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Showing posts tagged: Audiobooks click to see more stuff tagged with Audiobooks
Nov 1 2017 3:30pm

Never Gonna Give You Up: Romance News & Deals from Bella Andre, Liz Carlyle, and More

Grab a mug of tea and a scone and let's gossip about what's hot in romance.

{Did you know you can sign up to receive Afternoon Tea as an e-mail? Sign up to have your daily cuppa delivered straight to your inbox.}

Top Off Your TBR Pile

Never Too Hot by Bella Andre

—Deal Alert: Bella Andre's contemporary romance Never Too Hot is $1.99 at Amazon | Barnes & Noble | iBooks | Kobo | etc.* Injured firefighter Connor thinks he'll be able to get some necessary R&R before returning to his crew, except when he gets to his family cabin in the Adirondacks, it's already occupied by the gorgeous and distracting Ginger Sinclair. Neither of them is willing to cede their time at the cabin, so they have to learn to deal with each other...and the desire igniting between them! Don't you just love an awkward first meeting?

—Deal Alert: Liz Carlyle's historical romance The Devil You Know is $1.99 at Barnes & Noble | iBooks | Kobo | Amazon | etc.* After a disastrous season, Frederica d'Avillez is certain she'll not marry, but is determined to have a night of unforgettable passion. Rake, scoundrel, and all around hell-raiser Bentley Rutledge suits her needs quite well, and even though he knows he should resist, he can't bring himself to stay away from the magnetic Freddie. 

Deal Alert: Karen Rose's romantic suspense novel Closer Than You Think is $1.99 at iBooks | Kobo | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | etc.* Desperate to escape a stalker, psychologist Faith Corcoran goes back home and takes up residence in a recently inherited home where she has to confront the ghosts of her past. FBI Special Agent Deacon Novak is on a case that sends him right into Faith's path and intersects with her past in a way neither of them could've expected. Get pumped with 5 more intense romantic suspense novels this fall!

Deal Alert: Cat Sebastian's male/male historical romance The Ruin of a Rake is $.99 at Kobo | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | iBooks | etc.* Reviewer Cerestheories says Sebastian earned a spot on her TBR list with this story of “an uptight man being completely undone by a cheeky man who’s both jaded and comfortable with his sexuality.” Lord Courtenay, tired of being perceived as a libertine and a rake, seeks to improve his reputation by spending time with the most proper man in London, Julian Medlock. These enemies become much more as Courtenay begins to feel a love he doesn't believe he deserves, and Julian sets aside propriety for a desire he can't ignore. 

[+Audible romance package, gay teen romance, and more...]

Nov 1 2017 7:03am

What’s Your Latest Audio Obsession?

It's a new month, which means time to share new obsessions! Whether it's a podcast, narrator, or audiobook series, we want to know: What's your latest audio obsession? What are you loving about it? When did you start? 

Tell me about it in the comments!

Sep 28 2017 7:03am

In Audiobooks, What Clicks with You First: Author or Narrator?

Coffee, head phones, book.

When it comes to physical books author loyalty is usually what has us picking up our next read. When it comes to audiobooks, however, a different factor is at play: The Narrator. We've talked previously about how we can develop a crush on a narrator and that will compell us to try a book we may never have before, simply because a favorite voice actor is reading it. 

So what's your take? Do you like audiobooks? If so, what do you find you gravitate toward more often: narrator or author? 

Tell us about it in the comments!

Sep 18 2017 1:30pm

Christina Lauren Spill on Autoboyography with Narrator Deacon Lee

Autoboyography by Christina Lauren

Last week, dynamic co-authors Christina Lauren published their Young Adult male/male novel, Autoboyography, about a young man in Utah who begins what he thinks is, at first, the simple task of writing a book in four months for a Seminar in his senior year of high school. Then a distraction in the form of Sebastian Brother,  the Mormon prodigy who sold his own Seminar novel the year before and who now mentors the class, makes Tanner realize that while he's learning how to write a book in Seminar, he may learn something else too—like how to fall in love.

