it comedy or tragedy?  Suspense or allegory? Even after it was over, I couldn’t make up my mind.  But the combination of intermittent humor with stock characters, love scenes that seemed without sufficient motivation, and a creepy villain not associated with any of the ongoing conflicts had me confused and kept this story from rising above a C for story.

Narration: B

- Melinda

Time for Your Thoughts

What new releases are you looking forward to?

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

Do you have a Listening Challenge update to share with us?

Do you have a recommendation for a group listen?

What are the latest additions to your audio library?

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

Ending Notes

Our Speaking of Audiobooks Goodreads group keeps growing and we’re finding a lot to talk about.  Come join us as and share your audiobook shelf with us.

I’m announcing new romance audiobook releases and other audio tidbits 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.

I’ll be back again in early February.

- Lea Hensley

This entry was posted in audio books, Contests, giveaways, Lea Hensley. Bookmark the permalink.

56 Responses to Speaking of Audiobooks: February 2011 Releases and Shadowfever Giveaway (Contest Closed)

  1. Andrea says:

    I’d like to enter the Shadowfever audio drawing please. Thanks!

  2. Dee says:

    I am currently reading Shadowfever and loving it. I’d like to enter the Shadowfever audio giveaway contest. Thanks.

  3. Maryfranc says:

    Just finished listening to SEP’s Call Me Irresistible and loved it. Teddy and Meg are priceless. Being familiar with golf rules was helpful in the “caddy” chapter.

    Presently I’m listening to How to Woo a Reluctant Lady by Sabrina Jeffries (smiling in enjoyment).

    I am hoping Eloisa James’ Notorious Pleasures will be available on Audible.com next week. Don’t see it in the coming soon section.

    In print edition I am reading the wonderful Lady Julia Grey mystery series by Deanna Raiybourn. I’d love to win the Sadowfever audio giveaway contest. Thanks.

  4. Trish Johnson says:

    Please enter me in the Shadowfever audio drawing. I have just started the series (on 2nd book) and really enjoy. Thanks, hope I get picked!!

  5. melinda says:

    I am so pumped about having our own audiobook forum!!! Kudos for getting this done!! And Maryfranc, thank you for jumping in to say you loved Call Me Irresistible – so did I, and I thought new narrator Shannon Cochran did a great job. Didn’t you think she sounded a teensy bit like SEP herself??

  6. Nina says:

    I spent last week each night after work savoring Shadowfever – I didn’t want it to end too soon. Usually when a book that I’ve been waiting for is released I would read/listen to it like a hungry child let loose in a candy store. Quickly gobbling my way through it without letting the full flavor develop. But this time I made myself slow down and parceled out how much I would listen to each night. I stayed away from the computer and any site that might leak anything in the book. I wanted no spoilers. What a fantastic listening experience! I think Natalie Ross and Phil Gigante made the book come to life and I found myself re-listening to parts of it over the weekend. KMM left me totally satisfied. Please don’t enter me in the contest as I own all of the books on audio.

    I am looking forward to the release of Archangel’s Consort in late February. I haven’t listened to any of these books (although I’ve read them and I own them in audio format) so I’m going to give them a listen in order when AC is released. Another release that I’m looking forward to is This Side of the Grave which is to be released on Feb 22. I started this series on a whim in January and I’ve listened to all of the Night Huntress books so far but not the side books about Spade and Mencheres. That will be one of my next listens. JD Robb’s newest Treachery in Death will be on my iPod the day it’s released…love Eve Dallas and Roarke! In March the newest Suzanne Brockmann and JR Ward.

    I have now completed the following in my audio book challenge:

    Listen to first book in a new series – Night Huntress series by Jeanine Frost. I think Tavia Gilbert does a good job for Cat but not even close to a convincing job for the male characters in the book. Her voice is just too high for a sexy man like Bones.
    Listen to a Romance book released in 2011 – Shadowfever

    I plan to listen to a DIK book – Heaven, Texas
    Call Me Irresistible – which I got from the library
    New narrator – Justine Eyre reading the Archangel series

    FYI – for Audible members they are having a $4.49 buy the first of a series sale right now and I’m going to try 3 or 4 new series…can’t beat that price even if you get a dud in the mix. There are several good series that are being offered although I own most of the romance books on the list. I’m buying the first in the following series and would love some feedback about them from anyone whose either listened to them or read them. Mercy Thompson series by Patricia Briggs, Georgia Kincaid series by Richelle Mead and Anna Strong by Jeanne Stein.

