Best of 2013 Audiobook Blog Hop

January 1, 2014 Blog Fun, Giveaways 75

I’m super excited to be launching the New Year with the Best of 2013 Audiobook Blog Hop, hosted by the fabulous ladies at The Book NymphoHot Listens, and Geeky Bloggers Book Blog.  It runs from Jan 1 2014 to Jan 15 2014. The best part is that this giveaway is a hop where everyone features their three favorite listens from 2013… I think my wish list is about to explode!! Yay!!

I discovered audiobooks last year actually and since then, I’ve become a total addict. Let’s put it this way – when 2013 started I didn’t own any audiobooks and today I own 73! I haven’t read them all, but I’ve read enough of them that picking out just 3 top favorites was ridiculously hard.  My top three picks,ranked by favorite narrators:

#1 With All My Soul by Rachel Vincent, Narrated by Amanda Ronconi

All My Soul by Rachel Vincent

With All My Soul by Rachel Vincent
Narrated by Amanda Ronconi
Series: Soul Screamers #7
Published by Harlequin Enterprises Ltd. on March 26, 2013
Genres: FantasyRomanceYoung Adult
Pages: 384
Audio book length:11 hours 47 minutes
Format: Audiobook
Source: audible.com
five-stars
Goodreads
Audible • Amazon

My Thoughts: I loved the entire Soul Screamers series, one of the first series I devoured this year. I think Rachel Vincent and Amanda Ronconi make an incredible pair – Ronconi brings all the characters to life – and she’s particularly great at voicing the teenage Kaylee. A great young adult series. I’ve reviewed the entire series – start with the prequel, My Soul to Lose, which you can get for free on Audible.

#2 Shadowfever by Karin Marie Moning, Narrated by Natalie Ross & Phil Gigante

Shadowfever by Karen Marie Moning

Shadowfever by Karen Marie Moning
Narrated by Natalie RossPhil Gigante
Series: Fever Series #5
Published by Brilliance Audioon January 18, 2001
Genres: RomanceUrban Fantasy
Pages: 608
Audio book length:19 hours 57 minutes
Format: Audiobook
Source: audible.com
five-stars
Goodreads
Audible • Amazon

My Thoughts: The Fever Series is another one that I devoured. Definitely NOT young adult, Jericho Barrons is an alpha you have to meet if you haven’t yet. Unfortunately the first three books are narrated by Joyce Bean – the worst narrator I’ve encountered thus far – and you do not want to meet Jericho that way. But if you switch over with book #4 you’ll get a real treat – Natalie Ross and Phil Gigante take over and WOW! They both do a great job, though I think it’s Gigante’s voice for Jericho that made me fall in love with this duo. I’ve reviewed all the books, including the first book in the spin off series (also narrated by Ross & Gigante), so start with book 1, Darkfever (just don’t listen until book #4!!).

#3 Spider’s Bite by Jennifer Estep, Narrated by Lauren Fortgang

Spider's Bite by Jennifer EstepSpider’s Bite by Jennifer Estep
Narrated by Lauren Fortgang
Series: Elemental Assassin #1
Published by Audible Frontiers on September 28, 2010
Genres: Urban Fantasy
Pages: 432
Audio book length:11 hours 59 minutes
Format: Audiobook
Source: audible.com
four-stars
Goodreads
Audible • Amazon

My Thoughts: Lauren Fortgang was all-in-all a decent narrator. My only complaint was her pacing – I felt she read way too slow. But besides that she did a really good job embodying the characters, who are pretty awesome. I’ve only read book one in this series, but I fully intend to get caught up in 2013. Check out my review for Spider’s Bite and grab your copy 🙂

Giveaways!!