The two authors sat down with Deacon Lee, the man who brought to life other Christina Lauren heroes such as Carter from Dating You/Hating You, Luke from Wicked Sexy Liar, and now Tanner in Autoboyography. They're talking about romance, sexuality, and the Mormon faith.  

But first, an introduction from the authors themselves:

Before they begin production on one of our audiobooks, Simon & Schuster Audio checks in to see whether we have a certain narrator in mind. For our latest novel, Autoboyography, we specifically requested Deacon Lee.

[Read more...]

Jun 30 2017 12:00pm

8 Activities That Are Instantly Improved with an Audiobook

Audiobooks…They make life better!

There’s nothing I love more than curling up on my couch with a good book. Sometimes, though, this pesky thing called “life” gets in the way of binging on chocolate and coffee while reading a paperback. With 4,324,547,895,437 (a totally verified number) tasks to do throughout the day, my time spent in stories gets eaten up pretty quickly. Which means, if I want to enjoy some reading time, I need to get creative. When one of my writing besties suggested I give audiobooks a try, I decided to take the plunge. 

Now you may ask, “But when will I have time to listen to books?” Oh, my friend. Audiobooks will improve your daily slog by at least 44585% (completely accurate and scientifically calculated number). Here are some activities that are improved by audiobooks:

Folding Laundry

The Mt. Everest pile of clean clothes sitting in my living room is evidence of how much I hate anything to do with laundry. My only saving grace? Popping in my earbuds and listening to a book while folding. It makes the tedious work go by much quicker.

[Read more...]

Jun 23 2017 12:00pm

5 Reasons You Should Listen to Audiobooks

Source: Shutterstock

Audiobooks aren’t new, and certainly with the popularity of apps like Overdrive and Audible, there is more accessibility than ever. Recently I have become obsessed with audiobooks, in no small part because my workload leaves my brain nothing but sludge at the end of the day. If you haven’t listened to a book in a while, this summer is the perfect time to get into the habit. You won’t regret it! Make no mistake however; a terrible narrator or terrible source material can turn you off, but it’s worth the risk and here’s why:

1. It’s the perfect opportunity to reconnect with your favorite reads.

Many moons ago when I discovered The Black Dagger Brotherhood book series, I also discovered Jim Frangione’s voice in the audiobooks, and the same goes for Kimberly Alexis, who has been the voice for most of the Anita Blake series audiobooks. The perfect synergy of voice and source material can take your imagination to another level, just when you think you know the story by heart.

[Read more...]

Jun 14 2017 1:30pm

16 Audiobook Narrators You’ll Have a Crush on by the End of this Post

Source: Shutterstock

I have such a crush on…your voice.

I was brand new to audiobooks in 2012. At the time I was a high school English teacher driving an hour back and forth to grad school one night a week, and I wanted something more than the radio. A colleague had just finished listening to Maggie Stiefvater’s Scorpio Races and said it was one of the best audiobooks he’d ever listened to, so I gave it a shot.

The narrators are Fiona Hardingham as Puck and Steve West as Sean. The story itself is fantastic, but read by these two performers it was utterly magical. Also, something interesting happened. I kind of fell hard for Steve West—‘s voice. I even blogged about it on my short-lived YA blog, ending my review with the wish that I could have Steve West narrate my inner monologue. And he responded to my blog post. And yes I’m still squeeing about years later because yes I still crush on his voice and his audio performances. In fact, I’m currently listening to Laini Taylor’s Strange the Dreamer, narrated by—of course—Steve West.

It wasn't until Steve West commented on my Facebook that I learned audiobooks are more than just having books read to you. Beyond earning some bragging rights, I learned it’s a full-on performance. Single actors can sometimes taking on various roles with such distinguishably different voices that it often astounds me it’s the same person the whole way through. And when you click with the right narrator, it is a transformative experience.

For those of you still on the fence about whether or not to try an audiobook, I’m going to share a list of my narrator crushes with you and the books they performed (with audio samples!) that hooked me. Because now I seek out my favorite narrators as much as I do my favorite authors. For any of you who already adore audiobooks as much as I do, please share your voice crushes in the comments so we can bring more readers over to the audio side. Also, it’s important to note there are so many different ways to listen to audiobooks: CDs, audiobook subscriptions, your public library’s digital collection, etc.

