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Posted by Jess - - 10 Comments

I love to listen to audio books. That's how I "read" books 1-5 of the Harry Potter series, Eoin Colfer's Airman (my favorite of the books I read in 2010), Karen Stockett's The Help, and other favorites.

And with all of that time spent listening, I've learned one important truth about narrators: they can make or break a book for me. A bad narrator (like the one from a book I recently listened to... *shudder*) makes the Stop button really hard to resist--and that's not fair to perfectly good books.

But on a recent trip to Utah, I listened to the audio book of Scott Westerfeld's Leviathan and I was absolutely enchanted by Alan Cumming's masterful reading. I knew him as the hilarious actor from Emma (Mr. Elton), Tin Man (Glitch), and X2 (Nightcrawler), but now I also know him as the actor I want to read my books for the audio adaptation.

What a voice. You can listen snippets here.

What about you? Who would you want to narrate your WIP or favorite book?

P.S. This will be my last post for the week (I am headed back to Philmont, and I'll be on the road for the next couple of days), so it's also my last chance to remind you to enter my 100 Followers contest--where you can win your very own copy of Leviathan! Alas, it is not the audio version, but the print version has amazing illustrations by Keith Thompson. And if you supported Help Write Now in any way, you automatically get 3 extra entries! 

Road Trip Wednesday is a "Blog Carnival," where YA Highway's contributors post a weekly writing- or reading-related question and answer it on our own blogs. You can hop from destination to destination and get everybody's unique take on the topic.

To participate, just answer the prompt on your own blog and leave a link in the comments at YA Highway.

10 Responses so far.

  1. Alan Cumming does have a delightful voice. He was on Cabaret on broadway (unless I'm hallucinating) and then he hosted SNL. He was SO SO good.

  2. Ooh what a fantastic idea! You've just made me add Leviathan to my wish list at Audible.com!



  3. I completely agree with you. I listened to an audio book where the reader used different voices--but got them wrong for a scene. Alan Cummings does have a really great voice.

  4. Ooh, such an interesting choice! I love it. And completely agree, a voice that doesn't work for the listener kills the audiobook experience.

    Have a fun trip!

  5. Very interesting choice--I haven't read Leviathan yet, so I might just have to pick up the audio book! I haven't listened to any yet, but I can totally see how a bad voice would make the experience painful!

  6. Sarah says:

    KO is right, I believe he got a Tony for his work on Cabaret. I love Alan Cumming, he's always such an interesting and intense presence. Tends to elevate even the worst of films.

  7. I loved him on Cabaret. He's amazing, a great choice!!

  8. Wow, he has a great voice!

  9. If I wrote a funny book, Nathanael Parker all the way! :-) But with the trite things I write, I think it would be beneath Alan Cumming. How did I not realize he was Mr. Elton?!

  10. Kate says:

    I recently listened to Leviathan too, and have to agree Alen Cumming's is a wonderful reader.

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