AudioFile’s Best Audiobooks of April

Each month, our friends at AudioFile Magazine share a curated list of the best audiobooks for your literary listening pleasure.



memory piece audio

Memory Piece by Lisa Ko| Read by Eunice Wong
AudioFile Earphones Award
[Penguin Audio | 9.75 hrs.]

Multiple Earphones Award winner Eunice Wong performs this novel about a decades-long friendship between three Asian American women. Giselle Chin, Jackie Ong, and Ellen Ng come of age in the ’80s and ’90s, trying to make their way in the world. Wong’s performance captures the friends’ perspectives, giving each a unique narrative voice. In Wong’s narration, one friend sounds brusque and efficient, while another’s voice is laid-back and easygoing. Wong’s outstanding performance is one of the must-listens of the year.

the angel of indian audio

The Angel of Indian Lake: The Indian Lake Trilogy, Book 3 by Stephen Graham Jones| Read by Isabella Star LaBlanc, Barbara Crampton, Angela Goethals, Andrew J. Robinson, Stephen Graham Jones, Stephen King
AudioFile Earphones Award

[Simon & Schuster Audio | 16.5 hrs.]

In this trilogy, which uses the horror genre to explore generational trauma, Sisseton Wahpeton Dakota actor Isabella Star LaBlanc leads an ensemble cast. Voicing first-person narrator Jade “Slasher Girl” Daniels, LaBlanc walks the knife edge between anguish and rage as the young Blackfeet woman confronts a third massacre. Interleaved with Jade’s account of the bloodbath are hilariously fussy reports from a private investigator—neatly captured by Andrew J. Robinson. As the bodies fall, the mysteries untwist and retwist, with Jade striving to protect those she loves. Full of heart—and blood.

piglet audio

Piglet by Lottie Hazell| Read by Rebekah Hinds
AudioFile Earphones Award

[Macmillan Audio | 7.5 hrs.]

Narrator Rebekah Hinds imbues Hazell’s compelling debut with a palpable sense of dread. A London cookbook editor known as Piglet prepares for her wedding but, just 13 days before the big day, her fiancé shares a secret that derails everything. Hinds’s portrait of Piglet is a triumph, capturing her satisfaction at the sumptuous meals she creates for friends and family and her disintegrating confidence as she desperately tries to stay the course to her wedding. This is a listen like slightly burnt caramel—sharp and dark, yet still luscious.

welcome to the bookshop audio

Welcome to the Hyunam-dong Bookshop by Hwang Bo-reum, Shanna Tan [Trans.]| Read by Rosa Escoda
AudioFile Earphones Award
[Bloomsbury Publishing | 8 hrs.]

Rosa Escoda’s narration of this slice-of-life audiobook is like being wrapped in a blanket still warm from the dryer. Yeongju leaves her indifferent marriage and competitive career behind to open a bookstore that becomes a refuge to those seeking peace and renewal. Escoda’s brisk pace and gentle tone carry listeners along as Yeongju reconciles her childhood dream with the business of attracting and keeping customers. Escoda subtly calibrates her performance to make this story’s dreamlike mood irresistible.

victim audio

Victim by Andrew Boryga| Read by Anthony Rey Perez
AudioFile Earphones Award

[Random House Audio | 8 hrs.]

Anthony Rey Perez has just the right tone for this satirical debut novel, especially as he aptly mimics the protagonist’s self-justifying voice and truth twisting. Perez sounds just like the smart Puerto Rican kid from the Bronx featured in the story. Javi Perez succeeds until he doesn’t by playing the victim “trifecta”: tragic circumstance; struggling economics; and being a person of color. A good student who aims to become a writer, he parlays his victim status into a scholarship at a prestigious college and a gig as a staff member of a famous magazine. This first-person novel about his rise and fall is compelling, and Anthony Rey Perez’s excellent narration makes it a memorable audiobook.



a history of women in objects audio

A History of Women in 101 Objects by Annabelle Hirsch| Read by Gillian Anderson, Katy Hessel, Anita Rani, Jackie Kay, Len Pennie, Annabelle Hirsch, Shirley Manson, Rebecca Solnit, Sandi Toksvig, Marina Hyde, Naomi Shimada, and a Full Cast
AudioFile Earphones Award

[Random House Audio | 13 hrs.]

Annabelle Hirsch’s feminist look at history through 101 idiosyncratic objects is given a captivating performance by the author and 100 narrators. The choice of performers is as clever as the short essays about the objects. We have an anecdote about a healed femur from 30,000 BCE, narrated by Gillian Anderson; a fifth-century BCE Amazon warrior doll, read by Len Pennie; a seventeenth-century thumbscrew, read by Val McDermid; an eighteenth-century bidet, read by Olivia Colman; a nineteenth-century knife, read by Samin Nosrat. Many voices enhance the informative, insightful, subversive, and witty writing, making this an audiobook to savor and recommend.

burn book

Burn Book: A Tech Love Story by Kara Swisher| Read by Kara Swisher
AudioFile Earphones Award
[Simon & Schuster Audio | 7.75 hrs.]

Journalist Kara Swisher specializes in reporting on the Internet. Here she narrates her memoir with urgency and focus, providing a you-are-there history of Silicon Valley. Swisher has developed a well-honed, rapid-fire delivery; an aura of journalistic integrity; and a firsthand knowledge of tech history. There are plenty of reveals about the fake-it-til-you-make-it individuals who built tech culture. Swisher serves as the Valley’s outlier conscience—fearful of the future and optimistically pessimistic.

look again audio

Look Again: The Power of Noticing What Was Always There by Tali Sharot, Cass R. Sunstein| Read by Imani Jade Powers, Byron Wagner
AudioFile Earphones Award

[Simon & Schuster Audio | 6.5 hrs.]

Two gifted narrators give performances that make the authors’ ideas about paying attention come alive. Their vocal gifts are different and complement each other: Imani Jade Powers performs with a hushed intensity and a philosophical depth that give her interpretations real power. Byron Wagner’s amazing array of pitch patterns is fun to hear and makes the author’s ideas glow without trivializing them. The audiobook’s mission is to help us understand and gain power over the way we process familiar versus novel experiences.

none of the above audio

None of the Above: Reflections on Life Beyond the Binary by Travis Alabanza| Read by Travis Alabanza
[Dreamscape | 6.75 hrs.]

British performance artist and writer Travis Alabanza narrates their own expansive exploration of race, gender, and trans identity. Throughout this engaging production, they reject the expectation of a tidy response to the “When did you know….” question and the demands to perform according to narrowly defined gender parameters. Alabanza shares their experiences growing up Black and queer in England with a steadiness that is well paired with this reflective production. Alabanza’s unhurried delivery imprints their memoir on listeners, planting seeds for ongoing discussion.

backyard bird audio

The Backyard Bird Chronicles by Amy Tan, David Allen Sibley [Fore.]| Read by Amy Tan, Evan Sibley
[Random House Audio | 6.5 hrs.]

Author/narrator Amy Tan takes up bird watching to counteract the negativity and discord in the world. Tan is a joy to listen to—a charming and warm presence, with a dollop of self-deprecation, as she chronicles her learning journey. She exudes joy and wonder as a hummingbird feeds from her hand. When Tan figures out a way to stop the birds from wasting good seed, the sense of triumph she feels is clear. Listeners should be sure to check out the beautiful sketches by Tan included in a pdf with the audio.

Source link

About The Author

Scroll to Top