Author: Nicholas Harvey
Narrator: Kim Bretton
Length: 7 hours and 57 minutes
Publisher: Harvey Books, LLC
Series: AJ Bailey Adventure Series, Book One
Released: Aug. 13, 2020
AJ Bailey was destined to run a dive boat on the beautiful island of Grand Cayman, the Mecca of Caribbean SCUBA diving.As a young girl in England she was captivated by a story her Navy veteran grandfather told. Now, as she’s closer than ever to discovering the long-lost submarine from the story, a wealthy Argentinian arrives; a treasure hunter who’ll stop at nothing to steal the prize.Can AJ find the wreck in time?Or will the Argentinian hunter and his ruthless crew beat her to it?It’s a race against time at treacherous depths to uncover the real secret of the lost submarine.
Raised in England, working in America and heading for Grand Cayman. That encapsulates Nicholas Harvey’s career that’s been dominated by motorsports from an early age as a driver, then race engineer, to senior manager at the top level of motor racing in the States. Poised in the background has been a second career in writing that flourished into his debut novel, Twelve Mile Bank, the first of the AJ Bailey adventure series which combines a passion for diving, an obsession with military history and a love of the Cayman Islands. Nick and his wife Cheryl can be found touring the world in search of adventure on motorcycles, mountains and dive boats.
Kim is an accomplished and award winning actress and director with West End/Broadway theatre credits. Kim has narrated over 35 audiobooks and counting. She is also an in demand voice over talent in the commercial and corporate arena and owns her own class A recording studio in Nashville. Kim is from the UK but has lived in NYC, L.A. and now Nashville TN. She continues to work in Theatre, Film and TV as an actress and a director alongside narrating audiobooks and commercial voice overs.
Q&A with Narrator Kim Bretton
When did you know you wanted to be an audiobook narrator?
After a lifetime in the theatre and TV both acting and directing and
also being married to a music producer and songwriter and
having built 4 recording studios it seemed the natural
How do you manage to avoid burn-out? What do you do to
maintain your enthusiasm for narrating?
I only narrate excellent books! I have really enjoyed every single book
I’ve ever narrated – so that helps. Twelve Mile Bank was easy to
get enthusiastic about. I couldn’t put it down and ended up
finishing the reading ahead of schedule!
Are you an audiobook listener? What about the audiobook
format appeals to you?
I am. So I know how a narrator can make or break a book. I also
understand that different narration styles appeal to different
people and it would never do if we were all the same.
What are your favorite and least favorite parts of narrating an
I love reading and being lost to a whole new world and I love a good
story. So letting the story unfold is always a treat. I love to chat
with authors about characters and find voices for them – that is
hugely creative. The characters become friends. The editing and
mastering process can be rather tedious but I have strategies to
make it a little more interesting.
What would you say are your strongest narration abilities?
Characterization and timing – particularly comedic.
Is there a particular genre you feel unsuited for? Have you ever
declined a project because you didn’t think you were right for it?
I once declined a lovely book about the wines and vineyards of Italy.
Looking up the correct pronunciations of all the Italian words was
hurting my brain and taking the flow out of the reading.
What about this title compelled you to audition as narrator?
Great writing, exciting story – well defined characters and a genre I
hadn’t yet explored. I was completely taken in. I fell in love with
AJ and the gang and Nick’s stunning descriptions of Cayman. I
now want to go diving! Nick has promised he and Cheryl will take
me one day!
How closely do you prefer to work with authors?
I work really closely. I even now consider a few the authors I’ve
worked with friends and we chat outside of work.
The connection between author and narrator is intimate and intense. It
is a privilege to be chosen to read someones work and a task I
don’t take on lightly. An author bares their soul through their
words. I am in awe of that and always do my best to honour and
respect their work. I do my absolute best to exceed their
How did you decide how each character should sound in this
Nick and I chatted on the phone extensively before I started. We
discussed character traits, accents, ages and tone. Nick sent me
character descriptions and photographs. They helped
immensely. And we continued to tweak as I progressed with the
What types of things are harmful to your voice?
Not enough sleep and dehydration. And an afternoon doing death
groans and attack yells for a video game…
How does audiobook narration differ from other types of
voiceover work you’ve done?
I spend a lot of my day doing corporate narration and commercials so
my books are the treaty part of my day.
Do you read reviews for your audiobooks?
Yes. And I feel pride when they’re good and a bit sad if I disappointed someone.
If so, which ones stand out to you most, positive or negative?
Picking up a series when another narrator started it can be a
challenge. Listeners expect you to copy the performance of the
previous narrator and that’s not possible.
Who is your “dream author” that you would like to record for?
I’d love to do a Phillip Pullman book.
If you could narrate one book from your youth what would it be
I always wanted to record The Winter of Enchantment by Victoria
Walker as it was my favourite book as a child. I reached out to
the author and she let me do it! That was a dream come true.
Both Neil Gaiman and Garth Nix had also loved that book as
children and they both gave me lovely shout outs.
What do you say to those who view listening to audiobooks as
“cheating” or as inferior to “real reading”?
I’ve had someone say this to my face when I told them what my job
was. Being read to is a lovely gift. It allows you to rest your eyes
or clean the kitchen or endure a long journey or fall asleep.
Accept the gift….You’re still reading the book! It still counts!! So
much effort, care, creativity and love goes into producing an
What bits of advice would you give to aspiring audiobook
Be prepared to kiss your social life goodbye and spend your days in a
cupboard talking to yourself.
What’s next for you?
Right now a Regency Romance, next a Horror and after that book 8 in
a series I love and after that three hilarious Chick Lit rom coms in
a row. I bloody LOVE my job!
Bonus question: Any funny anecdotes from inside the recording
I keep a file of my favourite outakes. It mainly consists of burps,
hiccups, jump scare screams as someone opens my booth door
while I’m in the middle of reading, trying and failing to say
“grasped” and “clasped” and one of my favourite moments was
failing to say “championing them”. It took me about 30 tries and I
was crying by the end. Ooh and recently I was narrating book 6
in a series and the author killed off one of my favourite
characters. Through tears I cursed him. I sent him the outtake
and he found it so funny it’s now his ringtone!
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