Disney YouTuber Mr. Cheezy Pop One Of Best Audiobook Narrators For YA Books

Disney YouTuber Mr. Cheezy Pop One Of Best Audiobook Narrators For YA Books

Hockey Rivals Books

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Hockey Rivals

best audiobook narrators

What do the Hockey Rivals Books, Disney, and the popular time travel show Timeless all have in common? Audiobook narrator, actor, and YouTuber Maxwell Glick, who I truly believe is one of the best audiobook narrators around for YA and kids’ books.

As I recently shared, the Audible audiobook edition of Offsides (Hockey Rivals Book #2) was released this spring. Maxwell narrated Face-Off (Hockey Rivals Book #1) several years ago, and I was thrilled that he returned for the sequel—with a little help from the TV show Timeless. Before we get into that, let me tell you a little bit about Maxwell, whose youthful voice is perfect in audiobooks about young people.

His channel “mrcheezypop” is a family friendly destination where he takes you on magical adventures in happiness. From tips and tricks at Disney Theme Parks, to trying the latest food and drink all over the world, to sharing his own life in Los Angeles, Maxwell brings a much needed dose of positivity to viewers. He’s also an award winning actor and voice actor starring in the Emmy Award winning The Lizzie Bennet Diaries, appearing on numerous TV shows such as The Office, Castle, The Mentalist, and Timeless, has recorded voice work for major companies like Nickelodeon and Hasbro, and has recorded over 100 audiobooks, winning multiple awards for his work. For more Max, check him out on Patreon at patreon.com/mrcheezypop, and of course YouTube at youtube.com/mrcheezypop.

The Timeless Connection

On New Year’s Day, I was thinking of doing an audiobook edition of my latest release Offsides, but I wasn’t sure it was the right time as I had several projects in the works. I hadn’t talked to Maxwell in a few years and wasn’t sure if he would be available. Like I said, he is one of the best audiobook narrators around for YA books, plus he has an extremely popular YouTube channel, so I knew he would have a busy schedule.

That morning, my husband and I were watching Timeless on the DVR. My husband had gotten me into the time travel series, (I wish it was still on!) and we were binge watching. After the latest episode, a name jumped out at me in the credits. Maxwell Glick! We went back and found Maxwell in a guest spot. He was in costume, so I hadn’t recognized him—although how I didn’t pick up on the voice of Brad and T.J. McKendrick from the Face-Off Audible book is beyond me since he had several lines in the show. When I listened to his dialogue again, it was so obvious.

Anyway, I took this concidence as a sign that I should contact him. I dashed off an email to Maxwell, and within a few days, we had decided to pursue the project through ACX. He did a fantastic job as I knew he would. It amazes me how he can make each character sound different. If you’re planning any long car trips this summer and need to keep your teens and tweens entertained, definitely consider the Hockey Rivals audiobook editions. Let’s read on to learn more about Max, but first here is a video about what it was like for him to appear on Timeless.

Disney Magic

Another coincidence is that Maxwell and I both love the Disney theme parks. I mean, seriously love them! Let’s start with me. I got engaged at Epcot on a bench near Norway. Before we met, my husband had been to Walt Disney World over 30 times. We went to Paris on our honeymoon, and we of course had to visit Disneyland Paris. Unfortunately, that little excursion didn’t go so well. They put some kind of sauce on my burger, and let’s just say it didn’t agree with me. I wound up sitting on a hill most of the day and threw up on the train ride back to the hotel. Despite that bad day, I continued to love theme parks. In fact, I write the Storybook Valley chick lit series set at a theme park. So far, it includes the romantic comedies Fooling Around With Cinderella and Prancing Around With Sleeping Beauty.

best Audible narrators

As you’ll see on his YouTube Channel, Maxwell visits Disney theme parks all the time. If you’re a Disney fan, you’ll love his videos! Unfortunately, we had one disagreement. He calls the Avatar Flight of Passage at Animal Kingdom “the single greatest attraction Disney has ever made.” I refer to it as “the ride from hell” since I developed a serious case of motion sickness on that ride, and so did my kids. While I agree that in theory, this 3D flight was impressive, I didn’t see much of it as I was squeezing my eyes shut and praying for it to be over before I vomited. It was like a flashback to the saucy burger in Paris when I was praying, Please don’t let me wind up in a French hospital for food poisoning. Below, you can see a video that Maxwell posted about the ride. He exited in awe from the amazing experience; when I went, I stumbled off in awe that I hadn’t hurled.

