In past reviews, I’ve mentioned that I do most of my non-picture book reading with audiobooks. I’ve been a fan of audiobooks for a long time, but they’re especially important to me now that I’m a parent. First, let me explain what an audiobook is, in case you’re just joining this awesome party, and then we’ll get into why you should give them a shot. At the end, catch a promo for one of our favorite audiobook services. If you use it, we get paid, and that helps keep Busy Nest News going. Thanks!
What's an audiobook?
Audiobooks are actual print books that are read in a studio and recorded for others’ listening pleasure. Many people call them by the format in which they first encountered listening to books, such as:
Books on tape. Books on CD. MP3 books.
These are all formats for the recording, but they all fall under the broader heading of audiobooks. I choose to use this broader term, because for our purposes it is the most precise. I encourage you to use this term, as well, if you ask for a recorded book at the library or as a gift. If you use “book on tape,” the person doing the fulfilling might think you’re married to that format, and tell you it isn’t available, when it might be available on a disc, or as a digital download instead. Or your friend might gift you a box of tapes, when you don't even own a cassette player.
Why would I want an Audiobook?
Do you do a lot of driving or commuting? Do you lift weights or run regularly? Do you fold laundry? Do you cook? How about washing dishes? With an audiobook, these are all times you could spend reading. Of course, they are all situations where reading a print book or ebook would range from difficult to impossible to dangerous. But with an audiobook, they suddenly become twice as productive, and even more enjoyable. *Note: choose your book with care if you plan on listening to it while driving. Beware anything too dry or anything that takes too much focus away from the task of driving.*
Listening to an audiobook allows you to benefit from the knowledge or pleasure the book has to impart, while leaving your hands and eyes free to do other things. My husband works long hours and is often away for training or deployments. That leaves me to take care of Monkey without an extra set of hands. So despite my love of reading, it has become very difficult to find time to sit and hold a book in my hands and read it cover to cover. Thanks to audiobooks, I read a parenting book every month, plus another non-fiction book on a topic that interests me, and a humorous or mysterious novel, too. That’s right. I read around three books a month, while I’m at the gym, or washing dishes, or making dinner, or folding laundry, or walking the dog, or driving to the grocery store.
You can do it, too. Like I said, audiobooks come in many formats. These days, I mostly download them directly to my phone, but sometimes I check out discs, too. The very busy husband I mentioned has to read several books a year for his professional development, and he uses audiobooks to get that done. Now that he can read while exercising or commuting, he reads everything he’s supposed to and more.
I would be remiss if I did not mention this other use for audiobooks. People who are visually impaired can benefit from them greatly. Depending on where you live, books in braille or large print can be hard to come by, if you can read them at all. Likewise, people struggling with dyslexia can enjoy books at any reading level when they’re in audiobook form. Finally, you can use them to push your beginning reader to aspire to a more difficult level.
Get to it!
This year, I suggest maximizing your reading time by getting into audiobooks. Your life will be enhanced so much.
When every stoplight, every lap on the track, and every basket of clothes gets you through another chapter, think of the potential for growth - as parents, as readers, as professionals! Even as a leisure activity, audiobooks are a game changer!
Ariel’s Two Cents: I could not agree more! If audiobooks aren’t a part of your life, you should figure out how you can benefit from them. Need to do more professional development? Audiobooks. Want to read more parenting books? Audiobooks! Want to relax? Maybe find a little humor in the everyday dolldrums? Listen to a comedian read their book! Audiobooks to the rescue again. I truly believe everyone with hearing can benefit from audiobooks.
I have used Audible on and off for the past 5 years. I go through phases - sometimes I read exclusively audiobooks, like when Bean was a newborn. Sometimes I read exclusively physical books - my current phase. Sometimes my Kindle is my floating fifth limb. When I am in an audiobooks phase of life, I use Audible. As someone who has canceled and resubscribed multiple times, Amazon makes the process as painless as possible. Yes, you still need to call up, but in my experience you are done within 10 minutes. If you do decide to try Audible and the subscription isn’t for you, make sure to use your free book tokens up before canceling. The books are yours to keep, but the tokens disappear upon cancellation. But you know who told me that? The Amazon customer service representative! I love Amazon customer service.
If you're interested in trying Audible, check out our link below. If you use this link to try out Audible, we get paid by Amazon, and that helps keeps Busy Nest News running. Thanks!
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Do you love audiobooks? Is there a book or series we must try? If you haven't tried audiobooks yet, why not? We would love to hear your thoughts in the comments!
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Ariel and Brianna are friends who met while working in a library. Now they collaborate to develop life-enhancing book club experiences.
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