  7. Megan says:

    Please enter me in the Shadowfever drawing, to have my chance of KMM’s characters come to life. Really, I’d love an excuse to have Phil Gigante’s voice live in my head. I probably won’t get anything done, may end up in a car crash . . . but I’ll be wearing a goofy smile! I’m currently listening to Kleypas’ Seduce Me at Sunrise. Thanks, Megan

  8. maryann says:

    I’m very curious about this series. Please enter me in the Shadowfever contest.

    Nina, thanks for the heads up regarding Audible this month. I’m heading there now.

  9. TSTBren says:

    Loved the last column, Phil Gigante’s great, and very funny, personality was highlighted well in his replies. Along with his work ethic and training which gives him the ability to bring our favorite male leads to life in a drool worthy manner.

    I gobbled up Shadowfever in one day – the reading of it anyway – I did parcel out the listen over the next week. Slow start for me as I didn’t give a fig for the Darroc angle, but once it picked up speed, WOW!

    Your right Lea, Natalie Ross came into her own with Shadowfever, after having to adjust to her new voice for Mac in Dreamfever. Obviously I own there so I’ll pass on the giveaway also.

    Nina ….my two cents – The Mercy Thompson series is awesome. Judging by your other tastes your going to love it, Lorelie King does a good job narrating. If you haven’t listened to Ilona Andrews Kate Daniels series then Magic Bites at $4.50 needs to be added to your cart ASAP. Renee Raudman is spectacular with the series.

    I totally agree about Tavia Gilbert and Bones – I understand the reasons behind the “voice” given him and readily give those reasons. I wouldn’t want anyone to miss such a great series, if they do audio only. Personally I’m glad I read it first for the full impact of Bones! But you really can’t go wrong with Halfway to the Grave at $5.03 with this sale.

    Archangel’s Consort is number one on my audio list for February. I think Justine Eyre gives the perfect “never has been, never will be mortal” tinge to Raphael’s voice.

  10. Hi, guys! May I add my own “The Orchid Affair”, read by Kate Reading, to the list? It came out January 20th.

    • Vic says:

      Lauren Willig: Hi, guys!May I add my own “The Orchid Affair”, read by Kate Reading, to the list?It came out January 20th.

      Thanks for the heads up on this. I absolutely love Kate Reading narration so will have to check it out!

  11. Lea AAR says:

    Thanks Lauren! How did I miss that? I’m definitely interested as I’m sure others are as well.

  12. Connie says:

    Please enter me in the Shadowfever audiobook drawing.

    I recently listened to the audiobook of Magic Bleeds, the 4th book of the Magic series by Ilona Andrews. The book itself is very good (I’ll give it an A), but the performance by narrator Renee Raudman is phenomenal! Highly recommended!!

  13. Vic says:

    Missed Jan release from Tantor: Anne Stuart’s Ruthless (rd by Susan Ericksen) coming 1/31 (release sheet: http://www.tantor.com/SellSheets/B0100_Ruthless.pdf ). Reckless is coming out in audio 3/7/11 also read by S. E.

    Feb releases I’m looking forward to:
    Moon Sworn – Keri Arthur – last of the Riley Jensen PNR series 2/23
    Archangel’s Consort Nalini Singh (though I got and read the paperback)
    JD Robb (duh!)
    Kim Harrison’s Pale Demon (the next in the Hollows UF series)
    Jeaniene Frost – This Side of the Grave – I agree that Tavia’s voice for Bones can annoy

    Doing Level 2 on the Listening Challenge – have 2 categories down:
    - Pick an audiobook that received a DIK grade at AAR in print format: Nalini Singh’s Archangel’s Kiss
    - Relisten to a favorite book: Patricia Briggs – Hunting Ground

    Latest additions to my audioshelf:
    Keri Arthur’s Riley Jenson 05 – Embraced by Darkness and Riley Jenson 07 – Deadly Desire
    KMM’s Fever 05 – Shadowfever

    @Nina – Mercy Thompson’s are GREAT and you will not be disappointed in the purchase. We are discussing some of the series on the audible sale on the good reads group (see link above). If you haven’t listened to LK read before I think she’s a treat. However, if you have listened to her read the Stephanie Plum series, it may take a little longer to get into her reading Mercy since you’ll “hear” the SP characters at first. I have my ear trained now to hear the Mercy characters! :) The Ana Strong series is OK. I read books 1 -5 and have book 1 in audio. It’s been awhile since I’ve listened but nothing jumps out at me about the reader. My cousin really enjoyed the audio of the book though and she listened to it recently.