And now for the list! While I read both YA and adult, all books I’m sharing are chock full of what we come to Heroes and Heartbreakers for—ROMANCE!

[Read more...]

Jun 8 2017 2:30pm

Travel the World with J.P. Monninger’s The Map That Leads to You Interactive Audiobook!

The Map that Leads to You by J.P. Monninger

June is Audiobook Month and if you #loveaudiobooks, we've got a special interactive audibook treat for you from author J.P. Monninger's The Map That Leads to You.

Through the power of interactive listening, you'll get to take the journey along with the characters—through love and loss and what happens to best-laid plans. 

Don't forget to check out the full desktop version of the map as well!

Learn more about The Map That Leads to You

Heather Mulgrew’s world is already mapped out: she is going to travel abroad with her friends after college, come back to a great career in September, and head into a life where not much is left to chance. But that was before an encounter on an overnight train introduces her to Jack, a passionate adventurer who changes the course of her journey and her life.

Throwing Heather's careful itinerary to the wind, they follow Jack's grandfather's journal through post-World War II era Europe: Vienna, Budapest, Turkey—exotic places that serve only to heighten their feelings. As September looms, Jack urges Heather to stay with him, to keep traveling, to give in to the romance of their experience; Heather convinces him to return to the United States.

Jack has a secret that could change everything. And Heather’s world is about to be shaken to the core.

[On to the map!]

Jun 5 2017 3:30pm

Wrangled for Romance: Romance News & Deals from Delores Fossen, Julie Ann Walker, and More

Grab a mug of tea and a scone and let's gossip about what's hot in romance.

{Did you know you can sign up to receive Afternoon Tea as an e-mail? Sign up to have your daily cuppa delivered straight to your inbox.}

Top Off Your TBR Pile

Those Texas Nights by Delores Fossen

Deal Alert: Delores Fossen's contemporary romance Those Texas Nights is $.99 at Amazon | Barnes & Noble | iBooks | Kobo | etc.* Sophie has had a streak of bad luck, losing her business and getting left at the altar all in one day. Desperate for a win, Sophie tries to tempt Wrangler Creek's smoking-hot police chief, Clay, into a fake relationship, but he won't budge...until Sophie's former fiancé shows up in town married to Clay's kid sister. There's something undeniable about a cowboy romance...

Deal Alert: Julie Ann Walker's romantic suspense novel Wild Ride is $1.99 at iBooks |  Amazon | etc.* Investigative reporter Samantha is tasked with uncovering all the secrets of the MC Black Knight Inc, while Ozzie is tasked with making sure she doesn't get herself or BKI in too deep. “How Samantha follows her journalistic instincts, how Ozzie protects her and BKI, is a fast-paced, fascinating story.”

Deal Alert: Elise Marion's historical romance Chained is FREE at Barnes & Noble | Kobo | Amazon | etc.* Two houses once embroiled in a bloody feud find themselves at war once again after 30 years of peace when Sir Caden Maignar is captured, wrongfully accused of kidnapping, and chained in the bedroom of Lady Gwendolyn Toustain. Caden is infuriated by Gwendolyn, but more than that, everything about her drives him to distraction. Caden and Gwendolyn take enemies-to-lovers to a whole new level.

[+Audie winners...]

May 9 2017 1:30pm

Sharing is Caring—Especially in a Group-Listen of Christina Lauren’s Wicked Sexy Liar

Wicked Sexy Liar by Christina Lauren

Christina Lauren’s Wicked Sexy Liar took my audiobook virginity in a crazy threesome last year and my reading life has never been the same . . .

Before my audiobook threesome, I’d been completely against audiobooks. I’d sworn that listening to a book instead of reading was dishonest and downright cheating. I never believed that I’d be completely spent after one weekend with a new book boyfriend, even after I’d shared him with two other women who’d swooned right along with me.  

My friends and I had been on the road for two hours already, and we’d exhausted all the car games we knew, listened (and sung at the top of our lungs) to as much old school music we’d been able to tolerate and we’d still had at least three hours before we’d reached our destination – the Spring Fling writer’s conference. Chicago North Romance Writers hosted the conference and Cristina and Lauren were one of the keynote speakers. After some debate, we’d agreed to listen to Wicked Sexy Liar using the car stereo. 

