When We Were Sisters: One Audiobook, Three Voices,

I’m writing this before Tuesday’s election, but I can only imagine that whoever wins, whomever you voted for, and however you feel about the results, you need a break from real life. Do I have a break for you?

audiobookAre you an audiobook fan? Are you lazy, like I am, and love to be read to, or enjoy listening to books on walks, while you’re gardening, doing crafts or making dinner?

According to one source, audiobooks are the fastest growing segment in publishing today, and the industry is currently evaluated at 2.8 billion. Authors are no longer waiting to be chosen by a publisher for an audio contract. They are selecting their own narrators and recording their own books, some with stunning success.

Since I’ve yet to take that step, I was delighted when Blackstone Audio recorded my latest. For those of you who have been waiting for the audiobook of When We Were Sisters, the wait is over.

Okay, I wrote the book, but I still can’t wait for my copies to arrive, because this audiobook is different. While years ago I had an abridged novel with multiple narrators, this is only the second to be recorded that way, and at first I was dismayed.

The talented Karen White, who narrated all my Goddesses book, broke the news to me. When she learned I had a new book, she emailed to say she hoped she would be chosen for this one, too. But when she learned the novel was in first person, from three points of view, she explained that under those circumstances, each part would be read by a different narrator.

While the same narrator often portrays different characters in a novel, in When We Were Sisters, each chapter is told from the point of view of one character only, and readers are in that character’s head and listening only to that voice. Once I got over the surprise, I realized Karen was absolutely correct.

But three different narrators? How would all those choices be made?

Narrators can make or break a book, can’t they?

Have you ever turned off an audiobook because you couldn’t stand the reader? There’s one popular narrator my husband and I find so annoying, we carefully steer away from any book with his name attached.

We aren’t alone. Friends have a long drive to their house in New York each summer and like us, they fill the hours with audiobooks. This past year we listened to The Unexpected Mrs. Pollifax by Dorothy Gilman going to New York, and I’ve Got Your Number by Sophie Kinsella coming home. They were great choices. We’ve learned the hard way that we need fast-paced novels with suspense and humor to move us along those miles.

Our friends, however had made a terrible choice. Their narrator was so annoying they had to stop listening. Not coincidentally? It was the same narrator my husband and I boycott.

So what’s interesting about this? One bad narrator. So what? Well, bad is in the ear of the listener. This narrator actually has an enormous fan base.

Can we repeat together: Different “spokes” for different folks?

Because narration is so important, from the start I felt personally invested in the choices for my three narrators. Here’s the lineup:

  • Karen White, who narrated all my Goddesses books, reads the part of Robin.
  • Elijah Alexander was a good choice for the part of Kris.
  • But Cecilia? I wasn’t enthused, Blackstone’s original choice had a fabulous voice. I’d love to have her narrate a different book, but for this one, she just didn’t sound the way I imagined Cecilia. She wasn’t snappy; she wasn’t jaded.

After feedback from my Krewe of Review, I went back to Blackstone to express my doubts. They graciously gave me the opportunity to select another narrator, and I was given several additional options. Immediately I fell in love with Rachel Fulginiti.

Not sure you like audio? I think you need a chance to win this audiobook. Thanks to Audible’s generosity, I’m giving two free audiobooks to one lucky winner. Only those readers who follow all the rules are eligible:

The winner will receive a code to redeem his or her selected audiobooks online. Of course I hope When We Were Sisters  or any of my other audiobooks will be your choice.

If you buy the audiobook or borrow it from your library, let me know what you think of the casting.

Now? Enjoy!

***Audible’s offer: Right now Amazon is offering a free Audible trial for new readers. You receive two free audiobooks, and you can choose among 180,000 titles. After thirty days Audible will begin to bill you $14.95 each month for one book–there are other price plans, too. However you can cancel at anytime and keep your free books. Be sure to read the reviews and decide for yourself. For the record my own years with Audible have been trouble free. 

***Audible has a similar offer directly on their website, but their offer is for one free book, not two.

These offers are for your convenience only. I receive no commission and have no information about how long they’ll last.


  1. Joni on November 9, 2016 at 5:14 am

    I’m listing to “When we were Sisters ” it’s wonderful to listen too! I love to walk & sew listening to my stories makes the time pass so much quicker!
    The reader can really make or break the story- Jane Green reads her own stories & as much aS I love her books I didn’t like her reading voice at all! Horrible I could hardly listen to it!!

    • Emilie Richards on November 9, 2016 at 11:45 am

      So glad you’re listening. How do you like the narrators?

  2. Becky Rabalais on November 10, 2016 at 5:12 pm

    About half way through WWWS from Audible. Love 3. narrators. It bugs me when a woman narrator misses the vocal quality for the male characters.

    I’d love to listen to Sister’s Choice.

    Karen White is one of my favorite narrators.

    • Emilie Richards on November 10, 2016 at 6:19 pm

      So glad you’re enjoying this. Be sure you tell me you want to listen to SC for the giveaway. You might just win the audible coupons.

      • Becky Rabalais on November 10, 2016 at 6:43 pm

        I’d like to listen to Sisterms Choice for the giveaway ?

        • Becky Rabalais on November 10, 2016 at 6:50 pm

          Figured out the form?

  3. Kim on November 10, 2016 at 7:10 pm

    The parting glass. I love your books and hope all eventually are audiobooks. I listen at work 🙂

    • Emilie Richards on November 10, 2016 at 7:14 pm

      Just be sure to follow the rules on the blog and use the form I’ve linked to there in order to enter the giveaway. I would like to see Parting Glass recorded, too.

  4. Elizabeth brown on November 10, 2016 at 9:36 pm

    I’ve listened to When We were Sisters. LOVED it! The narrator was great. I, too, have rejected an audiobook because of a narrator I didn’t like. I would love for the Shenandoah series to be on audible! To pick just one book to start, Lovers Knot.

  5. Amanda Campbell on November 11, 2016 at 2:55 pm

    I’d love to hear When We Were Sisters in this format!

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