This is the last day of Audiobook Week. On behalf of Jen, this is has been a blast!! For my final post, I would like to discuss narrators. Someone this week mentioned that in audiobook reviews, we should separate the narrator from the review of the book. This comment made me pause. Since audiobooks are enhanced reading experiences, should we really separate our opinions of the books from the narrator? Can we?
I ask that because to me, audiobooks are like movies. You cannot separate the plot from the acting because the acting tells the story. In a similar vein, the narrator is telling the story, adding his or her own inflections, accents, tone – all of which will affect the listener’s experience of the overall story. My own imagination might have created a different voice or different emphasis on a certain word or phrase, which would impact my interpretation of the story versus what the narrator does.
As reviewers, don’t we owe it to our readers to state how the narrator impacts our overall impression of the book, if s/he could have done a better job, if the voice was pleasant, if s/he creating a different voice for each character, and so forth? Isn’t it like reviewing the lead actor and actress?
I’m curious what others think. Should we avoid reviewing the narrator or keeping the narrator and the story review separate? Let’s discuss!