Rebecca Bernard
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6 Anticipated Audiobooks of May 2019

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When the weather heats up heading toward summer, so does the book publishing industry. There are many new books coming out in the coming months and, if you’re a committed bookworm like me, the impending literary tsunami looks pretty intimidating. While you can’t turn the pages of an actual tome when you’re behind the wheel, consider these May books in audiobook form when you’re commuting or on a long-haul drive.

The Bride Test by Helen Hoang

One of 2018’s most buzzworthy new releases was The Kiss Quotient by Helen Hoang. This year its sequel, The Bride Test, drops on May 7 and follows Khai, Michael’s cousin from the previous book. His autism makes connecting with people – especially women – difficult, and his Vietnamese mother decides to take action and heads to Asia to find her boy a suitable wife. She returns with Esme Tran, who has her work cut out for her convincing Khai that they’re the perfect match so she doesn’t have to go back home to Ho Chi Minh City and the past she wants to escape. Renowned audiobook narrator Emily Woo Zeller reads this title and it comes in at a manageable 10 hours long.

We Hunt the Flame by Hafsah Faizal

I’m not going to lie, I’ve been waiting for We Hunt the Flame for months, and it’s hard to believe that its May 14 release date is almost here. The book is the first in the planned Sands of Arawiya series started by American Muslim author Hafsah Faizal. She told Publishers Weekly that, while it doesn’t feature Islam, she created a fantasy world heavily influenced by the Middle East to show it for the vibrant culture that it is, instead of the terrifying image broadcast on the news.

Zafira the Hunter has to disguise herself as a man to help her people, and Prince Nasir is an assassin who kills his father’s enemies. Even though they’re on opposite sides in Arawiya’s society, they have to work together to save their nation from the encroaching Arz. The audiobook is coming out on the same day as the book’s hard copy and has an 11-hour runtime. Narrated by Fiona Hardingham and Steve West to represent the two star characters, it’s sure to keep you entertained behind the wheel (and maybe keep you rooted in your seat long after you’ve parked).

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Stay Sexy & Don’t Get Murdered: The Definitive How-To Guide by Karen Kilgariff and Georgia Hardstark

Usually, I don’t feature books with titles like this in my audiobook lists, because we’re very classy here at The News Wheel, but I couldn’t pass up adding a book by hosts of the popular My Favorite Murder podcast. While you could totally buy a hard copy of this book on May 28, it’s a bit more on-brand for these authors if you enjoy their writing as an audiobook. Kilgariff and Hardstak narrate it with Golden Globe-winner Paul Giamatti, and the book will supposedly cover topics like putting your personal safety over being nice, their biggest mistakes, and their deepest fears after reporting on true crime for so long. Coming in at just 6 hours and 30 minutes, this is a shorter read that still promises to pack a punch.

The Farm by Joanne Ramos

If The Handmaid’s Tale freaks you out, The Farm might not be the right book for you. Like Margaret Atwood’s novel and the Hulu show, this story focuses on controlling a woman’s reproductive and literal freedom. In the world of The Farm, women go to a facility in upstate New York to live in the lap of luxury with massages, healthy meals, and fitness trainers. To stay there, though, they need to be pregnant with a baby for another family and can’t leave or have contact with the outside world. The book’s main character is Jane, a Philippine immigrant, who signed up for the farm so she could earn a better life for her family. However, the strict rules of the facility are making her reconsider her stay, and of course the people in charge aren’t happy. This is a longer audiobook, running at about 14 hours, but narrator Fran de Leon is sure to make it worth your while when it’s released on May 7.

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Red, White & Royal Blue by Casey McQuiston

Many of the audiobooks on this list have been on my radar for a while, but Red, White & Blue just popped up to take the internet by storm when the publisher sent advanced reader copies to reviewers. This romance follows Alex Claremont-Diaz, America’s newest first son, and England’s Henry, Prince of Wales. After a PR disaster between the two high-profile men, the British and US governments make them play nice for the sake of the press. One thing leads to another, and you can totally guess where this book is going. On May 14, consider checking out this audiobook, which runs just a little over 12 hours and is narrated by Ramon de Ocampo. Just maybe wait to start listening to it until after there are no kids in your car.

The Candle and the Flame by Nafiza Azad

Like We Hunt the Flame, The Candle and the Flame has been on my Goodreads list for quite a while (and they both have flame in the title, I know). The first Young Adult book on this list features a fictional location, but Own Voices author Nafiza Azad uses a magic-infused version of our reality set along the famed Silk Road as the backdrop for her story. Fatima lives in a city that was destroyed by a tribe of djinn, leaving her and two other humans as the sole survivors. Another faction of djinn then protects her, but when one of their leaders dies, Fatima bears some of the consequences. From there, it’s a journey to discover more about herself and where she fits in this magical world. Launching on May 14, the audiobook version runs 12 hours and 19 minutes with narration by Christine Tawfik.

No matter your reading taste, there’s bound to be a new audiobook for you coming out in May. Check out the Audible website or your local library for your favorite authors or genres.

Interview Source: Publishers Weekly