I used to spend a couple of hours each day on a bus to and from work, when I wasn’t sleeping, I filled those hours listening to audiobooks and podcasts. Audiobooks aren’t just for the commute though, sometimes it’s just nice to have someone read to you while you do the dishes, run errands or go on a walk. Here are 10 books that are great to listen to – wherever you are.
1. The Help by Kathryn Stockett, read by Jenna Lamia, Bahni Turpin, Octavia Spencer, and Cassandra Campbell: In Jackson, Mississippi, in 1962, there are lines that are not crossed. With the civil rights movement exploding all around them, three women start a movement of their own, forever changing a town and the way women, black and white, mothers and daughters, view one another.
2. Bossypants by Tina Fey, read by Tina Fey: The breakout star of “Saturday Night Live” and “30 Rock” gives a humorous account of her life, as well as behind-the-scenes stories from her hit shows
3. Bloody Jack by L.A. Meyer, read by Katherine Kellgren: Reduced to begging and thievery in the streets of London, a thirteen-year-old orphan disguises herself as a boy and connives her way onto a British warship set for high sea adventure in search of pirates.
4. The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern, read by Jim Dale: Waging a fierce competition for which they have trained since childhood, circus magicians Celia and Marco unexpectedly fall in love with each other and share a fantastical romance that manifests in fateful ways.
5. The End of Your Life Book Club by Will Schwalbe, read by Jeff Harding: The inspiring story of a son and his dying mother, who form a “book club” that brings them together as her life comes to a close. Mary Anne Schwalbe is waiting for her chemotherapy treatments when Will casually asks her what she’s reading. The conversation they have grows into tradition: soon they are reading the same books so they can have something to talk about in the hospital waiting room.
6. Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn, read by Julia Whelan and Kirby Heyborne: When a woman goes missing on her fifth wedding anniversary, her diary reveals hidden turmoil in her marriage, while her husband, desperate to clear himself of suspicion, realizes that something more disturbing than murder may have occurred.
7. Dead I Well May Be by Adrian McKinty, read by Gerard Doyle: Appointed by a crime boss to lead a gang of Irish thugs against rival powers in Harlem and the Bronx, young illegal immigrant Michael Forsythe falls out of favor when he seduces his employer’s daughter.
8. Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell by Susanna Clarke, read by Simon Prebble: The year is 1806. England is beleaguered by the long war with Napoleon, and it is hundreds of years since practical magic faded into the nation’s past. The reclusive Mr. Norrell of Hurtfew Abbey is the one practicing magician still remaining. Norell is challenged by the emergence of another magician, the brilliant novice Jonathan Strange. Norrell agrees to take Strange as a pupil and the young magician joins England’s cause to lend the army his supernatural skill on the battlefield.
9. Master and Commander by Patrick O’Brian, read by Patrick Tull: First in the series of Jack Aubrey novels. Establishes the friendship between Captain Aubrey, R.N., and Stephen Maturin, ship’s surgeon and intelligence agent, against the backdrop of the Napoleonic wars.
10. On Writing by Stephen King, read by Stephen King: On Writing begins with a mesmerizing account of King’s childhood and his uncannily early focus on writing to tell a story. A series of vivid memories from adolescence, college, and the struggling years that led up to his first novel, Carrie, will afford readers a fresh and often funny perspective on the formation of a writer.