What Are the Top 20 Children’s Audiobooks?

audiobook girlThe Fuse #8 blog at School Library Journal has been tallying up the results of the Top 100 Children’s Novels Poll. That got us wondering, “What are the Top Children’s Audiobooks?” While many of the books would be the same, adding audio into the mix may change the list a little. So we want to hear from you!

We’ll be compiling a list of the top 20—beginning readers, children’s books, children’s classics, or YA novels are all acceptable submissions. Please see below for rules. Everyone who sends in a list of nominations will be entered to win a the grand prize: a set of 10 audiobooks from the top 20!

    1. Leave a comment below listing your top 20 children’s audiobooks, from number 20 all the way up to number 1, in order. Feel free to leave a sentence or two describing your favorites. If you don’t have 20 favorites, list as many as you’d like.
    2. Submissions will close on May 30, 2010. We’ll tally up the results, assigning points to titles based on their ranking in your list.
    3. We’ll pick one random grand prize winner on June 14, 2010. That winner will receive 10 CD audiobooks from the compiled top 20 audiobooks list. Grand prize audiobooks will be chosen by Recorded Books.
    4. Contest is open to all K-12 educators in the United States. Recorded Books reserves the right to confirm eligibility and alter rules to this contest at any time.
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38 Responses

  1. Maniac Magee by Spinelli
    appealed to M.S. boys and girls, deals with some racial issues-great to build awareness.

    Rules-by Lord
    M.S. Mostly for girls but ok for boys.
    Deals with issues about autism and other handicaps.

    Spiderwick Chronicles
    Different in many ways from the movie

    Inkheart-by Funke
    M.S. boys or girls, fantasy

    Inkspell-by Funke
    Sequel to Inkspell-narrated by man who uses many different voices (Inkheart was narrated by woman)

    • For grade schoolers: Matilda, written by Dahl and narrated by the fabulous Miriam Margoyles AND Henry Huggins by Clearly narrated by his excellency Niel Patrick Harris. My daughter and I listened to these countless times and adored them.

  2. I listen to a lot of children’s and young adult novels so that I can know what to recommend to students.

    Pictures of Hollis Woods by Patricia Reilly Giff, I thoroughly enjoyed.

    And the City of Bones by by Cassandra Clare are two that I would highly recommend.

  3. 20. Number the Stars
    19. Bears of Hemlock Mountain
    18. Walk Two Moons
    17. BFG
    16. Charlotte’s Web
    15. Island of the Blue Dolphin
    14. Charlie and the Glass Elevator
    13. Maniac Magee
    12. The Snow Spider
    11. Bud Not Buddy
    10. Chestnut Soldier
    9. Sarah Plain and Tall
    8. No Talking
    7. Almost Astronauts
    6. How to Eat Fried Worms
    5. Bloomability
    4. Where the Red Fern Grows
    3. When You Reach Me
    2. The Sign of the Beaver
    1. Matilda

  4. 20. Twilight – Meyer / Read by Ilyana Kadushin
    19. A Single Shard – Park / Read by Graeme Malcolm
    18. Stargirl – Spinelli / Read by John Ritter
    17. The Princess Diaries – Cabot / Read by Anne Hathaway
    16. The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants – Brashares / Read by Angela Goethals
    15. Hope Was Here – Bauer / Read by Jenna Lamia
    14. Belle Prater’s Boy – White / Read by Alison Elliott
    13. The Lightning Thief – Riordan / Read by Jesse Bernstein
    12. Gregor the Overlander – Collins / Read by Paul Boehmer
    11. Hatchet – Paulsen / Read by Peter Coyote
    10. Saffy’s Angel – McKay / Read by Julia Swahla
    9. Life as We Knew It – Pfeffer / Read by Emily Bauer
    8. A Year Down Yonder – Peck / Read by Lois Smith
    7. A Long Way From Chicago – Peck / Read by Ron McLarty
    6. Because of Winn-Dixie – DiCamillo / Read by Cherry Jones
    5. Dragon Rider – Funke / Read by Brenden Fraser
    4. Where the Red Fern Grows – Rawls / Read by Anthony Heald
    3. Eragon – Paolini / Read by Gerard Doyle
    2. Charlotte’s Web – E. B. White / Read by the Author!
    (I can just imagine Mr. White telling the story to a group of kids. His voice takes the listener right into that intimate circle.)
    1. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone – Rowling / Read by Jim Dale
    (All the books in the Harry Potter series are wonderful – Jim Dale is the best!)

