Blogger Confession: Switching Formats Audiobook to Print

Posted January 29, 2015 by Felicia S in Blogger Confession / 31 Comments


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Hi y’all! Today’s Blogger Confession has to do with switching formats when reading/listening a series.

Specifically for me: when starting a series in audiobook and switching to print at some point.

NOTE: There have been many times when I have switched from print to audio or did both! Lately though there have been a few series that I started on audio but switched permanently to print. This is so odd for me since I have way less time to sit down with a book than listen to one. So switching may mean that the series goes on the back burner until I can fit it in. It is not something I do lightly.

Here are the reasons that I will drop a series in audiobook format:

  1. Switching of narrators (that I like) in the middle of the series. There have only been rare occurrences where I have stuck with a series in audiobook form after a narrator shift. Most of those were because I was either lukewarm or didn’t like the original narrator. Only twice have I stuck it out from a narrator I adored to a new narrator. Both of those cases were because I knew and liked the new narrator taking over.
  2. The narrator never grows on me. I always give the series at least 2 books for the narration to grow on me but after that I will give up. Sometimes the narration just doesn’t fit the story in my head.
  3. The series that has a new couple every book but the narrator sounds like he/she is reading with the same voices for all the couples (or only slight variations). The slight variations will work for a couple of books but by book 4 or 5 I will drop it if they sound the same.
  4. If the narrator sounds bored! This has only happened twice but I swear by book 5 the narrator sounded bored with the series.
  5. I am iffy about whether to continue a series and my library only has the print/ebook available. Lately I have had a bit of bad run on long running series that I used to adore. Some I have to buy because my folks are on my kindle/audible account. They read the series so I end up with all of them. For those they don’t read though, I have started turning to my library. I love my libraries (belong to 3) but the audiobook selection is not quite as vast as I would like. Oh the mystery section is awesome but the romance section needs a lot of work.

Here are some examples of series that I initially liked the narration but it no longer works for me:

  • The Accidental Series by Dakota Cassidy: My initial thought on the narrator was “meh” but by book 2 I was enjoying her narration! Then on book 6 her voices for the men really started to get on my nerves. Because I received books 6, 7, and 8 for review I listened to a little bit of each one. The voices in 7 and 8 were so nails on a chalkboard for me that I had to turn them off. I am now going to read those because I think I have the narration out of my head.
  • The Dresden Files by Jim Butcher (though now it is James again): When James didn’t narrate books, I didn’t listen to them. Have to admitΒ  I didn’t read them either. I tried but it wasn’t the same for me.
  • Rizzoli and Isles by Tess Gerritsen: This is one of those series that had to change narrators because of a death. It is also one that I now listen to on audio but it went through 3 or 4 narrators before finding one that worked. I listen begrudgingly to the ones in the middle if my library doesn’t have them during a reread.

Series that have switched narrators mid-stream and it didn’t bother me:

  • Stephanie Plum series by Janet Evanovich: I know it is hard to remember that Lorelie King didn’t narrate all of them. CJ Critt did the first couple of books and did a pretty good job. LK picked up and now she is the voice of Stephanie in my head.
  • Black Knights series by Julie Ann Walker: I was just “meh” about the original narrator but Angela Dawe is the newest one. I really like her so it worked for me. Also there were a couple of books that never were in audiobook form. I have to admit I hope they get recorded at some point.
  • The Fever Series by Karen Marie Moning: Got better after the narrator switch. I won’t even listen to the first 3 any more (though she didn’t bug me initially) because I would miss Phil as the guys!
  • The Dark Hunter Series by Sherrilyn Kenyon: What can I say? She has like 6 different narrators for the series and I seriously love 4 of them (Fred, Holter, Scott, and William). I pretty much will listen if one of those 4 narrates the story.

There are tons of series that I have switched to audio after starting in print. Evidently, I don’t have a problem sitting aside what I think a voice should be if the narration is good.

What about you? Have you found that sometimes the audio format no longer works for you for a particular series? Do you mourn a narrator switch?

Felicia S
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31 responses to “Blogger Confession: Switching Formats Audiobook to Print

  1. WELP. It’s not a secret that I don’t often listen to audiobooks . . . except for when I’m driving long distances. BUT. on those rare occasions, if I both like the book, and don’t finish it while I’m on the road, I almost always switch to print when I get home. Not the same thing, but it’s as close as I could get, LOL.

