Mobileread
Narrator Ratings
#1  sun surfer 10-30-2019, 10:43 AM
This is a thread to post your thoughts on different narrators and to give them a rating.

The idea is to give a narrator a rating from 1 (the worst) to 5 (the best) and/or your assessment of them.

If there's enough response, I will try to update this OP with a list of the narrators mentioned and rating given, so that you can easily see in one place what other MobileReaders think.

While this thread could be good even if there were other resources for this kind of thing, it struck me that there is no good place for this sort of thing. The closest is Audible ratings on narration, but they're combined within a book's rating and not easily visible if you're looking for an overview of a narrator or a narrator recommendation.

There might be a limit in scope for this, but MobileReaders are a passionate and opinionated bunch and many of us value each other's opinions.

So... tell us your narrator opinions!

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Ratings through post #82, in alphabetical order:

narrators with two or more ratings and an average above 4 are bolded

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#2  sun surfer 10-30-2019, 10:54 AM
I'll start with a few of my favourite and least favourite that I can remember.

Lisette Lecat - 5 stars
I've listened to her over a number of the No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency books and absolutely love her narration.

Fiona Shaw - 5 stars
Really outstanding narrator in my opinion. I listened to her on Nora Webster.

Emma Thompson - 1 star
Great actress, terrible narrator. One of the worst audiobook experiences I've had was listening to her narrate The Turn of the Screw, a great novella dragged down by hideous narration, and the absolute kicker is that you cannot preview her narration for it, as the sample is of Richard Armitage who does a fine job but only reads the introduction.
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#3  issybird 10-30-2019, 12:49 PM
I'll go for some low-hanging fruit as well.

Five stars each for my three favorite and most-listened to narrators: Simon Vance, Frederick Davidson and Nadia May. Are they my favorites because I listen to them most, or do I listen to them most because they're my favorites? Much more of the second than the first.

I'll also give five stars to two others for now, to whom I've listened to much less: John Lee and Timothy West.

One star goes to two narrators I mentioned in another thread, Joseph Porter and Anna Parker-Naples. Absurd stagey voices that don't suit the characters (a Boston Brahmin shouldn't sound like Gomer Pyle).

Quote sun surfer
I'll start with a few of my favourite and least favourite that I can remember.

Lisette Lecat - 5 stars
I've listened to her over a number of the No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency books and absolutely love her narration.

Fiona Shaw - 5 stars
Really outstanding narrator in my opinion. I listened to her on Nora Webster.

Emma Thompson - 1 star
Great actress, terrible narrator. One of the worst audiobook experiences I've had was listening to her narrate The Turn of the Screw, a great novella dragged down by hideous narration, and the absolute kicker is that you cannot preview her narration for it, as the sample is of Richard Armitage who does a fine job but only reads the introduction.
I've heard only one book by Lisette Lecat, Purple Hibiscus by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, and I thought she was wonderful. Unfortunately, I don't like the #1LDA books.

I thought Thompson was adequate reading The Turn of the Screw.
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#4  issybird 10-30-2019, 12:55 PM
Quote sun surfer
While this thread could be good even if there were other resources for this kind of thing, it struck me that there is no good place for this sort of thing. The closest is Audible ratings on narration, but they're combined within a book's rating and not easily visible if you're looking for an overview of a narrator or a narrator recommendation.
There are loooong threads in the Goodreads Audiobooks group of most-liked and least-liked narrators. Many narrators make both lists. I'm always surprised by how many do not like Frederick Davidson. While the amalgamated recommendations can have some weight, the problem with that sort of thing is if you don't know the poster and have no idea of how congruent your tastes are, so I'll be interested to see what people have to say here, where I have a sense of the members.
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#5  pwalker8 10-30-2019, 03:57 PM
Hum, I actually have a number of narrators that I really like, though several only have certain books that they do
The following are more actors who have a few audiobooks
- Jim Dale (Harry Potter - USA)
- Tim Curry (Abhorsen series)
- James Marsters (Harry Dresden series)
- Wil Wheaton (Ready Player One, Amber series, various Scalzi books)