  5. 1. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix by JK Rowling–Jim Dale is incomparable! I listen to one of the Harry Potter’s at least once a year because they are so amazing. I am putting this one first because his Umbridge is creepy.

    2. Henry Huggins by Beverly Cleary–Neil Patrick Harris does these and is wonderful. In fact, my sons and I listened to all the Henry Huggin’s book and then all the Ramona books and we can safely say that Neil does a better Ramona than Stockard Channing.

    3. Airborn by Kenneth Oppel–This is a Full Cast Audio, but the narrator, done by David Kelly, was so good! He has a great voice. I LOVED this.

    4. The Golden Compass by Philip Pullman–I tried reading this book several times and could never get into it until I started the audiobook. So good!

    5. The Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan—Jesse Bernstein does all the Percy Jackson books and he does a great job. My sons have loved all of these.

    6. Inkspell by Cornelia Funke—I understand why Brendan Fraser was cast as Mo in the movie, he has got a great reading voice.

    7. Peter and the Starcatchers by Dave Barry & Ridley Pearson—again, Jim Dale. Wonderful!

    8. The Penderwicks by Jeanne Birdsall—the narrator, Susan Denaker, has a soothing voice that fits right in with the tone of this story.

    9. Where the Red Fern Grows by Wilson Rawls—again I listened to this with my sons and they loved the story. Anthony Heald did a great job, but I am still more fond of my fourth grade teacher’s narration (good memories).

    10. Love Aubrey by Suzanne Lafleur—I LOVED the narrator’s voice for this audiobook. I can’t seem to find who it was (I had checked it out) but she was great.

    11. Bunnicula by James Howe—we listened to the version done by Victor Garber, excellent narration.

    12. Bloody Jack by LA Meyer—I know these audiobooks always win awards so I listened to the first one. I was not disappointed, very good narration.

    13 & 14: Skybreaker and Starclimber by Kenneth Oppel–I had loved Airborn so much and then Skybreaker. I ended up reading Starclimber because the audio version was not out yet, but then listened to it later because I loved the cast so much.

    15-20: You can round out my top 20 with additional titles in the Harry Potter, Henry Huggins and Peter and the Starcatchers series. I would listen to Jim Dale or Neil Patrick Harris narrate the phone book! They are so good!

  6. On the other side I think that new versions of Charlotte’s Web and A Wrinkle in Time are very necessary. Author readings of these books are not terrible, but not nearly what they could be.

  7. 20. Inkspell – Funke / Read by Brenden Fraser
    19. A Single Shard – Park / Read by Graeme Malcolm
    18. Stargirl – Spinelli / Read by John Ritter
    17. The Princess Diaries – Cabot / Read by Anne Hathaway
    16. The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants – Brashares / Read by Angela Goethals
    15. Hope Was Here – Bauer / Read by Jenna Lamia
    14. Belle Prater’s Boy – White / Read by Alison Elliott
    13. The Lightning Thief – Riordan / Read by Jesse Bernstein
    12. Gregor the Overlander – Collins / Read by Paul Boehmer
    11. Hatchet – Paulsen / Read by Peter Coyote
    10. Saffy’s Angel – McKay / Read by Julia Swahla
    9. Life as We Knew It – Pfeffer / Read by Emily Bauer
    8. A Year Down Yonder – Peck / Read by Lois Smith
    7. A Long Way From Chicago – Peck / Read by Ron McLarty
    6. Because of Winn-Dixie – DiCamillo / Read by Cherry Jones
    5. Dragon Rider – Funke / Read by Brenden Fraser
    4. Where the Red Fern Grows – Rawls / Read by Anthony Heald
    3. Eragon – Paolini / Read by Gerard Doyle
    2. Charlotte’s Web – E. B. White / Read by the Author!
    (I can just imagine Mr. White telling the story to a group of kids. His voice takes the listener right into that intimate circle.)
    1. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone – Rowling / Read by Jim Dale
    (All the books in the Harry Potter series are wonderful – Jim Dale is the best!)

