I have become absolutely obsessed with audiobooks lately. It started on a long car trip to NYC a couple weekends ago. My husband and I were looking for something to occupy the time. Usually on car trips we listen to music, but a four hour car trip is a lot longer than a one and a half hour car trip and four hours of music just didn’t seem like it would occupy us. When I was a kid, we used to listen to audiobooks while driving with my dad. I have a vivid memory of listening to Ramona Quimby books. I have a vivid memory of listening to Ramona and Her Father where Ramona parroted a commercial she had a heard about stockings sagging and bunching and causing “elephant ankles” to her teacher, who was very embarrassed.
This book kept me awake on the ride home, even when my husband fell asleep. I actually pulled off at a rest area just to change the CD because I knew that I was not going to make it without having a book to keep me company. But it was the night before I left for Virginia for the photo shoot and I didn’t feel like figuring out how to transfer the CDs onto my iPhone so I could listen on the plane. So instead, I downloaded the Overdrive app. This app allows you to borrow ebooks and audiobooks from your local library. And because my library is part of a consortium, which means that I can actually borrow from 28 different libraries.
Not every item is available as a downloadable audiobook (for example, The No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency is available as an ebook, but not an audiobook), but there’s still a pretty wide selection. So before I left I downloaded The Anatomist’s Apprentice, which is the first book in the Dr. Thomas Silkstone Mysteries. Tessa Harris wrote an engaging story and Simon Vance’s soothing British voice brought the book to life.
I finished it the night I got home from Virgina and then quickly moved on to The Tale of Despereaux: Being the Story of a Mouse, a Princess, Some Soup and a Spool of Thread, which is actually a children’s book by Kate DiCamillo. It was captivating and not in the least because Graeme Malcolm’s reading was enthralling.
Once I finished that book, which I devoured on Saturday, I began looking for more to read. I saved a bunch to my list by the same narrators because they both did such a terrific job at depicting the different characters that I knew anything else they read would also be delightful. Then I settled down to listen to A Far Cry from Kensington. This is a little slower to start, but I’m enjoying it as well. As it’s by Muriel Spark, I expect that that I’ll be really enjoying it soon. I fell asleep listening to it last night, so I’ll have to try and find my place again!
I had no idea that I was going to enjoy listening to books so much. I’ve always had a tricky time sitting still and listening, but I expect that knitting will provide me with a good excuse to keep my hands occupied while I listen. As it was, this weekend I played a lot of Candy Crush and lazed about in bed as a welcome respite after last week’s go-go-go of the photo shoot.
What are your favorite audiobooks? Who are your favorite audiobook performers? What books do you wish you had listened to rather than reading?
A shout out to Sarah and Julie, who both recommended Overdrive to me!