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14 Of The Best Audiobooks Narrated By Famous People To Soothe You Through Lockdown

As a kid, I was always that one stumbling along, trying to walk in a straight line with their nose in a book. Not a lot changed about my passion for a good book, except that I now do it stationary and with a cup of tea — because apparently I went from eight to 80 very quickly.

I’ve always resisted audiobooks though, because I can read the book myself, right? Then lockdown happened. Also this ad with the legendary Celeste Barber happened:

 

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Suddenly I find myself in a pile of cross stitch, puzzles and basically any crafty project I can fill my spare time with along with a deep need to have something playing while I do them. Music works, of course, but I have about a thousand different moods and music doesn’t suit them all.

All this to say, I have now discovered audiobooks and my life is changed. I know I’m super late to this game, but at least I made it eventually.

I’m getting a particular kick out of the ones read by famous people — it’s like old-time radio shows to me. Just grab me a sherry and a top hat. Which is why I made a list of the best ones. Please enjoy, you can thank me later.

#1 The Tales Of Beedle The Bard — J.K. Rowling

The famous fairytale book from the world of Harry Potter is read by a cast of narrators, most notable Mr. Jude Law himself.

#2 Call Me by Your Name — André Aciman

You’ve seen the movie, now listen as Arnie Hammer narrates the book it was based on. You already know he’s amazing at it.

#3 Becoming — Michelle Obama

The best First Lady that ever hit up the White House reads her own memoir. I just think she’s awesome and inspirational, ok?

#4 The Great Gatsby — F. Scott Fitzgerald

I have many bad things to say about Tobey Maguire’s efforts of narration in the film. Luckily Jake Gyllenhaal is here to read the book and make it right.

#5 The Handmaid’s Tale — Margaret Atwood

There is no form in which this story isn’t epic, and the same can be said for its narration by Elisabeth Moss, Bradley Whitford, Amy Landecker and Ann Dowd.

#6 Matilda — Roald Dahl

I’m of the opinion you are NEVER too old for Roald Dahl’s stories, especially when they’re narrated by none other than Kate Winslet.

#7 Go Set A Watchman — Harper Lee

The Pulitzer Prize winner written in the 50s and published decades later in 2015 as a sequel to To Kill A Mockingbird is narrated by Reese Witherspoon.

#8 Hitchhiker’s Guide To The Galaxy — Douglas Adams

There is no better time for a laugh, or a book that encourages you to keep calm in big comforting letters. Especially when Stephen Fry is reading it to you.

#9 The Bell Jar — Sylvia Plath

Plath’s only full-length novel is done complete justice by the narration of Maggie Gyllenhaal. You might need to follow up with a happy book though.

#10 Sense And Sensibility — Jane Austen

I don’t know about you, but I feel like now is the time to catch up on the classics, and Austen is made to be read aloud. This time by Gone Girl’s Rosamund Pike.

#11 Slaughterhouse-Five — Kurt Vonnegut

I can’t imagine anyone better to narrate this satiric war story than James Franco. Honestly if you’ve never read this book you HAVE to.

#12 A Series Of Unfortunate Events: The Bad Beginning — Lemony Snickett

Before you rewatch the brilliant series on Netflix, let a full cast of narrators, led by Tim Curry, bring the original book to life for you.

#13 Heartburn — Nora Ephron

Did someone say Meryl Streep? Yes, I did, because she narrates this first novel by the famous screenwriter of Sleepless In Seattle and When Harry Met Sally.

#14 Dracula — Bram Stoker

A whole cast pull out all the stops to bring this classic to life, led by Tim Curry and Alan Cumming. Maybe avoid listening in the middle of the night though.

(Lead Image: Pexels / Leah Kelley)