"Motown Man", the debut novel by Flint author Bob Campbell, is now available as an audiobook.
Campbell teamed up with the renowned voiceover artist Greg Campbell for the audio production of the novel that book critics have called a “thought-provoking,” “sensitive and honest portrayal of ethnic and racial diversity within Flint and the country,” and “a perfect book … at this point in history.”
Although the author and voice actor share the same last name, the two are not related. But they did grow up together in the same southside Flint neighborhood, with the author just a year older than the novel’s narrator.
Published in November 2020 by Urban Farmhouse Press (Windsor, ON), "Motown Man" is the story of Abby and Bradley, an interracial couple who are set on building a life together in a faded factory town rife with veiled racial tension, marked uncertainty and on the edge of losing its identity in the early 1990s. But to Bradley’s younger brother, James, their relationship is a fool’s errand. The novel’s setting “could be Anytown, USA,” according to a review in East Village Magazine.
“I’m honored to have Greg, a childhood friend and now an accomplished voiceover artist, narrating 'Motown Man',” said Bob Campbell. “The novel is set in a Midwest industrial city like our hometown. So, he really gets the sense of time and place, and the characters that inhabit that space. His distinctive voice also has a resonance that not only captures the mood of the story but amplifies it.”
The audiobook, released on the one-year anniversary of the print edition of "Motown Man", broadens the reach to an audience that may find the format more conducive to the way in which they enjoy books or finds it hard to fit reading into their busy schedules. Audiobook sales rose 12% in 2020 – the ninth year of double-digit growth in the format – and shows no signs of slowing down, according to the Audio Publishers Association.
“Telling stories for their entertainment, artistic and cultural values actually predate writing and reading them,” Bob Campbell said. “Digital technology provides an ‘old school’ way of bringing this story to listeners. And Greg’s tone and delivery really brings it to life.”
Greg Campbell made the leap from television news to narrating film, commercial and audiobooks. He provided his voice for the 2021 Emmy award-winning documentary Shaw Rising about the oldest HBCU in the south. He has also voiced nationally aired commercials for Ford, during the Kentucky Derby, and Kumho tires featuring NBA All-Star John Wall of the Houston Rockets.
“I want to thank Bob Campbell for choosing me to do 'Motown Man'. I really appreciate being asked to be the narrator,” said Greg Campbell. “I truly enjoyed doing the audiobook. The book is well-written and made sense to me from start to finish. I loved how the book addresses the perceptions that Bradley and Abby had to deal with as an interracial couple and neither being afraid to speak their minds. 'Motown Man' is thought-provoking throughout and there's never a dull moment.”
The audio version, including sample chapters, is available from these retailers:"Motown Man" are also available wherever books are sold or by visiting bobcampbellwrites.com/purchase/.
Bob Campbell, an essayist and novelist, likes his bourbon neat. His debut novel, Motown Man, was published by Urban Farmhouse Press in November 2020.