Written by Francisca Goldsmith on Thursday, December 5, 2019
AudioFile Magazine, SYNC's sponsor, published its annual Best Audiobooks list promptly on December 1. Containing 53 titles sorted into nine genres of about half a dozen titles each, these editors' choices reflect a year of listening that has included over 2,500 possibiiities for "best" and, importantly, decades of experience with listening to and evaluating audiobooks.
What's in the Young Adult category of Best Audiobooks 2019? So glad you asked!
There's Elizabeth Acevedo's WITH FIRE ON HIGH, read by the author who "sounds natural and authentic as Emoni, an immensely likable Philadelphia high school senior with a 2-year-old daughter and a gift for cooking."
Actor Michael Sheen's performance of Volume 2 of Philip Pullman's "Book of Dust" series, THE SECRET COMMONWEALTH, shows him to be "in step with the text at every turn."
FRANKLY IN LOVE, by David Yoon, comes to us listeners through the fine acting of Raymond J. Lee who "fully inhabits funny, endearing, nerdy-and-proud-of-it California high school senior Frank Li."
"Euan Morton brings his exceptional narration skills" to Rainbow Rowell's WAYWARD SON, the sequel to Carry On and the endearing repartee among vampire, wizard, and other gifted friends of Simon Snow.
AudiobookSYNC was able to bring listeners Akata Witch a couple summers back. Now the sequel, AKATA WARRIOR, by Nnedi Okorafor, is on the Best Audiobooks of 2019 list and narrator "Yetide Badaki’s dynamic voice returns with this story of Sunny, an Igbo and American albino girl with the juju needed to save humanity."
Another author and dynamic narrator pair familiar to AudiobookSYNC fans continue their excellent work together. In their performance of Sandhya Menon's THERE'S SOMETHING ABOUT SWEETIE, "Vikas Adam embodies the mixed feelings of Ashish Patel...a handsome high school basketball starl" while Sweetie, portrayed by Soneela Nankani, is "a teen who struggles with her mother’s continual comments about her weight."
So there's a solid six to make sure you have lined up as SOBL segues into winter vacation, for the school oriented, a time of gift giving for many, and the period just before we can start announcing the goodies coming to listening readers in the 2020 AudiobookSYNC season. When you've spun your way through our suggestions in this category, you can check out the full Best Audiobooks list from AudioFile Magazine here.