Audio Books- Yay or Nay?

audio books yay or nay

Oh my.. I have a bit of a confession. A small secret. A thing that I rarely tell anyone.

I really don’t care for audio books.


Wait.. Maybe I should rephrase… I have not cared for the audio books I’ve tried in the past. The characters do not sound right. I can’t get involved in the story, sucked in like normal. I feel like a fish out of water, like a college party night without alcohol. I feel yuck.

Here’s the thing: When I read a book- the character has a voice, the voice that I give them in my head. And, no disrespect to audio books- but the voice I give the character sounds better than the audio version. Now granted, there are times that I may not know what the characters are supposed to sound like- but I prefer the voice I give them.

But I keep reading tweets and reviews fromΒ  people talking about audio books & I have to say that I’m intrigued at times. Not enough to pay the full price for the audio. Not enough to get an Audible subscription. But…. somewhat. And I feel that sometimes I’m missing out.

Enter Gone Girl. 2012, I bought Gone Girl on Kindle (and then 1 day bought it on sale in hardcover because I freaking loved that book). Buying it on Kindle gave me a much lower price for the Audible version. Still I resisted. I mean how many ways can you own Gone Girl (even though it was a fan-freaking-tastic book)? I finally gave in a few weeks ago. I bought the audible version for 4.99. And I’m enjoying the heck out of it. Do I love it because I already love the book? Maybe. Do I love it because I love the voice of Amy- a character I was never quite sure I was giving an adequate voice to? Perhaps. Is the audio just that good? Possible.

Now am I about to jump on the audio bandwagon? Not quite yet. One time does not make a fan for life. But, I am more intrigued. And open to giving them another fair shake.


So tell me- are you an audio fan or not? And if you are- what are some of the “must try” books in your opinion?



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30 thoughts on “Audio Books- Yay or Nay?

  1. I have listened to a few audible books, but never really gotten into them either. Maybe I haven’t been in the right situation, or the right book… but they’re just so slow.

    • I completely understand. I’ve tried before and just could not get into them. I do like Gone Girl (but I also know what is happening, so I’m able to enjoy and listen without worrying about “missing something”)

  2. Hey, T! You already know my little secret concerning audio books. πŸ™‚ I want to start with a good one, so I am hoping you get some great suggestions for “must try” audio books!

  3. Suzy says:

    I feel exactly the same as you. I don’t like audio books. When I read a book, I have a picture of the character in my head and what they sound like. For audio books where a celebrity or a well known person is reading it, I know all I will picture the entire time is that person, not the character. And, if I listen to audio books, my mind wanders. What is the point?

    • YES! My mind does wander a bit and I worry that I’ll miss out on critical info. Again, not an issue with Gone Girl ( I’ve read it!) But still- I get your view point πŸ™‚

      I, personally, still like the idea of sitting with my book and reading. But that is just me πŸ™‚

  4. I’ve had a hard time with audio books, as well. I tried a few from the library either because 1) they can be easier to check out if they book is popular than the physical book (because no one really likes audio books?) or 2) I can listen to them while exercising, walking to work, etc.

    I’ve had huge problems with some of the narrators, though. Some audio books I just stopped. Others I suffered through. I just don’t like the way a lot of people read, I guess. (In my head, though, I think characters have more of a monotone than actual voices. Oops.) I suppose it’s all hit or miss and I have to just keep trying.

  5. lorispielman says:

    Hi T! I know what you’re saying about wanting to give the characters the voice YOU choose. So much depends on the narrator. One audiobook I absolutely loved was Kathryn Stockett’s THE HELP. Great voices, with several different narrators. But then again, is there any version of that book that isn’t genius?!

    • That’s so funny- the audio lovers I know in real life just told me to listen to The Help!

      I would never want to read for an audio- but I like to think the voices I choose to give the characters are pretty darn good πŸ˜‰

  6. I didn’t think I would enjoy audio books as much as I do. My favorites are Sissy Spacek’s Narration of To Kill a Mockingbird, Little Women and Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close and One Year to an Organized Life. . I enjoy listening to classics and nonfiction on audio it seems. But I haven’t been listening lately and need to fix that. I also only listen to ones I can borrow from library and download to my phone. I borrowed Bossypants by Tina Fey, hoping I like the audio better because I couldn’t get through the paper book. Hoping its funnier listening to her narration.

  7. GinaD says:

    I LOVE audiobooks! I primarily listen to them driving to/from work, but also listen to them when cleaning the house to ‘distract’ my brain from things I really don’t want to do.

    • Ahhhh…. So I only live about 3 miles from work- so…. But I have been listening to Gone Girl on my longer drives and while I’m making breakfast/lunch. I haven’t tried to listen while I clean- that’s when I turn my music up loud (an potentially dance around πŸ˜‰

  8. I love audiobooks πŸ™‚ Ever since I started having a long commute, audiobooks have been turning that commute into reading time instead of part of the work day. It’s fantastic! It probably also helps that I don’t typically imagine a voice for characters in books. The only time I’m likely to have a preconceived idea of what a characters should sound like is if I’ve seen a movie. Great discussion topic!

    • I totally imagine the character’s voice 😦 And my commute to work is less than 5 miles.
      But I do want to continue to give audio books a try. We’ll see πŸ™‚

      Thank you, thank you πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

  9. Christine says:

    I used to have a job that basically required some kind of background noise to survive. Enter audiobooks. Some were awful, especially when men tried to do women’s voices. There was one book where the reader kept mispronouncing names and Latin phrases. Look it up if you’re not sure! My friend listened to Water for Elephants and said it took forever because the reader of the “old” character talked way too slowly.

    I did really enjoy the Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants books. They were read by the actress Angela Goethals. Very pleasant, neutral voice, and age-appropriate for the characters in the books.

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