As a big fan of audiobooks, it’s always a special treat to discover ones that are narrated by some of my favorite celebrities. There’s something comforting about hearing a familiar voice read you a story, whether it’s a chilling horror novel, a swoon-worthy romance, or a modern literary classic. From Meryl Streep to Armie Hammer, here are 11 stellar celebrity audiobook readers to add to your listening queue.
Sarah is a high-powered executive and mother who’s got it all—until one day, a horrible car accident leaves her with a traumatic brain injury. Unable to see the left side of her surroundings, Sarah must learn to surrender control as she navigates her new reality. Actor Sarah Paulson (American Horror Story, Bird Box) offers a nuanced audio performance that captures the protagonist’s internal transformation from high-powered executive to a trauma survivor renegotiating her relationship with the world.
Narrated by Sarah Paulson
From neuroscientist and bestselling author Lisa Genova comes a story of resilience in the face of a devastating diagnosis. After a car crash leaves a vibrant mother in her thirties with a traumatic brain disorder called “left neglect,” she learns what truly matters most in life.
Sarah Nickerson, like any other working mom, is busy trying to have it all. One morning while racing to work and distracted by her cell phone, she looks away from the road for one second too long. In that blink of an eye, all the rapidly moving parts of her over-scheduled life come to a screeching halt. After a brain injury steals her awareness of everything on her left side, Sarah must retrain her mind to perceive the world as a whole. In so doing, she also learns how to pay attention to the people and parts of her life that matter most.
In this powerful and poignant New York Times bestseller, Lisa Genova explores what can happen when we are forced to change our perception of everything around us. Left Neglected is an unforgettable story about finding abundance in the most difficult of circumstances, learning to pay attention to the details, and nourishing what truly matters.
The PET SEMATARY audiobook is the perfect marriage of writer and reader. Michael C. Hall, who played a serial killer on Dexter for eight seasons, narrates Stephen King’s classic horror tale with chilling intensity. Whether you loved the recent film adaptation or were too scared to watch the horror play out on screen, this audiobook is well worth a listen—just be prepared for chills.
Narrated by Michael C. Hall
Before it was published as a novella, Colm Tóibín’s lyrical portrait of Mary, mother of Jesus, was performed as a one-woman show in Dublin. This made it a natural fit for adaption to audio, with none other than three-time Oscar winning actress Meryl Streep cast to narrate. The audiobook received stellar reviews, including one in the New York Times Book Review that called it “an ideal audiobook,” noting that “Streep's voice is familiar to generations of moviegoers, but its beauty as an instrument can be appreciated in this context as it often cannot be in films.”
Narrated by Meryl Streep
Sure, we'd listen to Meryl Streep read the phone book, but this is SO. MUCH. BETTER! This story is an imaginative take on what Mary, the mother of Jesus Christ, might say years after her son's death. To put it mildly, she's not the kindly, silent woman represented in thousands of years of art. Ms. Streep gives this Mary a backbone and displays some harsh judgement of herself and others. Did we mention it's Meryl Streep?!
Narrated by Meryl Streep
Written by Jane the Virgin protagonist Jane Gloriana Villanueva, SNOW FALLING follows Josephine Galena Valencia as she gets caught up in a sweeping love triangle between her detective fiancé and a railroad tycoon from her past. Fans of the show will recognize this as the plot of the romance novel Jane herself publishes in season three, which was in turn based on her love story with Michael. To make things even more meta, the audiobook is read by Ivonne Coll—who plays Jane’s abuela—and Anthony Mendez, the show’s charming omniscient narrator.
Narrated by Ivonne Coll and Anthony Mendez
NARRATED BY IVONNE COLL AND ANTHONY MENDEZ FROM TV’S JANE THE VIRGIN!
It’s been a lifetime (and three seasons) in the making, but Jane Gloriana Villanueva is finally ready to make her much-anticipated literary debut!
Jane the Virgin, the Golden Globe, AFI, and Peabody Award–winning The CW dramedy, has followed Jane’s telenovela-esque life—from her accidental artificial insemination and virgin birth to the infant kidnapping and murderous games of the villainous Sin Rostro to an enthralling who-will-she-choose love triangle. With these tumultuous events as inspiration, Jane’s breathtaking first novel adapts her story for a truly epic romance that captures the hope and the heartbreak that have made the television drama so beloved.
Snow Falling is a sweeping historical romance set in 1902 Miami—a time of railroad tycoons, hotel booms, and exciting expansion for the Magic City. Working at the lavish Regal Sol hotel and newly engaged to Pinkerton Detective Martin Cadden, Josephine Galena Valencia has big dreams for her future. Then, a figure from her past reemerges to change her life forever: the hotel’s dapper owner, railroad tycoon Rake Solvino.
