Audiobooks We Want to Hear

Four Gabriel García Márquez novels are becoming audiobooks. That's great; but we want more. Here are five more novels we'd like to listen to while folding the laundry.

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Yesterday came the welcome news that Blackstone Audio will be producing four Gabriel García Márquez novels as audiobooks. This development is part of a general trend of audiobooks muscling out the likes of Carly Rae Jepsen and The Eagles on iPhones nationwide. In that vein, here are some fine works of fiction and nonfiction that don't yet have audio versions (at least not on Audible, the most widely-used outlet for audiobooks) for whatever reason — but should.

Gravity's Rainbow, Thomas Pynchon: Well, technically, a 1986 audio version does exist, but good luck finding it. And even if you do, George Guidall's masterful recording is impossible to hear due to the recording's poor quality. A cleaned-up version would be a boon for Pynchon freaks fans, as would a brand-new one.

The poetry of Anne Carson: With works like Autobiography of Red and An Oresteia, Carson has established herself as one of our finest poets, remixing the works of ancient Greece for contemporary times. Poetry, especially ancient poetry, was meant to heard. Carson's poetry is not easy, but considering how much research audiobook readers are doing these days, someone is surely up for the challenge.

Gotham, Mike Wallace and Edwin Burroughs: This book is over a thousand pages in length — and ends in 1898. Nevertheless, the Pulitzer Prize-winning tome is the finest history of New York City we have. The print version, you might as well carry in a suitcase. Conversely, the audiobook won't take up much more space than a Breaking Bad episode on your smartphone.

Random Family, Adrian Nicole LeBlanc: This 2003 book about poverty in the South Bronx is a like a shot to the gut, carefully reported but written with obvious passion for its downtrodden subjects, who deal with poverty, violence and drugs on a daily basos. A capable narrator could bring the many voices LeBlanc captures to life.

A Naked Singularity, Sergio De La Pava: This novel was initially self-published, only to attract increasing attention, which has culminated in a PEN Literary Award for its author, who remains a public defender living in New Jersey. The complex, ambitious novel is a publishing world darling. An audiobook version, however, would allow it to reach a much wider audience.

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