2008 Notable Children's Recordings Committee: Ellen Spring, Chair, Rockland District Middle School, Rockland, Maine; Jane Claes, University of Houston Clear Lake, Houston, Texas; Colette Drouillard, College of Information, Florida State University, Tallahassee, Fla.; Kathy Kirchoefer, Prince George's County Memorial Library System, New Carrollton, Md.; Heather R. McNeil, Deschutes Public Library, Bend, Ore.; Karen M. Perry, Wiley Middle School, Winston-Salem, N.C.; Mary Puleo, Everett Public Libraries, Everett, Mass.; Angela J. Reynolds, Annapolis Valley Regional Library, Bridgetown, NS, Canada; and Janet Weber, Tigard Public Library, Tigard, Ore.
*If a producer/distributor has multiple listings, only the first listing for that producer/distributor will include its phone number.*
Black Duck . Listening Library. 5 hrs., 30 min. 1-800-733-3000. Elementary/Middle School
Step back in time to New England's rum-running days as David Ackroyd's piratical voice takes you straight into the mysterious history of the infamous Black Duck.
Bloody Jack: Being an Account of the Curious Adventures of Mary "Jacky" Faber, Ship's Boy . Listen & Live Audio. 8 hrs. 1-800-653-9400. Middle School/YA
Katherine Kellgren’s vocal athleticism takes listeners from the filthy streets of eighteenth century London to the high seas in L.A. Meyer’s fast-paced novel about a girl who stows away as a cabin boy. (2008 Odyssey Honor Audiobook)
Cave of the Dark Wind . Brilliance Audio. 2 hrs. 1-800-648-2312. Elementary
Jim Dale expertly narrates this exciting sequel to Peter and the Starcatchers which takes place while Peter is away from the Island of the Lost Boys, with pirates, treasure, and a terrible cave where the horrible Goat taker was hiding.
Clementine . Recorded Books. 1 hr., 30 min. 1-800-638-1304. Elementary
Clementine is the heroine that listeners will cheer for in this humorous, sweet story by Sara Pennypacker, beautifully narrated by Jessica Almasy.
A Crooked Kind of Perfect . Listening Library. 3 hrs., 17 min. Elementary
Zoe dreams of being a classical pianist, and playing at Carnegie Hall, but her dream is detoured to the Perfectone D-60 organ, and a competition where she wins the 4th place trophy in this thoroughly entertaining book by Linda Urban, narrated by Tai Alexandra Ricci.
Dooby Dooby Moo . Weston Woods. 13 min. 1-800-243-5020. Beginning Reader
Duck and his barnyard friends are determined to enter the county fair talent show in spite of their one obstacle--Farmer Brown--in this humorous tale written by Doreen Cronin and illustrated by Betsy Lewin, complimented by Randy Travis' straightforward narration. (2008 Odyssey Honor Audiobook)
Dream . Lyric Partners. 47 min. 1-800-490-8875. Preschool/Musical
Mae Robertson's lovely, mellow voice makes this collection of lullabies a soothing and peaceful way to lull a young child (or tired parent) to sleep.
Epossumondas Saves the Day . Recorded Books. 15 min. Beginning Reader
A little possum rescues his Mama, Auntie, and Baby Gator from a ferocious turtle in this lovingly told and narrated Bayou adventure.
Every Child Deserves a Lifetime: Songs from the "For Our Children" Series . Shout! Factory. 55 min. 1-866-604-0562. Musical
Ziggy Marley starts off this benefit CD, an eclectic collection of songs that children and parents of several generations will enjoy, with a variety of other well-known musical acts such as Bette Midler, Bob Dylan, Faith Hill, and Little Richard, to name a few.
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows . Listening Library. 21 hrs., 39 min. Middle/YA
Harry has come of age and must face the most dangerous and serious challenges of his life; narrator Jim Dale continues the series with expert voicing of the characters and the action, forcing the listener to savor this seventh and final book in the Harry Potter series. (2008 Odyssey Honor Audiobook)
Hattie Big Sky . Listening Library. 8 hrs., 30 min. Middle School/YA
Trying to 'prove-up' a Montana claim during WWI, Hattie Brooks' struggles and victories settle well through narrator Kirsten Potter's gentle prairie voicing of this Newbery Honor Book.
