Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Five Favorites For Your Listening Pleasure......

As we're fast approaching yet another marathon road trip, I thought I'd share some of our favorite audiobooks of the summer for your auto-listening pleasure:

We've been checking out exorbitant amounts of audiobooks from our local library lately.  For someone who has spent a significant amount of driving time listening to all of the Harry Potter audiobooks (over, and over, and over) you would think it would have occurred to me sooner to try out other books that the children could also listen to.  I thought it would be a disaster but they had been doing so well without dvd players that I thought I'd give it a go.  To my surprise/delight, the boys' car behavior turned out to be so much better when we were listening to a good story--maybe because it takes more mental energy than just watching a dvd or staring out of the window or asking me eleventy-billion questions and not listening to the answers?

I'd like to say that I'm a good mom and that I turn off the books when the children inevitably fall asleep......but these are good enough that I totally keep listening anyway.....


We've been through the entire Chronicles of Narnia series albeit in a completely random order consisting mostly of grabbing whichever one happened to be at the library that day until we got through them all.  The boys didn't seem to mind.  I really liked these ones:   The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, The Magician's Nephew, The Horse and His Boy, Prince Caspian, The Voyage of the Dawn Treader, The Silver Chair, The Last Battle but Aunt Kate said she listened to this radio theatre version and it was amazing so I think I see it in our near future too :)


I also loved this particular reading of A Little Princess.  After listening to a bridge-jump-inducing version of Ella Enchanted* that David picked out because it had a picture of a princess on the cover, I realized that the person reading the book is just as important as the story itself, and also that little girls with whiny voices can make a slightly annoying book completely excruciating.

I also realized that I must never have actually read this as a little girl and my whole knowledge of the story was apparently based on the Shirley Temple movie. Spoiler Alert:  the book is not the same as the movie, there is no desperate hospital searching, Ms. Crewe doesn't meet the queen, there is no happy reunion with her father, and I can't believe I'm just now finding this out.


Three Tales of My Father's Dragon.  This was not my favorite, but the boys loved it and it wasn't bad....or long :)  


The Adventures of Peter Rabbit.  This is where our audiobook bender began. If your kids aren't used to audiobooks this is probably a great place to start--the stories are short and.....wonderful.  Unless your kids hate Beatrix Potter in which case....I'm so sad for you.....and maybe, try the dragon stories. 


Peter Pan.  The boys loved this because, well, because it was all about Peter Pan.  I loved this because it is read by Jim Dale, of Harry Potter audiobook fame.  There's just something so comforting to me in his voice and in this recording he is just perfect.  I tried to listen to Return to the Hundred Acre Wood solely because it was read by him and I had to abandon it--the voices sounded so much like several of the Harry Potter characters' voices that it creeped me out and the whole thing felt wrong.  (I'm sure it would be a lovely audiobook though for anyone who didn't already associate the voices of Pooh, Piglet and the gang with those of known Death  Eaters.)  

Well those are our current favorites and I've got a new giant pile waiting for our next roadtripping adventure which I'm not dreading as much now that I've got something to distract the kids and myself with....and also because I've got a husband coming with me on this one :)

And since this has turned into a list of five things I guess I might as well try my hand at linking up with the ladies at Moxie Wife--better late than never, right?

*I don't recommend listening to Ella Enchanted with your obstinate four year old who is too smart for his own good.  He may begin telling you that he will no longer be obedient because he has now learned that obedience is a curse and you will have to have multiple discussions about why being forced to obey is bad but choosing to obey is good all of which begs the question did he really think he was being obedient before?


  1. Always on the hunt for things for our 3 boys to listen to when falling asleep at night :) We share many of your favorites, too! I have wanted to share my love of the Secret Garden, a Little Princess and Little Women with my boys for a long time...but for now we've compromised on Pippi Longstocking. Haha!

    1. David LOVES Pippi books :) Now that you've mentioned it I think I will check the library for the audiobook too!

  2. I love the list. I love audio books from the library. We used to check them out often. It's been a while though. I need to do it again, maybe our next road trip. You really do need to listen to the radio theater version of The Chronicles of Narnia, it was really fun!

    1. Maybe your next roadtrip should be in the direction of our house :)

  3. Thanks for the list. I will concur that the radiotheater of Narnia is awesome...abridged but awesome. One of our all-time favorites is Peter Dennis' reading of's the only version approved by Christopher Robin himself and Dennis does amazing voices of all the characters.

    1. I did not know that there was an approved reading--thank you! I will make sure that's the one we get when we do Winnie-the-Pooh. I'm planning on reading it with my oldest this Spring when we do a bit of Kindergarten at home :)


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