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Independents Rule at Audie Awards
Trudi M. Rosenblum -- 6/19/00
NewStar wins big, while the fall list of audio releases
shows variety but no Grisham

As always, the highlight of BEA for the audio industry was the annual Audie Awards, held June 2 at the Chicago Field Museum. Tom Bodett, Pat Schr der, Bill Bryson, Martin Jarvis and George Guidall were among the presenters.
Independent publishers ruled the day at this year's Audie Awards, earning 20 of the 26 awards. NewStar Media was the big winner, with six awards (one of which went to its Audio Literature imprint). The Audio Partners Publishing Corp. and HighBridge Co. each won three Audies. Other independent publisher winners included Recorded Books, Chivers, Audio Book Club Publishing, Naxos Audiobooks, Fair Oaks Media and the New York State Theatre Institute.

As for the big publishers, the Random House AudioBook Group took home three awards, one each for Random House AudioBooks, BDD Audio and Listening Library, while Simon & Schuster Audio won two awards and Time Warner AudioBooks earned one.

In addition to the audiobook awards, two Special Achievement Awards were presented. These awards recognize individuals or organizations who have made outstanding contributions to building consumer awareness of audiobooks and to fostering the growth of the audiobook industry. This year's Special Achievement Award honorees were Judy McGuinn and Robin Whitten. McGuinn, former v-p/director of Time Warner AudioBooks, founded and chaired the APA's Communications Committee and has been an active APA board member for two years. She is now COO at Earlychildhood.com. Whitten is editor, publisher and founder of AudioFile magazine, the only magazine dedicated solely to the audiobook industry. Whitten is also a newly elected APA board member.
Audio Highlights
  • Indie publishers win 20 of 26
    Audie Awards

  • Judy McGuinn and Robin
    Whitten honored

  • Armistead Maupin and Rosamunde
    Pilcher return after, respectively,
    eight- and five-year absences

  • New audios by Anne Rice, Sidney
    Sheldon, Caleb Carr, Tom Wolfe,
    Danielle Steel and Stephen King

  • Iyanla Vanzant introduces new
    Iyanla Live! series

The children's awards were published in the June 12 issue of PW. The adult Audie Award winners are as follows:
Guterson won Best Fiction
Fiction, abridged: East of the Mountains by David Guterson, read by Edward Herrmann (BDD Audio).
Fiction, unabridged: I Know This Much Is True by Wally Lamb, read by George Guidall (Recorded Books, LLC).

Mystery: The Breaker by Minette Walters, read by Robert Powell (Chivers North America).

Classic: The Screwtape Letters by C.S. Lewis, read by John Cleese (Audio Literature, an imprint of NewStar Media)

Nonfiction, abridged: The Endurance: Shackleton's Legendary Antarctic Expedition by Caroline Alexander, read by Michael Tezla and Martin Rubin (HighBridge Co.).

Nonfiction, unabridged: 'Tis by Frank McCourt, read by the author (Simon & Schuster Audio).

Personal Development: How Men Have Babies by Alan Thicke, read by the author (The Audio Partners).

Business Information: Beer Blast by Philip Van Munching, read by the author (Audio Book Club Publishing).

Motivational: J Torre's Ground Rules for Winners by J Torre and Henry Dreher, read by Torre (Simon & Schuster Audio).

Educational and Training: If You Can Talk, You Can Write by J l Saltzman, read by the author (The Audio Partners).
Hope won the Inspirational Audie
Inspirational/Spiritual: Reason for Hope by Jane Goodall (Time Warner AudioBooks).
Humor: How Paul Robeson Saved My Life by Carl Reiner, read by the author (NewStar Media).

P try: Realms of Gold: The Letters and P ms of John Keats by John Keats, read by Samuel West and Matthew Marsh (Naxos AudioBooks UK).

Short Stories/Essays/Collections: Malice Domestic 6 by various authors, read by various readers (NewStar Media).

Solo narration, male: The Fencing Master by Arturo Perez-Reverte, read by Michael York (NewStar Media).

Solo narration, female: Bridget Jones' Diary by Helen Fielding, read by Barbara Rosenblat (Recorded Books, LLC).

Solo narration, author: The Exorcist by William Peter Blatty, read by the author (NewStar Media).

Multi-voiced narration: The Diaries of Adam & Eve: Translated by Mark Twin by Mark Twain, read by Mandy Patinkin, Betty Buckley, and Walter Cronkite (Fair Oaks Audio).

Multi-voiced presentation: Sherlock's Secret Life by Ed Lange and Will Severin, read by various readers (NYS Theatre Institute/Family Classic Audio Books).

Theatrical production: A Prairie Home Companion 25th Anniversary by Garrison Keillor, read by Garrison Keillor (HighBridge Co.).

Audiobook adapted from another medium: The Dybbuk by S. Ansky, read by various readers (NewStar Media).

Unabridged fiction, licensed or distributed: Carry On, Jeeves by P.G. Wodehouse, read by Martin Jarvis (The Audio Partners).

Non-fiction, licensed or distributed: Lord Byron P ms by Lord Byron, read by various readers (HighBridge Co.).

