Tuesday Tease: Marriage Games

Impossible to stop listening until the last possible moment.

So there’s this little-known (ahem) movie in theaters, something about 50 Blinds, or Shades. I’ve only seen the trailer on TV about 50 times . . . this week. Anyway, if you’ve read the books and seen the movies, you might be looking for your next addiction. If that’s the case, we have a special treat for you, Audie Award Finalist MARRIAGE GAMESthe first book in The Games Duet.  Thanks to a commanding performance by narrators Sebastian York and Elena Wolfe, MARRIAGE GAMES is a must-listen BDSM audiobook. Adam and Diana face a marriage derailed by indifference and kept on life support with revelations of hidden desires. The narration encloses the couple and the listener in a private negotiation which feels urgent and essential.

124561.jpgMARRIAGE GAMES
by CD Reiss, Read by Elena Wolfe and Sebastian York
Flip City Media

Listen to a sound clip and read AudioFile’s full review. And then be sure to queue up the second half of The Games DuetMARRIAGE GAMES ends on a cliffhanger.

View more Aude Award Finalists in the Erotica category here.

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Tuesday Tease: Valentine’s Day

Fall in love with an audiobook!

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Valentine’s Day is coming around again, and it’s time to think about falling in love. Not with a person, but with an audiobook (of course). And a love affair with a romance audiobook is sort of a frame story—you’re relishing a captivating love story even as you have a serious crush on the narrator and the addictive performance they’ve just given to you as an additional gift.

Sometimes it’s love at first sight. Richard Armitage’s VENETIA had me at the introductory credits. It’s an elegant abridgment paired with Armitage’s melted butter voice.

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VENETIA
by Georgette Heyer, Read by Richard Armitage
Naxos AudioBooks

Other times, you fall in love with the whole package. Renee Raudman’s readings of Ilona Andrews’s fantasy romances build and weave to a crescendo. With so many memorable characters and scenes, there can’t be one favorite moment.

And then there are the surprises. I don’t know what I expected when I listened to Laura Kinsale’s UNCERTAIN MAGIC, read by Nicholas Boulton, but the exquisite mix of production quality and deeply developed vocal characterization impressed even this picky listener.

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UNCERTAIN MAGIC
by Laura Kinsale, Read by Nicholas Boulton
Hedgehog Inc.

I imagine you have your own audio crushes, too. Did I say that you should fall in love with an audiobook? I’ve changed my mind. Fall in love with all of them — it’s not cheating to spread your audio love around.—Caitlin Augusta

Browse the newest Romance audiobook reviews HERE, or if you are an RT Reviews fan, we share AudioFile  Romance reviews each week at RT Book Reviews BLOG!

Tease: Romance Audio Awards Announced

Two new categories for this year’s RT Awards.

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RT Book Reviews celebrates the awards season with the nominees for 2016 RT (Romantic Times) Awards that include the Reviewers’ Choice Best Book Awards and Career Achievement Best Author Awards. Two new awards are included for the first time: RT Review Source and AudioFile’s 2016 Best Romance Novel Narrator.

We are delighted to sponsor the Best Romance Narrator Award as part of our recent partnership with RT Book Reviews. AudioFile’s newest romance audiobook reviews now appear weekly on the RT Book Reviews website. 

The focus for BEST ROMANCE NARRATOR is, of course, the audio performance. And the nominees for  AudioFile’s first ever Romance NARRATOR Award 2016 are . . .

Nicholas Boulton for GLITTERLAND by Alexis Hall
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Nicholas Boulton brings a certain magic to his romance narrations. Sometimes intense, sometimes passionate, and sometimes inscrutable, Nicholas’s audiobook work in historical romance continues to garner raves from listeners and reviewers. His work with author Laura Kinsale has created remarkable audiobooks.

Jim Frangione for DARK CAROUSEL by Christine Feehandark-carousel.jpg  jim-frangione-400x480

Jim Frangione intrigued listeners with his multilingual performance of Christine Feehan’s paranormal romance. As AudioFile‘s review raves, “Narrator Jim Frangione and author Christine Feehan are like chocolate and peanut butter — dark and delicious.” Frangione is equally well known for his narration of J.R. Ward’s Black Dagger Brotherhood series, where “Frangione’s commanding narration shows listeners the ‘all-in’ nature of the characters.” Jim also narrates mystery, fiction, and children’s audiobook titles, including works by Dennis Lehane and Spencer Quinn. 

Rosalyn Landor for BECAUSE OF MISS BRIDGERTON by Julia Quinnmiss-bridgerton  rosalyn-landor-by-arielle-rudman-400x490

Romantic fiction is a genre Landor has spent a lot of time with, narrating works by Lisa Kleypas, Johanna Lindsey, Julie Garwood, Mary Balogh, and Eloisa James. She feels passionate about it and embraces romance’s particular challenges for the narrator. “It requires a very specific discipline in giving voice to the male and female characters,” Landor says, “especially to switch in and out of the male and female roles and play both sides of an intensely passionate scene. It’s made me appreciate how well these authors understand the male/female perspective.”

Saskia Maarleveld for BAY OF SIGHS by Nora Roberts
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Narrator of over 150 audiobooks, Saskia was raised in New Zealand and France and now lives in New York City. She’s able to switch seamlessly between accents and can often be heard speaking in British, Australian, New Zealand, and various European accents, in addition to her natural American accent. Her romance audiobooks include titles by Nora Roberts, Heather Graham, Maya Rodale, and Katharine Ashe. 

Steve West for A BUCCANEER AT HEART by Stephanie LaurensBuccaneer at Heart.jpg  steve-west-400x480jpg

London-born Steve West has an active film and stage career as well as more than 100 audiobook credits to his name. Steve can adopt a rich, rolling style for a nineteenth-century sea captain or embody a light, breathy, and genuine young heroine, then can switch easily to a menacing villain. His versatility is a great asset in his audiobook narrations. Steve’s audiography includes suspense, history, science fiction, and teen audiobooks. 

16rtawardswinner_0The BEST ROMANCE NOVEL NARRATOR winner will be announced on Friday, May 5, 2017, at RT’s annual convention, held this year in Atlanta, Georgia. For information about the convention and its many events for romance lovers, authors, and industry professionals, see RTConvention.com

Good luck to these incredibly talented narrators, and thanks to the skilled writers who made their work possible.

Check out all nominees in all the RT Awards categories HERE