  8. I only have 3 nominations. Sorry I can’t think of more at the moment.
    3. Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane – by Kate DeCamillo/ read by Judith Ivey. This was such a sad book that if I had been reading a paper copy, I probably would have given up but the voices the narrator added kept me going. I was not sure if my high school students would have liked it.
    2.. Elsewhere – by Gabrielle Zevin / read by Cassandra Morris. This was such an interesting concept. Very enjoyable.
    1. Memoirs of a Teenage Amnesiac – also by Gabrielle Zevin / Read by Caitlin Green. Both of the books by Gabrielle Zevin, I would recommend to the high school students that I teach.

    There were some others that had won the YALSA awards that were good but I can’t think of the titles right now. Sorry.

  9. I’m listening to a lot of the classics again that I read as a child – and I’m loving it.

    – Little Women
    – Anderson’s Fairy Tales
    – Peter Pan
    – The Secret Garden
    – Alice in Wonderland

    But, I will also second Margo’s list above – great list!

  10. 1. Lizard Music, read by Daniel Pinkwater
    2. Geronimo Stilton series, read by the amazing Edward Herrman
    3. Wind in the Willows, via Librivox, read by Adrian Praetzellis
    4. The Secret Garden, via Librivox, read by Kara Shallenberg
    5. Feed, by M. T. Anderson, terrifyingly read by David Aaron Baker

  11. […] Posted on April 27, 2010 by riddleburger I just submitted my Top 5 kidlit audiobooks to Recorded Book K-12′s […]

  12. Marcelo in the Real World
    The Collected Stories of Winnie the Pooh (Stephen Fry, Judi Dench, etc.)

  13. I can only think of 3:

    3. Out of the Dust by Karen Hesse, read by Marika Mashburn
    Mashburn’s Oklahoma accent and voice are spot on as Billie Jo.
    2. Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince by J.K. Rowling, read by Jim Dale
    Any Harry Potter book will do, Jim Dale is great (as others have mentioned). This is just the last one I listened to.
    1. Holes by Louis Sachar, read by the author
    A truly great book, and Sachar’s different voices for each character are wonderful.

  14. Here are my top audiobooks for children:

    16. The Mysterious Benedict Society series – Stewart, narrated by Del Roy

    15. The Penderwicks on Gardham Street – Birdsall, narrated by Susan Denaker

    14. Over Sea, Under Stone – Cooper, narrated by Alex Jennings

    13. Belle Prater’s Boy – White, narrated by Alison Elliot

    12. Hatchet – Paulsen, narrated by Peter Coyote

    11. Prince Caspian – Lewis, narrated by Lynn Redgrave

    10. The Last Apprentice series – Delaney, narrated by Christopher Evan Welch

    9. The Amulet of Samarkand – Stroud, narrated by Simon Jones

    8. Ellen Tebbits – Cleary, narrated by Andrea Martin

    7. Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry – Taylor, narrated by Lynne Thigpen

    6. The White Giraffe – St. John, narrated by Adjoa Andoh, whose African accent makes everything in this book more realistic and more beautiful to listen to

    5. Lizzie Bright and the Buckminster Boy – Schmidt, narrated by Sam Freed, whose narration brings all the characters to life vividly

    4. Henry Huggins series – Cleary, narrated by Neil Patrick Harris = In the future, in Harris narrates it, I’ll listen. He’s that good.

    3. Harry Potter series – Rowling, narrated by the incomparable Jim Dale

    2. Elijah of Buxton – Curtis, narrated by Mirron Willis = Willis doesn’t just read this book, he ACTs it, and it’s tremendous

    1. The Phantom Tollbooth – Juster, narrated by David Hyde Pierce = Pierce does a FANTASTIC job!

  15. The Ranger’s Apprentice Series by John Flanagan (John Keating)

    It’s PHENOMENAL

    Harry Potter Series (Jim Dale) — It got families to listen to audiobooks together and removed a lot of the stigma of audiobooks.

