The person reading out the story holds a significant place. Hearing the text read by a good reader can be a real pleasure. Rashid Raza is the reader for most of the audio books, published by Reado, and not without good reason. Raza’a voice, apart from being crystal clear, has a rich baritone that is immensely attractive. Voice modulation is very important. And, in Amish’s Immortals of Meluha and Khushwant Singh’s The Company Of Women, the scenes comes alive. The book, I believe, is read out ad verbatim. What elevates the experience is the presence of a background score. For instance, when Shiva is fighting warring parties, a strong background score gives the scene the much-needed drama. This makes the fiction novel seem like a play on radio.
That’s perhaps what makes audio reading so interesting. In non-fiction, there is less scope for drama, so voice modulation becomes very important. In Rashmi Bansal’s Connect The Dots, the reader, Sameera Ranjan, is over-dramatic in some places but in others, her emphasis keeps the audio interesting. With audio books, mundane tasks like commuting or working out can become entertaining or even educational experiences.