Shannon: I’m here today with narrator Lauren Ezzo. Lauren is an award-winning narrator of nearly 100 titles for authors including Mylene Dressler, Dot Hutchison, and Rachel Cohen. She sat down to talk with me today about herself as well as a new book she’s excited to introduce to the world, releasing Tuesday October 17 – The Last to See Me by M Dressler. And in celebration of this new book, we have a giveaway! [giveaway has ended]
Shannon: Lauren, welcome to AudioGals.
Lauren: Thanks for having me. I feel like I’m finally at the cool kids table.
Shannon: Can you tell us a little about what got you interested in audiobook narration?
Lauren: I’m an actor first and foremost. I’ve always loved literature and storytelling. A friend of mine was working at Brilliance Audio, and suggested I come in and audition. I did, and I’ve been narrating since 2015.
Shannon: It sounds like the perfect combination of things you love. When I looked you up on Audible, I saw you have nearly sixty books to your credit. That’s quite an accomplishment.
Lauren: Yes. Counting the books I’ve recorded under my pseudonym as well as those that are still in production, I think the total is actually closer to eighty-five.
Shannon: You work under a pseudonym? Do you want to tell readers more about that?
Lauren: I think there’s value in every book, every story I read, but I also know every book isn’t for every person. I want to be mindful of who is shopping for what. I use the other name for more of my intensely romantic work. I try to keep my two identities very separate, so I’d rather not give the other name I record under.
Shannon: Of course. That makes a lot of sense. You’ve recorded a wide variety of genres. Does one speak to you more than any other?
Lauren: I love anything with a good story, and I find a range of young adult work so thought-provoking and respectful. It’s so honest.
Shannon: I love young adult literature too. The genre has changed so much since I was a teenager. We at AudioGals review primarily romance audiobooks. As someone who has narrated some romances, what do you think is unique about bringing romances to life in an audiobook?
Lauren: Every book is different, as is every romance and relationship. Romance novels require a different type of attention to detail. It’s a lot about the build-up and the pacing. What kind of insight does the text give me? Romances feel a lot more intimate to me.
Shannon: I agree. The genre as a whole is so very intimate. I think that’s one of the things I like most about it. Let’s talk a bit about The Last to See Me by M. Dressler, which is released October 17. How did you prepare to record it?
Lauren: I read the book and try not to put too much on to it. I go through again, looking at the characters, who they are, and then the detail (accents, speech patterns), place names, etc. I like to do it one more time, skim with everything I know. The word choice was so deliberate here, and I marked emphasis and pauses. Then, I started to record.
Shannon: Did you have any contact with the author while you were preparing to record the book?
Lauren: I try not to be the first to contact authors. It’s a professional relationship, and I don’t want to step on any toes, but I saw her mention the audiobook on social media, so I invited her to get in touch if she’d like. We didn’t communicate about the creative process behind the narration, though. We didn’t really have to because the book was so well-written. I felt the text provided the information I needed to bring the story to life.
Shannon: I’m glad to hear it wasn’t a struggle for you. The Last to See Me is a complicated story that crosses quite a few genre lines. If you could tell potential listeners something about the story, what would it be?
Lauren: That’s for sure. When I first read the synopsis, it had something like five genre tag lines. Anyway, I want listeners to know that nothing in the novel is left to chance. I really feel that Emma’s voice guided us through her story. It reflects back to a lot of attitudes that are going on today in our world, what with all the racial tension and the like. At the same time, it feels like a sort of love letter to a time and place that no longer exists.
Shannon: I found her writing so lyrical. Her way with words was so moving.
Lauren: Lyrical is a great word. Sometimes, I feel like it’s the new catch-phrase when we talk about books, but it’s so true in this case.
Shannon: I want to thank you so much for talking with me today. I enjoyed getting to know you.
Lauren: It was a real pleasure. AudioGals is one of the premiere audiobook review sites, and I’m honored to talk with you.
In a small logging town in northern California, young Emma Rose Finnis was born and died. Now, no one remembers her hardworking life and her grand dreams – but she remembers. She remembers everything. Emma Rose is still here, one hundred years after her death…and she doesn’t plan on leaving.
But when a determined hunter arrives with instructions to “clean” Emma Rose out of her haunt, the stately Lambry mansion, death suddenly isn’t the worst fate imaginable. Emma Rose refuses to be hounded from the only place she’s ever found peace, even if it means waging a war on the living…and the dead.
Lyrical and haunting, this spellbinding American ghost story alternates between Emma Rose’s life and afterlife as the past and present become entwined in a compelling tale of loss, love and tenacity over a century in the making.
THE GIVEAWAY! [ended]
And now for the GIVEAWAY! Four lucky winners will get the audio CD of THE LAST TO SEE ME by M Dressler, narrated by Lauren Ezzo! Because it’s being mailed, only US addresses please. Just click below to enter for a chance to win – ends midnight Sunday October 22 Central Daylight Time (US).
No purchase is necessary. The giveaway is open from 12 am CDT Monday 16 October 2017 through 12:00 am CDT Monday 23 October 2017 (which is midnight Sunday).
Four winners will be chosen. The prize is an audio CD for The Last to See Me by M Dressler (value: US$14.99), therefore, winners will need to provide a US mailing address in order to receive the prize. Anyone with a US address is eligible to enter, with the exception that the reviewers at AudioGals and their immediate family members are not eligible. :)
One entry per person, please. Winners will be chosen at random by Rafflecopter software. Winners will be notified by email used for entry by 11:59 pm Monday 23 October 2017, and will have 48 hours to respond with the mailing address. If no response is received, another winner will be chosen.