  14. Nina says:

    TSTBren – I went to audible and read some of the reviews for the Magic Bites…is there romance? I’ve got to have romance and intimacy in my books. Your take? When I read a reviewer say that it’s “Stephanie Plum grows up” I hesitate. I’ve given up on that series. Nothing ever happens anymore – no sexual sizzle. I’m tired of her indecision between Joe and Ranger…yawn/snore. The early books were SO much better.

    As far as the “voice” that is given to Bones I agree with you that the cockney accent is correct it’s Gilbert’s high pitch that can takes me out of the sexiness/romance of the scene…It’s like his knickers are too tight…although he’s better without his knickers anyway-*snort*! ;-)

    I’m looking forward to Justine Eyre’s narration after reading your comment. It’s been a long time since I’ve read the Archangel books and can’t remember everything that happens so it will be fun.

    • Vic says:

      @Nina – Magic Bites is urban fantasy. There’s not that much romance or tension in book 1 but it builds over the series – book 2 it starts to get there – real pay off with books 3 and 4. Book 5 is due out in May. This is a FABULOUS series and Rene does a nice job reading it.

      • MaryK says:

        Vic: @Nina – Magic Bites is urban fantasy. There’s not that much romance or tension in book 1

        I dunno, there’s certainly sexiness! ;) I definitely wanted them to get together when I was done with book one. IIRC, the authors said they hadn’t planned on including a romance, that it kind of naturally grew from the story as they wrote it. Can’t remember where I read that.

  15. TSTBren says:

    Just FYI for any wanting to give Lauren Willig a try, the first in her series:
    The Secret History of the Pink Carnation is also on sale at Audible right now. $4.79 and Kate Reading as narrator, win / win.

    Nina, still laughing over Bones and the too tight knickers, you called it :0)

    … as Vic says the romance arc builds in the Kate Daniels books, but you can feel it from the first book and it’s very satisfying as it builds. To reiterate by quoting Connie from above:
    “the performance by narrator Renee Raudman is phenomenal!”

    Don’t ask me where the Kate / S.Plum comparison comes in though? That’s so far off base I can’t even imagine it ……. and I’m still hanging in there with Stephanie and the gang. An audio guilty pleasure for my husband and I each summer.

    • Vic says:

      TSTBren: Just FYI for any wanting to give Lauren Willig a try, the first in her series:
      The Secret History of the Pink Carnation is also on sale at Audible right now. $4.79 and Kate Reading as narrator, win / win.

      W00t – thanks for that heads up! Not sure I would have thought to go back and look while it was still on sale.

      I also have no idea where the S Plum/Kate Daniels comparison came from. *SHRUG*

      Again, at the prices on those first in series right now – it’s almost a crime not to give something you’re remotely interested in a try.

  16. TSTBren says:

    Would love to be able to edit / add to my posts …

    Nina, the Mercy Thompson series works the same way as Kate Daniels. UF with a romance thread. The romance angle is there, you can feel it, but it builds through the books.

    Since you enjoyed the Fever series I’m saying you’ll love Kate and Mercy both.

  17. Gayla says:

    count me in! I loved the book. Would love the audio too! If you haven’t read it – you need to ASAP!!!! Plus Phil doing Barrons – can’t go wrong there!!!!!!!

  18. Carrie says:

    Please enter me in the Shadowfever giveaway.

    RE: Magic Bites – My husband put it in my audibles cart, and I took it out based on the reviews that said Renee Raudman did a poor job with the narration! Now you all says she’s good! If she decent at all, the book is worth the money, especially since my husband was interested. (He had me buy two or three other sci-fi books that were on sale as well.)

    I also recommend Storm Front by Jim Butcher on sale now at audible if you like UF. James Marsters is a perfect Dresden!

    I’m still working on my first audio book for my Listening Challenge: Welcome to Temptation fulfills the “Languishing on my TBR pile” category. I love the snappy dialog, but hate the manipulative family members and self-absorbed friends, and I’m frustrated with the doormat heroine. This is why I couldn’t get through the print edition when I tried years ago. I listen to the book while I walk or do housework, but I’m not finding myself looking for things to do in order to get to listen more or longer. The narrator is good.

