Literary waves have changed tide, and a lot of credit goes to people like Tim Gerard Reynolds who have brought books out of bookshelves and into iPods, quite literally. Unarguably listed as one of the ‘Best Voices of 2014’ by the Audiofile Magazine, many people listen to audiobooks just because Tim Gerard Reynolds is narrating it.
[Read: Best Headphones for Listening to Audiobooks]
One of the best audiobook narrators out there, Tim holds the Audiofile Magazine Earphone Award 2010, the 2013 Audie Nomination and the Audiofile Earphone Award 2014. In 2016, three of his narrated books were among the highest grossing audio books in the United States.
Apart from audiobook narration, Tim is a painter and actor and studied at the Samuel Beckett Centre, Trinity College Dublin under the veteran late Michael Joyce of ‘The Royal National Theatre Studio’. He has worked with renowned stars of the stage and screen like John Crowley, Aidan Gillan, Robert Sean Leonard, Rhys Evans, and Anne Kauffman.
Without further ado, here are some of the best audiobooks narrated by Tim that will surely get you thinking and keep you hooked to those earphones!
This is the Riyria trilogy that Michael J Sullivan’s wrote first (there are three Riyria trilogies/series in total, with a fourth in progress). In Star Wars terms, these would have been the original series – episodes 4, 5 and 6. We are introduced to two thieves, Royce and Hadrian who unwittingly end up in a conspiracy that endangers not only their lives but also threaten to wipe out humanity from the face of Elan.
I originally stumbled on this series while searching for a “kid-safe” fantasy series for my pre-teen daughter. (Sullivan apparently wrote the series to help his daughter) Not only was the the plot captivating, but the many voices of Reynolds made the story come alive. Sullivan possesses a rare talent to write characters that endear themselves to the reader, reminiscent of the Eddings’ Belgariad series.
My favorite character voice: The down-to-earth brother Myron. Reynolds manages to paint this humble character vividly.
This trilogy follows life on a future Mars. The main character Darrow belongs to a low caste ‘the Reds’, who believe they are contributing in the survival of coming generations by making Mars ready for mankind. But he is in for a rude awakening – humanity has already reached Mars and huge parks and vast cities are spread all over the planet. The Reds are nothing but slaves. His memory of lost love and longing for justice makes him sacrifice everything to penetrate into the realms of the Gold caste. Darrow will do anything to bring his enemies down… even become one of them to achieve his goal.
To bring a dystopian space opera of this scale to life is a monument to the talents of Reynolds, in particular the way he makes use of different accents to distinguish castes from one another.
A film adaptation of the first novel of the trilogy is currently in production.
My favorite character voice: Cassius and the way the Golden arrogance shines through in Reynolds’ portrayal.
This is a series of four books that serve as a prequel to Sullivan’s Riyria’s Revelations series. These books, titled The Crown Tower
, The Rose and the Thorn
, and The Death of Dulgath
, and The Disappearance of Winter’s Daughter
document the events that took place 12 years before the scenario presented in Riyria’s Revelations. In these books, a cynical thief named Royce Melborn and an optimistic ex-mercenary Hadrian Blackwater join forces for the first time and form the rogues-for-hire group known as “Riyria (Elvish for “two”.)” They are seeking an incredible treasure, but the adventures don’t just stop there. The trilogy has bagged several awards over the years, and the first book was finalist in the 2013 Goodreads Choice Award Fantasy category.
My favorite character voice: The widow Royce and Haydrian lodge with in the The Disappearance of Winter’s Daughter. Reynolds manages a snooty hatefulness that accurately describes a bitter, prejudiced widow.
2016 Audie nominee for best fantasy novel, the USA today best selling series follows the obsession of a 16 year old Dante to become the greatest sorcerer since the days of the gods. He steals a holy book full of dark magic called the Cycle of Arawn, property of a sect that mastered the magic of nether and has been dead for centuries. But as soon as he gets hold of the book, he realizes the nethermancers have not actually left – they want their book back and the city of Mallon is on the verge of a religious conflict. With only a bodyguard Blays by his side, will Dante survive and save his city? Listen to the book and find out!
Get ready for a thrilling tale that will have you gasping at all the right moments! When the epic War of the Gods ended, all vicious demons were cast out and sent to the world. They nearly wrecked havoc and eliminated the human race until the Gods sent Ramrowan to save the mankind. He used magic to save the tribes and banish all the demons away. Times changed and the people forgot the demons and the Gods, and in the age of the Law a powerful Ashok Vadal acted as the protector of the realms. Until one day, when Ashok discovers his entire life is a fraud. What ensues ahead is a nail-biting saga of war, destruction and more!
Enter a world post apocalypse – all of humanity survives in a subterranean city called Silo. Silo goes into one hundred forty-four stories beneath the surface of the Earth, and the series delves deeper into the history and mystery of the city and the secrets that hold it together. The main character in the story is the sheriff of Silo, Holsten. The first 5 books build the aura of Silo and reveal the mysteries behind it, while books six to eight are a prequel to the series. The last book binds all the different storylines together and answers looping holes in the saga.
Another Michael J Sullivan book? Yes. Another of Michael Sullivan’s tales from Riyria (and available as a free
download from Audible), this short novella is another sneak peek into the lives and adventures of the rogues-for-hire duo of Royce Melborn and Hadrian Blackwater. This time, though, they haven’t been asked to steal something – rather a young heiress has put forward an odd request to steal her
. With their professional integrity at stake, will the Riyria get the job done or get to the bottom of the job? This one is a must listen!