Luckily, our strong opinions about Avatar Flight of Passage didn’t get in the way of our audiobook production. I asked Maxwell how he got so interested in Disney, and this was his response: 

 

“My love of Disney started as a kid because we took many vacations to Walt Disney World. Once I moved to LA and was so close to Disneyland, my love of it grew even stronger. I started making videos about Disney because I wanted to share my happy place with the rest of the world! The most rewarding part of it is when kids and families come up to me in the parks and say ‘mrcheezypop!’  Seeing the people who watch me in person is really special for me.”
 

Interview With Maxwell

Maxwell and I also discovered another coincidence. Before he moved to LA to follow his dream of being an actor, he went to Boston College. Ironically, that’s the school where the fictional McKendrick brothers want to land a scholarship to play Division 1 hockey. BC is mentioned quite a bit in Offsides, and Maxwell says he had fun performing those scenes. Below is the rest of my interview with Maxwell.

Tell us about your TV roles and your Taco John’s commercial campaign.

Being on TV is really wonderful. You get to work with the best people in the business, and I’ve been lucky enough to share the screen with people like Steve Carrel, Nathan Fillion, and Simon Baker. The Office was one of those dream jobs for me since I was such a fan of the show before appearing on it. Taco John’s was a great job for me because it was an ongoing campaign and I got to do over five commercials, and many voiceovers for them. That was one of the best jobs I’ve had. I was fortunate to be cast on The Lizzie Bennet Diaries which is a modern vlog style version of Pride & Prejudice. I played Mr. Collins. The show became somewhat of a sensation and won an Emmy. One of the coolest moments of my career, for sure. You can see the show in its entirety on YouTube.

How did you catch the acting bug?

I’ve always been acting or singing for as long as I can remember. I was in all of the shows in school, and I knew there was nothing else I would want to do.

How does it feel to watch yourself on television?

Seeing myself on TV or hearing myself is actually a thrill for me. Getting to see the work you did with all of the elements put together, is quite exciting. I don’t think that will ever change for me, no matter how many shows I’m on!

You’ve narrated over 100 audiobooks. Do you have any favorites? (Besides the Hockey Rivals books, of course!)

I really enjoyed reading the Joshua Dread series and also recently recorded another wonderful middle grade book called Maxi’s Secret.

When you act in a play, a TV show or a film, you can use nonverbal communication, movement and props to enrich the performance. Do you have any tricks or techniques that you use to help your audiobook performances come alive?

To make audiobooks come alive, I really tend to become that character I’m portraying. I’m often very animated when I’m reading, and very expressive with my hands. I think that really helps and comes through in the performance.

What is your process for approaching an audiobook? Do you read the whole book first so you know what’s coming, or do you like to be surprised and just take it one chapter at a time?

Sometimes I read the whole book, other times I skim it. It really depends on my deadline. Always though, I at least skim it so I know where the story is going and if something happens towards the end of the book that I need to know at the beginning involving a character. This could change the way a character is portrayed.

Does your voice ever get tired? Do you have to do anything special to take care of your voice?

My voice definitely gets very tired after long audiobook sessions. The key is water, water, water! All day I drink water when I’m recording, and even when I’m not! Tea is wonderful too. A nice 30 minute break after an hour and a half can go a long way as well.

Let’s talk hockey. What’s your favorite team and do you have any favorite players?

My favorite team is the Winnipeg Jets. When I was a kid growing up in New York, I was a New York Jets football fan, and thought, hey I can be a fan of two Jets teams, so I became a Winnipeg fan! Of course, it saddened me when they left, but when they moved back to Winnipeg, I was a fan again! I’m really hoping I can go to Winnipeg one day and see them play. My favorite player was always Teemu Selanne.

