The final question of this saterday the 29th is asked by Tanja. Thank you Tanja for asking us another question 🙂
Tanja:I have a question, well several all about audiobooks. Audiobooks are released after the ebook and printed version. If you review an audiobook have you read the book first? Does the audiobook change your opinion of the book? How much, if at all, does the narratior have an influence on how you experience the book? Do you have a favorite narrator?
Most of the time when I have picked up an audiobook to review it is one that I’ve already read in a print format. Audiobooks take a bit longer to listen to than it takes me to read, so it is a bit of a time commitment and I want to know that I’ll enjoy a book before I pick up the audio. That being said, there have been a few audiobooks I’ve reviewed with no foreknowledge and I have enjoyed all of them. Mostly because before I agree to review it I always try to give the sample a listen to make sure that the narrator isn’t gonna be one that bugs the heck out of me. I don’t really listen to enough audiobooks to really have a favorite narrator, but I have loved Scott R. Smith’s work on Avon Gale’s Scoring Chances series. Narrators can either give the story new life, or make you regret ever liking a book, and Smith has made one of my all-time favorite series even better. So major props to him.
Many times I will pick up an audiobook version of an ebook I loved. Other times I will purposely wait until the audiobook is released and then just listen to it as a first pass. I drive over 2 hours everyday for work so audiobooks are my preferred format.
For me, the narrator can make or break a book. Sometimes I loved the ebook and then hated the audiobook because the narrator simply did not bring out the best in the characters or was not right for the emotions. I’ve encountered times where the quality of the recording was so poor, I could not hear or understand the narrator and times the narrator obviously did not prepare and read an Australian or British character with and Irish accent or some such. Just because a narrator was perfect for one book, does not mean he or she is perfect for all books.
Other times I have had a narrator elevate my opinion of a story because that narrator performed that book and highlighted all the best parts.
I do have several favorites but that changes from time to time so I’m not going to name names. I will admit that I have rated my favorites low sometimes if their narration did not suit the story.
Some audiobooks I have read first, and I want to review the audio because I enjoyed the book so much. Others are new and to me that’s harder to review because I have to listen to the story more intensively. The narrator has a huge influence on how I experience the story. If I have read the book first, I can be more objective about the story and the narration part. If the narrator is bad and I haven’t read the book first, it’s very hard to focus on the good parts of the book.
sometimes, I’ve read the book first and that’s why i wanted the audiobook, but it’s not necessary to have read it first. sometimes, i like the fact that the first time that I have anything to do with a book is the audiobook, it makes me see it for the first time.
I think that the narrator has LOTS to do with the enjoyment of a story. If the story kinda sucks, but the narrator is pretty good…i can at least get some enjoyment from that part. However, it’s the same…if the story is really good and you have a horrible narrator…that takes away from the story and i’m usually thinking about how much i can’t stand the narrator and that pulls me out of a story.
Do you like audio books or prefer just an ebook or a paperback ?
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