Audiobooks are the perfect way to enjoy a good book during what could otherwise be wasted time — think exercising, commuting, or driving. The best part? Many audiobooks feature celebrity narrators who skillfully bring a book’s characters to life, seamlessly adapting the story from page to audio. Ready to hear a great book? Here are five audiobooks with famous narrators to put on your must-listen list.
Ali Wong / Narrated by Ali Wong and Justin Hakuta
Fans of her comedy specials know that Ali Wong isn’t afraid to describe the intimate, often hilarious, details of her life. Told through a collection of letters written to her two young daughters, Wong offers a wealth of relatable advice that she has learned from her achievements, failures, and life-changing moments. Narrated by the author and her husband, Wong shares her thoughts on life: From growing up to dating to motherhood, every topic is up for discussion. Random House Audio; Unabridged edition, Audible, Oct. 15, 2019
Margaret Atwood / Narrated by Ann Dowd, Bryce Dallas Howard, and others
In the highly anticipated sequel to “The Handmaid’s Tale,” readers are once again transported into Margaret Atwood’s terrifying, dystopian world. With over a decade of power, Gilead’s ruthless control is still holding strong. The story is told from the perspective and insight of three different women, each one living in the harsh realities of this new world. Through their experiences and difficult decisions, Atwood reveals further details, frightening secrets, and, finally, the fate of the Handmaid. A full cast of talented actors narrate the audiobook, most notably the author herself and Ann Dowd, who plays Aunt Lydia on the acclaimed television adaptation of the first book. Additional narrators include Bryce Dallas Howard, Mae Whitman, Derek Jacobi, and Tantoo Cardinal. Random House Audio; Unabridged edition, Sept. 10, 2019
Jenny Slate / Narrated by Jenny Slate
Comedian, actress, and author of the lovable children’s book “Marcel the Shell,” Jenny Slate invites readers into her mind with an assortment of quirky essays. Broken into short chapters, the collection feels like a combination of poetry and memoirs, sprinkled with humorous, relatable experiences. With refreshing observations about the world, the collection is a whimsical experience. The audiobook version is engaging, narrated by the author; each chapter will feel like a delightful conversation with a friend. Little, Brown & Company; Unabridged edition, Nov. 5, 2019
Ann Patchett / Narrated by Tom Hanks
In 1946, Cyril Conroy’s career finally takes off and he impulsively purchases a mansion as a surprise for his wife, Elna, and their two young children, Maeve and Danny. Built in the 1920s, the opulent estate is intricately furnished with artwork, books, and furniture chosen by the original Dutch owners. Soon after, Elna makes a drastic decision to leave both her husband and young children, changing the course of her family’s future. Years later, the siblings find themselves parked in a car outside of their childhood home, reflecting on the significant influence the house had on their lives. Focused on engaging characters, descriptive details, and an intriguing plot, bestselling author Ann Patchett returns with a novel highlighting the complex, layered dynamics that exist between family. The story is told from the perspective of Danny Conroy, a character who is brought to life by the familiar and engaging voice of Tom Hanks, who narrates the audiobook. HarperAudio, Unabridged edition, Audible, Sept. 24, 2019
Taylor Jenkins Reid / Narrated by Jennifer Beals, Benjamin Bratt, and others
Daisy, a young girl living in Los Angeles, spends late nights with musicians, frequenting clubs along the Sunset Strip and dreaming of a chance to be in the rock ‘n’ roll spotlight. Rising star Billy Dunne is at the front of The Six. Both poised for success in the 1970s music scene, it isn’t long before Daisy and Billy meet and fate throws them together to create rock ‘n’ roll history. The audiobook is narrated by a full cast of actors, enhancing the atmospheric novel. Narrators include Jennifer Beals, Benjamin Bratt, Judy Greer, and Pablo Schreiber. Random House Audio, Unabridged, Audible, March 5, 2019
Meghan Odegard is a librarian living in Wisconsin. She proudly supports Barn Sanctuary, a nonprofit dedicated to rescuing, rehabilitating, and caring for farm animals in need.