My original thought on audiobooks was that it could not truly be considered “reading” if there was no physical book in my hands. After all, part of the excitement was turning the page in anticipation. I can think of several books that kept me eagerly turning pages all night long to get to the next page, the next chapter, the completion of the story. How could an audiobook create that same experience?
I had gone to the library in search of my next read, and happened to see a cart of new books, including some audiobooks, and decided to check it out. The one that caught my eye that day was 12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos by Jordan B. Peterson. Always looking for ways to expand my horizons, I decided to give it a try.
My commute to work was 40 – 45 minutes one way, every day. The trip was boring, but my audiobook was going to liven up the drive as well as stimulate my brain. (By the way, I highly recommend the book. After listening to the audio version I purchased the e-book for future reference.) Once that experience ended, what next?
Our local library has a nice collection of books on CD, all arranged alphabetically by the author’s last name. No particular genre was calling to me, so I simply went to the As and selected The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams, which had been recommended to me years prior. The book itself was entertaining, and more so because it was read by Stephen Fry. Who wouldn’t love to listen to anything read by Stephen Fry?
Next in line was Jeffrey Archer’s “Clifton Chronicles” and afterward M. C. Beaton’s Agatha Raisin series. The library did not have the entire collection on CD, so I checked out the print version of the first book, then the second on CD. I so enjoyed listening to the British narrators that finishing the series (all 23 titles at the time!) was a disappointment. I confess it was the accent that had me hooked and made me wish there were many more in the series!
The whole audiobook concept is still new enough to me that foreign language book “listening” hasn’t happened yet, although I would love to find some good “listens.”
Have you tried audiobooks? In English or any other languages? Do you have a particular genre that you like to listen to, or don’t like to listen to but would rather read in print?