The Nine (The Judas Files, Book 1) by C.G. Harris, narrated by MacLeod Andrews is a new Urban Fantasy.
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Nine circles of Hell; each one worse than the last. For Gabe, all of Hell is level nine, where the real baddies endure subzero climates and have their nether-regions cradled in cryogenic underwear.
Gabe has carved out his own safe niche in this artic afterlife with his successful black-market business.
When Judas Iscariot makes him an offer he doesn’t dare refuse, Gabe must leave behind his contraband Twinkies and Dr. Pepper to become a double agent for the most dangerous organization the world has never heard of and prevent the release of a disease that could annihilate humanity …
If you enjoy the Dresden Files snark and Sandman Slim grit, the THE NINE, book one in the Judas Files urban fantasy series, should be the next book added to your bookshelf.
About the Author: C.G. Harris
C.G. Harris is an award winning science-fiction and fantasy author from Colorado who draws inspiration from favorites, Jim Butcher, Richard Kadrey and Brandon Sanderson. For nearly a decade, Harris has escaped the humdrum of the real world by creating fictional characters and made-up realities. When not writing, Harris enjoys sipping scotch while watching the twisted humor of Drunk History. Seeing our past through the bottom of a whisky glass is more entertaining than reading a dusty textbook. C.G. Harris is the pen name and combined persona created by authors, Chuck Harrelson and Kerrie Flanagan. Together they have published, The Judas Files, a gritty urban fantasy series and The Rax, an apocalyptic science fiction series.
About the Narrator: MacLeod Andrews
MacLeod Andrews is a multiple Audie, Earphone, and SOVAS award winning audiobook narrator, as well as an award winning film actor and producer. He’s perhaps most recognized in audio for narrating the Sandman Slim series by Richard Kadrey and The Reckoners series by Brandon Sanderson. His films They Look Like People and The Siren have played festivals all around the world and are available for streaming on major platforms domestically and abroad. He has a cat named Luna, a well known affinity for chocolate chip cookies, and rations his social media fix to twitter.
How did you wind up narrating audiobooks? Was it always your goal or was it something you stumbled into by chance?
I would say I stumbled into the opportunity by chance, but at the time I landed my first audiobook I had been actively pursuing voice over work. Admittedly audiobooks were not something I had even been aware of as a possibility. I had the good fortune of being put in touch with the inimitable Laura Grafton at Brilliance Audio when I was mostly doing theater in NYC and she gave me a crack at a middle grade book called Crows and Cards by Joseph Helgerson. I auditioned for her twice to get the gig, flew to Michigan to record, took a little longer than expected to finish, but soldiered through. It turned out well and garnered some awards (all credit to that wonderfully entertaining and original book) and so it led to more books, which led to more clients, and ultimately a career in and of itself.
How do you manage to avoid burn-out? What do you do to maintain your enthusiasm for narrating?
That’s a very good question. It’s not always easy as you move from one book to another so fast that you rarely get to relish work you’re proud of, or rest from an especially hard fought narration, or savor a really rewarding read. Generally what keeps my spirits up are listeners. Hearing from people who enjoy listening and knowing that your effort has made someone’s day better takes the edge off the grind. And then of course the material you’re narrating has a huge impact on how you feel throughout the day.
What would you say are your strongest narration abilities?
Putting myself into the narration whenever possible and recognizing a sentence as a thought that needs proper expression as opposed to words on a page that need to be read in a nice voice. I still think of myself as an actor when I approach a book and try to give my narrations a point of view, even if it’s a piece that requires a more removed narrator I try to think of that narrator as a character.
Has anyone ever recognized you from your voice?
Ha, not in person. Though it’s hard for me to get a pseudonym past audiobook fans.
If you had the power to time travel, would you use it? If yes, when and where would you go?
Hellz yeah I’d use it. I don’t think I’d be able to resist poking my head into the future for a bit. I also loved ancient greece growing up and Egypt. Wouldn’t mind cruising the library at Alexandria or drinking some old style wine in Athens.
How does audiobook narration differ from other types of voiceover work you’ve done?
It’s way way way way longer. I’ve done commercial spots where you stand there pulling apart a sentence syllable by syllable for an hour. “Cool, MacLeod, ummm, Could you slow down ‘of the’? And then rise your inflection on ‘bear’s’ and then give us a little mini pause before ‘dens’? But all still faster?” With a book, unless it’s really important to the story that you impart a particular nuance on a specific moment, or you just completely whiffed the rhythm or meaning of a sentence, you gotta keep powering through or you’ll be in the studio for weeks. There’s also a bit broader suspension of disbelief with books. You can get away with broader approximations of characters than you could in other mediums since listeners are generally accepting of and sometimes specifically attracted to the conceit that a single person is going to be the filament for this whole massive story.
Do you read reviews for your audiobooks?
If so, which ones stand out to you most, positive or negative?
Negative. We’re all wired that way.
What type of the review comments do you find most constructive?
I’ve never ever ever read someone complaining that the narration was too fast. So when I can keep my focus sharp I try to remind myself to keep the pace up at the speed of speech at least, if not thought. That then hopefully buys me some time to slow down when I really want to luxuriate in a powerful moment, or take a pause for comedic effect. I also try to pay attention to comments about whether accents felt false or character portrayals too extreme. On the other hand some folks will jump on you for not distinguishing your characters enough so… there’re many many types of listener, it’s an intensely personal experience listening to an audiobook and it’s impossible to please everyone. Which is TOTALLY fine. Some people love a straight read where the reader gets as far out of the way as possible to better mimic the experience of reading, where the audience is responsible for painting the picture, and some people love to be taken on a journey by the narrator, to have an almost cinematic experience. I tend towards the latter but when the text calls for it I’ll flatten things out at times. I start by trying to please myself, to tell whatever story is in front of me in a way that I enjoy and then hope I’m in line with most of the listeners.
What do you say to those who view listening to audiobooks as “cheating” or as inferior to “real reading”?
It’s been proven incorrect. It’s just a different means of gathering information. And just like there are speed readers I know people who can devour an audiobook at 3x speed if not faster. Active listening is as much of a skill and requires as much concentration as reading. I’m just as likely to lose focus listening to a podcast as I am reading an article.
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