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Reading is Magical's Favorite Audiobooks of 2019

Reading is Magical's Favorite Audiobooks of 2019

I listened to a LOT of audiobooks this year and these were my top eleven of 2019! (I couldn't narrow it down to just ten)

Playlist Tags: topic: best of 2019 influencer-created

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With the Fire on High

By Elizabeth Acevedo
Narrated by: Elizabeth Acevedo
Length: 7 hours 26 minutes

With the Fire on High

“This was a great listen. Emoni, a single teen mom, has so much on her plate and has maturity beyond her years. She’s realistic and responsible and navigates high school, parenting, college decisions and a budding love interest. She’s becoming a talented chef and her feelings are expressed in her food. The author narrates and she had me hooked from the first sentence.”

Belmont Books image Audrey, Belmont Books
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The Ensemble

A Novel

By Aja Gabel
Narrated by: Rebecca Lowman
Length: 11 hours 36 minutes

The Ensemble

“My goodness, I love the quartet of flawed and wonderful characters Aja Gabel brings to life. I felt the heartbreak and triumph each time the ensemble performed. The Ensemble captures everything from the relentless rehearsals to the particular hand injuries musicians worry over to the conflict within the group. Henry, Daniel, Jana, and Britt are each characters unto themselves, but together they create a fifth character: the quartet itself. An inventive novel about the lives of musicians and the world they inhabit, full of tension, ambition, confusion, and loyalty. The Ensemble is a remarkable achievement.”

Watermark Books image Sarah Bagby, Watermark Books
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Frankly in Love

By David Yoon
Narrated by: Raymond J. Lee
Length: 10 hours 10 minutes

Frankly in Love

“This book really hit it out of the park for me; as an Asian-American I could really relate to the main character in a lot of ways. An example of this, is Frank's wanting to please his parents, but yet also be his own person was something that I think most people, myself included can identify with. There are definitely plot twists that keep you on your toes. It was humorous, enjoyable, and well written. I would definitely re-read this one again! I think I would even like a physical copy!”

The Bluestocking Bookshop image Cassie, The Bluestocking Bookshop
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The Boys in the Boat

Nine Americans and Their Epic Quest for Gold at the 1936 Berlin Olympics

By Daniel James Brown
Narrated by: Edward Herrmann
Length: 14 hours 24 minutes

If you enjoyed Dust Bowl Girls, then you’ll love The Boys in the Boat.

“Set during the Dust Bowl, amidst the Great Depression, a dedicated group of basketball beauties, the Cardinals of Oklahoma Presbyterian College, are determined to challenge societal strictures and Babe Didrickson on their quest for the National Championship title. Faced with much criticism, judged less feminine for participating in a competitive sport rather than lady-like acceptable activities, the Cardinals overcome poverty, performing to their potential recognized by Coach Babb, and capture the heart of a Nation. This is the true tale of trailblazing women overcoming the overwhelming odds against them sure to inspire the athlete in all of us. A great, informative read like The Boys in the Boat by Daniel James Brown.”

McLean & Eakin Booksellers image Kristin, McLean & Eakin Booksellers
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The Fifth Season

The Broken Earth: Book #1

By N. K. Jemisin
Narrated by: Robin Miles
Length: 15 hours 27 minutes

If you enjoyed The City We Became, then you’ll love The Fifth Season.

“Maybe one of the best science fiction/fantasy novels I've ever read! No wonder the entire trilogy won three consecutive Hugo Awards. I loved: the masterfully crafted nonlinear storytelling that kept me guessing til the very end, the unparalleled world building, the strong characterization, the high stakes action/adventure, the diversity of relationship dynamics, the provocative depictions of the sexuality and gender, and the commentary on how otherness is so feared in society it leads to brutality and in some cases catastrophic ends. AMAZING! COMPLEX! and ABSOLUTELY BRILLIANT!”

A Great Good Place for Books image Zinna, A Great Good Place for Books
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Heavy

An American Memoir

By Kiese Laymon
Narrated by: Kiese Laymon
Length: 6 hours 17 minutes

Heavy

“"I wanted to write a lie," Kiese Laymon says in the opening pages of his brutal, beautiful memoir, Heavy. The book is written in the second person, addressed to his mother, with whom Laymon shares a turbulent, intimate relationship. She feeds his mind with books, but critiques the way Laymon feeds his body as he struggles with his weight. She is his best friend, yet demands excellence through regular beatings. And yet, Laymon's complicated love for his mother is absolute. It is palpable in his voice as he reads the words he wrote for his mother, as he tells you his story of being a black boy, a black man, in Mississippi and America. This is a book that will knock you flat on your back. This is a book that will make you sob in the grocery store. Laymon had me captivated from the very first word he spoke. It was a privilege to listen.”

Square Books image Maggie, Square Books
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How We Fight For Our Lives

By Saeed Jones
Narrated by: Saeed Jones
Length: 5 hours 34 minutes

How We Fight For Our Lives

“Saeed doesn't hold back any details, and his chapters often read like biographical poetry. This book is a window into a different life, and a different soul. It also makes a great listen.”

Bright Side Bookshop image Amy, Bright Side Bookshop
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Hollow Kingdom

By Kira Jane Buxton
Narrated by: Robert Petkoff
Length: 10 hours 10 minutes

Hollow Kingdom

“You wouldn't think a foul-mouthed, wise-cracking crow named S. T. (short for Shit Turd) would be a great companion at the end of the world, but honestly? I couldn't imagine another living being to spend the apocalypse with. Buxton amazingly captures the natural world as the humans have devolved into zombie-like creatures, and given us the narrator we deserve. On top of that, Robert Petkoff is the absolute perfect reader to take us on this journey. Side-splittingly hilarious as well as a thoughtful warning against technology, this unique book is one readers (or listeners!) won't be able to put down. ”

Watermark Books image Melissa, Watermark Books
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A Duke by Default

Reluctant Royals

By Alyssa Cole
Narrated by: Karen Chilton
Length: 12 hours 25 minutes

New York City socialite and perpetual hot mess Portia Hobbs is tired of disappointing her family, friends, and-most importantly-herself. An apprenticeship with a struggling swordmaker in Scotland is a chance to use her expertise and discover what she's capable of. And it turns out that she excels at aggravating her gruff silver-fox boss...when...

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City of Girls

A Novel

By Elizabeth Gilbert
Narrated by: Blair Brown
Length: 15 hours 7 minutes

City of Girls

“City of Girls is the perfect read when you're looking for something that's not too heavy, yet engaging and entertaining. I loved the motley crew of perfectly flawed characters, unapologetic in their vices and dramas. And how refreshing it was to read about women, especially 1940s women, who were open in their sexuality and, dare I say, actually enjoyed sex! With multiple partners! How scandalous! Elizabeth Gilbert (who is a ray of sunshine in real life) has created something unique and heartwarming with her third fictional title. And if you're like me who finds audio fiction really hit or miss depending on the narrator, you'll be happy the hear that Blair Brown does a beautiful job of it.”

Powell's Books image Michelle, Powell's Books
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On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous

A Novel

By Ocean Vuong
Narrated by: Ocean Vuong
Length: 7 hours 18 minutes

On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous

“A rare poignant visceral reading experience, tackling themes of war, immigration, identity, sexuality, violence, and carving out your place in the world. More poetic than narrative. Deeply Affecting! Absolutely Brilliant! Stunning!”

A Great Good Place for Books image Zinna, A Great Good Place for Books
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