Jim Santos Books

Author, Traveler, and Voice Over Artist

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There are some old TV commercials for Reeses' Peanut Butter Cups that are variations on a basic theme. One person is eating peanut butter, another is eating chocolate. Through a lucky mishap, they stumble into each other and one exclaims,

 "Hey, you got chocolate on my peanut butter!"
 The other retorts with "You got peanut butter on my chocolate!"

Now in today's world this would have escalated quickly into cries of oppression and cancel culture, possibly leading to a full scale riot and a Tucker Carlson special on how America is being destroyed by forced integration of snack foods. 

But in those halcyon days when TV only had four stations (plus a few fuzzy ones on UHF) and you changed channels with a pair of pliers, it results in the happy mutual discovery of "two great tastes that go great together!".

As Faithful Reader knows, in addition to having several books and hundreds of articles in circulation, I also have been doing some voice over work. A few weeks ago, I was recording an audition for narration of an audiobook when it suddenly dawned on me that maybe I should see what I need to do to record some of my own written words for release. After all, I've got all of this recording equipment sitting around, right?

I did a little checking into the market, and was surprised to see that the audiobook business is expected to reach $1.3 billion dollars by the end of 2021, with growth of at least 25% per year predicted for the next 5 years.

So, as Benjy Mouse from the Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy might say - yes, the purity of the written word, and yes, my books are like my children - but if it comes to a choice between the sanctity of art or taking the money and running, I for one could do with the exercise.

With that in mind, I created an account on ACX, and have been busily recording and submitting audiobooks.

So far I've submitted two books and four short stories for approval and release. Here is the list of currently available titles that can be found on Amazon, iTunes, and Audible - or by just clicking on the links below.

  • Living Abroad: Challenging the Myths of Expat Life - Living Abroad is a useful, honest, laugh-out-loud funny guide for anyone who’s considering a move from the United States to a new country. The author's years of experience both as an expatriate and as a writer make for a book that is truthful, realistic, funny, and sensitive. Although good numbers are hard to calculate, reliable sources estimate that more than three million Americans each year decide to try living in another country. Most of them are not making a political statement; some move abroad for economic reasons, some to start a new life or “re-invent” themselves, and some are just seeking new experiences. In the wake of COVID-19 and this nation's contentious politics, that number is likely to increase. With over 200 published articles in the international travel/retirement field, three books about travel, a dozen presentations at international retirement conferences on his resumé, and six years living in Ecuador, the author is uniquely qualified to bring you an unvarnished look at the challenges, pitfalls, and possible rewards of expat life. This is not a how-to book, or even a why-to. Instead it is an honest look at some of the questions and myths about living overseas, using entertaining and informative real-life examples to illustrate what is true and what is not so true. The goal is to provide the listener with the good and the bad - not to persuade you to become an expat or not - but to provide enough insight to decide what might be best for you. (4hrs 45min)
  • Hiking the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu (Travels with Jim and Rita Series) - Your favorite surrogate travelers, Jim and Rita, are tackling their biggest challenge yet - hiking the 26-mile Inca Trail to that wonder of the ancient world, Machu Picchu. As both are in their 60s, they are never quite sure if they will succeed. Follow along in "real time" in this day-by-day account of their experiences on this famous trail and destination. If you've ever considered the hike yourself or just wonder what it would be like for "regular people", not professional hikers, you will enjoy this story.  Special Feature: PDF download of color photos available after purchase of audiobook! (1hr, 33 min)
  • NOTE: This story is an expanded excerpt from An Uphill Climb: Survivor's Guilt and the Inca Trail. This story deals only with the hike itself, and not any of the personal issues addressed in sometimes painful detail in An Uphill Climb
  • First Tango in Buenos Aires (Travels with Jim and Rita Series) - Jim and Rita are off again, this time on a whirlwind weekend in the Paris of South America, Buenos Aires, Argentina. Join them on self-guided walking tours of the city, an evening at a Tango Club, and even a brush with scammers. Learn about the strange journey of Evita Perón's corpse and more. Descriptions put you right there, in this vibrant and diverse city on the Rio de la Plata! PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying PDF will be available in your Audible Library along with the audio. (36 minutes)
  • The Body Remembers: A Baseball Story (Short Takes! Series) - What happens when a 40-year-old body tries to relive the days of sandlot baseball? A short story (10 minutes) of how the body and its learned reflexes can get you into trouble.
  • Love Never Dies (Short Takes! Series) - A touching look at the joys and the sorrows that come with pet ownership. See how a white rabbit won at a carnival affects the lives of people and even animals around her, and decide if the lessons of loss at a beloved pet's passing are worth the lessons of love they can bring. Short story (10 minutes)
  • Foolish Mortals! (Short Takes! Series) - Get a glimpse into the non-politically correct tech support bullpen of the US Senate, and enjoy the perfect turnabout play on an attempted prank! Well, almost perfect. (8 minutes)
  • My Struggles with Stage Fright (Short Takes! Series) - Do you have nightmares about speaking in front of a large group of people? If so, you are not alone. Although he has been a radio DJ, played in bands, been on local TV, and gave speeches most of his adult life, author Jim Santos still struggles with stage fright. Enjoy this amusing tale of one of the more traumatic experiences in the public eye - so far, anyway! (12 minutes)

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