[Read more...]

Apr 6 2017 11:00am

An Audiobook Virgin Listens to Her First Audiobook—May McGoldrick’s Scottish Relic Series!

Much Ado About Highlanders May McGoldrick

I am an audiobook virgin. It’s not that I don’t like audiobooks—I’ve just never tried one. I know, I know, where have you been for the last decade. Happily devouring books with my eyes, that’s where. But I really wanted to dig into this story, and a few of my friends are fanatical audio book converts, so I decided to give it a shot and picked up May McGoldrick’s Scottish Relic trilogy.Historical, highlander pirate brothers, and a touch of magic? It’s like they wrote it just for me. 

Like any virgin experience, it wasn’t all candlelight and roses. The first hurdle I bumped into was that I kept getting visually distracted. Because I wasn’t focused on a page in front of my face, blocking out my view, I had to replay the first chapter a couple times to get into it. It helped that the first book in this series throws you straight into the action. Once I reprogrammed myself to see with my ears, I got sucked in. Before I knew it, I was in chapter six.

[Read more...]

Jun 29 2016 3:33pm

Iconic Connie Brockway Deal & Darynda Jones Interview: Romance News

Grab a mug of tea and a scone and let's gossip about what's hot in romance.

{Did you know you can sign up to receive Afternoon Tea as an e-mail? Sign up have your daily cuppa delivered straight to your inbox.}

Top Off Your TBR Pile

As You Desire by Connie Brockway

Deal Alert: Connie Brockway's iconic As You Desire is $.99 at e-tailers such as Amazon, Barnes & Noble, iBooks, etc.* Cheryl Sneed broke down the unforgettable “You Are My Egypt” scene—it'll make you soon all over again. 

 —Deal Alert: Kira Ward and Aubrey Sage's Fury had us at “Secret Baby Romance meets Fast and the Furious.” If that grabs you just as much, you can pick it up at online stores like Amazon for $.99!* Brittany Melson talked about her love of the secret baby trope, while Willaful talked about the presence (or lack thereof) of birth control, and what that could mean for a couple's story. 

Fresh Outta the Oven

—Nothing excites us more than to have Darynda Jones's latest Charley Davidson novel on our TBR pile. If audiobooks are your particular poison, then you'll have to look forward to a special treat as Darynda sits down with her narrator, Lorelei King, and talk about Charley and crew. We have the first five minutes for you here below, and you can hear the full interview in the audiobook version of the book. 

If you thought Popular went off the air too soon, or are currently a fan of Arrow, then your worlds are about to collide. Carly Pope (the Popular alum) joins the cast of Arrow as a Star City reporter who we imagine is going to stir up trouble. 

—San Diego Comic Con is coming up in just a few weeks, and some of our favorite shows are getting panel time. Even if we can't go, we know lots of news comes out of those panels. So we'll look forward to Fall TV updates from Orphan Black, Game of Thrones, Arrow, The 100, and more!

Today on H&H

*We don't know how long deals will last, so get 'em while you can!

Have a tip about hot romance news? Drop Heather & Jenn a line at heroesnhearts@gmail.com!

Apr 27 2016 3:39pm

Disgraced Lord & Amish Romance Deals, Plus a Jim/Pam Reunion: Romance News

Grab a mug of tea and a scone and let's gossip about what's hot in romance.

{Did you know you can sign up to receive Afternoon Tea as an e-mail? Sign up have your daily cuppa delivered straight to your inbox.}

Top Off Your TBR Pile

A Promise of More by Bronwen EvansDeal Alert #1: Bronwen Evans' Disgraced Lords historical, A Promise of More, is on sale in e-book for $.99 in e-book at Barnes & Noble, Amazon, iBooks, etc.* Read a sample from A Promise of More.

—Deal Alert #2: Sarah Price's contemporary Amish romance Plain Fame, Book 1 in the Plain Fame series, is discounted to $1.99 in e-book at Amazon.* Looking for more Amish romance recommendations? Maggie Boyd shares her 10 favorite Amish romance authors and books so far.

