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April 25, 2019

5 Audiobooks for Road Trip Reading

by Donna Huber

Road trip season is almost here. I've always thought it would be fun to do a cross country road trip; however, I hate driving so it is unlikely I will ever take such a trip. If you are hitting the road this summer, I have some audiobook recommendations that will keep you entertained.

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Did you know that there are a hundred or so ebooks with Audible narration that are free for Amazon Prime member to listen to? I didn't know that until about a year ago. Since then I listen to nearly an audiobook a week. It's a great way to get some extra reading in when can't have a book in my hands (or my eyes need the rest after a long day in front of a computer). I've also discovered some wonderful reads that I might never have read otherwise.

Camino Beach
Camino Beach by Amanda Callendrier may be the ultimate road trip book. The story is told in 2 timelines - present day and 20 years ago when the characters are seniors in high school. I liked seeing the different perspective between the teen-aged characters and their adult selves.

Sarah Martin had every intention of skipping her high school reunion. Once a popular girl and valedictorian, she’s now pushing forty, divorced, and running a small bookstore in Nashville—not exactly an impressive life. But Sarah’s best friend, Kristen, won’t take no for an answer, and she won’t let them return to Briley High without Roxanne, the missing third in their senior-high trio.

The beautiful and wild Roxanne—who listened to eighties rocker chicks, let anyone kiss her at parties, and dragged Sarah into plenty of trouble—disappeared just weeks before graduation. But Sarah’s not so sure she wants to track her down. She knows Roxanne’s departure was likely because of a betrayal—hers.

Along with their pal Jack, Sarah and Kristen embark on a quest in a beat-up old El Camino, once the center of their spring-break dreams, in search of Roxanne. But the road ahead is full of surprises that will force the friends to confront their pasts and consider the paths they’ve chosen—and the ones still waiting to be explored.

By Camino Beach at Amazon



A Pledge of Silence
While A Pledge of Silence by Flora J. Solomon is set largely in the Philippines, it probably isn't your typical beach read. Unless you love historical fiction, particularly stories set during World War II. Most of the WWII fiction I read is set in Europe, but this one is set in the Pacific. I was not familiar with the events the book is based on.

A World War II novel based on the plight of American military nurses serving in the Philippines. Follow a young woman whose life changes forever when she is captured and held prisoner of war by enemy forces.

January of 1941, Margie Bauer is called to active duty in the Army Nurse Corps of the United States Army Reserves. She delights in her assignment to Manila, the Pearl of the Orient. She falls in love with the beauty of the island and a carefree social whirl of bridge games, pool parties, and dancing under twinkle-light stars with handsome young doctors. Though rumors of war circulate, she feels safe—the island is fortified, the airbases are ample, and the Filipino troops are training intensively.

December 8, 1941, her dream world shatters. Japanese bombers roar into the Philippines, turning everything in their paths to smoldering piles of rubble. Racing to stay ahead of the enemy, the U.S. Army evacuates all personnel to the jungles of Bataan, where Margie tends to wounded, sick, and dying soldiers in open-air field hospitals. With the Nips at her heels, she withdraws to an underground tunnel-hospital on the heavily fortified island of Corregidor.

Ultimately captured, she is interned at Santo Tomas, a Japanese prison camp in Manila. For three years, she doubts her survival in the harsh environment, where she faces escalating danger, starvation and loss. When American planes appear in the sky, she excitedly waves and calls, “We’re here! We’re here!” The liberation forces, however, bring with them a threat more dangerous than the Japanese guards, ensuring she will never truly be free of this evil place and all that has happened.

Buy A Pledge of Silence at Amazon


The Magnolia Inn
The Magnolia Inn by Carolyn Brown would make a great vacation read. While there is romance, there is more to the book than that.

Inheriting the Magnolia Inn, a Victorian home nestled in the East Texas pines, is a fantasy come true for Jolene Broussard. After living with the guilt of failing to rescue her self-destructive mother, Jolene knows her aunt and uncle’s B&B is the perfect jump start for a new life and a comforting place to call home. There’s just one hitch: stubborn and moody carpenter Tucker Malone. He’s got a half interest in the Magnolia Inn, and he’s planting his dusty cowboy boots squarely in the middle of her dream.

Ever since his wife’s death, Tucker’s own guilt and demons have left him as guarded as Jolene. The last thing he expects is for his new partner to stir something inside him he thought was gone forever. And as wary as Jolene is, she may have found a kindred spirit—someone she can help, and someone she can hold on to.

Restoring the Magnolia Inn is the first step toward restoring their hearts. Will they be able to let go of the past and trust each other to do it together?

Buy The Magnolia Inn at Amazon


The Mutual Admiration Society
The Mutual Admiration Society by Lesley Kagen might be a good choice for a family trip. While not listed in a young adult category, the main character is 11 years old. Tessie, the main character, fancies herself a private investigator. It isn't so much she wants to solve the crime, but study crime so she can be a better criminal when she grows up. It's a fun mystery in a well-written coming-of-age story.

FACT: Unbeknownst to eleven-year-old Theresa “Tessie” Finley, she’s in over her head.

PROOF: After hearing a scream and catching a glimpse of a mysterious man carrying a body beneath the flickering streetlights in the cemetery behind her house, Tessie adds solving a murder case to her already quite full to-do list.

Tessie has elected herself president of the crime-stopping Mutual Admiration Society—as if dealing with her “sad madness” over the tragic drowning of her beloved father; showering tender loving care on her “sweet but weird” younger sister, Birdie; and staying on the good side of their hard-edged mother weren’t enough. With partner in crime Charlie “Cue Ball” Garfield, Tessie and Birdie will need to dodge the gossips in their 1950s blue-collar neighborhood—particularly their evil next-door neighbor, Gert Klement, who’d like nothing better than to send the sisters to “homes.” And, of course, there’s the problem of steering clear of the kidnapping murderer if they have any hope of solving the mystery of all mysteries: the mystery of life.

Buy The Mutual Admiration Society at Amazon


The Temporary Agent
The Temporary Agent by Daniel Judson is again not what one typically thinks of as a "beach read", but for thriller fans, it is a terrifically entertaining story. You will be kept guessing the whole time, never quite sure who the good guys are and who are the bad guys.

Scarred by war, former Navy Seabee Tom Sexton vows to leave his violent past behind, only to be drawn back into that life when a deadly conspiracy forces him to face an agonizing choice no man should ever have to make.

Five years after his life was saved in Afghanistan by Marine Force Recon Leader Charlie Cahill, Tom lives a bleak, nomadic existence, haunted by the debt he can never repay. Salvation appears in Stella—a woman as damaged, and resourceful, as he. But when a coded distress call from his former CO leads him to a shadowy NSA operative, Tom is recruited for a “black op” to bring back the now-rogue man who saved his life.

As he searches for Cahill, Tom quickly uncovers a much larger web of treason and betrayal that calls his entire world into question—and forces him into the ultimate no-win scenario.

Buy The Temporary Agent at Amazon


I'm always on the lookout for great audiobooks to listen to. Have you listened to any great ones recently?

While I will read some lighter reads during the summer, I still pick up darker reads from time to time. What is your favorite genre to read while on vacation?

Donna Huber is an avid reader and natural encourager. She is the founder of Girl Who Reads and the author of how-to marketing book Secrets to a Successful Blog Tour

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