Black Narrators You Should Be Listening To

Here are some of the most prolific Black audiobook narrators you should be listening to, from award-winners to up-and-comers. 


Bahni Turpin

Bahni Turpin has a long history of winning awards for her narration; we here at Libro.fm often wonder how she has the time to narrate so many audiobooks! Her narration of Children of Blood and Bone won an Audie Award for 2019 Audiobook of the Year, and she was inducted as a Golden Voice in 2019—AudioFile’s lifetime achievement honor for audiobook narrators.


Robin Miles

Robin Miles has a past in Broadway and television, so it’s no surprise that narration has served her well. She won the coveted Best Female Narrator Audie Award in 2021 for her narration of N. K. Jemisin’s The City We Became, and her narration of Caste by Isabel Wilkinson in 2020 won AudioFile’s Best of 2020 for Nonfiction & Culture.

The City We Became

By N. K. Jemisin

Caste

By Isabel Wilkerson

The Yellow Wife

By Sadeqa Johnson


Prentice Onayemi

Prentice Onayemi started his career narrating for educational texts, and eventually transitioned to full-length fiction, autobiographies, and more. A self-described “theater kid,” he also has a past on Broadway.

Behold the Dreamers

By Imbolo Mbue

The Rage of Dragons

By Evan Winter

Frederick Douglass

By David W. Blight


Dion Graham

Dion Graham has a string of awards to his name, especially when it comes to children’s and young adult literature—including When Stars are Scattered and Dear Martin. He also has AudioFile’s Golden Voice honor to his name, and his “range and talent as a narrator have netted him consistently superlative praise, including four Audie Awards, scores of AudioFile Earphones awards, and numerous other “Best of” accolades.

Black Leopard, Red Wolf

By Marlon James

Little Family

By Ishmael Beah

Concrete Rose

By Angie Thomas


JD Jackson

In June 2020, JD Jackson was inducted as one of AudioFile’s Golden Voice, and he won the 2021 Audie Award for his narration of His Truth is Marching On, and recently helped breathe new life into the ancient Beowulf.

His Truth Is Marching On

By Jon Meacham & John Lewis

The Nickel Boys

By Colson Whitehead

A Little Devil in America

By Hanif Abdurraqib


Dominic Hoffman

Dominic Hoffman’s background in acting and degree in English literature make him a perfect candidate for audiobook narration, and his reading record is no exception. One of his narrator preparation tips: “Get rest. When you’re tired, the first thing to go is your voice.” 

Deacon King Kong

By James McBride

The Starless Sea

By Erin Morgenstern

Homegoing

By Yaa Gyasi


Adjoa Andoh

You might recognize Adjoa Andoh from her role on Bridgerton as Lady Danbury, but did you know she narrates audiobooks, too? Her audiobook record includes bestsellers and favorites like Americanah, Get a Life, Chloe Brown, and Remote Control.

Americanah

By Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

Get a Life, Chloe Brown

By Talia Hibbert

Remote Control

By Nnedi Okorafor


Janina Edwards

Janina Edwards recorded her first audiobook in 1987, and hasn’t stopped since—she’s received two AudioFile Earphones awards for her skills.

The Proposal

By Jasmine Guillory

The Will to Change

By bell hooks


Shayna Small

Shayna Small is an actress, singer, and educator—and of course, an award-winning narrator. She’s earned three AudioFile Earphone awards and Audies for her narration in The Vanishing Half and Red at the Bone.

The Vanishing Half

By Brit Bennett

The Gilded Ones

By Namina Forna

America on Fire

By Elizabeth Hinton


Adenrele Ojo

Adenrele Ojo first trained as a dancer as a little girl, but then made the transition into theater, and eventually into audiobooks. AudioFile Magazine says it best: “Ojo shines brightest in dialogue creating a zest and personality.”

While Justice Sleeps

By Stacey Abrams

The Mothers

By Brit Bennett

Lakewood

By Megan Giddings


Ariel Blake

Ariel Blake is new to the audiobook narration scene, but you’d never know based off her stellar performance of Luster—it won an AudioFile Earphones award.

Luster

By Raven Leilani


Nicole Lewis

When she’s not narrating audiobooks, Nicole Lewis might be on Broadway, film, or television, as well as teaching and voice coaching. She especially has a knack for accents.

Such a Fun Age

By Kiley Reid

The Beauty in Breaking

By Michele Harper

The Space Between Worlds

By Micaiah Johnson


Nile Bullock

Nile Bullock is a young, up-and-coming narrator, as well as an actor, musician, dancer, and TikTok star. Definitely one to watch!

Opposite of Always

By Justin A. Reynolds

Rebel

By Marie Lu

The Stars Beneath Our Feet

By David Barclay Moore


Imani Parks

If Imani Parks looks familiar, it could be from when she played Young Nala on Broadway in The Lion King. She also has recorded more than 20 audiobooks, receiving multiple AudioFile Earphones awards.

Monday’s Not Coming

By Tiffany D. Jackson

My Jasper June

By Laurel Snyder

Is there another Black audiobook narrator you’ve listened to and loved?
Let us know in the comments below!

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Jenna Homen works on all things related to social media and the Libro.fm community. When not reading and listening to books, she is probably painting or hiking.

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