Tuesday, 6 November 2012

Audiobooks schmaudiobooks


Every now and then a person has to hold their hands up and say, 'I was WRONG, okay?'

Back in 2010 I took part in a discussion on the brilliant books website Vulpe Libres on audiobooks.

Author Rosy Thornton talked about how much she loved a good talking book, and I put forward the counter argument, about how audiobooks just didn't work for me. And they didn't.

The thing is, I've changed my mind. I susbscribed to Audible.com anyway, because my youngest son liked to stave off car sickness by listening to books on long car journeys. About eight months ago, found I'd built up some credits that I needed to use up.

Grudgingly, I downloaded a book: The Secrets Between Us by Louise Douglas.

And you know what? I decided I liked the experience after all. It's a great book for a start, but listening to it also turned out to be the perfect thing to make household chores a bit more bearable. 

Since then I've listened to many good audiobooks and am now just as addicted as Rosy.

Here are the pick of the books I've enjoyed most over these months (I won't mention the duds...that's a whole new post)

Me Before You by Jojo Moyes 

Please Don't Stop the Music by Jane Lovering

Private Peaceful by Michael Morpurgo

My Dear I Wanted to Tell You by Louisa Young

The Casual Vacancy by JK Rowling

So if you've never been tempted by audiobooks, it's worth giving it a go. 

But be warned...you may start making excuses to hide from the family to listen to a little more (as with The Casual Vacancy, read by the wonderful Tom Hollander) or, as genuinely happened today, fighting tears in a queue in Sainsburys (listening to the end of Private Peaceful).


7 comments:

Rosy Thornton said...

Yay - glad you're convinced, Caroline! We're just finishing listening to Simon Mawer's 'The Girl Who Fell From the Sky' on the daily commute (partner's turn to choose, but it's a good story and well written). My turn next - ooooh, what shall I choose?

Caroline Green said...

Rosy, do you do it through Audible? Do you manage to keep it to one a month as per membership plan? I fail miserably...

Thrifty Gal said...

I must admit i've never liked them! I can't bear being talked at like that - I never listen to radio either.... Which is a shame since so many great actors read them. Maybe I shpuld try again...

Caroline Green said...

I always liked podcasts but found audiobooks too slow. But I'm glad I gave them another go. I always used to think someone needed to invent a device you could read while walking (safely) and I guess this is the closest you can get!

Rosy Thornton said...

I just buy them, Caroline. Though must admit unabridged audiobooks are expensive - and I refuse to listen to abridged books! Luckily it takes us ages to get through each one, so the bill isn't too astronomical! Public libraries generally have a good stock of unabridged audiobooks, though - as they do with large print, and for (I take it) the same reasons, of serving the blind and partially sighted.

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Derek said...

I've not really tried audio books, other than a giveaway Alice in Wonderland read by Alan Bennett. Trouble is, his voice was so relaxing I had to turn it off as it was dulling my concentration. I like the idea of audiobooks though - because driving in a car is my absolute favourite place to listen to radio dramas.