Maxwell Glick Around the Web: 

Twitter
You Tube
Instagram

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Below is more information about our Hockey Rivals audiobooks. Here is the blurb for Offsides:

Twin hockey stars T.J. and Brad have finally resolved their differences and forged a friendship on and off the ice. Now high school seniors, they focus on landing a commitment to a D1 school.

What should have been the best year ever takes a nasty hit when the boys’ parents announce their divorce, and Brad makes a mistake that could impact his game eligibility. Meanwhile, T.J. faces off against their father, who opposes his decision to delay college and pursue junior hockey.

Adding to the tension are a rebellious kid brother, girlfriend trouble, and recruiting pressure. The turmoil threatens to drive the twins apart just when they need to work together the most. With a championship title and their futures at stake, T.J. and Brad must fight to keep from going offsides.

If you start a free trial with Audible, you can get an audiobook for free! How’s that for a deal?

Buy Face-Off on Audible

Buy Offsides on Audible

 

Listen To The Audible Samples Below:

How The Boston Bruins And Team USA Inspired The Hockey Rivals Books

How The Boston Bruins And Team USA Inspired The Hockey Rivals Books

Hockey Rivals Books

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Hockey Rivals

What do the Boston Bruins and the U.S. Olympic Men’s Hockey Team have to do with my Hockey Rivals series? Actually, quite a lot.  Here’s the story of why it took me 26 years to publish a sequel to my classic YA hockey book Face-Off. How crazy is it that the sequel, Offsides, just came out last fall?

It’s even crazier when you consider that I wrote Face-Off when I was a teenager. I got really obsessed with pro hockey during the late 1980s and early 1990s. It started with the 1988 Olympics, which featured hockey players like Brian Leetch, Craig Janney, and Tony Granato. Once it ended, I started following the Boston Bruins.

The Bruins were awesome, playing the Edmonton Oilers in the 1988 Stanley Cup Finals. They lost, but they were still awesome. Soon, I had posters of Cam Neely, Ray Bourque, Craig Janney, and Bob Joyce hanging on my wall. Even though Wayne Gretzky was a rival, he was amazing to watch, and I even had him on my wall. Plus he was marrying actress Janet Jones, who I loved in the gymnastics movie American Anthem. So, I could forgive him for not being a Bruin.

In high school, I kept painstaking records of the Boston Bruins’ wins and losses. An avid reader, I also read any magazines and books about NHL hockey that I could get my hands on. I had a subscription to Hockey Digest and I’d pick up copies of Hockey Illustrated at the store. My dad took me to Bruins games and I’d buy various publications at Boston Garden. I read Gretky’s autobiography, and biographies of Bobby Orr and Phil Esposito. But I couldn’t find any YA hockey books at the library or in bookstores. Since I liked to write, I decided to write my own hockey books for teens – partly to entertain myself and partly on a whim. I’d seen an ad in Tiger Beat magazine for a young adult novel competition, open to teenagers, and I decided to write a YA hockey book and enter it in the competition.

YA hockey book

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I had a blast writing my hockey story of two brothers, T.J. and Brad McKendrick, who battle on and off the ice. I wrote in a notebook during high school study hall (and ahem, during boring classes when the teacher wasn’t looking) and my friend Joanne would give me feedback. I typed it at home on a Brother word processor. (Remember those?) I set the book in Massachusetts, a hockey hotbed, and made the boys Boston Bruins fans.

To my shock, I got a telegram during my freshman year in college, notifying me that I had won. I received a contract from a major New York publisher and it was a whirlwhind of local newspaper publicity and booksignings. I received fan letters like this one asking for a sequel:

“This is, by far, one of the best books I have ever read. Face-Off has an excellent climax and a superb plot . . . This is one book I think every hockey fan should read. Your book shows how in hockey, it’s not a one-man show and it takes a whole team to win. I know a sequel to Face-Off would be great. I couldn’t change any part of this story to make it better if I tried.”
– Adam from Ohio

Behind The Scenes Of A YA Hockey Book

So, in 1993, I decided to write a sequel. I finished the first draft of Offsides when I was twenty, a college sophomore. But when I submitted it to the publisher, there had been a major restructuring and my editor was gone. No one there remembered Face-Off as I got rejected with a form letter. Then I sent the story to other publishers. They weren’t interested in a sequel to a novel published by another company. Since no one would publish it, I put the book in a drawer.

