My Love/Hate Relationship with Audiobooks

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Until recently, I only read physical books or ebooks. The few times I’d attempted to listen to audiobooks were disastrous, and within a few chapters I’d give up on it entirely.

It baffled me a bit – after all, I love podcasts and audiobooks aren’t that different. For whatever reason, however, I found that I was unable to focus on the story I was listening to and I would quickly get bored and go pick up a physical book.

In 2018, I made a goal of getting through at least one full audiobook. It’s definitely a very modest goal, but one that was difficult for me. To give myself a higher chance of success, I chose to listen to one of my favorite middle-grade books, Neil Gaiman’s The Graveyard Book, narrated by Gaiman himself.

Not only did I finish listening to it, but I found that I had enjoyed it! I was proud of myself for actually finishing an audiobook, and decided that I wanted to give it another go.

Obtaining audiobooks was a bit tricky at first. I signed up for a free trial of Audible, which is how I listened to The Graveyard Book, but I didn’t want to pay $15 a month for one book. While watching booktube videos about great audiobooks, I kept hearing about Scribd, which is significantly cheaper and allows you to listen to however many audiobooks you want to each month.

Through Scribd, I ended up listening to quite a few audiobooks: The 5th Wave by Rick Yancey, The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas,  The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue by Mackenzi Lee, among a few others.

What I started to realize is that the reason I had never enjoyed audiobooks is that I just hadn’t found the right ones yet. The narrator plays a huge role for me in my enjoyment and understanding of an audiobook. When I find a narrator I love, I end up having fun with the experience.

I’m looking forward to listening to a ton of audiobooks in the future. Next up will be Sadie by Courtney Summers.

If you have any recommendations for great audiobooks that I should listen to, please let me know in the comments! I would love some suggestions!

Author: Penny Wright

Absolutely bookish.

6 thoughts

  1. For me it has to be a specific kind of story for audio. Like, i can’t listen to the ones that have too many characters for example cuz i just lose the plot 😀
    If it’s a simple story with few characters, i do enjoy it.

    I also listened to Illuminae while reading cuz the full cast + sound effects where really nice to go with the book.

    I also got Sadie on audio. I think i will read it too while i listen, just so i can pay more attention.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I can definitely understand how too many characters could be confusing for an audiobook. Your comment made me think of one of the books I’m currently reading by Brandon Sanderson, and there’s aboslutely no way I would be able to keep track of everything by listening to it.

      I’ll have to look for Illuminae! I’ve heard good things about the series.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I just started listening to audiobooks in 2018, and I totally agree with the narrator; I could barely get through three hours of “Eragon” because the narrator was absolutely horrible.

    However, I loved “The Hunger Games” trilogy partially because of the narrator (Carolyn McCormick). I also enjoyed “The Diviners” because of the narrator (January LaVoy). I haven’t listened to it yet, but I heard “Six of Crows” was awesome, too: it has a full cast!

    Liked by 1 person

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