Selected Audiobooks for Young Adults

The Media Selection and Usage Committee of the Young Adult Library Services Association, a division of the American Library Association, announced its second annual Selected List of Audiobooks for Young Adults. The committee members are: Candace Bundy (Fairview Park, OH), chair; Leslie Dann (New York, NY); Kathleen Degyansky, (Woodside, NY); Francisca Goldsmith (Albany, CA); Susan Hawk (Decatur, GA); Kathleen Krahnke (Wexford, PA); Dale McNeill (Dallas, TX); Amy Spaulding (New York, NY); Jane Washburn (San Diego CA); and Roslyn Wylie (Normal, IL).

The titles appearing on this list were selected for their appeal to teens, the quality of the recordings, their strength in conveying the story, author recognition, and timeliness of the subject matter.

Edgar Allen Poe's Stories and Tales I, Monterey SoundWorks, adapted by Michael Sollazzo, 1998, 2 cass., 116 minutes, 1-56994-500-4.

"The Tell Tale Heart," "The Cask of Amontillado," "The Fall of the House of Usher," and "The Gold Bug" are brought vividly to life by the St. Charles Players with this radio theater style production.

The Golden Compass, by Phillip Pullman, Listening Library, 1999, 8 cass., 11 hrs., 0-8072-8062-3.

Narrated by the author and read by a full cast of characters, the story comes alive as Lyra and her daemon, Pantalaimon, set out to free the children from the gobblers.

Habibi, by Naomi Shihab Nye, Read by Chistina Moore, Recorded Books, 1999, 5 cass., 6 hrs., 0-7887-3532-2.

When Leanna's parents move the family from St. Louis to her father's native Palestine, she finds she must learn to live in a totally different culture.

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone, by J. K. Rowling, Read by Jim Dale, Listening Library, 1999, 6 cass., 8 hrs., 0-8072-8118-2.

Harry's life dramatically changes when he is summoned to attend Hogwarts, the infamous boarding school for wizards.

Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, by J. K. Rowling, Read by Jim Dale, Listening Library, 1999, 6 cass., 9 hrs., 0-8072-8191-3.

Who would think that Harry's second year at Hogwarts could be even more astounding than his first!

Holes, by Louis Sachar, Read by Kerry Beyer, Listening Library, 1999, 3 cass., 4.5 hrs., 0-8072-8162-X.

When Stanley Yelnats is sentenced to a Texas juvenile correctional camp, he discovers the agony of digging seemingly useless holes in the dessert, the strange secret of the superintendent, a new friend whom he teaches to read, and unexpected strength of character.

I am Mordred: a Tale from Camelot, by Nancy Springer, Read by Stephen Crossley, Recorded Books, 1999, 5 cass., 5.75 hrs., 0-7887-2976-4.

Mordred wants nothing more than to be freed of the curse of one day killing King Arthur, the father he has never known. Will Mordred be able to escape his fate in this Arthurian legend?

In My Hands: Memories of a Holocaust Rescuer, by Irene Gut Opdyke with Jennifer Armstrong, Read by Hope Davis, Bantam Doubleday Audio, 1999, 4 cass., 7 hrs., 0-553-52658-8.

Determined not to allow the German destruction of her homeland, 17 yr. old Irene Gut secretly aids Jews in World War II Poland in this gripping and moving retelling of one woman's defiance of the Nazis.

Jesse, by Gary Soto, Read by Robert Ramirez, Recorded Books, 1999, 3 cass., 4 hrs., 0-7887-3166-1.

Jesse and his brother are working as field hands to pay for their community college courses, but the path to a good education won't be easy for these two young Mexican Americans.

Legends: Stories by the Masters of Fantasy, Vol. 2, edited by Robert Silverberg, Harper Audio, 1998, 4 cass., 6 hrs., 0-694-52078-0.

Three original short novels by three fantasy authors, Robert Jordan, Terry Pratchett, and Orson Scott Card, and three engaging readers add up to pure pleasure for the listener.

Lena, by Jacqueline Woodson, Read by Kate Forbes, Recorded Books, 1999, 2 cass., 3 hrs., 0-7887-3528-4.

Lena and her younger sister Dion feel they have no choice but to leave home after they both become victims of abuse.

Life in the Fat Lane, by Cherie Bennett, Read by Christina Moore, Recorded Books, 1998, 5 cass., 7 hrs., 0-7887-2635-8.

