Thursday, 7 March 2013

My First Audiobook: Yay or Nay?

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My First Audiobook: Yay or Nay?

I finally decided to throw myself into the world of audiobooks after seeing so many people being converted to this particular pathway. 
So I thought why not give it a go?
I would probably say at this point that my experience with my first ever audiobook was somewhere between a yay and nay. Somewhere between the good and the bad, and it was much more a trial and error sort of thing.
So the audiobook that I had chosen to listen to was 'Beauty Queens' by Libba Bray, and the narrator also happened to be the author herself. And I will say this straight away, Libba Bray is a super cool narrator, her accents are crazy awesome and hilarious.

Audiobooks: Take 1
So I should explain my experience straight from the beginning: my misconceptions of audiobooks.
For some reason, I thought that I could listen to an audiobook anywhere and everywhere and be able to do other work whilst listening to it. But NO that is not possible. Unless you want to confuse yourself straightaway about what is happening in the book just because you were listening to it while walking in the middle of a busy street, while on a busy bus journey.
I did exactly that- it didn't start or end well.
The thought 'why don't I listen to my audiobook while I sit on the bus' ran through my mind many times and as I had to spend about half an hour sitting down during the journey made it seem like a good idea. I basically listened to the book for 3 minutes and I was already lost as in what was happening and it felt like there was someone just blabbing in my ear.

Moral of the story: I would probably need to listen to my audiobook in a calm and relaxed environment.

Audiobooks: Take 2

I finally made time to start the audiobook properly. Straight from the start I was hooked. The different aspects of 'Beauty Queens' was fun and exciting, especially the various accents Libba Bray pulled off. There were laugh out loud moments and footnotes that were pretty awesome.

Something else I noticed about audiobooks that made me feel somewhere between yay or nay was the pacing. I won't lie, you need a good amount of time to listen to the whole book. The audiobook moves at a steady speed that allows you to understand everything thoroughly. But, there were moments where I wished I could somehow speed up the narration in a way where I wouldn't miss anything important as I wasn't always interested in specific parts. But I stuck through.

Another part of audiobooks that amazed me was the individuality of the different characters. Each was unique and you could totally work out who was who. It was also magical in so many ways, I felt like I was actually there in the book. Cool right?

I also learnt another valuable lesson with this audiobook. NEVER try to continue to listen to an audiobook when you are at a point where you are super tired and your eyes are closing. It's crazy but I actually fell asleep with my headphones in and the audiobook playing. It was like a soft lullaby in my ears and I couldn't even pin point when I had stopped listening. In the morning, I noticed a flat battery, headphones still in and when I recharged the battery I noticed I was about 4 more hours into the story. I learnt my lesson.

Carrying on, the book was awesome. However, then came to a point in the books where things went downhill. But I don't blame that on the audiobook but more on the plot line so I shall skip talking about it.

Overall, my first audiobook felt much like a testing experiment, I am not yet totally sold but I know there was some amazing aspects of them that I would love to experience again.

I would love to know if you have any suggestions of audiobooks that will blow me away?
What is your opinion on audiobooks?
What are some of your favourites?


  1. I am a huge fan of audiobooks though I only listen to them while driving, doing housework, or running on the treadmill. Some of my favorites are the Harry Potter series (read by Jim Dale), Jane Jameson series by Molly Harper (read by Amanda Ronconi), and the In Death series by JD Robb (read by Susan Erickson). I have found that I really love comedies in audio so that may be something to think about. Hope this helps!

    1. I'll definitely check out a few of your recommendations especially the Jane Jameson series which sounds like it would be cool to listen to as an audiobook. The best time I think for me to listen to the audiobook is probably just before I go to sleep. Hopefully I can find a few good audio comedies, I think the funny element will be cool!

  2. I started listening to audio books a few months back during my commute. I'm in my car for a couple of hours a day and the audio books greatly cut down on my road rage. :) I have started listening at home when I'm cleaning too, like Jennifer above. I suggest listening to the samples first, you'll usually be able to tell if the narrator will drive you nuts or not.

    1. I actually never thought to listen to the samples beforehand but I will do that the next I pick one. I think I'll try listening to the audiobook while cleaning, it'll make the cleaning aspect much more do-able.


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