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Help, my audio book has been “Bricked”

May 13, 2016

I’ve gotten into the habit of listening to audio books during my daily commute and have had the misfortune of coming across Scott Brick’s narrative work more than once now. I mean how could I not? He’s so prolific, narrating over 700 books so far (WTF??).  This man is the human equivalent of cilantro, people love him or hate him and think he tastes like soapy death!!  He’s so divisive I took to the internet to see what other people are saying about him. I am amused, there is even a petition (which I totally signed)! Some of what people are saying needs to be repeated as a warning to others though!

“I just can’t stand the breathless intonation he gives the characters. They sound like the know-it-all yuppies you find and ignore at cocktail parties.” – K. Sims


“God, he’s so awful. People who argue that “he can’t be bad if he’s so popular” must be ready to award Dan Brown the Pulitzer.” – James Abraham


“If you are an insomniac try him out….that should finally get you to sleep.” – S. Allard


“He reminds me of William Shatner from the early Star Trek years. When I hear his voice the first thing that pops into my head is a parody of an already super cheesy soap opera.” – jason


“The guy will make picking up a newspaper dramatic and sad, while the dying dog next to it gets a dry monotone and breathless death.” – Isaac


“No matter the genre his constant, overly tense, emotional intonation ruins books for me. Its like reading in all capitals or something.” – Lee



“Scott Brick’s every damned utterance gushes with insipid melodrama. He usually sounds like he’s on the verge of tears or hysteria. Pathetic, disgusting, and unlistenable — this narrator is a turd-Midas for everything he reads. SCOTT BRICK: STOP MAKING WORDS.” – Adam

“Every character in every book, regardless of the author, sounds the same.” – Audie O’File

“I’m beginning to think that there is a Scott Brick gene. Only some of us have it, or lack it, whichever the case may be. I wish Scott Brick lovers could hear what I hear when forced to listen to him.” – Lunada Bay Lady (see, my cilantro theory!)


“He reminds me of nothing so much as the character Calculon from Futurama. Long…..pauses, and breathy, tonal shifts.” – John Mitchell


“Scott Brick’s narration has the sing-songy, self-important, overly dramatic intonation of a Goth girl reading aloud her horrible poetry.” – Googly Elmo

goth girl.gif

“Scott Brick just made me return the book “Forever on the Mountain.” Listening to Brick read it, all I could hear was “I am a thesbian! I am a thesbian!” It was like listening to a book being read by Frasier Crane.” – Huldren

dear god.gif

“Scott Brick emotes identically, everywhere and always, regardless of the character. He turns rational characters into overwrought teenagers.” – D. Carson


“I never liked Scott Brick’s narration. He narrates like Zapp Branangan would with some sort of heroism or a overconfident virtuosity.” – WhiteKnight74


” I actually hate Scott Brick’s narrations. For the past 5 years or so I given up completely on Scott Brick and now refuse to buy an audiobook narrated by this guy. Why is he so popular? Why isn’t everyone as enlightened and correct as me?! WHY DO PEOPLE LIKE THIS GUY?!” –  The_Chairman_Meow


“I’ve listened to several audiobooks read by Scott Brick. I keep hoping that I’ll start to like his narrations, but, instead they just get more and more irritating. I wish I could pay him to stop narrating books — he’s awful.” – Brian Swenson


“Oddly, the man is popular… Then again, so is McDonalds. And, when something could be as good and savory as filet mignon, Brick will only ever deliver the Big Mac version.” – Chris Gelles

big mac.gif



31 Comments leave one →
  1. biggus permalink
    July 30, 2018 2:11 pm

    The annoying thing is that when he stops with that stupid quavering ‘listen to how dramatic I am’ voice, he is fine. He is a good reader in the technical sense, just a horrid narrator because of his (lack of) acting skills.

  2. Jestherd permalink
    August 4, 2018 3:06 am

    I have actively tried to like Scott Brick…(only because he does so many books I really love) but I feel like he doesn’t allow the reader to have a thought or feeling…he forces emotion where there isn’t any. His narration tries too hard to shape every character-even the flat non-dynamic ones…and that RUINS my experience with the characters. I can’t listen to any book read by him…as it lacks authenticity and respect for the listener.