    The Bartimaeus Trilogy by Jonathan Stroud (Simon Jones)

    If I Stay by Gayle Forman (

  16. Must add: The Frances Audio Collection (stories by Russell Hoban) narrated by Glynis Johns

  17. Ohhhh, this is very hard. I have listened to a few very amazing audiobooks, but others have just been, well, not so memorable.

    Harry Potter — can I lump them together? — go without saying.
    Bartemaeus Trilogy — once I got past the weirdness of hearing Arthur Dent playing a demon.
    Anything by Jessica Almacy, but I’ll say Rules is #1 on my list of hers.
    Flight #117 is Down by Cooney — this put me on the edge of my seat! I was literally breathless through some parts.
    I am very fond of the full-cast recordings by Coville, though I know many are not so fond. One that struck me upon hearing was Dragonslayers, because at the end of the tape was a fantastic recording of songs from the musical! I was thrilled when Coville released it on CD.
    Speaking of Arthur Dent, can I put the Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy in there? I suppose it’s not really for children… but really is the best radio play ever.
    One I listened to recently that really blew me away is the Golden Hoard, that wonderful folktale collection. I don’t know who narrated it, but he was incredibly versatile and fantastic to listen to.

    I have really enjoyed reading these recommendations. Lots to listen to. Thanks!

  18. 20. The Last Battle – C.S. Lewis
    19. The Silver Chair – C.S. Lewis
    18. The Voyage of the Dawn Treader – C.S. Lewis
    17. Prince Caspian – C.S. Lewis
    16. The Horse and His Boy – C.S. Lewis
    15. The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe – C.S. Lewis
    14. The Magician’s Nephew – C.S. Lewis
    13.Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince – J.K. Rowlings
    12.Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban – J.K. Rowlings
    11. Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets – J.K. Rowlings
    10. The Call of the Wild – Jack London
    9. The Giver – Lois Lowry
    8. Hatchet – Gary Paulson
    7. Maniac McGee – Jerry Spinelli
    6. The Hobbit – J.R.R. Tolkein
    5. The Last Olympian – Rick Riordan
    4. The Battle of the Labyrinth – Rick Riordan
    3. The Titans Curse – Rick Riordan
    2. The Sea of Monsters – Rick Riordan
    1. The Lightening Thief – Rick Riordan

  19. In an effort to NOT list ever single Harry Potter book, I’ve just done the Top 14. And I’m not an educator, just a fan of Children’s audio, so don’t worry about including me in the contest.

    -Beth

    1. The Giver – Lois Lowry (Read by Ron Rifkin) Rifkin’s voice perfectly captures

    Jonah’s journey to wisdom. I’ve listened to this more times than I can count and it

    never gets old. A wonderful novel & a beautiful performance.
    2. Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets – J.K. Rowling (read by Jim Dale)

    This was the first audiobook I listened to that had me laughing out loud so hard I

    cried. Jim Dale’s troll Valentine song fiasco about killed me.
    3. The Golden Compass – Phillip Pullman (Read by Author & Full Cast) The

    voice acting here is absolutely amazing. Lyra’s adventures come alive in a way

    that’s so much better than any of the other adaptations.
    4. The Watsons Go to Birmingham – Christopher Paul Curtis (read by Lavar

    Burton)
    5. Bridge to Terabithia – Katherine Paterson (read by Tom Stechschulte) This one

    had me weeping for days. So beautiful and sad.
    6. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire – J.K. Rowling (read by Jim Dale)
    7. Coraline – Neil Gaiman (read by Author) Gaiman’s voice gives the perfect

    creepy flavor to a truly chilling story. I’ll never forget the mice rhymes and how

    perfectly creeped out they made me.
    8. Peter and the Starcatchers – Dave Barry & Ridley Pearson (read by Jim Dale)

    “The Ladies!!”
    9. The Graveyard Book – Neil Gaiman (read by Author)
    10. The Wee Free Men – Terry Pratchett (read by Stephen Briggs)
    11. The Subtle Knife – Phillip Pullman (read by Author & Full Cast)
    12. Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing – Judy Blume (read by Author)
    13. Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince – JK Rowling (read by Jim Dale)
    14. The Amber Spyglass – Phillip Pullman (read by Author & Full Cast)