The captivating robber baron sets her heart aflame once more, leading to a champagne-fueled night together. But when their indiscretion results in an unexpected complication, Josephine struggles to decide whether her heart truly belongs with heroic Martin or dashing Rake.
Meanwhile, in an effort to capture an elusive crime lord terrorizing the city, Detective Cadden scours the back alleys of the Magic City, tracking the nefarious villain to the Regal Sol and discovering a surprising connection to the Solvino family.
However, just when it looks like Josephine’s true heart’s desire is clear, danger strikes. Will her dreams for the future dissolve like so much falling snow or might Josephine finally get the happy ever after she’s been dreaming of for so long?
TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD devotees are divided on GO SET A WATCHMAN, which was technically a first draft of the 1960 novel but was published in 2015 as a “sequel.” WATCHMAN takes place sixteen years in the future, when Jean Louise Finch (aka Scout) returns home as an adult, conflicted by the amount of bigotry remaining in the community that raised her. If you’re curious to see what all the fuss is about, listening to the audiobook is a great option: Reese Witherspoon is the perfect voice for grown-up Scout.
Narrated by Reese Witherspoon
Set two decades after the beloved Pulitzer Prize–winning masterpiece TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD, GO SET A WATCHMAN follows twenty-six-year-old Scout's return home from New York City to visit her aging father, Atticus. Read by Academy Award–winning actress Reese Witherspoon, this audiobook captures a young woman and a world in a painful yet necessary transition out of the illusions of the past.
Narrated by Reese Witherspoon
Jesmyn Ward’s National Book Award–winning novel SING, UNBURIED, SING is told from the perspectives of three characters: a mother, her son, and the ghost of a teenage inmate who died running away from Mississippi’s infamous Parchman prison. A trio of celebrity audiobook narrators read this heartbreaking story of family and forgiveness, injustice and incarceration. Collectively, their acting credits include Mudbound, 12 Years a Slave, and True Blood, but their work on this audiobook is a masterful performance all its own.
Narrated by Kelvin Harrison Jr., Chris Chalk, and Rutina Wesley
Forbidden love meets coming-of-age in this lyrical gay romance set in the picturesque Italian Riviera in the 1980s. If you were among the many won over by the Oscar-nominated adaptation of the same name, then you have to check out this audiobook. Armie Hammer, who plays Oliver in the film, delivers a swoon-worthy narration of Aciman’s sensual prose that will transport you to memories of hot summer nights and your first love.
Narrated by Armie Hammer
Al Gore’s 2006 documentary on global warming played a major role in raising public awareness of climate change. The accompanying book dives deeper into the issue, and its 2017 sequel discusses how things have changed—and stayed the same—in the last decade. A star-studded cast of celebrity audiobook readers lend their voices to the recordings, Shailene Woodley (Divergent), and Sterling K. Brown (This Is Us).
Narrated by Al Gore, Sterling K. Brown, Danny Burstein, Marin Ireland and Shailene Woodley
Fresh off the heels of a successful debut at the Sundance Film Festival, Al Gore’s follow-up to his eye-opening blockbuster An Inconvenient Truth comes at a time when climate change is a daily headline and audiences are more eager than ever to act on behalf of the planet.
“We’re going to win this…If anybody doubts that we have the capacity and the will to act, just remember that the will to act is itself a renewable resource.” —Al Gore
Al Gore has been advocating on Earth’s behalf for twenty-five years. In An Inconvenient Sequel he recounts and contextualizes the critical issues and moments in the climate change movement since the release of An Inconvenient Truth more than ten years ago, and highlights the real solutions we have at hand to change the planet for the better.
From the bestselling author of THE VEGETARIAN comes a historical novel set during the 1980 Gwangju Uprising in South Korea. Told from multiple perspectives, the novel brings to light the horror and violence of this massacre as the characters manage grief on both a personal and national scale. Actor Sandra Oh (Killing Eve) is one of several talented narrators on this full-cast audiobook that is sure to linger with listeners long after they finish.
Narrated by Sandra Oh and a full cast
Beloved British actor Kenneth Branagh played the titular role in the 1994 film adaptation of Mary Shelley’s classic work, making him the perfect choice to narrate the audiobook. This abridged 1997 recording is a true backlist gem, perfect for those looking to relive the frightening story or wanting to dip their toes into the world of Gothic horror for the first time.
Narrated by Kenneth Branagh
A middle-aged nanny gets the opportunity of a lifetime when, by mistake, the employment office sends her to the house of a glamorous nightclub singer. A bestseller in its day, this 1938 British novel experienced a resurgence of popularity when it was adapted for the big screen in 2008. Oscar-winning actor Frances McDormand, who plays the eponymous character in the film, also brings the audiobook to life with her delightful narration.
Narrated by Frances McDormand