  2. What a great post!!! I was devastated when the narrator changed in the Stephanie Plum series…I had loved the way CJ Critt did all the voices, and I begrudgingly continued to listen to the series when Lorelei King took over. It took a while, but I ended up enjoying her narration just as much, BUT…I have a hard time listening to anything else LK narrates – her voices are the same. I tried another book in another series (Temperance Brennan by Kathy Reichs) that she narrated and had to keep reminding myself that this wasn’t a Stephanie Plum book.

    I love using audio to listen to series and do that with quite a few. Most have kept the same narrator and I have really enjoyed them, but for instance Kathy Reich’s Temperance Brennan series has had quite a few different narrators. Just when I find one I really like, someone else narrates the next book. I do wish they’d pick one and stick with it!

    I did a combo on the Rizzoli & Isles series…read a few, and listened to a bunch. What is the death you are referring to? A narrator death or a character death? I’m actually caught up on that series…just waiting for the latest one to arrive from publisher.

  3. The Chicagoland Vampires series had a switch on me that I didn’t like. I switched to paperback for a few books, then decided I really wasn’t getting through the books by actually reading them, then I switched back. Now I can’t stand the first narrator because I’ve gotten so used to the second. Blergh.

    I’ll also switch if the content matures or something. For the most part, I struggle with any overly romancey books on audio — Part of it is that my fiancee will sit in the background and make fun of the romantic interest. But part of it is just the idea of listening to a sex scene or something like that. So with the books that start off pretty clean and mature over time, I’ll avoid the audio later (That’s why I’ve only ever listened to the first 5 Anita Blake books by Laurell K. Hamilton and will probably never listen to the rest).

  4. I do think it would be a challenge when you’re all set with a narrator and then they’re switched up on you midstream. I still haven’t gotten into audiobooks but I know that would frustrate me. Except when it doesn’t. πŸ™‚

  5. I am really new to audio books, but I am hooked. I am listening to the Harry Dresden, series but even though I love James I have read a couple. James voice is in my head now, so it as if he is reading them. Can”t imagine someone else reading them.
    What makes me sad is when a series does not have an audio for a book. Your example of Julie Ann Walker is a good one. The one I wanted to listen to did not have an audio. Or a series that has audio for the first three books, but not the last.

  6. I don’t have any series I have switched from audio to ebook, but I have some that haven’t worked for me on audio because of the narrator, some of them are Outlander by Diana Gabaldon and The Hollow series by Kim Harrison.

  7. I just got my first “Big Girl” audiobook and I’m having trouble with it myself. I had to switch to the e-book for a time being but I’m going to try the audio again soon. I do have to ask though Felicia, do you have a romance audio book that you would recommend to me? One that you liked as an audio the best?

    • I am not sure which one you would like so I will do it this way:

      Contemporary Romance: Really like Jill Shalvis Animal Magnetism series on Audio and her Lucky Harbor series (though I have only listened to one).

      Historical Romance: Elizabeth Boyle’s current series and Sarah MacLean’s current series are both really well done.

      Romantic Suspense: Krewe of Hunters series by Heather Graham and Lori Foster’s Undcover series

      PNR: Black Dagger Brotherhood by JR Ward and Lara Adrian’s series

      Urban Fantasy: White Trash Zombie series by Diana Rowland and Kim Harrison The Hallows

      I can give you m ore but these are some of my favorite combo narration/story

  8. I don’t use audio books so switching narrators never occurred to me. That could definitely be an issue in some cases.

    I get so distracted with audio books. I the dot enjoy them if their biographies or comedy so it holds my interest – or isn’t’a big deal if I miss a few lines.

