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Monday Mini ~ The Transcriptionist by Amy Rowland

MondayMini3Getting back into the swing of things each week is hard. So is finding the quiet time to write a review over the weekend. In order to ease out of the weekend, I’ve decided to begin my blogging week with a mini review.

It’s been a while, folks. Blogging just hasn’t been a priority for me recently. That doesn’t mean that I’m not feeling a touch guilty about it. Here’s hoping that my small step today will prompt me to get on a more regular schedule.

Today I’m reviewing an audiobook I requested from Highbridge Audio. I loved the idea of this book and was excited to give it a listen after discovering that Xe Sands was narrating. Here are my thoughts.

The Transcriptionist by Amy RowlandCover of The Transcriptionist
Algonquin Books ~ May 13, 2014 ~ 256 pages
Highbridge Audio ~ Xe Sands ~ 5 hours 2 minutes

Being a transcriptionist is a lonely career, especially in an age when newspaper are going digital if not going out of business altogether. Lonely does not lead to the story of a sedate woman in The Transcriptionist. Quite the opposite in fact. Lena is the last transcriptionist standing at New York’s Record. From talking to pigeons to obsessing over the life of a sensational suicide she once rode next to on the subway, Lena exhibits increasingly bizarre behavior and skeptical outlook on life leaves little doubt that her solitude is due to equal parts her personality and self-fulfilling prophesy.

The audiobook version of The Transciptionist was both well produced and well narrated. I listened via CD and I appreciated that the breaks between discs were well placed. Narrator Xe Sands’ performance imbued Lena with more warmth and presence than I believe I would have found within the pages alone. The Transcriptionist wasn’t what I had hoped it would be, but the audio version with Xe Sands thoughtful interpretation of Lena and her isolation kept me reading when I might otherwise have set the book aside.

 

The 2014 Short Stories/Collections Audie Award Winner and Giveaway

Audie-LogoWhen I was asked to participate in the APA’s @Audiobook Community Audio Month campaign I jumped at the chance to feature the Short Stories/Collections category. After judging the Literary Fiction category for three years, I discovered this category and was so happy judging it. It offers such a wide variety of stories and narrators. While I am not one to sit down and read a collection of short stories, I absolutely devour them in audio.

Here are the titles nominated for the 2014 Audie Award in the Short Stories/Collections category:

  • The Ballad of the Sad Café by Carson McCullers (arrated by David Ledoux, Joe Barrett, Therese Plummer, Kevin Pariseau, Suzanne Toren, Edoardo Ballerini, and Barbara Rosenblat from Audible, Inc.)
  • The Cage Keeper and Other Stories by Andre Dubus III (narrated by Andre Dubus III from Blackstone Audio, Inc)
  • Nine Inches by Tom Perrotta (narrated by William Dufris, Andi Arndt, Tom Perrotta, and Rupert Degas from Macmillan Audio)
  • Nothing Gold Can Stay by Ron Rash (narrated by Alexander Cendese, Robert Petkoff, Prentice Onayemi, Christian Baskous, and Phoebe Strole from HarperAudio)
  • Sherlock Holmes in America by John L. Lellenberg et al. (narrated by Graeme Malcolm from Audible, Inc.)
  • We Live in Water by Jess Walter (narrated by Edoardo Ballerini and Jess Walter from HarperAudio)

I found each nominated title a joy to listen to. I would have been pleased to feature any of the titles as the Audie winner and I’ve looked forward to this day all month.

Without further ado, here is the 2014 Audie Award in the Short Stories/Collections category:

SherlockHolmesinAmerica

From Audible, Inc.: Just in time for Sherlock Holmes, the major motion picture starring Robert Downey, Jr. and Jude Law: the world’s greatest fictional detective and his famous sidekick Dr. Watson are on their first trip across the Atlantic as they solve crimes all over 19th-century America – from the bustling neighborhoods of New York, Boston, and D.C. to fog-shrouded San Francisco. The world’s best-loved British sleuth faces some of the most cunning criminals America has to offer and meets America’s most famous figures.

My thoughts: While the stories change settings throughout America and each author’s take on Sherlock Holmes was slightly different, Graeme Malcolm did an excellent job making this collection work as a whole. As a recent Sherlock convert, I loved every minute of it. Now that I’ve read about Sherlock’s exploits in America, I really must read the original stories by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.

Giveaway!

I have one copy of Sherlock Holmes in America by various authors courtesy of Audible, Inc. to give away. Comment here by midnight on Saturday, July 5th to be entered to win. Tomorrow be sure to visit Audiobooker as Mary will be giving away the wining title in the Business/Educational category.

Summer Shorts ’14 Blog Hop featuring Jo Anna Perrin

Jo-AnnaSpring12-269x300

I am so glad that Summer Shorts has returned again this year for another round of wonderful short narrations recorded by the best of the best audiobook narrators in the business. Today I have the good fortune of featuring Jo Anna Perin, talented narrator, writer, co-founder of Abbreviated Audio, and personal friend who frequently makes […]

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Monday Mini ~ The Snow Queen by Michael Cunningham

Cover of The Snow Queen

Getting back into the swing of things each week is hard. So is finding the quiet time to write a review over the weekend. In order to ease out of the weekend, I’ve decided to begin my blogging week with a mini review. I typically don’t listen to celebrity narrators outside of the titles I […]

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Summer Shorts ’14 Blog Hop Featuring Dion Graham

Dion

I am so glad that Summer Shorts has returned again this year for another round of wonderful short narrations recorded by the best of the best audiobook narrators in the business. Today I have the good fortune of featuring Dion Graham. June wouldn’t be audiobook month for me if Dion didn’t stop by the blog. […]

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Summer Shorts ’14 Blog Hop featuring John Lee

Summer-Shorts

I am so glad that Summer Shorts has returned again this year for another round of wonderful short narrations recorded by the best of the best audiobook narrators in the business. This year I have the good fortune of featuring John Lee, the multi-award winning narrator of over 400 titles to date. To prepare for […]

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Monday Mini ~ Frog Music by Emma Donoghue

Cover of Frog Music

Getting back into the swing of things each week is hard. So is finding the quiet time to write a review over the weekend. In order to ease out of the weekend, I’ve decided to begin my blogging week with a mini review. Last year I listened to Emma Donoghue’s Astray because it got such […]

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A Listener’s Choice JIAM Giveaway

Cover of The Martian

During the Audie Awards last Thursday, Team Armchair Audies announced the winner of the first Listener’s Choice Award. While the Audies are mainly focused on the publishing companies as they nominate titles they would like to see win in each of the categories, the Listener’s Choice Award was focused on the narrator and the story. […]

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1st Annual Armchair Audies Listener’s Choice Awards

armchairaudies

Last year I did a lot of raging against the Audiobook of the Year machine. While on one level I understood that this Audie award was based on marketing and sales figures, I could not let go of what I feel the winner of the Audiobook of the Year Award should signify: an audiobook and […]

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Monday Mini ~ The Martian by Andy Weir

Cover of The Martian

Getting back into the swing of things each week is hard. So is finding the quiet time to write a review over the weekend. In order to ease out of the weekend, I’ve decided to begin my blogging week with a mini review. Going to a bookstore with a fellow book lover can be dangerous. […]

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