June 8, 2012
Top audiobook award goes to Tina Fey; Jane Austen defeats Kardashians
by Nick Davies
Earlier this week, the Audio Publishers Association presented its annual awards for excellence in audiobook publishing. The Audie Awards, or Audies, are typically given out in conjunction with BEA, in full swing this week, and this year Tina Fey nabbed the top prize for her memoir Bossypants, as read by her. Other nominees in the top category included Neil Gaiman’s American Gods (read by a full cast) and Walter Isaacson’s biography Steve Jobs (read by Dylan Baker). Fey’s audiobook really is worth a listen, and it’s not surprising that it received the top honor from the Audies—to have a comedian and seasoned performer reading her own work gives the book a natural advantage, and reminiscing about her time on Saturday Night Live gives Fey the chance to bust our her Sarah Palin impression again, not to mention a spot-on Paul Lynde. It also features the audio of this clip from SNL of a sketch Fey did with Amy Poehler during the 2008 election and a PDF of the images from the physical book, so as not to omit any aspect of the book.
Fey also won the award for biography/memoir, but not in the other two categories in which Bossypants was nominated: narration by the author(s) and humor. William Shatner won the latter for reading his book, Shatner Rules: Your Guide to Understanding the Shatnerverse and the World at Large. In other categories, a BBC Radio production of I, Claudius took home the award for audio drama, Jane Fonda’s Prime Time won for personal development, and a BBC production of several Jane Austen works beat the various Kardashians and their odiously titled audiobook Kardashian Konfidential for package design—an admittedly minor category that feels like a moral victory all the same.
Nick Davies is a publicist at Melville House.