Best Young Adult Audiobooks of All Time

In today’s busy world, finding time to sit down and read a book can be a challenge. Fortunately, audiobooks make it possible to enjoy literary classics and new releases alike while on the go. And if you’re a fan of young adult literature, you’re in luck: There is a handpicked selection of YA audiobooks available for your listening pleasure right below. In this article, we will explore why young adult audiobooks are worth your time, the top YA audiobook genres, award-winning picks, and the best narrators and voice actors to bring your favorite stories to life.

Best Young Adult Audiobooks of All Time

Why Young Adult Audiobooks Are Worth Your Time

You may be wondering: why should I listen to an audiobook when I could just read the book myself? Well, there are several reasons why young adult audiobooks are worth your time. First and foremost, they allow you to enjoy great stories while multitasking. Whether you’re exercising, commuting, or doing household chores, audiobooks offer a way to make the most of your time. Additionally, listening to an audiobook can bring a new level of immersion to the story, as talented narrators and voice actors create fully-realized characters and worlds.

The Benefits of Audiobooks for Teens and Adults Alike

Furthermore, audiobooks offer benefits beyond convenience and entertainment. Research has shown that listening to audiobooks can improve reading comprehension, vocabulary, and overall literacy. This makes them an excellent option for educators looking to engage their students and help them develop critical reading skills. And for those with visual impairments or learning disabilities, audiobooks can provide an alternative route to accessing great literature without the challenges of traditional reading methods.

But the benefits of audiobooks don’t just stop at literacy. Listening to audiobooks can also be a great way to improve your mental health. Many people find that listening to audiobooks helps them relax and unwind, reducing stress and anxiety. This can be especially beneficial for young adults who may be dealing with the pressures of school, work, and social life.

The Popularity of Young Adult Fiction in Audio Format

Audiobooks have become increasingly popular over recent years, and the young adult genre is no exception. In fact, young adult fiction is one of the most popular genres in audiobook format. Many publishers now release audiobooks simultaneously with their print counterparts, meaning readers have access to their favorite titles in both forms.

But what makes young adult fiction so popular in audio format? One reason may be that many young adult books deal with complex themes and emotions that can be difficult to fully appreciate through reading alone. Listening to a talented narrator bring these characters and stories to life can add a new level of depth and understanding to the experience.

Another reason for the popularity of young adult audiobooks may be the diverse range of voices and perspectives represented in the genre. Young adult fiction often explores issues of identity, belonging, and social justice, and audiobooks can provide a platform for a variety of voices to be heard.

So whether you’re a young adult yourself, an educator looking to engage your students, or simply a fan of great storytelling, there are plenty of reasons to give young adult audiobooks a try. With their convenience, immersion, and educational benefits, they may just become your new favorite way to experience literature.

Top Young Adult Audiobook Genres

Are you looking for a new young adult audiobook to dive into? Look no further! Here are some of the top YA audiobook genres:

Fantasy and Science Fiction

Harry Potter: The Complete Collection (1-7)

From Harry Potter to The Hunger Games, fantasy and science fiction have long been popular young adult genres. These stories transport listeners to other worlds and offer incredible adventures to accompany them on their daily journeys. Whether you’re a fan of magic and mythical creatures or futuristic technology and space travel, there’s a YA audiobook for you.

Imagine soaring through the skies on the back of a dragon or exploring a distant planet with alien life forms. These stories allow listeners to escape their everyday lives and immerse themselves in fantastical worlds full of wonder and excitement.

Romance and Relationships

There’s nothing quite like a good romance novel to make you feel all the feels. Young adult romances often explore themes of first love and coming-of-age, making them relatable for many listeners. These stories offer a glimpse into the complexities of relationships and the challenges of navigating young love.

Whether you’re swooning over a charming prince or rooting for a quirky couple to get together, YA romance audiobooks are sure to tug at your heartstrings. These stories remind us of the magic of falling in love and the power of connection.

Mystery and Thriller

If you’re a fan of suspense and intrigue, seek out young adult mystery and thriller audiobooks. Whether you’re solving a murder with teenage detectives or attempting to unravel a conspiracy in a dystopian future, these stories will keep you on the edge of your seat.

From psychological thrillers to classic whodunits, YA mystery and thriller audiobooks offer a thrilling listening experience (if you’re looking for more YA-accessible thrillers, check out our guide to Natasha Preston). These stories challenge listeners to think critically and solve puzzles alongside the characters, making for a truly immersive experience.

Coming-of-Age Stories

Young adult literature often centers around coming-of-age stories, and audiobooks offer an excellent way to experience these narratives. From dealing with family drama to navigating friendships and self-discovery, coming-of-age stories offer relatable experiences for listeners of any age.

These stories remind us of the challenges and triumphs of growing up, and the importance of finding our place in the world. Whether you’re a teenager navigating high school or an adult reflecting on your own coming-of-age journey, YA coming-of-age audiobooks offer a unique perspective on the human experience.

