This is Not the Jess Show by Anna Carey; narrated by Suzy Jackson
Publication Date: February 2, 2021
Jess is living in the 90’s and dealing with some complicated issues. She has a major crush on her childhood best friend, unsupportive friends and a younger sister sick with a terminal illness. To make matters more complicated, unexplainable things start happening to Jess. She hears chanting no one else can, a flu knocks out half her classmates, and her best friends keep pressuring her to date the annoying school jock. When her sister ends up in the hospital, it’s the catalyst that Jess needs to slowly unravel a deep secret about the town.
My Contrary Maryby Cynthia Hand, Brodi Ashton, and Jodi Meadows; narrated by Fiona Hardingham Publisher: Harper Audio Release date: June 22, 2021 ISBN: 9780063087903
Mary, Queen of Scots, is an Eðian in a cutthroat world of Verities. Despite her mouse form in a world of predators, she refuses to be a victim. She may be caught between scheming deGuise uncles and a vicious Catherine de Medici, but she never forgets that she is a queen. Instead, she frees Eðians that have been captured and abused, retakes her throne, and discovers romantic love is possible, even in politically arranged marriages.
Hand, Ashton, and Meadows have spun off their Jane series and are now reimagining historical Marys. With their signature nods to actual history and several hilarious homages to pop culture this well-crafted story of power and intrigue with a strong female protagonist is worth the listen. Fortunately, the characters are voiced by the consummate narrator, Fiona Hardingham. Hardinham flawlessly performs the multiplicity of accents (French, English, Scottish) enabling listeners to immediately recognize each character and breathes life into a rollicking tale that will appeal to teens.
Readers who enjoyed The Lady Jane Series (My Lady Jane, My Plain Jane–also narrated by Hardingham, and My Calamity Jane) will avidly devour this fantasy.
– Jodi Kruse
Other Nominated Titles
This Is Not The Jess Show by Anna Carey; narrated by Suzy Jackson (February 2, 2021)
The Selected Lists teams read throughout the year in search of the best titles published in their respective categories. Once a book is suggested (either internally or through the title suggestion form), it must pass through a review process to be designated an official nomination. Each week, the teams feature a review of one of the officially nominated titles. Additional titles to receive this designation are listed as well. At year’s end, the team will curate a final list from all nominated titles and select a Top Ten. The previous years’ lists are available on The Hub.