Best of 2021

Best of 2021 – Top 12 Narrators

I’ve always loved audiobooks and these days, I listen to more books than I read. The talent field of narrators is extraordinary. The best bring great stories to life and can make an “okay” story much better. Here’s my list of narrators who made my ears happy this year!

1. Narrator
: Jan Cramer – DI Kim Stone Series

Cramer is one of the reasons why DI Kim Stone is one of my most favorite series. She’s mastered the regional dialect and given distinct voices to the major characters. And, she’s a fantastic storyteller.


Narrator: Kaleo Griffith – The Perfect Gentlemen Series 

Griffith is one of my favorite narrators who really brought the perfect gentlemen in this series to sexy life. This is a colorful cast that he managed exceptionally well, making the first three stories a wonderful listening experience.


3. Narrator: Greg Boudreaux- The Perfect Gentlemen Series

Boudreaux had the misfortune of replacing a beloved narrator in this series and I was distraught when I learned of the change. But five minutes into the 4th book, I was already loving his performance. He’s got smooth storytelling skills. He made the transition feel seamless.


4. Narrator: Julia Whelan – Malibu Rising

Whelan is another narrator who’s always on my favorites list for good reason. This was a complicated story with multiple main characters and she made it feel like there were multiple narrators. Her skills are in the stratosphere.


Narrators: January LaVoy, Samantha Desz & Bailey Carr  – The Night Swim

LaVoy is always on my favorites list (listen to anything she’s narrated) but this was my first time experience with Desz & Carr and I was impressed. The story is haunting and these three delivered exceptional performances.


6. Narrator: Steven Weber – Win

I was very happy when Weber took over the narrating duties for the Myron Bolitar series following the retirement of the previous reader. I love how he’s captured the spirit and rhythm of that series, which he brought to this spinoff. He was perfect as Windsor Horne Lockwood, III!


NarratorsAli Andre Ali, Cassandra Campbell, Michael Crouch, Amanda Dolan & Pete Simonelli – The Perfect Family 

Sometimes a story demands multiple performers and this was one of them. Each of the narrators breathed life into his or her character, helping to make this a standout story.

8. Narrators: Full Cast – No Hiding in Boise
Devon Sorvari, Stephanie Willing, Hillary Huber, Stephanie Einstein, Madeleine Maby, Nick Mondelli, Michael Brusasco, Patrick Lawlor, Adam Barr, Pete Cross & Neil Hellegers 

I love full cast narrations and these performers made a tough story and subject utterly fascinating. And, it all felt so cohesive. Just listen in.


Narrator: David Chandler – Lightning Strike

Chandler is the voice of the Cork O’Connor series and he delivered his always wonderful performance in this story but this time it was the prequel for the series. He had to manage a young Cork and his family and it was mesmerizing.


Narrator: David Pittu – For Your Own Good

Pittu made a diabolical character seem normal in this outstanding psychological thriller. There were times I came close to rooting for him, too! This was my first listening experience with Pittu and he will definitely tip the scales if I see his name associated with another book.


Narrator: Ben Onwukwe – All the Lonely People 

Onwukwe was just fabulous in this story! He’s a fine actor that brought his considerable skills to not only the main character but all the important secondary roles. I loved everything about his performance.


12. Narrator: Ann Marie Lee – Lucy Kincaid Series 

Lee has come to personify Lucy Kincaid (the character) but she also is a wonderful storyteller. Most of the books are 12 hours or longer but she makes the time fly as she captivates me with her narrating skills. I’ve been listening to one a month for over a year and she keeps me coming back.


Who were some of your favorite narrators this year?

14 thoughts on “Best of 2021 – Top 12 Narrators”

  1. Julia Whelan and January LaVoy feature on my list of favourites, also MacLeod Andrews, Aoife McMahon, RC Bray, and definitely Hugh Frazer for the Poirot and some other Christie audios.

    Liked by 1 person

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