    • MaryK says:

      Carrie: RE: Magic Bites – My husband put it in my audibles cart, and I took it out based on the reviews that said Renee Raudman did a poor job with the narration! Now you all says she’s good!

      For what it’s worth, I rarely pay any attention to the reviews on the Audible site. I’ve seen some off the wall reviews there. And I guess you saw the above comments about the comparison to Stephanie Plum(?!).

      @Lea – I’m glad you said we could comment multiple times b/c I had a lot to say. :)

  19. MaryK says:

    I’m planning to do the Listening Challenge. I just haven’t gotten around to signing up yet. :S

    I really enjoyed Justine Eyre’s narration of Nalini Singh’s Angel series. I’m a little afraid to listen to her do anything else because her voice is Elena’s voice to me now. At the end of the Angel books, there’s the usual sales pitch from the audio company, and it was a bit jarring to hear Elena saying that.

    Christina Dodd is an author I’ve never been able to connect with. I can’t pinpoint a particular reason; we’re just on different wavelengths or something.

    In latest additions to my audio library news, I got a copy of Carnal Innocence narrated by Tom Stechschulte off of ebay for about $10! It’s going to be one of my Challenge audios once I figure out which category to use it for.

  20. MaryK says:

    Also, please enter me in the Moning audio giveaway. Now that I know it ends well, I’m ready. :D

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  22. Nina says:

    Okay TSTBren & Vic I’m in with both Mercy Thompson and Kate Daniels- maybe this will be my try a new author! I think the Georgia Kincaid series sounds intriguing – anyone read/listened to it? There are no reviews at AAR for this series. Just wondering.

    Question: Listen to a sub-genre you usually avoid. This is a tough one because I read so many variations in romance. Please help me think of sub-genres.
    Urban fantasy
    Romantic Suspense
    Shape Shifter

    I’m still thinking on the group read and am interested.

    • Vic says:

      Nina: Okay TSTBren & Vic I’m in with both Mercy Thompson and Kate Daniels- maybe this will be my try a new author!

      *does a little dance* EXCELLENT! One more encouragement on the KD series – book 1 is the roughest because of the world building. If you don’t LOVE the series after book 1 at least give book 2 a chance and then you’ll be off and running. You can see the DRASTIC climb in ratings as you go through the books. This really is a great series! Also, the writers have provided some free content on their website giving certain scenes a re-write from the hero POV which are great fun to read.

      Nina: I think the Georgia Kincaid series sounds intriguing – anyone read/listened to it?There are no reviews at AAR for this series.Just wondering.

      I have this on my TBR list but haven’t pulled the trigger yet. Most people I have friended with on GR and some book forums rate series at around 3.5…

      Nina: Question:Listen to a sub-genre you usually avoid.This is a tough one because I read so many variations in romance.Please help me think of sub-genres.
      Urban fantasy
      Romantic Suspense
      Shape Shifter
      ContemporaryI’m still thinking on the group read and am interested.

      OK, I had same issue with this category which is why I didn’t pick it for myself. However, I just thought of one for me and I see missing in your list – Steampunk.

      • Connie says:

        @Vic – The climb in ratings for the Kate Daniels series is indeed DRASTIC!

        Magic bites (Book 1) has an average of 4 stars on Amazon.com, which is very good for a debut by any author. However, Magic Bleeds (Book 4), the latest and my personal favorite in the series, received 5-star rating from 161 out of 175 reviewers (remaining numbers:13 4-stars, 1 3-stars). Really remarkable!

        I am not a fan of urban fantasy, and yet this series, especially Magic Bleeds, is unbelievably good.

    • MaryK says:

      Nina: Question: Listen to a sub-genre you usually avoid. This is a tough one because I read so many variations in romance. Please help me think of sub-genres

      Well, I’ve noticed a lot of Category Romance coming out in audio. That would be a Super Challenge. I’m a bit of a category junkie but even I haven’t braved one in audio.

  23. Mary Frances Graham says:

    Melinda, yes, I loved the narration of Call Me Irresistible. Of course, Anna Field’s shoes are impossible to fill, but I loved the book. She did sound like SEP. SEP’s Youtube video was hilarious with her “publisher” yelling at her in the background because she kept saying “Don’t buy the book if …”

  24. Jo-Ann W. says:

    Darn, I was trying to just skim the comments because I just knew there would be a spoiler in there about Shadowfever and I didn’t want to know anything, but yep, my eye caught it. Oh well.

    Please enter me in the contest. I’m halfway through Blood fever and still enjoying it. Mac does digress though, doesn’t she?