Package design: Star Wars Episode 1: The Phantom Menace--CD by Terry Brooks, read by Alexander Adams (Random House AudioBooks).

The Coming Fall

BEA also saw the presentation of the audio publishers' fall lists, which offered a wide variety of fiction, nonfiction, biography and self-help titles.

Although the lack of a new John Grisham novel makes audio retailers groan, a number of other bestselling authors do have new fiction coming on audio. Look for Journey by Danielle Steel (BDD, Oct.); Merrick by Anne Rice, combining her worlds of witches and vampires (Random, Oct.); Winter Solstice by Rosamunde Pilcher (BDD, Aug.); Hooking Up by Tom Wolfe, a collection of stories and essays, read by the author (S&S, Oct.); The Sky Is Falling by Sidney Sheldon (Harper, Sept.); Pagan Babies by Elmore Leonard (BDD, Sept.); The Carousel by Richard Paul Evans (S&S, Sept.); The Switch by Sandra Brown (S&S, Oct.). The Rescue, by Nicholas Sparks, author of The Notebook, is the first-ever title to be released simultaneously in four formats: abridged cassette, unabridged cassette, abridged CD and unabridged CD (Time Warner, Oct.).

The Night Listener by Armistead Maupin is his first novel in eight years, and is read by the author (Harper, Oct.). Jack Kerouac's On the Road will be unabridged at retail for the first time, read by Matt Dillon (Harper, Oct.). Judgment in Death by J.D. Robb, a pseudonym of Nora Roberts (Brilliance, Sept.) is the latest title of the "In Death" romantic suspense series; Brilliance will publish the entire series on audio, interspersing old and new titles, beginning in December.

Two historical novels should do well this fall. Nothing Like It in the World by Stephen Ambrose, author of bestsellers Citizen Soldiers and Undaunted Courage, tells of the building of the transcontinental railroad (S&S, Aug.), while Gore Vidal's The Golden Age covers American political and cultural life from 1939 to 1954 (BDD, Sept.).

There's plenty of suspense on the way, too, including Dr. Death by Jonathan Kellerman, author of bestsellers Monster and Billy Straight (Random, Dec.); Flint by Paul Eddy, about a female operative in the Special Crimes Squad (Brilliance); Killing Time by Caleb Carr, author of bestseller The Alienist (S&S, Sept.); Wild Justice by Phillip Margolin, author of Gone but Not Forgotten (Harper, Sept.); Roses Are Red by James Patterson, author of bestseller Pop G s the Weasel (Time Warner, Nov.); and 24 Hours by Greg Iles, author of Mortal Fear and The Quiet Game, which was won by Brilliance in a heated auction;

Biographies and memoirs abound on the fall list. Tuesdays with Morrie will finally be released on CD (Brilliance, Sept.). Other bios include Married to Laughter by Jerry Stiller, read by the author (BDD, Aug.); Off Camera: Private Thoughts Made Public by Ted Koppel, read by the author (Random, Sept.), Natural Blonde: A Memoir by Liz Smith, read by the author
Karr is one highly
anticipated title
(Random, Sept.), Do I Stand Alone? by Jesse Ventura (S&S, Sept.), My Father's Daughter by Tina Sinatra (S&S, Oct.); J DiMaggio: The Hero's Life by Richard Ben Cramer (S&S, Oct.); Edith's Story: Courage, Love and Survival During World War II by Edith Velmans, read by award-winning narrator Miriam Margolyes, with an introduction read by the author (Audio Partners, Oct.); Shakespeare: His Life and Work by Richard Hampton and David Weston (Audio Partners, Oct.); Angel on My Shoulder by Natalie Cole with Digby Diehl, read by Cole (Time Warner, Nov.); and Cherry by Mary Karr, the sequel to her bestselling memoir, The Liar's Club (Random, Sept.).
Fans of the self-help/personal development genre can look forward to a new series of audio-only titles from Oprah fave and audio bestseller Iyanla Vanzant, recorded from live lectures. The first two titles in the Iyanla Live! series are Our Relationship with Money and Our Relationship with the World (S&S, Nov.). Sarah Ban Breathnach returns with A Man's Journey to Simple Abundance (S&S, Nov.), while perennial favorite John Gray offers Practical Miracles for Mars and Venus (Harper, Oct.).

A variety of nonfiction subjects will be explored on audio this fall. Stephen King offers his thoughts on the narrative process in On Writing (S&S, Oct.). The Last River by Todd Balf, the true story of a whitewater kayaking adventure, will appeal to fans of Into Thin Air and The Perfect Storm, and will be supported by sports radio giveaways in five cities (Random, Sept.). Jazz by Geoffrey C. Ward and Ken Burns is a tie-in to the upcoming PBS documentary miniseries (Random, Oct.); and Bob Woodward's Boom is an investigation of the current economic boom (S&S, Oct.). Sex and the City by Candace Bushnell is the collection of essays that inspired the HBO series, and is narrated by series co-star Cynthia Nixon (Time Warner, Oct.). And finally, A Call to Conscience is a collection of landmark speeches of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., edited by Clayborne Carson and Kris Shepard (Time Warner, Jan. 2001).

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