You know I like free audiobooks, right? Well, I do. I really like the variety of books found on a certain free audiobook site. However, all narrators are not created equal. These volunteer narrators, God bless ‘em, aren’t getting paid and are in it for altruistic reasons. I appreciate what they do, honestly, but I’m human and have my favorites.
I recently found an audiobook, a mystery, that I was interested in and from the description believed it was narrated by one of my favorites. She read 2 or 3 parts and then they started switching up narrators, a lot. I’m ok with 2 people narrating, but this book had 30+ parts and multiple narrators, all from different parts of the US and elsewhere in the world. I have trouble with accents, I realize this is hypocritical of me as I have an accent myself; I can’t listen to myself on any recording, “that’s not me!” So, I’m throwing giant bricks in this glass house, yes. There was one lady who had a very thick accent and I was sure I would not be able to understand what was going on. I did, actually, adjust to her way of pronouncing certain words, although I’m sure I missed a lot before I did. Then the narrators switched again. I had to readjust.
Of course, accents are just a small part of it. Some narrators put a lot of personality into their reading. It helps distinguish the dialogue and the differing characters. Some though never vary any of what they’re reading. It all sounds the same. Droning.
So, my experience was one of frustration. I continued to listen to the book until the end but I’m still not 100% sure who killed the guy or why. I lost the thread of the plot somewhere. I don’t think I’ll be reviewing this book. I will not be listening to a book with multiple narrators on this site again. I might make an exception for books where it was written with differing points of view in the first person, if the narrators keep to their distinct personalities.
One good thing about all of this was that I now have a bigger list of narrators I want to listen to again and ones I want to avoid.
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