Anne Flosnik – in my mind she’s the queen of historical romance audio. Narrating for romance greats such as Mary Balogh, Elizabeth Hoyt, Julie Garwood, Amanda Quick, Julia London, Catherine Coulter, Elizabeth Lowell, and Jo Beverley (and that’s not all), she’s once again proving her reigning status by narrating Laura Lee Guhrke’s first books in audio, the Abandoned at the Altar trilogy. Releases are scheduled for October, November, and December of 2011 by Tantor Audio and, as a big Guhrke fan, I’ll be listening to each one.
Anne is known well throughout the audiobook industry for her performances in a multitude of genres. Although her recordings now average 75% in the romance genre, she has received numerous awards in other genres and I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention a few of those awards – the Library Journal Top 40 Audiobooks of 2009, Earphones Awards in 2008 and 2009, AudioFile’s Best Audiobooks of the Year 2009, American Libraries Association Special Services for Children Award 2000, and the Audie Finalist performances (Audie awards can be likened to the Oscars for audiobooks) in 2005, 2008, and 2010.
Although Anne’s romance narrations have consistently received their share of praise from listeners, my thoughts on Anne’s work can best be compared to a journey. My first listen, Elizabeth Lowell’s Untamed in 2008, made the first steps a challenge. In my early days of reading romance, I had given Untamed my highest grade but listening in audio made me wonder about my love for the hero, Dominique. He seemed uncaring and brutish. What had I been thinking when I read in print? But after listening to two more Flosnik narrated romances, I realized that all three heroes had sounded gruff and emotionless and concluded that rather than unlikeable heroes, it was the narrator’s interpretation of those heroes that affected me negatively. I became hesitant to listen to more.
Fortunately, that didn’t mean I quit listening to Flosnik narrations as I later found Mary Balogh’s First Comes Marriage to be a success – first in print and then in audio. I expected Elliott to be unfeeling and superior and that’s just how he sounded. I have relistened to First Comes Marriage twice.