Because I hope everyone at least gets a chance to fall in love with audiobooks the way I have, I’m going to be giving away 1 free audiobook of your choice from Audible. This giveaway is open internationally, but you must be able to accept books from Audible to win. Good luck and happy listening! Oh and Happy New Year!!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

And as part of the hop, there’s any even more exciting giveaway available (which I would LOVE to win)!! Thanks to Audible you have an incredible opportunity to win a 6 month (single credit) membership to Audible.com!

 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Blog Hop Participants

Be sure to visit all the blogs on this hop – imagine all the great listens you’re going to find! And several of the participants will also have giveaways of their own. Have fun!  

Berls

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About Berls
Berls has been a book lover her whole life. She reads pretty much every genre and is currently working hard at making her childhood dream of becoming an author come true. She loves sharing her thoughts about books, blogging, and just random fun stuff. She's a challenge and read-a-thon junkie, so it's no wonder that she loves co-hosting the COYER reading challenge. Leave a comment, Berls is always happy to chat!

75 Responses to “Best of 2013 Audiobook Blog Hop”

  1. Berls
    Twitter:

    A bad narrator can destroy a great book, but a great one can make a good book brilliant – so I hope this hope has helped you find some great narrators to try again with 🙂 Amanda Ronconi is super great for starting IMHO

  2. Cindi Clubbs

    I have not read or even heard of any of your top three which is why I love these blog hops—I find my next reads!! My daughter and I tried to listen to a ya audiobook and were turned off by the narrator as well. I think that’s why I’m so chicken to listen to audiobooks!!

    • Berls
      Twitter:

      Yay! I love finding out someone is new to audio books – I recommend Amanda Ronconi above all for starting 🙂

  3. Christina T

    I have read With All My Soul and it was sad to see one of my favorite series over with but it was good ending to an amazing series. I haven’t heard anything with any of these narrators, I’m still big on read the book and have slowly made my way over to audio books.

    • Berls
      Twitter:

      I think finding the right narrator/author combo was key for me making the switch so enthusiastically. I hope you find a golden couple – for me its Amanda Ronconi and any other she reads for LOL!

    • Berls
      Twitter:

      Oh I hope you get a chance to check out that series – it’s so great and Amanda Ronconi is Amazing!

    • Berls
      Twitter:

      Ilona Andrews is an author I have on my TBR – guess I better check out the audio. Good luck in the giveaway!

    • Berls
      Twitter:

      That was me last year – they are pretty great huh? I’m getting ready to pick winners, so good luck!

  4. LadyVampire

    I am just starting to read the Rachel Vincent series here. I’m also new to audiobooks but so enjoy them. Thanks for the giveaway!

    • Berls
      Twitter:

      Enjoy Soul Screamers – that may have been my favorite series of the year (not just for audio)! Good luck in the giveaway 🙂

    • Berls
      Twitter:

      If you only ever get to listen to 1 of the narrators, I hope you get to listen to Amanda Ronconi. She’s really, truly great!

  5. Lupdilup

    Thank you so much for being part of the hop! Woot! Another audiobook junkie, yay!
    I loved 2 of your choices. I have listened to the first 2 books of the Soul Screamers series, but I need to catch up. I’m glad to hear that such a great listen is part of it 🙂
    If I have to pick the best performances for this year, it has to be, Kirby Heyborne and Candace Thaxton in The Sea of Tranquility.

    Thank you Berls!
    Lupdilup recently posted…Best Audiobooks of 2013 Blog Hop and GiveawayMy Profile

    • Berls
      Twitter:

      I never dreamed I’d love audiobooks as much as I do. They’re just so handy for reading when you’re doing other things. The Soul Screamers series was probably my favorite YA read of 2013 (not just audio). I love Rachel Vincent and Amanda Ronconi. I cried a few times, not going to lie.

      I need to check out your best picks. Right now I’m listening to Dark Lover :-)!!

  6. Stephanie H.

    I haven’t yet read any of the books on your list, but I have the soul screamers and elemental assassins series on my wishlist. I started reading the fever series this year, but haven’t gotten to shadowfever yet. My husband read them all on audio, though, and enjoyed them.