Fast forward to 2011. After years of working as a reporter and continuing to write fiction, I was back in the publishing game with two adult mystery novels Twenty-Five Years Ago Today and Sink or Swim, and my young adult supernatural thriller Dark Before Dawn. Thanks to the growth of ebooks, there were many more opportunities for authors than there had been in the 1990s.

Since Face-Off was only available from used bookstores, I self-published a second edition in ebook, paperback, and Audible formats. It immediately started selling, and I vowed to publish Offsides also. I hired a company to scan my old manuscript into a computer so I could work with it again.

The book needed a lot of rewriting. I began researching junior hockey and Division 1 scholarships, but when my daughter was diagosed with Type 1 Diabetes in 2013, it hit me hard, and I stopped writing. When the words finally started flowing again, my muse was directing me to write my Storybook Valley romantic comedy series for adults. I needed to write something light and funny.

But I couldn’t stop thinking about my old friends Brad, T.J., Chris, and Jory, especially since mothers and grandmothers kept emailing me to ask about a sequel. Suddenly, I was inspired to go back to it before another generation outgrew the book.

This was one of the strangest, most rewarding, projects I’ve ever undertaken as I had such a unique collaborator–my teenage self. Once I got going, writing in the voices of the McKendrick boys felt totally natural to me. The twenty-five year wall disappeared and it was as if no time had passed. Over the next six months, I rewrote every single word. I’m grateful to my teenage self though, as she provided the basic outline. My adult self fleshed it out and improved the writing. I have to admit, it was fun giving the boys cell phones and showing them texting and on social media.

It was also interesting as my original “outline” was penned by a teenager, but when I was rewriting it, I had a parent’s perspective. Part of Face-Off‘s charm is that it was written by a teen for teens. With Offsides, it was neat to have my teenage self collaborate with my adult self and to blend both perspectives. I am also grateful to the organization College Hockey, Inc. for answering my questions about junior hockey and Division 1 scholarships.

Here is the blurb for the sequel. Twin hockey stars Brad and T.J. have finally resolved their differences and forged a friendship on and off the ice. What should have been the best year ever takes a nasty hit when the boys’ parents announce their divorce, and Brad makes a mistake that could impact his game eligibility. Meanwhile, T.J. faces off against their father, who opposes his decision to delay college and pursue junior hockey.

Adding to the tension are a rebellious kid brother, girlfriend trouble, and recruiting pressure. The turmoil threatens to drive the twins apart just when they need to work together the most. With a championship title and their futures at stake, T.J. and Brad must fight to keep from going offsides.

The book is available in paperback, e-book, and audiobook formats. I’m excited as the Audible audiobook edition came out last week, and in a neat twist of fate, the Boston Bruins are going to be facing the St. Louis Blues in the Stanley Cup Finals next week. How nice that the B’s inspired me to write Face-Off, and that Boston Bruins hockey is still going strong.

Offsides YA Sports Audiobook Perfect Road Trip Entertainment for Teens

Offsides YA Sports Audiobook Perfect Road Trip Entertainment for Teens

Hockey Rivals Books

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Hockey Rivals

Do you need some road trip entertainment for teens and tweens this summer? Offsides (Hockey Rivals Book 2) is now available as an Audible audiobook. Maxwell Glick, who narrated Face-Off (Hockey Rivals Book 1) is back as the voice of the McKendrick brothers in this explosive sequel, an action-packed hockey novel for young adults.

The release of the audiobook edition is extremely exciting to me as Offsides was published 26 years after the original publication of Face-Off. The print and e-book editions came out late last year, and Maxwell and I began working on the Audible edition in March. What a fascinating experience this was for me, revisiting characters I created at sixteen years old and hearing my scenes performed by a talented narrator.  I had such fun bringing Brad and T.J. into the present with cell phones, texting, and social media, and even more fun listening to Maxwell’s performance.