  20. Okay — not in any order, but I couldn’t resist sharing some of my favorites (there’s more, but I limited myself to 20):

    A Dog on His Own by MaryJane Auch narrated by William Dufris
    A Northern Light by Jennifer Donnelly narrated by Hope Davis
    The Thief Lord by Cornelia Funke narrated by Simon Jones.
    Red Glass by Laura Resau narrated by Emma Bering
    Alvin Ho by Lenore Look narrated by Everette Plen
    The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman, narrated by Neil Gaiman
    The Absolutely True Diary of a Parttime Indian by Sherman Alexie, narrated by Sherman Alexie
    Clementine by Sara Pennypacker narrated by Jessica Almasy

    The Jesus Storybook Bible by David Suchet
    Diamond Willow narrated by Helen Frost narrated by Jennifer Ikeda
    The Days of Little Texas by R.A. Nelson read by Luke Daniels
    The Black Book of Secrets by F.E. Higgins narrated by James Daniel Wilson
    Chasing Lincoln’s Killer by James L. Swanson read by Will Patton
    The Possibilities of Sainthood by Donna Freitas narrated by Emily Bauer
    The Boy Who Dared by Susan Campbell Bartoletti narrated by David Ackroyd
    Emperors of the Ice by Richard Farr read by Michael Page
    Tikki Tikki Tembo by Arlene Mosel read by Blair Lent
    Leviathan by Scott Westerfield narrated by Alan Cumming
    Wild Girl by Patricia Reilly Giff read by Justine Eyre
    Masterpiece by Elise Broach read by Jeremy Davidson

  21. […] you love polls? I kind of do. Recorded Books K-12 is asking What Are the Top 20 Children’s Audiobooks? I know the post asks teachers to vote, but I checked and public librarians can weigh in as well! So […]

  22. 1. Skulduggery Pleasants (all) by Landy
    2. Inkspell by Funke
    3. Inkheart by Funke
    4. Penderwicks (either) by Birdsall
    5. Because of Winn Dixie by DiCamillo
    6. Harry Potter (all) by Rowling
    7. Tale of Despereaux by DiCamillo
    8. My Lousiana Sky by Holt
    9. Cementine by Pennypacker

    (Not a teacher, but a public librarian)

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  24. All the Harry Potter books. Actually enjoy listening to these books better than reading them.

    Single Shard – wonderful
    Holes – kids love the audio
    Hatchet – and the rest of the series
    Charlotte’s Web
    Earagon – easier than reading it
    Each Little Bird That Sings – my heart sang
    Great Turkey Walk – laugh out loud
    Inkspell & Inkheart
    Hunger Games
    Al Capone Does My Shirts
    Frindle
    Ella Enchanted
    Because of Winn-Dixie
    The Boggart

  25. These are grade school successes and wantabees….

    20.The Great Fire by Jim Murphy- useful, wonderful voices of Taylor Mali (Audio Bookshelf)
    >>>>>>
    13 Freak the Mighty
    12 Time Cat by Lloyd Alexander
    11 Susan Cooper’s Dark IS Rising
    10. Ivy and Bean series
    9. Geronimo Stilton
    8. The Benedict Society series
    7. Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIMH- useful
    6. Chocolate Kiss, Cating (not widely available as should be…)
    5. Number the Stars
    4. Lisa Yee’s Stanford Wong series.. should be!
    3.Gooney Bird series
    2. Desperately need Scat, Hoot, and Flush by Carl Hiaasen
    1.Percy Jackson series

  26. 20. The Wrong Hands by Nigel Richardson. A book you’ve likely never heard of, but it’s so good. The audio, read by Euan Morton, is brilliant!

    19. Mimus by Lilli Thal. Another personal favorite no one’s heard of that will reward (nearly) all listeners. I want more Maxwell Caulfield!

    18. King Dork by Frank Portman. This never got on the AAYA list, and I do go on about it. I want everyone to listen to King Dork!

