The Independent's Christina Hardyment won the award for Best Media Coverage
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TALKIE OF the Year at this year's Talkies, the Oscar ceremony of the audiobook world, was Alan Bennett's Talking Heads 2 (BBC, pounds 8.99, CD pounds 14.99). "Almost better without the visuals" was the opinion of the judges. Among the invisible talkers was Thora Hird, who was at the ceremony. Space forbids a complete list (which you can read in this week's Radio Times), but here are my own favourites: Stephen Fry reading J K Rowling's Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone (Cover to Cover, unabridged pounds 19.99); Tales from Ovid (Faber/Penguin, pounds 8.99), translated and read by Ted Hughes; Michael Palin reading his own Full Circle (Chivers, unabridged, pounds 16.99); Timothy West reading Trollope's The Way We Live Now (Cover to Cover, pounds 79.99); Robert Powell reading The History of Opera (Naxos, pounds 11.99, CD pounds 16.99), written by Richard Fawkes; Stephen Baxter's Voyage (BBC, pounds 8.99), engineered by Dirk Meggs, the Stephen Spielberg of the audioworld; Kingsley's The Water Babies (BBC, pounds 8.99), directed by Janet Whitaker. The Performer of the Year award went to Andrew Sachs.