Audiofile Magazine (also Library Journal Starred Review)
Too Many Bosses, Too Few Leaders: The Three Essential Principles You Need To Become an Extraordinary Leader. Tantor Media
This account of how to be a true leader begins with the story of one of history’s greatest leaders, Mohandas Gandhi. Sean Runnette’s delivery of these passages, in particular, shows that he was a wise choice to narrate this work. He evokes both gentleness and strength as the text moves between discussions of leaders throughout history and business leaders in management positions of corporations today. Particularly sensitive in his delivery of the rhetorical questions at the start of the chapters, Runnette honors the author’s intent to draw the listener in. Further, his variation of inflection and emphasis helps the listener to absorb the facts, quotes, and business jargon that build the author’s case regarding the shared traits of great leaders and top-notch managers.
Booklist (also Library Journal Starred Review)
The Sages: Warren Buffett, George Soros, Paul Volcker, and the Maelstrom of Markets.
Runnette brings elegance to his measured reading of Morris’ summation of the contributions and viewpoints of three captains of finance—savvy investor Warren Buffet, analytical investment scholar George Soros, and former Federal Reserve head Paul Volcker, who has declined comment on successor Alan Greenspan’s tenure. The trio advises President Obama amid an economic turbulence each had warned (often to deaf ears) about for years. Morris compacts a great deal of economic theory and analysis, so Runnette’s appropriate pauses in the text let important concepts sink in as he smoothly details market reflexivity. He is perhaps at his best when presenting Hungarian-born Soros’ quotes and financial diary excerpts in a charming European-tinged accent. You don’t need an economics degree to comprehend the information, but it doesn’t hurt to have a knowledge of basic economic ideas.
Publishers Weekly (Audiofile Earphones Award)
THE CURVE OF THE WORLD: A Novel. HighBridge Audio
Stevens and Runnette combine their subtle, solid talents to bring this exciting and moving story vividly to life. Smartly abridged from Stevens’s well-reviewed first novel, this audio version follows American Coca-Cola salesman Lewis Burke through various adventures of the body and soul, as his commercial jet is forced down on a deserted airfield in the Congo (making this perhaps not the best choice for airplane listening) and he flees into the jungle to avoid a band of dangerous rebels. Runnette is adept at imbuing all the characters—including a remarkable Congolese boy who becomes Burke’s guide—with an honesty and resonance that remain in the listener’s memory.
Publishers Weekly (PW Best Audiobooks of 2010)
Washington Rules: America’s Path to Permanent War. Macmillan Audio
Bacevich, a retired colonel, critiques the unstated, unexamined premises, the “Washington Rules” that govern American foreign policy—even to the detriment of national security and domestic harmony. Bacevich is frustrated by the hamstrung debate, but Sean Runnette is not. He reads with a polite NPR softness at odds with the crusading, rabble-rousing tone of Bacevich’s writing, but the contrast works better than might be expected. Runnette treads softly over Bacevich’s reportage, picking out the most crushing indictments of the text and highlighting them by dropping his voice to an intimate whisper. The contrast between the ideas proffered and their accompanying emotions are distinct, and well-rendered.
Libary Journal (LJ Best Audiobooks of 2010)
The Disappearing Spoon: And Other True Tales of Madness, Love, and the History of the World from the Periodic Table of the Elements. Tantor Media
Science magazine writer Kean’s first book presents fascinating anecdotes about each of the known elements of the periodic table and the scientists who discovered them, e.g., how lithium helped cure poet Robert Lowell of his mental illness and how gallium became the prime element for chemical pranksters (it dissolves in ordinary tea—hence, the title). Kean’s love for science, invention, investigation, and discovery shines in this flow of fun facts. Audie Award winner Sean Runnette’s lucid, energetic narration is well suited to the author’s wit, flair, and authority in this entertaining audio that nicely supplements Theodore Gray’s massive The Elements: A Visual Exploration of Every Known Atom in the Universe. Kean’s welcome debut will inform general listeners and serve as a valuable reference for chemistry faculty. Highly recommended.
Audiofile Magazine (Audiofile Earphones Award)
THE COURAGE TO BE FREE : Discover Your Original Fearless Self by Guy Finley. Tantor Media
Stress in this profound little audio is all about the divide between our original unrestricted self and the self-compromising thoughts and feelings dumped on us by negative experiences, unsupportive people, and our lack of faith in the goodness of life. Powerful visual imagery and memorable stories deliver the Buddhist-like prescriptions, which include living in the moment, quieting the mind, avoiding pressures and compulsions, and viewing external challenges as gateways to inner growth. Sean Runnette’s narration is remarkable for its compassion and understanding of Finley’s message. Runnette’s tender approach to every sentence and paragraph helps the author’s wisdom glow. Along with the understated power of the author’s writing, Runnette’s performance makes this one of the most arresting and thought-provoking audiobooks available today.
School Library Journal
The Fast and the Furriest. Listening Library
Kevin Pugh has issues. Both Kevin and his dog Cromwell vegetate until one day Cromwell watches a dog-agility contest on television and suddenly his energies become focused. No longer a fat puddle of fur, Cromwell is ready to compete! But how can Kevin do dog-agility training when he’s supposed to be learning football? Kevin finds he must take control of his life or drown. Sean Runnette reads Andy Behrens’s book with enthusiasm and great timing, creating unique voices and accents for the characters. His presentation is often laugh-out-loud funny, and certainly guffaw-worthy.
Knives at Dawn: America’s Quest for Culinary Glory at the Legendary Bocuse d’Or Competition. Tantor Media
The backstage drama behind the world’s most esteemed culinary cooking competition is revealed in Friedman’s treatise on the legendary Bocuse d’Or. Teams from 24 countries vie for the 2009 prize. In preparation for the U.S. team’s participation in the Bocuse, Friedman follows the contestants through months of grueling training and practice cook-offs. Sean Runnette ideally captures the impeccable French accent required to pronounce so many dishes and the names of legendary French chefs. He also excels at a variety of international accents as required to portray chefs from all over the globe. Most notably, he imparts the competition’s mounting suspense as the aspiring chefs, their vainglorious mentors, and struggling protégés strive for the prized honor. Mouthwatering descriptions compete with a tangible passion for food throughout.