Audiobooks Read By Celebrities That Are Must Listens

1. Redshirts by John Scalzi – read by Wil Wheaton

Considering Redshirts is a satire of Star Trek – the title is a reference to the red shirted extras who were always sacrificed for a story – Wesley Crusher is the perfect choice to read the book. Although, considering the meta elements of the novel, we recommend you don’t think about the time travel/alternate universe/multiple universe implications of it.

Thandie Newton -- photo courtesy of HBO

Thandie Newton -- photo courtesy of HBO

2. Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen – read by Rosamund Pike

Seeing as Rosamund Pike played Jane in the 2005 Pride and Prejudice movie, it makes sense she reads the book. However, if there’s anything to learn from this reading, it’s that Pike is criminally underused every time she plays a young, beautiful women. Her voice is so flexible playing Darcy, the Bennett family, and the various other characters you’ll check to see that she, and only she, is talking. And yet it’s so. Someone cast this woman in a movie and let her play all the parts.

 3. Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte – read by Thandie Newton

Thandie Newton’s been in every genre from Westworld to Beloved, so her taking on the story of a whirlwind of a personality packed into a tiny body makes complete sense. She’s also magic at bringing Mr. Rochester to life. Much like Pike, it indicates that Newton could star in a romantic drama and play both part. But it’s apt, considering that Rochester and Eyre act like their souls are two parts of a whole.

Bryan Cranston -- photo courtesy of IGN

Bryan Cranston -- photo courtesy of IGN

4. Frankenstein by Mary Shelley – read by Dan Stevens

If you think about Dan Stevens’ career since Downton Abbey, you can kind of see why he left the show. This year he’s been the star of the show Legion and played a part in Colossal. Both are science fiction stories playing around and practically satirizing the genre, so it makes sense he’d read the mother of all science fiction books. Don’t let that British accent fool you – he tells the story as creepily as its meant to be told.

5. The End of the Affair by Graham Greene – read by Colin Firth

The Mr. Darcy of Pride and Prejudice and Bridget Jones’ Diary reads the less romantic, less comedic Graham Greene novel with a seriousness that might surprise you. But unlike Austen or books based in Austen, Greene’s novel is full of the meaty drama and frustration and miscommunication that Firth really sinks his teeth into.

6. The Things They Carried by Tim O’Brien – read by Bryan Cranston

Full of pain and suffering and secrecy and reading between the lines, the voice of this book is hard to pin down. But Breaking Bad’s Bryan Cranston has the perfect combination of alternating regret and defensiveness to hit that note without falling into cliché.

James Franco -- photo courtesy of Goodreads

James Franco -- photo courtesy of Goodreads

7. The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao by Junot Diaz – read by Lin Manuel Miranda

If you think about it, this is a match made in heaven. LMM’s Hamilton is about a young, scrappy wannabe hero without a father figure who dies before his time, just like Oscar Wao. Like LMM, Junot Diaz threads all kinds of references through Oscar Wao; his are just comic books, nerd, and Dominican Republic history and diaspora references instead of the hip hop, rap, and historical references of Hamilton. The biggest difference is probably the fact that Oscar Wao is set in New Jersey, not New York. If you don’t think that’s a big difference, clearly you’ve never spent enough time in either.

8. The Dead Zone by Stephen King – read by James Franco

James Franco loves to record audiobooks. It’s actually hard to choose just one, so we chose the author that loves his books turned into audiobooks. Franco is surprisingly good at reading suspense and horror. Has anyone checked his basement recently?