Amazing Audiobooks (#AA2021) Nominees Round Up, September 16 Edition

Click here to see all of the current Amazing Audiobooks nominees along with more information about the list and past years’ selections.

Today Tonight Tomorrow by Rachel Lynn Solomon; narrated by Rebekkah Ross
Simon & Schuster Audio
Release date: July 28, 2020
ISBN: 9781797111735

Rowan wants to be valedictorian, she wants to win Howl, and she wants to write romance novels. All that stands in her way is her nemesis, Neil.  She can beat him for valedictorian, she can beat him at Howl, and hopefully get the confidence to share her novel with the world.  Her last day of high school is full of anticipation, fear, and maybe a little dread, but if everything goes her way, Rowan just might win at high school after all. 

A fun rom com, Today Tonight Tomorrow follows Rowan and Neil in an elaborate scavenger hunt around Seattle.  Following the enemies to lovers trope, it is unapologetically predictable with a happily ever after ending.  The main character is a lover of romance novels, and here she gets to live her own.  Ross’s narration keeps the energy going as well as great character voices. The story has good LGBTQ representation and a positive Jewish storyline as well.

Those who are looking for a fun YA romance need to look no further, and those looking for a love note to Seattle can also settle in for this one.  Fans of When Dimple Met Rishi by Sandhya Menon or Stay Sweet by Siobhan Vivian will be happy listening to Today Tonight Tomorrow.

-Cathy Outten

A Peculiar Peril by Jeff VanderMeer; narrated by Raphael Corkhill
Macmillan Audio
Publication Date: July 7, 2020
ISBN: 978-1250211835

Jonathan Lambshead is months away from inheriting a mansion crammed to the gills with all kinds of oddities. When his two best friends arrive to help him catalog the contents of his deceased grandfather’s house, the trio is swept onto an alternate Earth named Aurora where famed occultist Aleister Crowly is alive and well, marmots and other animals (as well as a number of vegetables) can talk, and sinister forces are taking over Europe. Jonathan’s family ties to a secret society tasked with keeping Earth and Aurora separate turn out to be deadly, and Jonathan and his friends must unravel his past while attempting to save the world(s). 

This large first novel in a duology is filled with magic, historical fiction, military strategy and fantastic beasts. Teens who enjoy fantasy, alternate worlds or oddities will devour this audiobook. Corkhill’s narration brings VanderMeer’s humor and absurd fantasy to life, keeping the listener thoroughly engaged. 
Perfect for readers of Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell or The Night Circus as well as Scott Westerfeld’s Leviathan series. Fans of the television series Carnival Row or Good Omens will find much to enjoy.

-Natalie LaRocque

The Rise and Fall of Charles Lindbergh by Candace Fleming; narrated by Kirsten Potter
Listening Library
February 11, 2020
ISBN: 9780593155233

This revealing biography follows the life of Charles Lindbergh from his childhood in Minnesota to his fall as a Nazi sympathizer. Every major event of Lindbergh’s life is covered giving insight into his motivations and sometimes controversial choices. The book describes well known events like his obsession with aviation, eventual fame as a pilot, and the kidnaping of his first child. The book also looks at lesser known life events including his close relationship with his mother, the isolation he experienced as an only child and his interest in eugenics and white supremacy. All of these events are weaved together in a compelling story that gives the reader a true, honest portrait of a very complicated man.

This fast paced biography is narrated with vigor and enthusiasm. There is never a dull moment in Lindbergh’s life and Potter uses his intensity for life to fuel her voice as she describes flying maneuvers, kidnapping investigations and arguments between family members. Potter also does a nice job of changing her voice slightly to signal the listener that she is reading a direct quote from someone.

Listeners who enjoy troubled historical figures with adventurous lives like Samurai Rising: The Epic Life of Minamoto Yoshitsune and Bonnie and Clyde: The Making of a Legend will find similar themes in this audio. If the excitement of flying and setting world records is more what you are looking for, than Born to Fly: The First Women’s Air Race Across America is sure to please.

–Rachel Adams