  9. I have not listened to enough to have had these problems yet, but I am sure it will happen..Like the Jim Butcher ones..I haven’t caught up yet but I did hear that there was at least one that I know of with out James Marsden and that will just not work for me. πŸ™ Those are great reasons to switch though. πŸ™‚

  10. Totally agree about narrators, they make or break it. I was considering going back and doing the Fever series rereads on audio but if Phil Gigante isn’t doing the first ones, no way, he totally makes the series in my opinion. Plus I love how they don’t have females doing male voice or vice versa. I struggled a bit with the narrator for the Bloodlines series by Richelle Mead, but she grew on me and then in book four they got a male narrator to do Adrian, but I don’t like that during Sydney’s chapters Adrian’s voice is by the female narrator and vice vs in Adrian’s chapters, I really don’t like that.

    • I read the first 1 in the Bloodlines series, listened to the 2nd one and have it on my list to catch up in Feb. I will probably do a mix of both for that one. I don’t mind the narration but it isn’t my favorite.

      Oh the first 3 fever was a different female and no Phil. They really weren’t bad but they are unlistenable after the change.

  11. I haven’t had too many that have changed narrators after having a long standing one. I’ve had several series where the narrator was different for each book (The Demonica series by Larissa Ione, Original Sinners by Tiffany Reisz and Otherworld series by Kelley Armstrong), and those are pretty hit or miss.

    I didn’t know that James didn’t narrate all the Dresden Files books. I just started the series this past year and I’m only two books in, so I guess we’ll see how that goes.

    The that have changed narration that I’ve dealt with Anita Blake series by Laurell K. Hamiltion, not horrible, but I still prefer the first narrator. There have been several that have had one book by a different narrator because of a schedule conflict or something, like The Hollows by Kim Harrison and Merry Gentry by Laurell K. Hamilton.

    • I don’t mind if the narrator is different for every book in a series especially if it is different couples. I find I actually like it (urban fantasy is different but that is the same with mystery series too).

      James does most of the Dresden series, I can’t remember if there are 2 or 3 he didn’t do. I stopped there and have never picked it back up (even though he is narrating them again).

  12. I hardly ever switched anymore. I did once last year with the last Stephanie Perkins book. If they change the narrator I drop the series. Series I haven’t gone back b/c the narration didn’t work for me are like The Night Huntress (I didn’t like the voice for Bones) and I have a few like that. Series I really enjoyed but they stop working on audio I just don’t bother anymore. So if a series doesn’t work for me on audio, that’s it for that series.
    I do say to myself, I’ll read instead, but I never do, not anymore with all the audios available.
    Great post πŸ™‚

  13. I think the narrator for The Accidental Series by Dakota Cassidy is what’s killing the series for me. I’ve DNF two audios in the series so far. I’m thinking of switching formats but since I have all the series on audio for review (and for free) I might try latest one I DNF (Accidentally Catty) a second try and see if I can hang with it. If not I’m skipping to Something About Harry since I have it on my Kindle from Netgalley to see if I like reading it better than listening.

    I 100% agree that the change in narrator(s) for the Fever series is much better. Even though I’m not 100% happy with the voice for Mac.

  14. I listened to Shatter Me on audio, and I swear that narration could be used to torture enemies. I couldn’t even tell if I liked the book or not because the narrator was so over the top and whiney and possibly trying to gaslight me. Switched to the print books and it was fine.

    I listened to most of the Vampire Academy books in audio, and that series switched narrators a lot ( and the pronunciation of the name Mia was all over the place, from Me-ah to My-ah). But I was fine with the different narrators. The only reason I didn’t listen to Bloodlines on audio was because I had started The Book of Life and it’s super long and I couldn’t wait to read about Sydney and Adrian, so I read those in print. Not sure what I’ll do for the last book yet!

    • We all have different ways certain people’s voices get to us. I do firmly stand that a good narrator (to the listener) can make a book better but a bad one can make me put a good book down!

      You know with VA I didn’t mind it mostly because they were all just “meh”—not great, not bad but not the kind I grew attached too.

      The Book of Life series to me was very well done but length is daunting in audiobook to some. I LOVED it πŸ™‚

  15. Interesting post! I’ve done more switching the other way (eBook to audio) but there are a couple of series where I decided to revert to the eBook because of the narrator. I listened to a book in Jo Goodman’s Bitter Springs series and decided to abandon the audio going forward unless there’s a change in narrators. I was poised to do the same with Chicagoland Vampires until the narrator changed. As much as I like the audio format, I’d rather read a book rather than give up on a series because the narrator isn’t working.