Homecoming queen, Lara Ardeche could always eat whatever she wanted and still remain slim until she develops a mysterious disorder which causes her to gain weight uncontrollably.

A Long Way from Chicago, by Richard Peck, Read by Ron McLarty, Listening Library, 1999, 3 cass., 4 hrs., 0-8072-8125-5.

Looking back to when his Grandma was younger than he currently is, Joey relates many of the humorous, heart warming and totally outrageous tales of the summers he and his sister, Mary Alice, spent with their Grandma in her small Illinois town..

My Louisiana Sky, by Kimberly Willis, Read by Judith Ivey, Listening Library, 1998, 3 cass., 4 hrs., 0-553-52598-0.

Tiger Ann Parker is twelve and grappling with the death of her grandmother, her mentally disabled parents, and the rejection of her classmates. Beautifully told and stunningly set in 1950's Louisiana the unforgettable characters lead the listener to a new appreciation for family, love and acceptance.

Pretty Fire, written and performed by Charlayne Woodard, Los Angeles Theater Works, 1999, 1 cass., 95 min., no ISBN, call 1-800-708-8863.

Upbeat and witty, Charlayne Woodard reveals the moving and inspirational of her life with her African-American family in five autobiographical vignettes in this one woman, award winning stage production.

Red Scarf Girl: A Memoir of the Cultural Revolution, by Ji Li Jiang, Read by Christina Moore, Recorded Books, 1999, 5 cass., 6 hrs., 0-7887-2634-4.

A poignant yet often horrifying true story of the author's experiences as a twelve year old coming of age in the era of China's Cultural Revolution. Her bright future compromised, Ji Li is forced to make impossible choices with dire consequences.

Sang Spell, by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor, Read by Ron Rifkin, Listening Library, 1999, 3 cass., 5 hrs., 0-553-52634-0.

Jason's world is shattered when his mother is killed in an accident. While hitchhiking from Boston to Dallas to begin a new life, he accepts a ride on a cold, rainy night that will plunge him into another world.

Six Adventures of TinTin, Vol.1, by Herge, Listening Library, 1999, 2 cass., 3 hrs., 0-8072-8087-9.

Herge's comic book boy detective with his dog Snowy, come to life in this full cast production of TinTin's adventures on the high seas, around the world, and even on the moon.

Soldier's Heart, by Gary Paulsen, Read by George Wendt, Bantam Doubleday Dell Audio, 1998, 2 cass., 2 hrs., 0-553-52611-1

Fifteen year old Charly Goddard joined the First Minnesota Volunteers hoping to find glory in the Civil War in this carefully researched fictionalized biography.

Switchers, by Kate Thomas, Read by Niamh Cusack, Listening Library, 1999, 4 cass., 5 hrs., 0-8072-8137-9.

Drawn together by their unusual ability to change into animal forms, Tess and Kevin are forced from their human existence to fight the icy evil that threatens their world.

There's a Girl in My Hammerlock, by Jerry Spinelli, Read by Julie Dretzin, Recorded Books, 1999, 3 cass., 4.5 hrs., 0-7887-3827-5.

After her devastating cut from cheerleading tryouts, Masie develops a plan to get close to Eric, her junior high crush….she joins the wrestling team. Facing the taunts of her classmates, however, makes Masie even more determined to remain on the team.

The Upstairs Room, by Johanna Reiss, Read by Christina Moore, Recorded Books, 1999, 4 cass., 5 hrs., 0-7887-3525-X.

In this true story, a young Jewish Dutch girl and her sister are hidden from the Nazis for two long years in a cramped farmhouse room.

Whispers from the Dead, by Joan Lowery Nixon, Read by Julie Dretzin, Recorded Books, 1999, 4 cass., 4.75 hrs., 0-7887-3829-1

Sixteen year old Sara is haunted by the presence of someone who had been murdered in her new home. She soon realizes that her own life depends on finding the murderer.

Z for Zachariah, by Robert O'Brien, Read by Christina Moore, Recorded Books, 1999, 5 cass., 6 hrs., 0-7887-2974-8.

In this Edgar Award winner, sixteen year old Ann believes that she is the sole survivor of a nuclear holocaust - until she meets another survivor and discovers that there are worse things than being alone.