Fresh Outta the Oven

—Listen up, audiobook devotees! You can sample a clip from Alica Hunter Pace's newly released Sweet Gone South audiobook, narrated by Amy Rubinate, in the Flash player below. Two lost souls finding each other and falling in love above a candy shop? Sweet! (You can learn more or order a copy of the Sweet Gone South audiobook at Amazon.)

[Listen to a clip + Jim/Pam reunion!...]

Jul 8 2015 1:00pm

Easy Listening: The Pros of Male and Female Audiobook Narrators

The Utterly Uninteresting and Unadventurous Tales of Fred the Vampire Accountant by Drew Hayes

If you don’t have time to actually read a book, many e-readers and tablets allow you to have an electronic voice read the story to you.  Although I know several people who will use this option, I can’t imagine it brings anything to the enjoyment of the story.

To really bring a book to life by audio, you need a truly talented narrator.  While there are a few authors who will use more than one narrator to tell their audiobook story, the ones I love the most present a whole cast of characters all by themselves.  Some narrators are so talented, after I finish an audiobook I find myself not just searching for my favorite authors, but my favorite narrators as well.

Among the ladies, some of the stand outs that I have enjoyed include:

Susan Ericksen who narrates for J.D. Robb, Nora Roberts, Tess Garritsen, Lorraine Heath and Sara Paretsky.

Lorelei King who narrates for Patricia Briggs, Darynda Jones, Janet Evanovich, and Debbie Macomber.

Amanda Ronconi who narrates for Molly Harper, Tate Hallaway, Donna Kaufman and E.J. Copperman.

Kirsten Potter who narrates for Dianne Duvall, Jude Deveraux, Maya Banks and Lisa Gardiner

[Husky, smoky, soft describes the narrator's voice...]

Jul 2 2015 12:30pm

Do You Hear What I Hear? Listening to Tessa Bailey’s Officer Off Limits

Officer Off Limits by Tessa Bailey

What happens when a reader who doesn’t like audiobooks puts Audible to the test with one of her favorite authors? An eye ear-opening experience, that’s what.

Since I began blogging for H&H late last year, I’ve challenged some of my long-held beliefs about reading. I used to think re-reading was a waste of time. No longer. I will now read a series out of order. (But only if I don’t have time to read the backlist. And only if I don’t miss a lot of world-building. And... Okay, so I’m still working on that one. ) I figured it was time to give audio books another try.

I have a dear friend who raves about listening to novels and how much more reading she gets done because of the convenience of audio books. I sit in traffic for up to two hours each workday commuting to and from the office. I listen to talk radio. Audio books should be in my wheelhouse, right? Alas, the previous times I tried listening to books I found myself getting easily distracted and losing my place. So, I thought I should try an author I knew would hold my attention, particularly with her steamy sex scenes. Would hearing someone else read graphic sex scenes in an audio book make me uncomfortable? (I’m from New England and have weirdly held onto some ancient prudish beliefs from the Pilgrims, I think.) Time to find out. Enter Tessa Bailey.

[Listen to Tessa Bailey's Officer Off Limits audiobook...]

Jun 30 2015 10:00am

10 Women’s Fiction Audiobooks You Should Listen To

First Frost by Sarah Addison Allen

Have you heard? June is Audiobook month so let’s send off the month by celebrating their wonder.

If you are only listening to books on long trips in the car or on the plane then you are doing yourself a disservice. They make even the unpalatable chore palatable.

In the 1990’s I took on the responsibility of ordering my grandmother’s books on tape from National Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicap. I thought they were wonderful for her, but really didn’t see the benefit to me. I had much rather read than have someone read to me.

But after a couple long distance trip filled with static and radio silence I became a believer. And for years that was the only time I listened to audiobooks. I would make sure on my trips to find the local Cracker Barrel restaurant and exchange my old book for a new one as I traveled on.

