Narrator: Tobias Silversmith
Length: 7 hours, 19 minutes
Too Stupid to Live is a humorous and sexy story of the geeky guy who gets the super hottie of his dreams. After a bit of work of course. It features Sam, a kind of scrawny, occasionally awkward guy who reads romance novels and thinks of life in those terms, who meets the gorgeous Ian, the rake on his way to redemption. I read the book when it first came out a few years ago and really enjoyed it. I particularly liked Ian’s character growth and the way he changes over the course of the story. And the sexy times. The book is super hot. So I was really excited to give it a try in audio as well.
This book was one of the rare times I found that my story rating listening to the audio didn’t totally match my opinion of the book when I was reading it. So first off, let me refer you to my original review here. Rereading that review, I agree with most of it, but this time around I had a harder time with Ian, and I think that is largely due to the audio. Ian isn’t super likable at first as he is mostly interested in Sam for sex and isn’t particularly nice to him. This is part of his character arc as he slowly finds himself falling for the guy he meant to keep at a distance. So it works well in the story as we see him grow and change over the book, and there is a tenderness to him that comes out even when he doesn’t intend it.
The main issue I had with the audio is that I wasn’t a huge fan of the way narrator Tobias Silversmith portrays Ian. He comes across derisive and condescending so much of the time, with kind of a sneer to his voice. This is the case even in scenes where he is supposed to be acting sweet and caring. I don’t necessarily think this is the tone Silversmith is intending to convey, as much as how the voice sounds to me. It made Ian come across as unpleasant to me and I had a much harder time warming up to him, especially at the beginning. In particular, he often calls Sam “kiddo” or other similar terms of endearment, things that could sound kind of sweet if said tenderly, but that come across as kind of demeaning when said with the wrong tone. Even his sexy “alpha” voice sounded kind of sneering to me most of the time. So I think this portrayal really affected how I felt about Ian, and as a result, the book as a whole.
Other than that, I think Silversmith does a generally nice job with the audio. The pacing is good, the tone fits the story, and Sam’s voice works really well for his character. The narration really captures Sam’s uncertainty with regard to Ian quite nicely. A few of the side characters didn’t work quite as well, particularly the women, but overall I thought the elements of the audio were good aside from my issues with Ian.
I still think this could be a good choice in audio format, as most of the book worked well, but overall I found my experience better when reading it. Either way, Too Stupid to Live is an enjoyable, sexy, and fun story.