These are more narrators that I really like
- Nick Podehl (he does a lot. He did the Patrick Rothfus books)
- Nick Sullivan (David Weber's War God series, plus Katherine Kurtz Deryni series)
- Oliver Wyman (a bunch, Larry Correia's Monster Hunter series)
- Sean Barrnet (Gemmell's Drenai series and a bunch of non fiction)
- Simon Vance (a bunch)

There are also a number who I like, but it's might be because they do favored authors. Sometimes it can be difficult to separate the series and the narrator, especially if they use the same narrator for all the books and I haven't heard them do any other books.
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#6  JSWolf 10-30-2019, 06:25 PM
Tom Weiner narrated the book Armor by John Steakley.I thought he did an excellent job especially the different voices. If anyone wants to check thi out, it's available at Hoopla.
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#7  Apache 10-30-2019, 06:56 PM
Quote JSWolf
Tom Weiner narrated the book Armor by John Steakley.I thought he did an excellent job especially the different voices. If anyone wants to check thi out, it's available at Hoopla.
I have read Armor multiple times. As many times as I have read it, I never thought to get it as an audiobook. Now you have made me want to go out and buy the audiobook.
Apache
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#8  JSWolf 10-31-2019, 07:44 AM
Quote Apache
I have read Armor multiple times. As many times as I have read it, I never thought to get it as an audiobook. Now you have made me want to go out and buy the audiobook.
Apache
When I was looking for an eBook version of Armor, I was only able to find the audiobook on Hoopla. So I tried it and really enjoyed it. The narrator did a really good job.
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#9  sun surfer 10-31-2019, 11:36 AM
I've updated the first post with a prototype list of ratings.

Quote issybird
I've heard only one book by Lisette Lecat, Purple Hibiscus by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, and I thought she was wonderful. Unfortunately, I don't like the #1LDA books.

I thought Thompson was adequate reading The Turn of the Screw.
Quote pwalker8
Hum, I actually have a number of narrators that I really like, though several only have certain books that they do
The following are more actors who have a few audiobooks
- Jim Dale (Harry Potter - USA)
- Tim Curry (Abhorsen series)
- James Marsters (Harry Dresden series)
- Wil Wheaton (Ready Player One, Amber series, various Scalzi books)

These are more narrators that I really like
- Nick Podehl (he does a lot. He did the Patrick Rothfus books)
- Nick Sullivan (David Weber's War God series, plus Katherine Kurtz Deryni series)
- Oliver Wyman (a bunch, Larry Correia's Monster Hunter series)
- Sean Barrnet (Gemmell's Drenai series and a bunch of non fiction)
- Simon Vance (a bunch)
Quote JSWolf
Tom Weiner narrated the book Armor by John Steakley.I thought he did an excellent job especially the different voices. If anyone wants to check thi out, it's available at Hoopla.
Do any of you want to give a number rating to any of these? You don't have to, but if you do I'll add the ratings to the list.
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#10  sun surfer 10-31-2019, 12:14 PM
Quote issybird
I've heard only one book by Lisette Lecat, Purple Hibiscus by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, and I thought she was wonderful. Unfortunately, I don't like the #1LDA books.
More's the pity as I wish you enjoyed the #1LDA as much as I do. For me they're like comfort food; they make me smile and give me a warm feeling.

What's funny about you listening to Lecat for Purple Hibiscus is that I listened to another narrator for Adichie's Half of a Yellow Sun and it began with Lecat (unannounced) doing a short intro. I was excited thinking it was Lecat doing the entire book under a pseudonym but alas no (although the narrator I did listen to did a good job too).

Quote
I thought Thompson was adequate reading The Turn of the Screw.
Different strokes. I might've missed some exculpatory evidence of good narration in my almost immediate and continually intensifying dislike of her narrating style. For me she read parts too quickly, especially the ones where she spoke excitedly (which happened all too frequently). I thought Thompson's melodramatic, overwrought and borderline-hysterical-in-parts approach was a complete mismatch for the subdued, elegant and slow-building horror of James' writing.

The only other audiobook experience I disliked as much was Dune as read by a large cast.
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