Farewell, Audiophiles!

Hello Audiophiles! Well, it looks like our time together is coming to a close. As of today, this version of the audiobooks newsletter is ending. But Book Riot still has you covered on the audiobooks front: there will be a new Audiobooks Promotions Newsletter launching October 3rd! It will feature special offers, new products, and interesting listens from the world of audiobooks. If you sign up here, you’ll also be entered into a giveaway for a chance to win a one-year subscription to Audible.

This week, Samuel, Dylan, Gwen, and I are heading out on a road trip to spend time with family. This is Gwen’s first road trip, (I can’t believe it’s been a year since she joined our family!) and I strongly suspect there will be a road trip audiobook in our future. She’s always loved the sounds of audiobooks to keep her calm — such a girl after my own heart. Dylan, being the perfect baby angel that he is, loves road trips and will be having the time of his life, I’m sure. If you want to follow along on their travels, you can find the Corgis’ Instagram here.

Okay, let’s jump into the audiobooks for this week.

Bookish Goods

A photo of a book sleeve in a cloth pattern featuring with cute bats

Large Book Sleeve – Night Flight W/ Pockets by Good Vibes Good Books

I adore a good book sleeve — and this one has pockets! This store has sleeves in several different sleeves and patterns. This one is my favorite. Perfect for spooky season! $25

New Releases

A graphic of the cover of Best of Friends by Kamila Shamsie

Best of Friends by Kamila Shamsie | Narrated by Tania Rodrigues

Women’s Prize Winner Kamila Shamsie is back with her latest novel, Best of Friends, which follows two childhood best friends, Zahra and Maryam. Since meeting as girls in Karachi, these two women have been there for each other through everything. But now as adults, events unfold in ways that will test their friendship in new ways.

A graphic of the cover of Stay True by Hua Hsu

Stay True by Hua Hsu | Narrated by the Author

When Hua Hsu, the child of Taiwanese immigrants, meets Ken, the son of Japanese immigrants, he doesn’t know what to think at first. They come from such different cultures and backgrounds, but in America, they are lumped into the same label of “Asian American.” Hsu and Ken slowly become friends despite their different views on the world, but after Ken dies in a carjacking, Hsu must find a way to mourn his friend and process his grief. So, he writes.

Want to read books from this newsletter? You can, for free! Get three free audiobooks with a trial to Claim your 3 free audiobooks now!

Riot Recommendations

Since I started writing the audiobooks newsletter, I’ve recommended HUNDREDS of audiobooks, and in my first newsletter, I shared some of my favorites: The Golden Compass by Phillip Pullman, performed by a full cast; and Sabriel by Garth Nix, performed by Tim Curry; The Secret Lives of Church Ladies by Deesha Philyaw, performed by Janina Edwards; and Disability Visibility: Unabridged Selections edited by Alice Wong, performed by Alejandra Ospina.

For my last recommendations, I wanted to tell you about MORE of my favorite audiobooks of all time, the ones I go back to when I need a familiar voice telling me the story of my favorite characters going on incredible adventures or standing up against incredible odds.

A graphic of the cover of he who fight with monsters

He Who Fights with Monsters by Shirtaloon | Narrated by Heath Miller

Before I listened to He Who Fights with Monsters, I had no idea that the LitRPG genre existed. Imagine my surprise that my 15-year relationship with World of Warcraft would directly translate to stories featuring characters who are in video games. But last year, I was randomly assigned this audiobook for a review, and I fell head over heels in love with Heath Miller’s rendition of Jason Asano, a Japanese Australian man thrown into a completely different universe. There, Asano finds himself in a video game-like world where he must gain experience by defeating monsters while saving villagers as he moves through the world. I just finished volume seven of the ongoing series, and now have listened to Miller’s performance for more hours than I can count. It’s one I pre-order as soon as I can and download the day it comes out.

A graphic of the cover of Aru Shah and the End of Time

Aru Shah and the End of Time by Roshani Chokshi | Narrated by Soneela Nankani

I don’t even have words to express my joy when I realized that Rick Riordan and Roshani Chokshi were teaming up as a writer/editor team for the first book in Riordan’s new imprint. Aru is an Indian American girl who accidentally unleashed a terrible evil into the world only to find out that she is a reincarnation of one of the Pandava brothers. That series also made me a forever Soneela Nankani fan as I listened to her brilliantly perform every book in this series over the last five years.

A graphic of the cover of salvage the bones

Salvage the Bones by Jesmyn Ward | Narrated by January LaVoy OR Cherise Boothe

Forever and always, I will love this novel. It’s centered around Esch, a teenage girl who lost her mother as a young girl and who now lives with her dad and siblings in the Mississippi Delta. As hurricane Katrina is headed their way, Esch tries to prepare for the storm and take care of her younger brothers. While I listened to a previous version of the audiobook performed by Cherise Boothe, I love January LaVoy, so it was well worth relistening to. It’s a unique experience hearing the different narrators make their performance their own. They use different voices and interpretation of tone and cadence in the dialogue. Boothe’s edition of the audiobook is now out of print, as it were, so it may be hard to find, but both versions are fantastic.

A photo featuring Kendra, a white woman with brunette hair, Dylan, a red and white Pembroke Welsh Corgi, and Gwen, a black and white cardigan welsh corgi, as a puppy
Kendra, Gwen (at ten weeks), & Dylan

Thank you all so much for reading my musings about audiobooks over the course of countless newsletters. And while I won’t be writing about audiobooks here anymore, you can hear more about what I’m listening to over on Book Riot’s main site, the Read or Dead podcast, or in the True Story newsletter!

Elsewhere on the web, you can find me over on my substack Winchester Ave or over on Instagram @kdwinchester. As always, feel free to drop me a line at

Happy listening, bookish friends!

~ Kendra!