  25. TSTBren says:

    Jo-Ann, there were definitely “kick Mac” moments for me, even though I liked her and her growth throughout the series.

    Nina here are a few more sub categories with examples, at least for me. You may already have them covered but who knows?

    Futuristic Romance – Jayne Castle

    Sci Fi Romance – Linnea Sinclair

    Light/Funny PNR – MaryJanice Davidson –

    Light Mystery w/ romance – Elizabeth Peter’s Crocodile on the Sandbank

    Time Travel – KMM Highlanders

    Regency – Georgette Heyer

    Western – Jude Deveraux – Mountain Laurel

    You could go further with an “Angels” sub category.

    Nora Roberts Sign of Seven Trilogy was classified as Horror?? The first is Blood Brothers with Phil Gigante narrating – some great one liners and a bit of a creep factor.

    From the AAR Poll …

    Kick A$$ Heroines

    Tortured Hero

    Best/Favorite Couple etc, etc

  26. Jennifer says:

    I LOVED Shadowfever and haven’t heard the audiobook yet, I can’t wait!…. hopefully I’ll win one (hint, hint) :)

  27. willaful says:

    Please enter me!

    I’ve just started really enjoying audiobooks, rather than just putting up with them while I work out. The last one I listened to, Charming Grace by Deborah Smith was excellent, as is the one I’m currently listening to Envy by Sandra Brown. In both cases, I think I’m actually enjoying the books more because of the excellent narrations than I would have if I’d just read them.

    • Lea AAR says:

      willaful: Please enter me!I’ve just started really enjoying audiobooks, rather than just putting up with them while I work out. The last one I listened to, Charming Grace by Deborah Smith was excellent, as is the one I’m currently listening to Envy by Sandra Brown. In both cases, I think I’m actually enjoying the books more because of the excellent narrations than I would have if I’d just read them.

      willaful – welcome to our world of audiobooks! And Envy, wow, what a great audiobook! I have to totally agree that some books are much better in audio than print, just because of a talented narrator(s).

  28. Kaetrin says:

    I’ve completed my first category in the SOA Listening Challenge – start a new series and see if it hooks you. I listened to Darkfever and yep, boy howdy, did it. I’m listening to Dreamfever now, having just finished Faefever this morning. The change of narrators is a bit jarring – I had quite got used to Joyce Bean and Natalie Ross’s Dani sounds more English to me than Irish. I haven’t got to any Phil Gigante bits yet. Of course, I’m frantic about how Mac is, but I ran out of housework! Maybe I can start baking…. hmm

    As to the giveaway, I’m in Australia so I can’t enter and I have Shadowfever on audio anyway but, can I ask if AAR EVER includes non-US/Canada in it’s giveaways? It would be nice to be included once in a while. :(

  29. Patsy says:

    I think I’m hooked on audiobooks now. I love to read the book first and then listen to it. I love the way Phil Gigante narrates. He doesn’t disappoint!

    • Lea AAR says:

      Patsy: I think I’m hooked on audiobooks now. I love to read the book first and then listen to it. I love the way Phil Gigante narrates. He doesn’t disappoint!

      Patsy – I recently followed TSTBren’s suggestion to read a section of a print book and then listen to that section in audio. Then read the next print section followed by that section in audio, etc. I did this for the first time when listening to Shadowfever. There were so many details and I didn’t want to miss a thing but I also didn’t want to wait through reading the entire book in print before hearing the audio. It worked so well! I won’t do this every time but I think I will for books with a substantial amount of world building.

  30. Carolsue says:

    I love KMM’s books and would LOVE to read (or listen to on CD) this book. Her previous books were awesome.

    I love the reviews and information here as well!
    digicat {AT} sbcglobal {DOT} net

  31. Beth says:

    I would love to be entered in this contest…hope I am not too late!
    I got hooked on audio books about 4 years ago when the local library only had the audio version available for a series of books I was trying to read. Loved it and have tried to check out the audio on any book when I get a chance, but I have narrator preferences…I enjoy the audio more when I can tell the narrator is really into it.
    I’ve have always loved theater arts and cold reads are the best because you are not sure what to expect so you tend to read it with an over the top thrill and really go for it.
    Wish I could do audio books for a living, but then I think I might loose the enjoyment of them and well you have to be really good at it too-lol.

  32. hilly says:

    I’m reading Shadowfever and would love to hear the audio version; please enter me into the contest for the CDs! Thanks!