Dystopian and Post-Apocalyptic Worlds

The Maze Runner

The popularity of dystopian and post-apocalyptic stories has risen in recent years, thanks in part to the success of series like The Maze Runner and Divergent. These stories offer a glimpse into bleak futures and tests of survival, making for intense and exciting listens.

Whether you’re fighting for survival in a world ravaged by a deadly virus or battling against a tyrannical government in a dystopian society, YA dystopian and post-apocalyptic audiobooks offer a thrilling listening experience. These stories remind us of the importance of resilience and the power of hope in even the darkest of times.

So, which young adult audiobook genre will you dive into next? Happy listening!

Award-Winning Young Adult Audiobooks

With so many great young adult audiobooks out there, it can be challenging to decide where to start. Here are some award-winning picks to guide your listening choices:

Audie Award Winners and Finalists

The Hate U Give

The Audie Awards are presented annually by the Audio Publishers Association to recognize excellence in the audiobook industry. Many young adult titles have received recognition, including The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas, read by Bahni Turpin, which won the 2018 Audiobook of the Year award.

Another Audie Award-winning young adult audiobook is Sadie by Courtney Summers, narrated by Rebecca Soler, which won the 2019 Thriller/Suspense category. The audiobook features a full cast, including a podcast-style element that adds to the suspenseful atmosphere.

Looking for a fantasy audiobook? Check out The Cruel Prince by Holly Black, narrated by Caitlin Kelly, which was a finalist in the 2019 Fantasy category. The audiobook brings to life the world of Faerie with vivid descriptions and a captivating performance.

YALSA Amazing Audiobooks for Young Adults

The Poet X

The Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA) offers a list of Amazing Audiobooks for Young Adults each year, showcasing the best audiobooks for teens. Notable picks from recent years include The Poet X by Elizabeth Acevedo, narrated by the author, and Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi, narrated by Bahni Turpin.

Another YALSA Amazing Audiobook for Young Adults is The Astonishing Color of After by Emily X.R. Pan, narrated by Stephanie Hsu. The audiobook features a mix of English and Mandarin Chinese, adding to the authenticity of the story’s setting in Taiwan.

If you’re in the mood for a mystery, try One of Us is Lying by Karen M. McManus, narrated by Kim Mai Guest, MacLeod Andrews, Shannon McManus, and Robbie Daymond. This audiobook was a YALSA Amazing Audiobook for Young Adults in 2018 and features a gripping whodunit plot that will keep you guessing until the end.

Best Narrators and Voice Actors for Young Adult Audiobooks

Finally, who are the best narrators and voice actors to look out for in the young adult audiobook scene? Here are a few standout names to add to your audible wishlist:

The Importance of a Great Narrator

A great narrator can make or break an audiobook experience. A talented voice actor can bring characters to life and make you forget you’re even listening to an audiobook! It’s crucial to seek out narrators and voice actors whose styles align with your tastes.

But what makes a great narrator? It’s not just about having a pleasant voice. A great narrator must also have impeccable timing, a wide range of vocal inflections, and the ability to convey emotion through their voice alone. They must be able to capture the essence of each character and bring them to life in a way that feels authentic and true to the author’s vision.

Popular Voice Actors in the YA Audiobook Scene

Some of the most popular voice actors in young adult audiobooks include Saskia Maarleveld, Will Patton, and Emily Woo Zeller. Maarleveld’s performances add warmth and depth to both romance and adventure stories, while Patton’s gravelly voice is perfect for gritty dystopian tales. Zeller, meanwhile, brings nuance and subtlety to complex characters and emotional moments.

But there are many other talented voice actors out there, too! Bahni Turpin is known for her incredible range and ability to bring diverse characters to life. Michael Crouch is a master of pacing and can keep listeners on the edge of their seats. And January LaVoy has a voice that is both soothing and captivating, making her a great choice for stories that require a gentle touch.

It’s also worth noting that some authors choose to narrate their own audiobooks. This can be a great choice if the author has a distinctive voice or if they want to ensure that their vision for the story is fully realized. Some authors who have successfully narrated their own books include John Green, Neil Gaiman, and Angie Thomas.

In conclusion, young adult audiobooks are a delightful and engaging way to enjoy great stories on-the-go. With so many amazing titles available in the YA genre, it’s easy to find a book that captures your interest and imagination. Whether you prefer romance or science fiction, audiobooks offer an immersive and convenient reading experience that’s not to be missed!


What age range is young adult fiction appropriate for?

Young adult fiction is written for children aged between 12 and 18. It introduces young readers to mature themes that are not present in middle-grade fiction.

What is the most popular young adult genre?

While there are YA books written for every genre, the majority of YA books and series belong to the fantasy genre. This is because fantasies create an excellent metaphorical space in which authors can explore many of the trials teenagers face in today’s society.

Why should young people listen to audiobooks?

Audiobooks are a great way to unwind and relax, offering young listeners a break from the hectic world of schoolwork and after-school activities.

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Eddison Monroe
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