    17. Stuck in Neutral by Terry Trueman. The audiobook gives voice to the voiceless Shawn.

    16. Feed by M.T. Anderson. The first audiobook in my listening to truly use the aural experience: The feed is indeed inside your head.

    15. The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman. Atmospheric and spooky, with just a touch of irony.

    14. Dairy Queen by Catherine Gilbert Murdock. What’s not to love about Natalie Moore’s D.J. Schwenk?

    13. The Bartimaeus trilogy by Jonathan Stroud. Simon Jones’ smart, snarky Bartimaeus is one for the ages.

    12. We Are the Ship: The Story of Negro League Baseball by Kadir Nelson. A listener doesn’t miss Nelson’s wonderful paintings because Dion Graham is painting word pictures.

    11. Martina the Beautiful Cockroach by Carmen Agra Deedy. A wonderful opportunity to hear the difference between storytelling and story reading. They’re both great!

    10. The Last Apprentice (and sequels) by Joseph Delaney. Even though Christopher Evan Welch isn’t British, he skillfully creates some scary times out in the English countryside.

    9. Inkheart by Cornelia Funke. The first is the best! The late, great Lynn Redgrave relishes every word of this magnificent ode to the power of reading.

    8. Louise, the Adventures of a Chicken by Kate DiCamillo. In what I will always think of as “my” Odyssey book, Barbara Rosenblat takes that French hen to some exciting places.

    7. Th1rteen R3asons Why by Jay Asher. A perfect use of the audio medium: Hannah is speaking to Clay over his earphones, and we are listening in.

    6. Fairest by Gail Carson Levine. I love any audiobook where songs are actually sung, and they are here. This is not the same book as the one you read … it’s much, much better.

    5. The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-time Indian by Sherman Alexie. Sherman Alexie is the only reader who could have brought his alterego, Arnold Spirit Jr., so vividly to life.

    4. The Curious Incident of the Dog of the Dog in the Night-time by Mark Haddon. Technically not for young adults, I can still hear Jeff Woodman’s tentative, yet confident voicing of the autistic Christopher.

    3. Accidents of Nature by Harriet McBryde Johnson. A brilliant performance by Jenna Lamia, who skillfully demonstrates the difference between 17-year-old Jean’s internal and external voices.

    2. Bloody Jack (and sequels) by L.A. Meyer. Bloody Jack – hotheaded, impetuous, affectionate, smart – all that and more of her starring personality are embodied in Katherine Kellgren’s vivid interpretation.

    1. Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling. Narrator Jim Dale sets the bar very high with his masterful performance of this series. No one does fantasy vocal characterizations like Mr. Dale.

  27. 20. The Whipping Boy – Sid Fleischman
    19. Amos Fortune, by Elizabeth Yates
    18. All-of-a-Kind Family, by Sidney Taylor
    17. – 13. The Spiderwick Chronicles, by Holly Black & Tony DiTerlizzi
    12. A House Called Awful End, by Philip Ardagh
    11. Misty of Chincoteague, by Marguerite Henry
    10. Everything on a Waffle, by Polly Horvath
    9. Call it Courage, by Armstrong Sperry
    8. Island of the Blue Dolphins, by Scott O’Dell
    7. Because of Winn-Dixie, by Kate DiCamillo
    6. Lunch Money, by Andrew Clements
    5. Frindle, by Andrew Clements
    4. The Tale of Despereaux, by Kate DiCamillo
    3. Tiger, Tiger, by Lynne Reid Banks
    2. Poppy, by Avi
    1. The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane, by Kate DiCamillo

  28. […] Reading RecommendationsFree audio and lesson plan for Bridge to TerabithiaSummer Reading List for YAWhat Are the Top 20 Children's Audiobooks?Another free Lesson Plan for Bridge to Terabithia – with […]

  29. […] Reading RecommendationsFree audio and lesson plan for Bridge to TerabithiaSummer Reading List for YAWhat Are the Top 20 Children's Audiobooks?Another free Lesson Plan for Bridge to Terabithia – with […]

