Billy Crystal, Pete Seeger, Kate Winslet, Meryl Streep, and Bryan Cranston are competing in  The Audio Publishers Association (APA) “Audiobook of the Year” at the 2014 Audie Awards® Gala.

Each title was chosen for excellence in production as well as their ability to create new interest in the audiobooks through creative and innovative marketing. The jury tasked with judging this category commented that this year’s Audiobook of the Year finalists each found new audiences for audiobooks while presenting a unique listening experience and the promise of a long listening life.

Janet Benson, Audies Competition Chair, says, “The juried awards present a unique challenge: judges listen to 25 publisher submissions totaling more than 200 hours, each representing a publisher’s best work. The juries discuss the benchmarks the best recordings must meet to earn the distinction, and for Audiobook of the Year, they also analyze marketing campaigns and subsequent sales. These six finalists are truly the best of the best.”

The three titles competing for Audiobook of the Year are:

• Still Foolin’ ’Em; written and narrated by Billy Crystal; Macmillan Audio.

“A seamless blend of single voice narration and live performances does for the audiobook medium what Billy Crystal’s opening acts have done for the Oscars, which is to bring in a larger audience. In a word: ‘Mahvelous.’”

• The Testament of Mary; by Colm Tóibin; narrated by Meryl Streep; Simon & Schuster Audio.

“Sometimes a great narrator can enrich and elevate even a critically acclaimed title. Meryl Streep does that here, transforming Colm Tóibin’s imaginative, provocative, and poignant novella into a masterpiece.

• The Things They Carried; by Tim O’Brien; narrated by Bryan Cranston; Audible, Inc.

“Brought to life by Emmy winner Bryan Cranston, Tim O’Brien’s modern classic The Things They Carried immediately transports the listener to the steamy jungles of Vietnam and the chilly waters of Lake Superior.”

Michele Cobb, President of the APA, says, “The APA applauds everyone involved in the production of these outstanding titles. Each one has contributed greatly to the growth of the audio publishing industry.”

The three finalists for Distinguished Achievement in Production are:

• Ender’s Game Alive; by Orson Scott Card; narrated by a full cast; Audible, Inc.

“A full cast lead by luminaries such as Scott Brick, Kirby Heyborne, and Janis Ian create an electric presentation of Orson Scott Card’s Ender’s Game. Featuring a script written specifically by Card for this production, Ender’s Game Alive is sure to create more fans for this science fiction classic through its intriguing plot, spot-on music and sound effects, and charismatic performances.”

• Matilda; by Roald Dahl; narrated by Kate Winslet; Penguin Audio.

“Celebrate the 25th anniversary of Roald Dahl’s classic novel, Matilda, with Kate Winslet’s pitch-perfect narration of the audiobook. From the clever and precocious Matilda and her schoolmates to the awful overbearing Miss Trunchbull and the sweet Miss Honey, Winslet delivers a performance that captures the characters and the spirit of the book.”

• Pete Seeger: The Storm King; by Pete Seeger, edited by Jeff Haynes; read by Pete Seeger; Hachette Audio.

“A sterling mixture of stories, narratives, poems, and music, this outstanding audio features intimate, seemingly unscripted commentary from Seeger in which he regales listeners with stories about his childhood, family life, career, and much more.”

The the Audie Awards® Gala will jump start the JIAM (June Is Audiobook Month) movement and will take place May 29th, 2014, at the New York Academy of Medicine in New York City.

About the APA

The Audio Publishers Association (APA) is a not-for-profit trade organization, whose members consist of audio publishing companies and allied suppliers, distributors, and retailers of spoken word products and allied fields related to the production, distribution and sale of audiobooks. The APA’s primary goals are to promote awareness of the audiobook industry; serve as a networking, educational and information forum for its members; deliver programs and services that serve the common business interests for its members; gather and disseminate industry statistics; encourage high production standards; and promote policies and activities that accelerate audiobook industry growth.

Source: The Audio Publishers Association




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