GRAIN VALLEY, KAN. — Folks in this iconic farming community are bursting with pride these days, because their favorite voice actress, Tavia Gilbert, has been named Best Female Narrator at this year’s Audie Awards, the highest honor in the audiobook industry!
The 22nd annual Audies Gala was held at New York City on June 1st. Awards were given in 27 categories including Audiobook of the Year. Gilbert, who brought Grain Valley to life in Maggie Vaults Over the Moon by Grant Overstake, is among the greatest performers in the world of audiobooks, as selected by the Audio Publishers Association.
She won the Audie for her performance of the novel, Be Frank With Me by Julia Claiborne Johnson. Other nominees in the category were Robin Miles, Juliet Stevenson, Bahni Turpin, and Emma Thompson.
“Tavia Gilbert is every author’s dream performer,” said Overstake, who added, “She makes Maggie and Grain Valley’s cast of characters come to life. She puts her heart and soul into everything she does, and everybody in the business knows it, and everyone who listens to her can feel it, too.”
Tavia received a slew of positive reviews for the audiobook version of Maggie Vaults Over the Moon, released in 2015 by Blackstone Audio, the nation’s largest independent audiobook distributor. Gilbert and author Grant Overstake “make a great duo” according to reviewer Kira Moody, a librarian in Salt Lake City, Utah.
Three-time Audies Award judge Susan G. Baird anointed Gilbert’s performance with superlatives such as “beautiful,” “engaging,” and “splendid,” in AudioFile magazine, which included Maggie on its list of recommended new audiobooks. Read full review at AudioFile.
With advancements in smartphone technology, the audiobook industry is growing exponentially, as more and more people are downloading books to their phones and listening as they travel. For teen athlete Katie Wright and her mom, Jennifer, the 31-mile stretch of highway between Prospect, Kentucky and Katie’s pole-vault practices at Fuzion Athletics in Shelbyville went by waaay too soon as they listened to Tavia Gilbert perform Maggie Vaults Over the Moon.
“Since my daughter was very little one of my favorite parenting memories was reading to her. We still love to share books together but sometimes struggle to find the time,” mom said. “We discovered on the long drive to practice how great it is to listen to an audiobook together.
“Gilbert’s narration really drew us into the story and characters!” Jennifer adds in her review. “Often times coming home we would stay in the car a few more minutes just to continue listening to the story. While we loved the happy ending, we were sad that the story ended and we no longer shared part of our day with Maggie together.”
Maggie Vaults Over the Moon is the magical story of Maggie Steele, a gritty farm girl who rebounds after tragedy, reaching high achevement as a pole-vaulter. Kirkus Reviews calls it, “A fine young adult novel about perseverance in sports and in life.”