I think teens and tweens, especially sports fans, will love listening to the audiobook on car trips or plane rides. Here is a blurb:

Twin hockey stars T.J. and Brad have finally resolved their differences and forged a friendship on and off the ice. Now high school seniors, they focus on landing a commitment to a D1 school.

What should have been the best year ever takes a nasty hit when the boys’ parents announce their divorce, and Brad makes a mistake that could impact his game eligibility. Meanwhile, T.J. faces off against their father, who opposes his decision to delay college and pursue junior hockey.

Adding to the tension are a rebellious kid brother, girlfriend trouble, and recruiting pressure. The turmoil threatens to drive the twins apart just when they need to work together the most. With a championship title and their futures at stake, T.J. and Brad must fight to keep from going offsides. 

You can listen to clips of the Face-Off and Offsides audiobooks below.  If you start a free trial with Audible, you can get an audiobook for free!

Buy Face-Off on Audible

Buy Offsides on Audible

Conclusion

Here is a recent review from Ariesgrl Book Reviews“I read the first book in the series, several years ago and I loved it. I love hockey and I was thrilled to discover a middle grade book. With this sequel, I learned a lot about Junior league and the steps required to catch the eyes of colleges and the NHL. I hope the author continues to develop the series, as I am sure fans are going to crave more McKendrick hockey.”

I hope fans will crave more also as I have an idea for a third book.

Here is a post on why it took me 26 years to publish the sequel and stay tuned for an interview with narrator Maxwell Glick.

Video On Interesting Books To Read – Okay, They’re Mine!

Video On Interesting Books To Read – Okay, They’re Mine!

Hockey Rivals Books

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I just wanted to share the above introduction video that I posted on YouTube on interesting books to read. Okay, I admit, I wrote them! I write in several genres, so my catalog offers books to read for many tastes and ages. I’d be honored if you would check them out and let me know whether you agree that they are interesting books to read. Authors love connecting with readers!

In the video, I talk briefly about my Hockey Rivals books, Storybook Valley chick lit series, mystery novels, young adult paranormal thriller, and children’s picture books. Pretty diverse, huh? I also briefly discuss my freelance editing service and online teaching.

Obviously, you can learn more about the Hockey Rivals books here on the Hockey Rivals Books website. You can find out more about my other titles over at www.stacyjuba.com.

Be sure to visit my YouTube channel, Writer Tips & Book Chats With Stacy Juba, and say hello. Hope you find some good books to read both in this video and in my upcoming ones.

Hockey Videos On YouTube Geared Toward Hockey Families

Hockey Videos On YouTube Geared Toward Hockey Families

Hockey Rivals Books

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Buy Face-Off Now

Hockey Rivals

I’m excited to share that I’ve been working on the first hockey videos for my new YouTube channel.

Who would’ve thought that I’d be putting hockey videos on YouTube? As an introvert, I never thought I was the YouTuber type. I hope you’ll check out my channel, Writer Tips & Book Chats With Stacy Juba. I’ll be talking more about my books, recommending other authors’ books, and sharing writing tips and tutorials. Oh yes, and I will be doing some videos of interest to hockey families. 

I must admit, all of the technology is intimidating. I’m learning how to use screencasting software, a Yeti microphone, a webcam, and how to edit video and audio. I hope you’ll subscribe and cheer me on as I learn what the heck I’m doing.

In my first hockey video on YouTube which I embedded above, I give a tour of the Hockey Rivals Books website. Obviously if you’re reading this, then you discovered the website. I’m glad you’re here, as I created the website to help readers find my Hockey Rivals books for middle grade and high school kids.

To date, the series includes Face-Off, which was published when I was a teenager, and Offsides, published over 25 years later. There’s an interesting story behind that, which I’ll share in a couple of upcoming videos. But for now, let me tell you more about why I created this hockey website and blog.

