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I wish I were the mom who loves to read aloud for hours on end. But I’m not. My voice gets tired. I get tired! (And have you ever noticed that as soon as you get into a good Morning Time read-aloud routine again everyone gets sick and you lose your voice or develop a cough?) I also work from home which means my read-aloud hours are limited by more than just my voice. There just aren’t enough hours in the day for me to read aloud every book I want my children to hear.
Thanks to Amazon and Audible, Focus on the Family and Jonathan Park, my kids never lack for wholesome entertainment that stimulates their brains and ignites their imaginations. Audiobooks introduce them to classic literature and allow them to keep childhood favorites on repeat. Audio adventures bring history to life and educate them on important facts without even realizing it. Audio dramas instill important values in my children’s minds and reinforce the character traits we are training them to display.
I grew up on Patch the Pirate. They were my dad’s favorite to help him stay awake on our family road trips. Combining fun stories with quality music, these audio adventures teach timeless truths in memorable ways.
- Kidnapped on I-Land
- The Misterslippi River Race
- The Custard’s Last Stand
- Patch the Pirate Goes West
- Patch the Pirate Down Under
- Once Upon a Starry Knight
- And many more!
My younger siblings listened to Jonathan Park–and now they are favorites of my own children. I love the fact that my kids get to listen in as Jonathan and his friends develop character traits. But I really love all the facts they are learning about Creation, science, and faith.
We’re new fans of the Brinkman Adventures, thanks to a review copy. But we’re excited to get to know this fictional missionary family. These audio dramas are inspired by true missionary stories. So while some of the episodes are mostly lighthearted, others deal with heavier issues like persecution and child slavery. But they all point listeners back to Truth–and show the unique perspective and challenges of growing up in a missionary family.
Focus on the Family Radio Theatre is more than just an audiobook being read or performed word for word. Professional actors, high quality sound effects, and thrilling music make these beloved theatres ones you’ll want in your family’s collection.
- Anne of Green Gables
- At the Back of the North Wind
- The Christmas Carol
- The Chronicles of Narnia
- The Legend of Squanto
- Little Women
- The Secret Garden
Focus on the Family Radio Theatre for Older Children
Some of the Focus on the Family Radio Theatre presentations deal with topics that make them better suited for families with older children. These are some of those unforgettable stories that will forever touch your children’s hearts and minds.
- Billy Budd, Sailor
- Bonhoeffer: The Cost of Freedom
- The Hiding Place
- Les Miserables
- The Screwtape Letters
- Silas Marner
Lamplighter republishes old books, weaving biblical truths and principles into the original stories. In addition, they create radio theatres of many of the tales. We were instantly caught up in The Basket of Flowers. Others, like Sir Knight of the Splendid Way, were a bit harder for my younger children to get into. But the lessons they teach are as timeless as the books they come from.
My brother read all the G.A. Henty books as a teenager. So when I found Heirloom Audio Productions, I was excited to experience G.A. Henty brought to life through audio drama. Though my children love The Story of the World, I didn’t know if Henty–even dramatized–might be beyond them. However, they loved our review copy of In Freedom’s Cause, and we were all excited to learn more about heroes Wallace and Bruce in a memorable fashion.
Favorite Fantasy, Fiction, and Non-Fiction Audiobooks
From classic fictional tales by George MacDonald, Edith Nesbitt, and Arthur Ransome to the brand new fantasy worlds my children love created by Alan W. Harris, S.D. Smith, and Andrew Peterson…here is a treasure trove of fantastic audio adventures for the whole family.
- All of a Kind Family (3 books in the series available on Audible)
- Caddie Woodlawn
- Carry On, Mr. Bowditch (read by Jim Weiss)
- The Five Little Peppers and How They Grew
- The Green Ember (3 books in the series)
- The Hobbit
- The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring, The Two Towers, and The Return of the King
- The Little Britches Series (8 books in the series–some mild swearing)
- King Arthur and His Knights (read by Jim Weiss)
- Mary Poppins (6 books available on Audible)
- The Princess and the Goblin
- The Princess and Curdie
- The Railway Children
- Redwall (17 of the 22 books in the series are available on Audible)
- Sherlock Holmes for Children (read by Jim Weiss)
- Swallows and Amazons (12 books in the series!)
- Swiss Family Robinson
- The Tales of Larkin: Hawthorn’s Discovery (5 books in the series)
- The Wingfeather Saga (4 books in the series)
- Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea (read by Jim Weiss)
Favorite Audiobooks for Younger Children
When my oldest was young, we introduced her to audiobooks with classics like Winnie-the-Pooh. Here are a few more favorites well-suited for very young listeners!
- Animal Tales (read by Jim Weiss)
- The Complete Adventures of Curious George
- The Complete Tales of Beatrix Potter
- First Stories to Last a Lifetime (read by Jim Weiss)
- James Herriot’s Treasury for Children
- Little House in the Big Woods (8 books in the series)
- Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle
- Tell Me A Story: A Treasury of Classics (read by Jim Weiss)
- Thornton W. Burgess Bedtime Stories
- Uncle Wiggly’s Storybook (read by Jim Weiss)
Now that I’ve shared a few of our favorite audio adventures, I hope you’ll share about your favorite audio dramas in the comments!
Here at Club31Women, we recognize that not everyone has the same taste or point of view on books, music, or movies, but we offer these short reviews for your consideration. Our hope is that you will find something new and wonderful on this list of recommended resources!
~ Lisa Jacobson, Club31Women
Gretchen learned to read at age 3 1/2 and has been a connoisseur of words ever since. She and her farmer husband are homeschool grads who met at Yellowstone National Park and fell in love through a 10-year friendship formed in correspondence by old-fashioned mail. When they got married, it took more than 16 boxes to contain their combined library of books. Instilling a love of reading and a passion for good books is an integral part of the way they educate their four children at home. When Gretchen isn’t reading, she’s blogging about books or coding WordPress websites for authors and bloggers.