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Year 2004 Top Audiobook Picks

Amateur Marriage

(CD and Cassette)

by Anne Tyler: In the heat of World War II, young Michael and Pauline hastily get married. Pauline, impulsive and impractical, tumbles hit-or-miss through life, while Michael, cautious and judgmental, proceeds deliberately. In time their foolish quarrels take their toll. Read by Blair Brown.

The Birth of Venus

(CD)

by Sarah Dunat: In the late Renaissance Florence, young Alessandra, an unusually educated woman, must choose her own path: a marriage of convenience to her brother's homosexual lover, or a dangerous love affair with the house painter. Read by Kathe Mazur.

The Bookman's Promise

(Cassette)

by John Dunning: When an old colleague offers Cliff Janeway, ex-cop turned book dealer, a $5,000 bondsman job, he can't resist. When people far more lethal than the judge stalk the bail jumper, Cliff becomes her protector, lured by the chance to capture a legendary volume. Read by George Guidall.

The Falls

(CD)

by Joyce Carol Oates: As Ariah Erskine begins a seven-day vigil in the mist of Niagara Falls waiting for her husband's body to be found, confirmed bachelor and pillar of the community Dirk Burnaby is falling in love with her. Their passionate love affair, marriage and family are ripped apart by secrets, sins, lawsuits, murder, and, eventually, redemption. Read by Anna Fields.

Higher: A Historic Race to the Sky and the Making of a City

(CD and Cassette)

by Neal Bascomb: At the end of the Roaring Twenties in New York, architect William Van Alen, commissioned by Walter Chrysler, found himself in direct competition with partner-turned-rival Craig Severance, architect for the Manhattan Company Building (now the Trump Building).

Though the Chrysler was begun first, the Manhattan moved faster. But the real winner was a late entrant: the Empire State Building. Read by Richard M. Davidson.

Hissy Fit

(CD and Cassette)

by Mary Kay Andrews: Calling off her wedding after discovering her fiance's infidelity, Keeley Rae Murdock, an interior designer, accepts the job to restore the rundown antebellum plantation house from Will Mahoney. As the house comes together, Keeley discovers shocking secrets about her mother's disappearance many years ago. Read by Moira Driscoll.

The Meaning of Everything: The Story of the Oxford English Dictionary

(CD)

by Simon Winchester: Winchester celebrates the 75th anniversary of the OED by producing a remarkable account of the men who shaped the venerable dictionary. Read by the author.

My Sister's Keeper

(CD and Cassette)

by Jodi Picoult: Thirteen-year-old Anna Fitzgerald engages lawyer Campbell Alexander in a lawsuit against her parents for the rights to her own body. Anna was conceived after her older sister, Kate, developed a rare form of leukemia at the age of two, and has donated bone marrow and blood to her sister. Now she has been asked to donate a kidney, and she intends to refuse. Read by various narrators.

A Redbird Christmas

(CD and Cassette)

by Fannie Flagg: Having learned that he'll probably die before Christmas, Oswald Campbell leaves Chicago for the south and ends up in Lost River, Alabama, a sleepy town where he is taken under folks' wings. Frances Cleverdon, a widow, hopes that Oswald will turn out to be someone's knight in shining armor. The quirky story takes a heartwarming turn when Frances and Oswald become involved in the life of Patsy Casey, an abandoned young girl with a crippled leg. Read by the author.

Ten Big Ones

(CD and Cassette)

by Janet Evanovich: A man wearing a devil mask robs a deli-mart. Before the crime is over, Stephanie's car is in flames. But she has also seen the thief's face. Learning that he is a member of the Trenton street gang, she goes after him. But instead of bringing down the thief, she finds herself on the run. Read by C.J. Critt.