  3. Liz permalink
    August 25, 2018 4:51 am

    I made the mistake of listening to an audiobook narrated by that motherfucker while driving. My eyes started closing and I was almost asleep. Had to turn him off and I felt more awake almost instantly.

    • August 27, 2018 6:06 pm

      I’m glad you survived Liz! If you are able to I hear speeding him up helps.

  4. theov3rmind permalink
    August 30, 2018 9:18 am

    This guy has ruined the last 7 Halo books and today I found out he’s narrating the new Halo book as well! I instantly cancelled my pre-order 😥

    • September 25, 2018 10:18 pm

      My condolences! RIP Halo literature in audio format.

  5. Catherine permalink
    January 15, 2019 1:59 am

    Now Scott Brick is reading as Jack Reacher…… I so sad. Brick is a reader, not an actor. Everything he reads is so over dramatic. He always reads like the character is an axxhole. and Reacher is not. I just don’t know what I’ll do from now on. So sad.

    • January 28, 2019 9:06 pm

      Oh…oh no! Maybe you can speed up the playback pace and that will help.

      • biggus permalink
        January 28, 2019 11:45 pm

        If you speed him up so that you can’t hear him, that could work. Brick’s reading speed isn’t the problem, it is his total inability to ‘act’, and his obvious belief that he can. He is so mind numbingly dismal in this, I simply cannot believe that he keeps getting hired. He is among the worst audio book narrators, and I cannot listen to anything of his any more. 😦

      • February 12, 2019 9:42 pm

        I feel ya! I’m just trying to polish the turd so to speak. I still can’t believe that he is so popular. Why does he keep getting booked for stuff? I don’t get it!!

      • Gus Wrethman permalink
        February 20, 2019 7:35 am

        Not enough polish in the world for this job. 🙂 As you say, I find it hard to believe myself. I totally get why this person may not like that person’s accent, that is a personal thing, and a subjective thing. I don’t mind Brick’s accent, it is kinda neutral to my aussie ears, but his acting, that fake tremor, it is so bad it is scary. I mean, it is beyond bad, it is way bad, pathetically bad. AND THEN as if the fake tremor and his other nonsense aren’t enough to drive you totally insane, the fact that he does it in virtually every circumstance. He could be describing a car driving down the street and he will try to make it sound like high drama. Not only can’t he act, he doesn’t know WHEN to act. Go away Brick, I will never listen to a book read by you again! That said, I MIGHT try a much older one, I have this suspicion that he hasn’t always been this bad. Maybe when he started out, he didn’t do it. Anyone have any thoughts on this theory?

      • February 20, 2019 1:09 pm

        I know his regular speaking voice is more nuanced. Because his tone is the same throughout it makes it all flat and boring to me instead of everything being high drama. He sounds bored to me, like “Ugh, I hate my job but these jokers keep paying me so here’s another shitty audio book. You’re welcome!”

      • Gus Wrethman permalink
        February 21, 2019 10:13 am

        Being an audiobook fan, I understand, as you most likely do, just how much a good reader can add to a book. I have read (listened to) pretty average books, that have been brought to life by exceptional narration. Here, we have the opposite, which is a pity, because he is such a big name, he often reads the big titles. All of us here will pass. 😦 He may be bored, but I think that he thinks he is actually really good at it. Anyway, I will make a point of listening to one of his from as far back as I can find, just to see the difference, assuming there is one 🙂

    • biggus permalink
      January 28, 2019 11:47 pm

      Let the publishers know just what you think of this clown. I doubt that it’ll do much, given his unexplained popularity, but who knows, maybe if enough people point out why he is so bad, they might start to listen.

  6. February 22, 2019 5:05 pm

    The only thing worse than a book read by Brick is a book read for Librivox in English by a half literate reader with a heavy foreign accent. I wonder how many people have been killed by falling asleep while driving and listening to one of his audiobooks?

