Until recently, I have not been a big fan of audiobooks. Part of the joy of reading, for me, is being able to choose the pace. If a book is action packed, I’m more likely to tear through it, reading as fast as possible (The Hunger Games, for example). If a book has a slower plot, and is lyrically written, I tend to read slowly. I take breaks and think about word choice and sentence structure. I might even flip back to a previous passage. I found it difficult to rewind an audiobook to find one line that I hadn’t heard. I also tend to space out while listening and miss huge chunks of the plot.
Katniss Everdeen changed all that. When I finished reading The Hunger Games, I NEEDED to read the next book in the series. Unfortunately, the print copy of Catching Fire was out, but the audio was available. I decided to give it a try. Although listening to an audiobook took some getting used to (the narrator’s voice didn’t jive exactly with how I had pictured the main character’s voice) I noticed the benefits of listening right away. I put in the first disc and put the dishes away. I swept the floor and folded laundry. When all the housework was done, I had time to play with Katniss (our new kitten). By the way, there will be pictures of her coming soon!!!
I then moved on to Delirium by Lauren Oliver. This book got me through the worst flu/cold/virus I have ever had. My next audio pick is Pandemonium (the sequel to Delirium) and I’m sure it will entertain me while I go on a mini-road trip this weekend.
Many of our child and tween patrons love listening to books on CD during long car rides or while doing chores around the house. Following along to an audiobook while reading can be a good way for ESL students to work on pronunciation.
While I still prefer to read books, I’m glad that I have found a place for audiobooks in my life. I prefer to listen to fast-paced stories that are narrated in first-person. Do you enjoy audiobooks? Feel free to leave a recommendation in the comments.