What I really love about audiobooks

Shine Shine Shine


They can be educational.

They can be entertaining.

The best ones are both.

They make running errands something to actually look forward to.

They make driving in D.C.-area traffic so much less of a nuisance.

At a point when “free time” is something of a misnomer, they’re keeping me immersed in books. And saving my books read list from ruin.

They take me back to elementary school — to the pure, simple, endless days when I looked forward to nothing more than having someone read to me. My parents, grandparents, a teacher . . . I could listen to stories all day. I did listen to stories all day — even after I could read them myself.

They push me out of my reading comfort zone. I grab audiobooks that sound interesting simply because I’m interested in them, and I’ve often gravitated toward non-fiction. The stories I’ve enjoyed are not ones I would have been likely to choose in print.

They’re . . . fun. They make me happy. They breathe life into “boring” days. They matter.


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21 thoughts on “What I really love about audiobooks

  1. Yes! All of the above. And they even make boring tasks like cleaning the house more bearable. And Shine Shine Shine was an especially entertaining audio. I’ve become dependent on audio, it makes up half my reading now.

  2. Many years ago I delivered pizzas in a relatively rural area, which meant I spent a lot of time just driving around back country roads with hot steaming pizzas in my passenger seat. My favorite thing to listen to while doing that was audio-books and also a set of old sci-fi radio serials I had on tape. (Including the infamous 1939 Orson Wells War of the Worlds broadcast) Those tapes made my shifts fly by so fast, and I actually looked forward to going to work!

  3. This is so perfect. I always listen to audiobooks in the car, it makes driving a thousand times better. Sometimes I’ll even go the long way home to get more of the book :)

  4. I actually look for things to do around the house just so I can keep listening. I can remember a time when I thought I really couldn’t “do” a book in audio – I’m so glad I stuck with them because having a good audiobook on the go is a regular part of my life now.

  5. Dito on all your reasons for loving audiobooks! I was the first child in my family and although I read to my sisters, my mom never read to me. She was an immigrant from Italy and children’s books in Italian were expensive and hard to find forty years ago.

  6. Absolutely agree with this, from start to finish! I can’t imagine not having an audiobook ready for my listening on my iphone; I have no idea how I resisted so long to them, but I definitely can’t live without them.
    It’s also interesting to me how I don’t listen exactly to the same things I would read in print. I’m glad to hear I’m not the only one who noticed something like this!

  7. I can completely relate — I got hooked on audio books when I was a DC commuter. They transformed commuting into something to look forward to and I would at times take a detour to prolong a listen and I was always annoyed by phone calls that would interrupt my reverie.

    I don’t commute as much in NC, but I still listen and I’ve got my son hooked on them for roadtrips, which I think is a great alternative to video games and movies.

  8. Yes! Audio books are the bomb. They make the commute to work so much more enjoyable. And they have such a horrible stigma… like, only old people or the blind can listen to them. Just not true… or fair. :P

    Jonathan
    http://www.ireadabookonce.com

  9. totally agree! I can listen to audiobooks that I would never be able to just sit through and read without getting antsy or not having the time for it, but they make standing in traffic in DC much more bearable!

  10. I keep telling myself I am going to grab more audiobooks but I never end up doing it. The only time I listen to them is on long car trips. Of course, when I moved to Denver, I assumed I’d be commuting more than I am and had *hoped to listen to more! Maybe when I start heading into the city three days a week starting in September I will start grabbing them more!

  11. I started listening to audiobooks only this year. (I listened to them briefly a couple of years ago and that didn’t go too well.) They certainly make me look forward to doing errands too!

  12. It’s so true! I also just started listening to audiobooks and I love that they can make me look forward to my drive to work :) Plus, guilt free reading time – I’m not going to be doing anything else while I drive!

  13. The first 1/2 of this post reads like free verse! I happily imagined myself watching you at a poetry slam. :-) I agree with all you points. Audiobooks make dishes bearable and traffic exciting, they make sure I read books I might never have made it through otherwise because no matter the pace of the action, the pace of the audio is exactly the same. I HEART audiobooks!

  14. Damn right! Everything you said was right on, audiobooks make the stories more interesting and give it life. They remind me of a blind person seeing, or should I say hearing, a movie.

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