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February 15, 2018 BOOKLIST
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Farr’s remarkable narration treats listeners to introspective, thoughtful, and humane interpretations of every character in Strout’s memorable exploration of the denizens of Amgash, Illinois.
Beartown. By Fredrik Backman. Read by Marin Ireland. 2017. 13hr. Simon & Schuster Audio, CD, $39.99 (9781508230977).
Thought-provoking without being didactic, this intense and timely story of an isolated, hockey-mad Swedish town is convincingly conveyed by narrator Ireland, from the opening gunshot to the unexpected but immensely satisfying conclusion.
Born to Run. By Bruce Springsteen. Read by the author. 2016. 20hr. Simon & Schuster Audio, CD, $49.99 (9781508224228).
Springsteen combines intense self-knowledge with his gifted lyricism to create a stunningly frank and insightful autobiography—read with warmth, regret, joy, mockery, pain, self-deprecation, and determination.
Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine. By Gail Honeyman. Read by Cathleen McCarron. 2017. 11hr. Books on Tape, CD, $40 (9781524749705).
McCarron’s splendid narration perfectly mirrors the prickly heroine, her life, and all those she encounters with an array of voices and dialects enhancing the witty writing and warmhearted tone.
The Force. By Don Winslow. Read by Dion Graham. 2017. 13.5hr. Blackstone, CD, $39.95 (9781504680608).
Graham’s dazzling performance of Winslow’s gritty and provocative novel of dirty cops exemplifies the kind of magic that occurs when an expert narrator reads a fine novel.
Glass Houses. By Louise Penny. Read by Robert Bathurst. 2017. 13.5hr. Macmillan, CD, $39.99 (9781427287397).
In his smooth baritone, Bathurst convincingly portrays Penny’s cast of beloved characters, reflecting the dark mood and building tension in Gamache’s thirteenth case.
Hidden Figures: The American Dream and the Untold Story of the Black Mathematicians Who Helped Win the Space Race. By Margot Lee Shetterly. Read by Robin Miles. 2016. 11hr. Harper, DD, $24.99 (9780062472076).
Masterfully evoking time and place, Miles offers a nuanced, empathetic recounting of the lives of the bright, female, African American mathematicians who helped the U.S. attain superiority in the space race.
Lincoln in the Bardo. By George Saunders. Read by Nick Offerman and others. 2017. 7.5hr. Books on Tape, CD, $35 (9780553397598).
A superb and record-breaking cast of 166 voices, representing characters living and dead, transports listeners to 1862 and the cemetery where Lincoln mourns his dead son in this dazzling realization of Saunders’ novel.
News of the World. By Paulette Jiles. Read by Grover Gardner. 2016. 6hr. Brilliance, CD, $59.97 (9781511356787).
Gardner proves the perfect traveling companion on this heartfelt but unsentimental odyssey, illuminating characters and events as a Civil War veteran transports a young girl, freed from Indian captivity, across Texas.
Prussian Blue. By Philip Kerr. Read by John Lee. 2017. 18hr. Books on Tape, CD, $55 (9780399566486).
Lee inhabits the cynical, sarcastic Bernie Gunther in gripping, parallel story lines set in 1956 and 1937 and adeptly captures the fear and danger the ex–Berlin policeman faces.
The Turn of the Screw. By Henry James. Read by Emma Thompson and Richard Armitage. 2017. 5hr. Brilliance/Audible, CD, $9.99 (9781536608397).
While Armitage sets the stage for this haunting novella, Thompson’s breathtaking performance as the unnamed governess underscores the emotional qualities of the tale while creating a nightmare tone.
The Women in the Castle. By Jessica Shattuck. Read by Cassandra Campbell. 2017. 13hr. Harper, CD, $27.99 (9780062657398).
Campbell’s expressive narration draws listeners into the lives of four women, widows of Hitler-resisters, in this touching and eye-opening revelation of the devastating aftermath of war and of the enduring human spirit.
You Don’t Have to Say You Love Me. By Sherman Alexie. Read by the author. 2017. 12hr. Hachette, CD, $30 (9781478912811).
In his distinctive reading style, Alexie narrates his memoir—consisting of short chapters filled with reminiscences, recollections, reflections, poetry, and song—and creates a mesmerizing audio that will ring in listeners’ ears long after the final words. (Top of the List Winner—Adult Audio)
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