My original website, www.stacyjuba.com, highlights all of my books across different genres and age groups. I’ve written adult mystery novels, I write the Storybook Valley chick lit series, I’ve published a young adult paranormal thriller, and I’ve even published a children’s book about the U.S. flag code. I felt, however, as if my hockey books were getting lost in the shuffle. I know there is an audience for the books, as I’m grateful to see some sales every day, but I don’t think many people were finding them through my website.

I wanted to make my hockey books easier for readers to find and to connect with more hockey families and organizations, so that’s why I created the Hockey Rivals site. 

Face-Off is about twin brothers Brad and T.J. McKendrick, who don’t get along and pretty much avoid each other until T.J. switches schools. They wind up playing on the same high school hockey team, which does not go well, at least not at first. The story also delves into their family life, which includes troubled younger brothers and parents who may be separating.

You’ll notice that I’ve sprinkled snippets from some of my favorite reviews and fan letters throughout the site.  I love this one: “I read your book, Face-Off, and it was one of the best books I’ve ever read. You write some of the best books I’ve read in my life.” 

Offsides takes place during the boys’ senior year. They’re both chasing a D-1 scholarship and there’s a lot of tension going on. T.J.’s father doesn’t want him to delay college to play junior, Brad screws up and does something that could affect his game eligibility, and their parents are divorcing. Plus, both of the twins are having girl trouble. 

I hope you enjoy the excerpts of the books and the Audible sample of Face-Off that you’ll find on the site. Click on the book titles above, and the links will take you to the samples.

The About Stacy page tells more about me and explains why the book covers say Stacy Drumtra-Juba even though it was easier to list them with the retailers under Stacy Juba. In a nutshell, I wrote the first book when I was sixteen-year-old Stacy Drumtra, and now I write under my married name, Stacy Juba. You can see a picture of me as a teenager at my first book signing, and a more recent picture. Ahem, I’m a bit blonder now…

I’m very excited about the blog component of the website, which will feature posts about hockey books for tweens and tweens, sports books for teens and tweens, hockey movies, hockey gifts, hockey videos, and resources of interest to hockey families. I’m also seeking guest bloggers! If you want to review a book or product that would be of interest to hockey families, or if you want to write something about your organization, then be sure to get in touch with me. I’d also love to have some book reviews submitted about hockey or sports books, especially books geared toward kids or hockey families. Reviews from students are welcome. Feel free to email me through my Contact page.

Speaking of my Contact page, even if you’re not interested in guest blogging, drop me a line and say hello. If you’d like, I can also send you an email with a personalized note to glue into the book. I’ve corresponded with a lot of moms and grandmothers that have given the books as gifts and appreciate the bonus of adding a personal inscription.

If you want to order several copies of the books, maybe for a hockey team, then you can check out my Bulk Offer page for a special offer.

Conclusion

I hope you enjoy my hockey videos on YouTube! I’d love it if you could subscribe on YouTube, like the video, and leave me a comment. Do you have any ideas for blog posts or videos that would be of interest to hockey families?

 

Interested in Guest Blogging?

Are you interested in contributing a guest post of interest to hockey fans? Perhaps a review of a middle grade or young adult sports book, a hockey product review, an article about your non-profit hockey organization, or advice for hockey families?

I'd love to hear your ideas. Fill out the below form, and I will get back to you as soon as I can.

Contact Stacy

Welcome to the Hockey Rivals Books Blog

Welcome to the Hockey Rivals Books Blog

Hockey Rivals Books

Score A Goal For Reading
Buy Face-Off Now

Hockey Rivals

Welcome!

I’m super-excited to be launching a website showcasing my Hockey Rivals novels for young adults. I wrote the first one, Face-Off, when I was a teenager and published the second one, Offsides, 26 years later. As it turns out, even 26 years later, there aren’t a lot of YA novels about ice hockey, and Face-Off’s popularity has only increased with time.

I’m also thrilled to be launching a blog that will showcase other sports novels and posts of interest to hockey families. I’m accepting guest posts, so if you have an idea, feel free to message me through my contact page.

Stay tuned for more posts!

 

 

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