    • Berls
      Twitter:

      I hope you enjoy them! I listened to the whole fever series on audio (even the earlier books because I bought them without realizing I wouldn’t like the narrator for the first 3). The story is so good that even bad narration didn’t ruin it for me. I’m still working on the rest of EA but hear great things. Happy 2014!

  7. Lady Bren

    First off I have to tell you that I love your review format!!
    I am similar in that when I find a series I devour it. And the right voice can definitely make you fall in love with a character. My “hot” voice is Holter Graham. I believe he could read the phone book and I’d listen
    Lady Bren recently posted…Welcoming 2014 with a Blog HopMy Profile

    • Berls
      Twitter:

      Thanks so much! I’m going to have to go find some books with Holter Graham then – always looking for “hot” voices! Happy 2014!

  8. BookaholicCat

    I read your three favorites, but sadly I don’t think I have listened to any of the narrators, but have to check them out.
    Thanks for the giveaway!

    • Berls
      Twitter:

      They’re great books – but the narrators really do push them that extra mile IMHO. If you can only check out one of the narrators, I totally recommend Amanda Ronconi, she’s just AMAZING. Happy 2014!

  9. January

    I haven’t read any of them! I’ll definitely have to check them out! My favourite that I listened to this year was Looking For Alaska. Thanks for the giveaway! 😀

    • Berls
      Twitter:

      Looking for Alaska is a new one for me – I’ll have to check it out! I hope you get to read one of my picks (obviously I loved them LOL). Happy 2014!

  10. Denise Z

    I have read Jennifer Estep’s Elemental Assassin series and absolutely love it. I have not listened to is in audio. I have not listened to many audiobooks this past year, but my favorite was Janet Evanovich’s Explosive Eighteen, it was a real hoot and loads of fun with a great narrator. Thank you for participating in this fun hop 🙂

    • Berls
      Twitter:

      I haven’t read Janet Evanovich and I just checked out the narrator (Lorelei King) and she’s brand new to me. Yay! I love finding new greats. I haven’t finished EA but look forward to catching up this year. Happy 2014!

    • Berls
      Twitter:

      I do love the Molly Harper books too – I could have easily made all three of my favs from last year Ronconi reads, but decided to give it a little variety 🙂

    • Berls
      Twitter:

      OMG Phil is incredible – When I first heard his voice for Barrons (which is in the book where MAC is Priya for a good part…) I went weak in the knees! Can’t wait for July and Burned!

    • Berls
      Twitter:

      Iced was another great one – same narration duo, so you know exactly what I’m talking about. I can’t wait for Burned!

    • Berls
      Twitter:

      I can’t wait to get back into EA – I’ve only made it through Spider’s Bite so far and really hope I’ll get caught up in 2014!

    • Berls
      Twitter:

      Yay! I adore audio books and look forward to getting back into them this month (I haven’t had much audio time as of late). Happy New Year!!

    • Berls
      Twitter:

      Yay! I’m glad to have helped solve that problem. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did – Gin is a great heroine!

  11. Amy

    Loved Moning’s on audio & have 2 of Estep’s on audio waiting for ear time. I need to look into catching up on the Soul Screamer’s on audio too.

    • Berls
      Twitter:

      I absolutely loved Soul Screamers, I hope you get to catch up on it this year 🙂 And I also have a couple of Estep’s just waiting to be read. If only there was more time!

    • Berls
      Twitter:

      Isn’t it? I’m loving seeing everyone’s favorites – it’s really adding to my audible wishlist! I’ll have to check out Simon Vance and Michael Page, I’m not familiar with either of them… and uh-oh a Jane Austen Challenge? I may have to add it to my list of challenges. Going to check out your post!

  12. YvonneJ

    I’m not familiar with any of the narrators that you mentioned. Just looking at the cover of Shadowfever makes me want to give it a try.