The Higher Power of Lucky . Listening Library. 3 hrs., 38 min. Elementary/Middle
This 2007 Newbery Award-winning story about 10-year-old Lucky has elements of adventure, survival, and conflict, all reflected by the tenets of the 12-Step programs that Lucky eavesdrops on in a continuing effort to find her "higher power."
If a Tree Falls at Lunch Period. Listening Library. 4 hrs., 16 min. Middle School
Gennifer Choldenko has written a book, told in alternating chapters exquisitely read by Ariadne Meyers and Francois Battiste, that covers fitting in, acceptance, and best friends lost in seventh grade.
The Invention of Hugo Cabret . Scholastic Audiobooks. 2 hrs., 51 min. 1-212-343-6100. Middle School
Magically narrated by Jeff Woodman, along with sound effects and including a DVD, this audio recording relates the story of 12-year-old orphan Hugo Cabret who is convinced that if he can fix the mechanical man that so fascinated his father, he will know what his future holds.
JAZZ . Live Oak Media. 43 min. 1-800-788-1121. Beginning Reader
The smooth tones of narrators James "D-Train" Williams and Vaneese Thomas enhance this work of the history of Jazz told through a series of poems in this Coretta Scott King Honor Book written by Walter Dean Myers and illustrated by his son, Christopher Myers. (2008 Odyssey Award Audiobook)
The Librarian from the Black Lagoon . Weston Woods. 8 min. Beginning Reader
Mike Thaler's picture book about the school library comes to life with child narrator Alexander Gould leading the way through the wild rumors and exaggerations to the first class visit of the year.
Lilly's Big Day . Live Oak Media. 14 min. Beginning Reader
Narrator Laura Hamilton captures the spunky, determined voice of Lilly who has her heart set on being the flower girl at her teacher's wedding in this work written and illustrated by Kevin Henkes.
Marley: A Dog Like No Other . HarperChildren's Audio. 4 hrs. 1-800-242-7737. Elementary School
Neil Patrick Harris delivers a personalized narration to the children's adaptation of the book "Marley and Me," a story about a man and his best friend.
The Rules of Survival . Listening Library. 6 hrs., 8 min. Middle School/YA
Daniel Passer delivers a controlled and nuanced narration of young teen Matthew's harrowing journey, with his siblings, to find a safe haven from his abusive mother.
Skulduggery Pleasant . HarperChildren's Audio. 7 hrs., 30 min. Middle School/YA
Rupert Degas fleshes out a cast of characters including a “tweenage” girl, nefarious villains, and a skeleton detective. Music and sound effects mirror the mood of this bone-rattling mystery. (2008 Odyssey Honor Audiobook)
Seven Blind Mice . Weston Woods. 9 min. Beginning Reader
B.D. Wong provides the narration of Ed Young’s Caldecott Honor winning tale in which seven blind mice discover wisdom comes from seeking the whole. The background music adds just the right touch and the CD includes an interview with author/illustrator Ed Young discussing his creative process and how he dealt with controversies surrounding the book’s publication.
Treasure Island . Listening Library. 7 hrs., 9 min. Middle School/YA
Robert Louis Stevenson’s pirate classic elegantly unfolds as Alfred Molina’s panoply of accents and the soundscape of the sea place listeners aboard the Hispaniola. (2008 Odyssey Honor Audiobook)
A Very Brave Witch . Weston Woods. 5 min. Beginning Reader
Music by David Mansfield provides a spooky, fun background for the narration of young Elle Fanning and others in this read-along Halloween picture book.
The Wednesday Wars . Scholastic Audiobooks. 7 hrs., 28 min. Middle School
Joel Johnstone narrates the story of Holling Hoodhood's seventh grade year at Camillo Junior High in 1967, highlighted by Wednesday afternoons, when Holling is left alone in Mrs. Baker's class while his classmates go to temple or catechism class.
Welcome to Camden Falls . Scholastic Audiobooks. 4 hrs., 27 min. Elementary School
Flora and Ruby have had to move to Camden Falls, Mass. following their parents' death, and their journey and friendships found are narrated with compassion and caring by Ariadne Meyers in Ann M. Martin's noteworthy book.