I’m not sure when I discover the beauty of books and chores. Marketers for audiobooks call it multi-tasking, but for me it is called relief. Relief from the drudgery of unwelcome tasks that take me away from my favorite pastime—reading. My mother’s life would have been so much easier if audiobooks had been around when I was a sulky teenager. Her interruptions into my reading time put me in bad temper –martyrdom in fact. I think it is possible that I might have been half way pleasant if I could have washed windows and listened to a favorite book.

[More Women's Fiction audio books below...]

Dec 10 2014 4:45pm

Listening to History: Historical Romance Audiobooks to Try

The holiday season is upon us and I don’t know about you, but for me that means a lot of travelling, shopping, present wrapping and cooking. Initially this would not seem the ideal time for reading, but the secret weapon for romance reading during the Christmas period is audiobooks. I have loved audiobooks since I was a child and first listened to The Secret Garden on tape. Throughout the years I have listened to a fair few books, both romance and non-romance. To help you feed your romance reading addiction through the holiday season I invite you on a trip through the ages.

Late Medieval:

By Right of Arms by Robyn Carr

This is by far my favourite medieval romance on audiobook, partly due to Nicola Barber’s fantastic narration. Set during Prince Edward’s reign of England, it focuses on a French castle that has just been taken over by the English knight Hyatt. All that stands his is way is the young and newly widowed Aurelie who pledges to honor her late husband, although she is now being forced to marry the conquering knight. One of the reasons I loved this audiobook is the strength of Auriele’s character despite being born in a time when women were often seen as second-class citizens, regardless of rank.

I would highly recommend to anyone who enjoys the marriage of convenience trop and relishes watching a strong alpha fall to an equally strong heroine.

[We love a good trope...]

Nov 25 2014 2:45pm

Mr. Grey, Travis Family, Thor, and More: Gifts for Your Singular Reading Tastes

Captivated by You by Sylvia DayThis time of year, it's not unusual for people to gift and receive self-help books, or to listen to music that they wish was the soundtrack for their lives. Sure, those kinds of things are fine, if that's what you're into, but what if your tastes are a bit more—to quote Mr. Grey—singular? So we've got a holiday gift list that is perfect for the romance fan, depending on your...singular tastes.

You Want a Real-Life Christian Grey:

Sylvia Day’s Crossfire series. Why? Because Gideon Cross and Eva Trammell are just as dangerously addictive and sexy as Christian Grey and Ana Steele.

J. Kenner’s Stark series. Why? Because the hero and heroine in this series are more than just their effed-up personae; Kenner delves into some real issues behind the trauma.

[Need some help putting together a holiday wish list? Let us help...]

Feb 14 2014 11:00am

Now Win This: The H&H Birthday Bash!

We love our birthday, but we're not getting the gifts this year, we're passing them on to you! Today is our third birthday, and we're celebrating with a prize pack to ring in the occassion. See below to see all the swag we'll be giving out...

Click here to enter for a chance to win this prize pack!

This sweepstakes has ended! For more chances to win fabulous prizes, head to our Sweepstakes! Page.

**NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. A PURCHASE DOES NOT INCREASE YOUR CHANCE OF WINNING. You must be 18 or older and a legal resident of the 50 United States or D.C. to enter. Promotion begins February 14, 2014, at 11 am ET, and ends February 21, 2014, 10:59 am ET. Void in Puerto Rico and wherever prohibited by law. Click here for details and official rules.

[See all the swag...]

Jan 29 2014 6:15pm

H&H Bloggers Recommend: Best Reads of January 2014

Wild Ones by Kristine WyllysEach month, we ask our bloggers to share the best thing they’ve read (or things, plural, if our bloggers declare a tie ’cause they just can’t choose). It doesn’t have to be a new book, as evidenced below; just something that made the month sparkle a bit more.

Without further ado, here’s the installment for January 2014 (and if you’ve missed any, be sure to check out past recs via the Related Posts section at the bottom of the post):

Sahara Hoshi

My pick is going to be Kristine Wyllys's Wild Ones. I love that Bri is an uncompromising heroine and Luke is a fantastic alpha male. In addition, the world readers are introduced to is raw, gritty, and uncompromising. I look forward to future installments in the series, hopefully one featuring Bri's bff, Jax.

[The rest of the best...]