  7. tcut permalink
    June 1, 2019 1:10 pm

    I had to laugh when I read this since, I, too, am searching the Internet to see if I’m the only one who loathes this narrator. He can ruin any book. The inappropriate hyper dramatic tone and excruciatingly slow narrative is worse than fingernails on a chalkboard. Why would anyone choose this guy to narrate??? I’m now enduring a 2x speed reading of his because it’s the 4th of 5 novels combined (“2666” by Bolaño). Wouldn’t you know it’s the part I was most looking forward to? Aaaargh.

  8. reifnir permalink
    June 2, 2019 4:28 pm

    lmao, this made my afternoon. I’m a software person working on an application related to managing audiobook in my spare time. I made one of the error codes ScottBrickDetected for fun 😀

  9. Gus Wrethman permalink
    June 5, 2019 10:32 pm

    To put a theory of mine to the test, I listened to a book narrated by Brick in 2005. It was fine. It was obviously before the fateful day when someone told him he could ‘act’. 😦

  10. Boush permalink
    June 6, 2019 12:59 pm

    I’m wasting time at work making sure that I’m not crazy and that other people hate Scott Brick anywhere near as much as me. I have heard for years that Brad Meltzer’s books are great. The Brickster narrates all of them. I had to force myself to hold down my lunch to get through one of them, and convinced myself that it was just the one character that I hated his interpretation of. I couldn’t make it 20% of the way through another book, so then I thought maybe I didn’t like Meltzer. I’ve tried to deal with him on other books, including The Passage just now (because I *loved* the show and I knew I would love the book, too), and… no. It’s Brick. He sucks worse than the black hole in Interstellar. I hate him and how prolific he is in reading books I want to listen to during my commute.

    • June 6, 2019 5:02 pm

      Omg, The Passage is SO LONG too. I really wanted to love it cause that’s my fave kind of story but I was just annoyed through the entire thing.

  11. Mike M. permalink
    November 18, 2019 3:03 pm

    I’m so glad I found this. Like so many others, I was driven to do a “hate” search after trudging through his quivering voice listening to Absolute Power,, where he-men detectives sound like they’re about to break into tears. Guns are out and he is moaning….. That upswing, the high 1920s stage actor voice. Doesn’t he have a low register at all? Thank you for letting me know that I’m not alone. He ruined the Orphan X series completely. Are my only choices George Guidall, where everybody sounds over 70 (acceptable in many cases), or over the top with histrionic Brick?

    • December 3, 2019 10:49 am

      No, all of the Star Wars audio books have fantastic narration. Once you find a narrator you like you can look up their bio to see if they’ve done other things you might like. Start here: (personal fave is Marc Thompson). Fred Berman is also a fantastic narrator who has worked on a few of The Walking Dead books (but also a shit ton of Sherrilyn Kenyon stuff so ymmv).

  12. Ed Farnsworth permalink
    October 12, 2020 9:47 pm

    Thank God I’m not alone. I’ve purchased every Lee Child audiobook except for the last two because THEY’VE BEEN BRICKED! This guy is excruciatingly terrible! WHY? WHY? WHY?

    • October 12, 2020 11:16 pm

      My condolences Ed! I still don’t understand why he’s so popular!!

      • Ed Farnsworth permalink
        May 11, 2021 7:27 pm

        Just tried to buy, “The Green Brain,” by Frank Herbert on Amazon. Left this review.

        Nothing more disappointing than finding an audiobook you’ve been looking for and discovering that Scott Brick has been hired to narrate it. Absolutely unlistenable, just like his entire body of work. I’ve returned audiobooks by him before after mistakenly buying them. Now I’m more careful, but Amazon, please create a warning label for this guy. One could easily make a mistake a accidentally wind up listening to several seconds of his voice before you slam down the spacebar.

      • May 23, 2021 7:58 pm

        Omg, Brick strikes again!!

  13. Ben Siegel permalink
    May 21, 2021 5:49 pm

    My wife and I listen to a lot of books. We joke that the four most frightening words to us are “read by Scott Brick”. Very simple: he over modulates. He’s up. And then he’s down.

    • May 23, 2021 7:57 pm

      How does he manage to over modulate AND sound so boring? It is almost impressive TBH.

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