Sync Audiobooks: Week 1

Sync Audiobooks bannerThis summer, SYNC will be providing two free teen audiobooks each week from April 25th to July 31st. Each week will focus on a specific theme, pairing complete downloads of two high interest titles for teens 13+. The first week will start on Thursday, April 25th with Blink & Caution by Tim Wynne-Jones and Swing by Kwame AlexanderMary Rand Hess. These two titles will be available to download for free this week only (from 4/25 to May 1st) at the SYNC website. The theme for the first week is “the tensions of friendship: friendship matters—whether you’re close to home or on the run.”

Blink & Caution audiobookBlink and Caution, both separately on the run, get caught up in a kidnapping by dint of being in the wrong place at the wrong time. This gripping crime story is told in alternating points of view—second person for Blink and third person for Caution—a technique that is especially effective in the audio format. Running through Blink’s mind is the abusive voice of his stepdaddy, telling him “how it’s going to be.” MacLeod Andrews shifts tone only slightly from sneering to serious to relate Caution’s side of the scheme. Two voices, both narrated by Andrews, create a story so fraught with woe, guilt, terror, and tension that the listener can’t help rooting for the teens to escape the situation they’re in. The library owns this in ebook format as well.

Swing audiobookWith a poet’s passion, Kwame Alexander narrates his novel-in-verse about high school friends Noah and Walt. Alexander’s strong connection to his characters shines in his enthusiastic delivery and clear distinctions between the boys’ personalities. Noah, cautious and reserved, pines for a girl who sees him only as a pal; Walt, vibrant with jazz running through his veins, wants only to make the varsity baseball team. Over ice cream cones and lattes, the boys support each other’s dreams and sometimes squabble like brothers. With measured emotion, Alexander drives home the full impact of this contemporary coming-of-age story as the realities of the broader world burst Noah and Walt’s sheltered upper-middle-class bubble. Be prepared to listen to Alexander’s heartfelt performance all in one go. The library owns this title in book and CD audiobook formats.