Audiobooks have changed my life. They have made things that would be a chore, into an opportunity to read.
My love affair with audiobooks started about eight years ago, from the early days of downloading them on a dial up connection, to now where I get two books a month from Audible, my feelings for them haven’t changed. Any time I am walking, cooking, cleaning or just going about the house, you can be sure I have an earbud in and that I’m listening to an audiobook on my iPhone. I’d estimate that in the last eight years, I’ve listened to more than two hundred days of audio. That includes listening to the whole 461 hour and 25 minutes Wheel of Time series three times. Though quite a bit of that was listening at double speed. Don’t judge.
There’s also something special about listening to the author read their own work. No one can read a Bill Bryson book, like Bill Bryson. Stephen Fry reading his autobiography is likewise a wonderful experience. You can hear the emotion in his voice as he recounts his bipolar episodes. Even when the author does not read the audiobook, there’s still a wonderful, childlike experience of being read to.
Some books are better read than listened to. That is undeniable. Something like The Signal and The Noise is much to involved and mathematical to make good listening. A Malcolm Gladwell book on the other hand, is absolutely perfect. The genres I have found work best are any non-literary fiction, narrative non-fiction, like autobiographies and Bill Bryson books, business books, and popular science books. I will do another post on some of my favourite books/authors/narrators in a few days.
Until then, you can get a free audiobook by signing up for a free 30 day trial with Audible. Do yourself a favour, and pick something up.