Sammy and Juliana in Hollywood Tomorrow, When the War Began by Benjamin Alire Sáenz, by John Marsden, narrated by Robert Ramirez narrated by Suzi Dougherty Read Around Sammy Santos and Juliana Rios live A group of teens returning from amongst the racism, discrimination, a camping trip discover that and everyday violence during the something terrible has happened 1960s Vietnam years in small town Southern New in their absence. How they survive and fight an the World Mexico. Ramirez narrates with strong cultural invading army is skillfully narrated by Dougherty authenticity, intensifying the sense of time and place. with her authentic Australian accent. With Your Ears Seedfolks Under the Blood Red Sun by Paul Fleischman, by Graham Salisbury, for teens narrated by Various Voices narrated by Jeff Woodman One by one, people of varying ages Tomikazu Nakaji’s biggest concerns and backgrounds transform a trash- are baseball, homework, and a local filled inner-city lot into a productive bully, until life in Hawaii with his and beautiful garden, and in doing so, Japanese family changes drastically the gardeners are themselves transformed. Each after the bombing of Pearl Harbor on gardener is read with regional and cultural accuracy, December 7, 1941. Woodman creates Tomi’s diverse heightening the emotional impact of the story. community with unique voices for each character.
A Step from Heaven The Whale Rider by An Na, narrated by Jina Oh by Witi Ihimaera, A young Korean girl and her family narrated by Jay Laga’aia find it difficult to learn English and The first-born male insures the rightful adjust to life in America. Jina Oh succession of chief in a Maori tribe expertly creates Young Ju’s voice from in Whangara, New Zealand. When her earliest toddler experiences in Kahu breaks that line, she must prove Korea through her painful attempts to that she has truly been chosen by the keep peace in the family as a high school student. whales to lead her people. The narrator, a native Maori, provides accurate pronunciation and pacing to Sunrise over Fallujah heighten the cultural experience for listeners. by Walter Dean Myers, narrated by J. D. Jackson Robin Perry, from Harlem, is sent to Enjoy an authentic cultural Iraq in 2003 as a member of the Civilian Affairs Battalion, and his time there listening experience profoundly changes him. Jackson captures Robin’s voice, increasing the emotional as you travel the globe impact of this story of boys and war. with these audiobooks.
To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee, narrated by Sissy Spacek A young girl growing up in an Alabama town in the 1930s learns of injustice and violence when her father, a widowed lawyer, defends a black man falsely accused of rape. Spacek’s soft southern accent adds to the Teen Central @ Hedberg Public Library regional atmosphere created so powerfully by the author. 6/2011 We live in a global society and Elijah of Buxton Here in Harlem: by Christopher Paul Curtis, Poems in Many Voices one of the best ways to connect with narrated by Mirron Willis by Walter Dean Myers, each other is through stories. Eleven-year-old Elijah Freeman, narrated by Multiple Voices Audiobooks can provide a wonderful way to hear the first free-born child in Buxton, A celebration of Harlem through the voices of people from many lands and regions. Canada, uses his wits and skills powerful and soulful first-person attempting to bring an unscrupulous poems in the voices of the residents The following titles offer authentic cultural preacher to justice. Willis effortlessly narrates a tale who make up the legendary listening experiences, so plug in your ear buds and filled with dialect, accentuating both the humor and neighborhood. Read by a full cast, each travel through time and around the world. the horror of Elijah’s life. poem comes to life with the music and sound effects of this vibrant African American cityscape.
Esperanza Rising The Absolutely True Diary of by Pam Muñoz Ryan, Nory Ryan’s Song a Part-Time Indian narrated by Trini Alvarado by Patricia Reilly Giff, written and narrated by narrated by Susan Lynch Sherman Alexie On the eve of the Great Depression, Esperanza and her mother are When a terrible blight attacks Budding cartoonist Junior leaves forced to leave their life of wealth Ireland’s potato crop in 1845, his troubled school on the Spokane and privilege in Mexico to work in 12-year-old Nory Ryan’s courage Indian Reservation to attend an all-white farm Southern California, where harsh circumstances face and ingenuity help her family and neighbors survive. town school where the only other Indian is the Mexican farm workers. Spanish words and phrases Lynch brings a lilting Irish accent to this bleak school mascot. Alexie comfortably creates Junior’s are effortlessly read by Alvarado adding to the historical moment that still manages to be filled voice, showcasing the humor and tragedy of this cultural realism. with hope. autobiographical novel.
The First Part Last One Crazy Summer Before We Were Free by Angela Johnson, by Rita Williams-Garcia, written and narrated by Julia Alvarez narrated by Khalipa Oldjohn narrated SiSi Aisha Johnson In the early 1960s in the Dominican (featuring Kole Kristi) In the summer of 1968, Delphine and Republic, 12-year-old Anita learns Kahlipa Oldjohn’s appropriately her two younger sisters travel from that her family is involved in the youthful voice realistically takes Brooklyn, New York to Oakland, underground movement to end the listeners inside Bobby’s story as his carefree teenage California to spend a month with the bloody rule of the dictator, General life changes forever when he becomes a father and mother they barely know. Resenting Trujillo. Alvarez, who grew up in the must care for his adored baby daughter. the intrusion, their mother sends them off to a Black Dominican Republic, perfectly creates the setting, Panther community day camp. Johnson’s strong language, and characters through her narration. voice guides listeners through Delphine’s growing The Grey King awareness of herself. by Susan Cooper, Colibrí narrated by Richard Mitchley by Ann Cameron, Peace, Locomotion narrated by Jacquelin Kim Eleven-year-old Will Stanton, who by Jacqueline Woodson, has only recently discovered his narrated by Dion Graham Kidnapped by a ruthless man who magical powers, is sent to Wales to forces her to lie and beg for money, recover from a long illness. There Sixth-grader Lonnie, “Locomotion,” a 12-year-old Mayan girl endures an he encounters a strange boy and an keeps his family alive through letters abusive life, always wishing to return amazing dog that help him in his quest to defeat the to his sister, living in a different to the parents she hardly remembers. powers of darkness. Native Welsh speaker Mitchley’s foster home. Dion Graham’s sensitive narration brings Kim’s reading creates a sense of place and culture, as rich voice transports listeners to the mountainous listeners squarely into the lives of Lonnie’s own foster well as Colibrí’s anguish. countryside ably conveying the dark magic. family, including the brother who comes home from the war completely changed.