  33. Pingback: Tweets that mention Speaking of Audiobooks: February 2011 Releases and Shadowfever Giveaway « All About Romance’s News & Commentary Blog -- Topsy.com

  34. Gale says:

    Please enter me in the Shadowfever audio drawing. I’ve read the first 3 books in the series. :-)

  35. Dawn says:

    Please enter me in the Shadowfever drawing…

    As for group read ideas… The Septimus Heap series by Angie Sage are very entertaining. They have a good pace, even some music intertwined, interesting characters, etc. The first book is Magyk. There are 5 so far and a new one is coming out very soon. Magyk, Flyte, Physik, Queste, Syren and soon Darke. Although technically rated YA, I know many adults who read and love this fantasy fiction series. They switched narrators after book one, but I’ve enjoyed them all. Very well done. It is not a romance series though if you’re limiting the suggestions to that genre. But, then you will be missing out…. though if you are limiting it that way… how about the Sookie Stackhouse books by Charlaine Harris? They also have a great narrator.

  36. Diana says:

    Thanks to the armtwisters (you know who you are) I’m a Fever convert. I listened to the entire series in a month and now I’m bereft that it’s over. KMM ramped it up for these books because I still think the Highlander books are a bit fluffy.

    I’ve given Singh’s Archangel books two tries and I’m out. Just didn’t connect for me.

    The sale inspired me to try Mercy Thompson and Dresden books. I love Briggs’ Alpha and Omega.

    Has anyone tried JR Ward’s Covet and Crave? I’m a fan. Fascinating world and narrator Eric Dove is excellent.

    Don’t enter me in drawing.

  37. MaryK says:

    Audible’s added more books to the $5 sale. Ward’s Covet is there and some other romantic UFs.

  38. MaryK says:

    Also Lisa Kleypas, Mary Balogh, Nora Roberts. Maybe they’ve been reading through some of the older Speaking of Audiobooks columns.

  39. TSTBren says:

    Lea are you buried under that wicked snowstorm in the Midwest?? Sending good thoughts your way….

    Kaetrin did you settle in to the change in narrators in the Fever series so you could get back in the groove and really enjoy the rest of Dreamfever and then Shadowfever?

    Patsy I’m big on reading first and then listening. Patience is not a virtue of mine, I need to know what happens, then I can relax and enjoy the narration and pick up on details.

    Diana hoping I was one of the armtwisters for Fever. It might have me batting 500 in my recommendations coinciding with your likes. :)

    I have Covet and Crave on my TBR/TBL, time to bump them up. Happy to hear good things about the narrator.

    Thanks for the heads up MaryK, I went back and found a couple more “first in the series” bargains at Audible.

  40. Lea AAR says:

    TSTBren – thanks for thinking about me! We are buried in the most terrific snow storm ever in Oklahoma – we are beating the snow record of 13″ but what is most concerning are the 40 mph winds, the below 0 wind chill, the lack of visibility, and all the stranded drivers who thought they could make it to their destination. Oklahoma is NOT prepared for such weather – it shuts down. I know these sounds like sissy conditions to many of you all but people freak out here!

  41. Lea AAR says:

    I too wish we could edit our posts! “These sounds”…my spell check didn’t even catch that one!

  42. Lea AAR says:

    Winners of the Shadowfever giveaway:

    Trish Johnson



  43. TSTBren says:

    Scary, not sissy! It’s one thing to live in snow and find it common 6 months out of the year. But freak blizzards, where even a few inches of snow (much less over a foot!) can cripple whole cities / states? No thanks!

    Congrats to the Shadowfever winners, your going to love the audio.

  44. Kaetrin says:

    Hi TST Bren! I am enjoying the Natalie Ross/Phil Gigante narration (I’ve just started Shadowfever this morning – so very glad I didn’t have to wait for these cliffhangers – there would have been much gnashing of teeth and wailing!) and I certainly like PG’s Barrons, but I think I enjoyed Joyce Bean better than NR. NR sounds really shrill to me when she’s yelling – and, while that may be what real people sound like in such circumstances, it’s a bit hard on the ear! I’m still waiting to find out what’s *happened* to Barrons (she’s still in the silvers – trying not to give away spoilers here) so I’m eager to get back to it!

    Hope everyone dealing with snowstorms stays safe!

  45. TSTBren says:

    I’m looking forward to your final review when you’ve finished Shadowfever Kaetrin. :)

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