  30. I’ve only been in the YA biz for about 5 years, and recently discovered audio, as a way to keep up with what my students were reading. Some of my favorites include:

    10. Diamond of Drury Lane (Golding) performed by Finty Williams

    9. Elsewhere (Zevin) performed by Cassandra Morris

    8. I am the Messenger (Zusak) performed by Marc Aden Gray

    7. Waves (Dogar) performed by James Clamp

    6. Magician:Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel (Scott) performed by Erik Singer

    5. Inkspell (Funke) performed by Brendan Fraser

    4.Stoneheart trilogy (Fletcher) performed by Jim Dale

    3. Harry Potter (Rowling) performed by Jim Dale

    2. 13 Reasons Why (Asher) performed by Joel Johnstone and Debra Wiseman

    1. All of Skulduggery Pleasant( Landy) but especially The Faceless Ones, all performed by Rupert Degas (he’s awesome, I don’t think I’ve laughed so hard in my life)…”damn lazy cows”

  31. 1. Blackbringer, narrated by Davina Porter
    The accents used by the narrator were perfect, and really made me believe I was dealing with a strange faerie culture.

    2. Saffy’s Angel, narrated by Julia Sawalha
    The narration is spot-on and hilarious. It can be difficult to narrate funny books without either overdoing it or missing opportunities for humor.

    3. Trickster’s Choice and Trickster’s Queen, narrated by Trini Alvarado
    The range of believable accents helped with the worldbuilding for me.

    4. Harry Potter series, narrated by Jim Dale

    5. Fairest, narrated by Full Cast Audio
    Hearing the songs makes the book come alive.

    There are many other excellent audiobooks, of course, but these are the ones that made me feel that the listening experience was significantly different from reading the book. There are many audiobooks that I love simply because I love the story. This list includes the audiobooks that I love because the narration is so well done.

  32. 1. Harry Potter (series)
    2. Ella Enchanted
    3. The Golden Compass
    4. The Giver
    5. Tikki Tikki Tembo
    6. Jackie’s Wild Seattle
    7. Frindle
    8. Running Out of Time
    9. Series of Unfortunate Events (series)
    10. Number the Stars
    11. Teeny Tiny Woman
    12. Holes
    13. Small Steps
    14. Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants
    15. The Indian in the Cupboard
    16. The Boy in the Striped Pajamas
    17. Airman
    18. Beezus and Ramona
    19. The Worst Monster in the World
    20. The Bridge to Terabithia

  33. […] If you are a K-12 teacher in the United States, it’s time for YOUR vote on the Top 20 Children’s Audiobooks. From Recorded Books K-12 is a contest which requires you to submit your 20 favourite audiobooks for children. When you enter, you are automatically entered to win the grand prize! Contest closes May 30, 2010. Learn more. […]

