Help me find more audiobooks read by more than one person.
March 12, 2011 1:43 AM   Subscribe

I'm trying to find other audiobooks recorded with multiple readers.

I recently discovered the old Reader's Chair versions of the Vorkosian books by Lois McMaster Bujold. Each one has at least two readers, one male and one female, each reading the appropriate gendered voices (the female also reads the hermaphrodite's (her term, although as this is a designated sex and not people who are intersex, I think it's ok)). The narration is read by the reader of the same gender as the main character. (Female narrator for the first two, male for the rest, not sure about Falling Free.)

Anyway, I'm quickly finding that I really like this format. The multiple readers is nice, they do some tricks where if two people are supposed to be talking at the same time, they talk at the same time, etc. We're talking better than Jim Dale here. (Not that the voice actors are better, but that the engineering gives rise to a level that not even he can achieve by just reading.)

Unfortunately, Reader's Chair went out of business a while ago.

So does anyone know of any other books recorded like this? I've run a couple of searches for Reader's Chair audiobooks and all I've found are references to Bujold's work. I'd love to find their old catalog and a means of ordering or otherwise acquiring their recordings for other books. Scifi/Fantasy is preferable, but honestly, as long as the book is decent, I like the format enough to listen to it.

Also of note:
These are books, not audioplays.
posted by Hactar to Media & Arts (17 answers total) 12 users marked this as a favorite
Do radioplays that became classic books count? Like The Hitchhikers Guide To The Galaxy?

What about books that became radioplays, like some of the Terry Pratchett Discworld novels?

The BBC does a lot of books like that.
posted by -harlequin- at 2:08 AM on March 12, 2011

"The Help," which I loved, has different readers for each of the women telling the story.
posted by mimi at 4:10 AM on March 12, 2011

The term "full cast" might help you search.

I loved Philip Pullman's "His Dark Materials" trilogy.
posted by MonkeyToes at 4:32 AM on March 12, 2011 [4 favorites]

If nonfiction is okay, Richard Dawkins 'The Greatest Show on Earth' is read by him and his wife Lala Ward. I can't explain why, but the switching between their voices really does help make things more comprehensible.
posted by Caravantea at 4:33 AM on March 12, 2011

Max Brook's World War Z audiobook has a great cast including Alan Alda, Mark Hamill and John Turturro. Great stuff (and a fun book).
posted by jedrek at 4:41 AM on March 12, 2011

One of the best audiobooks my kids and I have listened to are Philip Pullman's His Dark Materials trilogy. I think Pullman reads the narration, but actors read the parts of the characters. The audiobooks are so good I have suggested to people that they listen to them instead of reading the books.
posted by not that girl at 4:52 AM on March 12, 2011

And, of course, as soon as I post I see that someone already mentioned Pullman. *sigh*
posted by not that girl at 4:52 AM on March 12, 2011

The Time Traveler's Wife has two readers, male and female. Also, Orson Scott Card's Ender and Bean series books are full cast.
posted by girlbowler at 6:06 AM on March 12, 2011

If you like crime/thrillers, James Patterson's "Step on a crack" had multiple narrators including Mad Men's John Slattery.... I enjoyed it.
posted by I_Love_Bananas at 6:32 AM on March 12, 2011

The audiobook version of Robert Jordan's Wheel of Time series is done that way, with Kate Reading reading sections that primarily concern female characters, and Michael Kramer reading the mostly male sections. The thing here is that if you like this, you're really in luck, because there's a lot of it - more than 4M words.
posted by spasm at 9:28 AM on March 12, 2011

Sarah Vowell's books are recorded with multiple readers. For example, Assassination Vacation guest stars Conan O'Brien, Stephen King, and others.

You might also like John Hodgman's books, as they feature guest readers and his troubadour, Jonathan Coulton. That is all.
posted by fifteen schnitzengruben is my limit at 10:04 AM on March 12, 2011

Wigfield is a satire. It's written by the cast of Strangers With Candy; Stephen Colbert, Amy Sedaris, and Paul Dinello. They also read all of the parts in the book, and it really wouldn't be the same experience without them doing so. An excerpt from the review by NPR's John Moe:

The world of Wigfield, as concocted by the brilliant Stephen Colbert, Paul Dinello, and Amy Sedaris (creators of the Comedy Central series Strangers with Candy), is somewhat reminiscent of the slice-of-life small-town humor of Christopher Guest's Waiting for Guffman. But instead of putting on a musical, as the Guffman folks did, the people of Wigfield busy themselves trying to acquire government handouts and stabbing each other to death. When the government rebuffs their efforts, based on the fact that they're not technically a town, they come up with a plan to get paid anyway. Wigfield's residents (as played by Colbert, Dinello, and Sedaris) are portrayed in a series of compellingly grotesque portraits by renowned designer and photographer Todd Oldham. The humor of the book--much like the town's mentality--is dense, as nearly every sentence contains one or several grimly hilarious references. Fans of feel-good whimsy are advised to navigate toward lighter fare but social pariahs, disgraced journalists, brooding malcontented sociopaths, and anyone who enjoys dark, twisted, and profoundly funny writing will find a home in Wigfield. --John Moe
posted by nickjadlowe at 10:27 AM on March 12, 2011

Virginia Woolf's The Waves was adapted for BBC radio in 2 episodes by Terence Davies, with 6 different actors for each of the 6 characters. It's more like a play than a novel anyway, because the characters' monologues make up almost the whole book. I don't think it's available for listening on their website but it's easy enough to find elsewhere.
posted by Chicken Boolean at 12:53 PM on March 12, 2011

Juliet, Naked.

Not the best of Nick Hornby's books, IMO, but it fits your criteria.
posted by palacewalls at 2:46 PM on March 12, 2011

Thanks everyone. These are great, keep them coming!

I'll definitely keep an eye out for "full cast" in the future.
posted by Hactar at 4:29 PM on March 12, 2011

I just ran a search on "full cast audio" at and got 652 results--you might want to have a look over there. "Multi voiced" is also a relevant search term. Good luck!
posted by MonkeyToes at 5:23 PM on March 12, 2011

Although I tend to prefer single reader audiobooks, I have to say that the audio version of Chuck Palahniuk's Haunted that has several of Random House's best readers is fantastic.
posted by monopas at 6:13 PM on March 12, 2011

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