    • Berls
      Twitter:

      The Fever series was really great IMO, just don’t do the audio until book 4. And you can’t go wrong with anything narrated by Amanda Ronconi – though Soul Screamers is a definite favorite. I hope you get to try some of them out 🙂

    • Berls
      Twitter:

      Yay! I hope you enjoy the series. I agree that title didn’t fit too well – the others fit better and the series only gets better IMO. Amanda is a perfect fit for narration as you’ve already discovered, enjoy!! 🙂

    • Berls
      Twitter:

      Don’t feel too bad – the Fever series is one of the very few I’m actually current on! I’ve only read book 1 in EA and really hope to get caught up this year.

  13. Kelli (The Oddiophile)

    I enjoyed Spider’s Bite this past year too. Although the slower pace of Fortgang’s narration struck me as a good match to the slow Southern setting, I can see why it might chafe a bit, especially as the action ramps up.

    One of my top 3 listens was narrated by Amanda Ronconi and she is such a good narrator. I’ll have to give the Soul Screamers series a listen.
    Kelli (The Oddiophile) recently posted…Best of 2013 Audiobook Blog HopMy Profile

    • Berls
      Twitter:

      I think you’re right that the slow pace does match the South pretty well. I think as I read more of the books it’ll bother me less and less. I just wanted her to speed up so I could read it faster LOL

      Amanda Ronconi is an amazing narrator and when I see she’s the narrator for a book I’m considering it’s a done deal!

    • Berls
      Twitter:

      I plan to catch up with Estep’s EA series this year, I really enjoyed book 1 and then life got in the way .And Burned by KMM is my most anticipated audiobook of 2014 without a doubt, so excited!!

    • Berls
      Twitter:

      Me too – I just recently finished the Jane Jameson series and I’m working on the Alaska one. I could have made an top 3 all made up of Amanda Ronconi honestly LOL

  14. Marcia Bookswagger

    I keep hearing about the Karen Marie Morning Series but its always good and bad and now I know why did not get that its a narrator switch making it good, I have not read the series but you do have me adding it to my TBR but WILL NOT do audio until book 4, I a curious about a duo audio team, I am going trying to remember to come back after I listen but don’t hold me to it, I forget my keys most days.
    Marcia Bookswagger recently posted…The Accent, its the accent. Audio books keeping me sane (Bookswagger Stop)My Profile

    • Berls
      Twitter:

      The team is incredible – I wish they’d go back and redo the first three books! I hope you remember, but either way I hope you get to read the series!

  15. Debra Kay Neiman

    These are three new books, authors to check out this year. Happy New Year from Oklahoma, USA. crystalbluern at onlineok dot com

    • Berls
      Twitter:

      Happy New Year Felicia! Thanks so much for hosting this, I’ve been looking forward to it for a while now. IMO The Soul Screamers is one of the better young adult series I’ve listened to/read – not as much teenage angst and Amanda is crazy great (as you know).

    • Berls
      Twitter:

      I’ve never listened to podcasts, but I imagine I would enjoy them since I love audiobooks so much. Good luck in the giveaway – maybe it will be the push you need to get back into audiobooks 🙂 Happy 2014!

      • Jenna
        Twitter:

        Most of the podcasts I listen to are for TV shows not currently airing new episodes. The Walking Dead returns next month, Game of Thrones usually starts at the end of March, and Falling Skies is a summer show. I’m still catching up with Falling Skies, but I hope to have a few weeks in between finishing that up and the return of TWD that I can listen to some audiobooks.
        Jenna recently posted…Happy New Year!My Profile

        • Berls
          Twitter:

          Oh cool I had no idea that there were podcasts for shows… and I’m a pretty big fan of The Walking Dead so I may just have to check that out!

    • Berls
      Twitter:

      Oh wow, I hope you get to check out at least Amanda Ronconi – she’s the #1 reason I’m an audiobook addict now 🙂 Thanks for stopping by and Happy 2014!

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