Over the last two years, our family has driven more than 10,000 miles. I should really say that my daughters and I have ridden 10,000 miles, because my husband does all the driving. Many people roil at the thought of driving long distance with their children. But, for our girls, you have spent countless hours driving to see their out of town grandparents, this is their normal. We have definitely had our driving melt-downs. But, audiobooks are the one thing that has most prevented a historic melee. We turn a good book series on, and like music soothes the savage beast, everyone settles in to listen. And, when you go really long haul, like Highway 1 or Highway 101, a series is particularly fun. So, here is our rundown of our favorite audiobooks.
So, here is our rundown of our favorite audiobooks, with strong stories and evocative readers. These books will keep kids enthralled but also draw in grown-ups.
Beverly Cleary’s age-old series follows Ramona and her older sister, Beezus, through their exploits in elementary school. The reader does an exceptional job making you feel like you are right there in 2nd grade. The eight-book series also catches up with the girls over the years, so for this is great for families with multiple children.
2. Harry Potter
Jim Dale is probably the premier reader, turning the Harry Potter series into a one-man radio play. These seven books are the kind of audiobooks that you can hear over and over. We particularly enjoy them on wintery drives.
The Blue Balliet series of four books are age-appropriate mysteries. The solid reader will keep you interested in this tale of child-detectives investigating art crimes.
This six-book series draws on some of the same mythological themes as Harry Potter, but for older children. There are some serious themes and violence. It takes place largely in the Bay Area, so this was an ideal series to enjoy while we drove Highway 1.
Stuart Gibbs writes a number of different middle aged children’s series. But, we love the three-part Spy School for its light tone and strong friendships.
This four-part series features mystery, time-traveling, and dollhouses. We loved this series, particularly due to the strong female lead. The reader does a good job playing the various roles.