Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together. 

This week’s TTT topic is: the best narrators for audiobooks.

I began listening to audiobooks quite late but once I did, I never looked back and found some amazing narrators in the process!

I know this is supposed to be a top ten but you’ll get a longer list because I found some really amazing ones! A narrator can make or break a book to me and I always listen to a sample before choosing a book. Some voices I can’t stand and others just feel weird when you have a certain character/age in mind. But others can make the whole experience… magic!

I tried to group narrator by genres they usually narrate even if THE queen of Narrators, Julia Whelan is pretty versatile and can read romance, fantasy, mystery… everything!

So without further ado, let’s dive in!

Romance

The best romance narrators are: Julia Whelan (the QUEEN of narrators); Zachary Webber (his voice will melt your panties! Pure sex); Joanna Fairview (very mischievous).

Mysteries & Thrillers

Angela Dawe was the irresistible Finlay Donovan (a huge dash of humor), Lauren Ambrose was perfect for sweet and innocent Nina, Brittany Presley is brilliant in mysteries/horror stories or stories with a heavy dose of suspense. The same can be said from January La Voy (who narrated The Diviners but also The Change). Another gripping thriller “All the Dangerous Things” was narrated by the captivating Karissa Vacker! Sarah Zimmerman is another versatile narrator going from cozy mysteries (the Countess of Harleigh) to chilling crime with “A Good Marriage”. And I loved Bronson Pinchot ‘s narration of “These Silent Woods”.

Woman Fiction

In woman fiction, I think no one will surpass Therese Plummer. She amazed me with her narration of The Bright Side of Disaster and many other books from Katherine Center!

Historical fiction

There is one narrator who does an incredible jobs with German and French accents and who is perfect for narrating WWII fiction: Saskia Maarleveld! Even if she also narrates some fantasy I think she is at her best in historical.

Fantasy

I have several amazing narrators for fantasy! Rebecca Soler who narrates Stephanie Garber’s books (Once Upon a Broken Heart) and all of Marissa Meyer’s too (Cursed, The Renegades, Heartless etc.). Nicola Barber who was amazing narrating Stalking Jack the Ripper or Jackaby (a series so many more should listen to!). Another “queen” of fantasy is Lauren Fortgang! She has narrated many of Jennifer Estep’s books but also Ninth House! A recent one that I discovered and who si amazing too, narrating with much gusto is Lameece Issaq who was fabulous in The Adventures of Amina Al-Sirafi!

LGBTQ with humor

These two narrators are perfect narrating LGBTQ stories. One with a dry humor, very British Joe Jameson narrating Boyfriend Material and one just FANTABULOUS and weird and COMPLETELY CRAZY that had me laugh so hard: Michael Lesley who narrated The Lightning Struck Heart and The Extraordinaries among others.

Epic Science fiction

Two names for me in science fiction. The AMAZING Tim Gerard Reynolds who had me on the edge of my seat all along while listening to Red Rising and the inspiring Suzy Jackson who gave her spunk to Spensa in Skyward.

That’s it! As you can see, I have many favorites and I hope you found some new ones and new books!

Thanks for reading.

Sophie

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16 Comments

  1. Nice list! January LaVoy, Saskia Maarleveld, and Lauren Fortgang are definitely high on my list, and I am also a huge fan of Tim Gerard Reynolds, have been since hearing him narrate Michael J. Sullivan’s Riyria!

  2. Narrators def make a difference! I’m not familiar with most of these, though I have several by Reynolds. Guilty confession- there are some audio books I have just because of who reads it. Benedict Cumberbatch, Stephen Fry, Neil Gaiman, Mark Gatiss. I also love when Star Trek actors read Star Trek novels

  3. I listened to The Extraordinaries and Boyfriend Material and both narrators did an outstanding job. I agree about narrators making or breaking a book, Sophie – I’ve had to stop listening because of some, and they ruined the book for me.

  4. Totally agree that the narrator can make or break the experience! And, like you, if it’s a new to me narrator, I always listen to a sample first. Love that you mentioned Joe Jameson! He totally brought Luc to life for me. :)

  5. I love Whelan. She’s amazing. I also had listened to Boyfriend Material. I DNFed that book and gave it a second chance via audio. The narrator won me over, and I gave it 4.5 stars