  34. 1. Harry Potter by J. K. Rowling. Narrated by Jim Dale. I know I’m not very original but I can’t deny that I’ve listened to the vocal acrobatics of Jim Dale too many times to put Harry, Hermione, Dobby and the rest at the top of the list.
    2. Absolutely True Diary of a Part Time Indian by Sherman Alexie. Read by the author. The “Rez” accent is not essential to appreciate this adolescent chronicle of straddling two worlds, but is sure doesn’t hurt.
    3. Roll of Thunder Hear my Cry by Mildred Taylor. Narrated by Lynne Thigpen. The power and authenticity that Thigpen brings to Taylor’s story of depression era racial issues is breathtaking.
    4. Year Down Yonder by Richard Peck. Narrated by Lois Smith. I don’t know who this Lois Smith is, but in my world she will have closet full of Lane Bryant dresses and a passel of shenanigans up her sleeve that would do Grandma Dowdle proud.
    5. Joey Pigza by Jack Gantos. Narrated by the author. It goes to figure that Joey’s papa would be able to be about to give Joey the perfect frenetic pitch.
    6. Anne of Green Gables by L. M. Montgomery. Narrated by Barbara Caruso. At first I was put off by the old fashioned feel to the narration but then I realized Caruso was pulling me back in time with her voice to the red roads of P.E.I.
    7. Our Only May Amelia by Jennifer Holm. Read by Emmy Rossum. The young narrator used to tell this tomboy romp brings such a delicious texture to this captivating character.
    8. The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman. Narrated by the author. I’m not sure if a children’s book should sound this sexy, but I will happily take my ghost stories with this kind of verbal velvet.
    9. Ramona the Pest by Beverly Cleary. Narrated by Stockard Channing. Not only can Ms. Channing bring regal indignation as the First Lady in The West Wing, but she can bring the same indignation as a five- year-old.
    10. Good Masters, Sweet Ladies by Laura Amy Schlitz. Full cast of narrators. Sure I’d read the book before it won the big award, and sure I was mighty impressed with Schlitz’s skill with words. But hearing it how it was meant to be heard, moved it from a grand award-winner to pure genius.
    11. Because of Wynn-Dixie by Kate DiCammillo. Narrated by Cherry Jones. Cherry Jones’ expressive, slightly-lispy, voice is so right for India Opel and company.
    12. Bloody Jack: being an account of the curious adventures of Mary “Jacky” Faber, Ship’s Boy by L. A. Meyer. Narrated by Katherine Kellgren. The vocal ability of Ms. Kellgren to take us from the cockneyed streets of 18th century London to the highs seas in the British navy is dizzying delight.
    13. Holes by Louis Sachar. Narrated by Kerry Beyer. It is hard to imagine any telling of this flawless book not working. The narration here kicks the sublime up a level.
    14. Wee Free Men by Terry Prachett. Narrated by Stephen Briggs. The brogue brought to this tale of hard-drinking, hard-talking, blue fairy boys is a giggle a minute.
    15. Sammy Keyes by Wendelin Van Draanen. Narrated by Tara Sands. The light young voice of this narrator suits to perfection the light young detective in this series.
    16. A View from Saturday by E. L. Konigsberg. Narrated by Rick Adamson, L.J. Ganser, Agnes Hermann, Aasif Mandvi, Barbara Rosenblat, Jeff Woodman. This incising interconnected tale told by 4 different narrators has the bonus of showcasing the greatest of all audio book readers, her most exalted Barbara Rosenblat.
    17. Maniac McGee by Jerry Spinelli. Narrated by S. Epatha Merkeson of Law and Order fame. There is something about this favorite of mine being read in the dry but compassionate voice of Merkeson.
    18. Tadpole by Ruth White. Narrated by Kate Forbes. The Appalachian accent brought to this reading is tangible.
    19. The Golden Compass by Philip Pullman. Narrated by the author with a full cast of British Actors. For the most part I find full-cast audio books irritating at best and lobotomizing at worst but for whatever reason this version is divine. The actress reading Lyra is captivating.
    20. Inkheart by Cornila Funke. Read by Lynn Redgrave. The dulcet Ms. Redgrave does such a lovely job reading this first book in Funke page-escaping trilogy, it’s a wonder the schizophrenic Brendon Frasier was turned to, to do the others.

  35. […] There were many great suggestions that did not make it into the final top 20 lists, so please check out all the comments for some great reading […]

  36. 1 lemony snicket series
    is a must for an audiobook lover
    2.harry potter series
    but i prefer stephan fry to jim dale for the simple reason can’t voice is not a teenager

    3.around the world in 80 days by jules verne(read by jim dale)

    4.secret garden

    5. love story

    6. roald dahl
    i have yet to find a dahl book which i didn’t enjoyed

    bfg
    Roald Dahl – Charlie and the Chocolate Factory
    Roald Dahl – Charlie and the Great Glass Elevator
    Roald Dahl – Danny the Champion of the World
    Roald Dahl – Dirty Beasts
    Roald Dahl – George’s Marvellous Medicine

  37. Quick plug for a couple I haven’t seen (much)

    James and the Giant Peach, Roald Dahl, read by Jeremy Irons. The scene where the peach rolls through the town had us all on the edge of our seats with hearts thumping! Irons does an absolutely amazing job.

    The entire Little House series by Laura Ingalls Wilder, read by Cherry Jones. Jones does a fantastic job with this series – loved her voice. Favorite among the series – Little House in the Big Woods, The Long Winter

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