Audiobook Recommendations — I need ’em!

  So I’ve started going to the gym almost regularly and I’m slowly beginning to feel the effects — more energy and a better mood most importantly. Unfortunately, the time I’m spending working out has cut into the time I spend reading, and I do miss that.  Audiobooks seem to be the ideal solution, and I’ve resurrected my membership at audible; but I’ve had a love-hate relationship with audiobooks in the past. I’ve hesitated to listen to an audio version of a book of which I already own the print (or electronic version). Why? Don’t know, but as a result most of the audiobooks I’ve selected have been secondary choices and thus have not held my interest, especially when I listen in the car on the way to/from work (20-30 minutes each way) — I lose track of what is going on.

  I’ve had better luck with listening to non-fiction over fiction, and one of my favorite books of last year, Stories I Only Tell My Friends by Rob Lowe, was an audiobook.  For me, anyways, I find a non-fiction narrative easier to follow.

  That said, the first audiobook I selected for my gym listening is I’ve Got Your Number:  A Novel by Sophie Kinsella.  I’ve enjoyed reading Kinsella’s novels in the past, and her stories seem to be well-suited to an audio format.  Chrisbookarama also gave the audiobook a very favorable review so I think it will be entertaining to listen to while I’m putting in my time on the elliptical machine.

  But I need more recommendations and advice:

  1.    What audiobooks do you think I should try? 
  2.    Do you listen to an audio and read the print version of a book simultaneously? 
  3.    Are there specific reasons you select an audiobook over the print version?
  4.    Do you think audiobooks “count” as reading?  (I think they do, but I’ve had people tell me otherwise)

Thanks in advance for your help!

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5 Responses to Audiobook Recommendations — I need ’em!

  1. zibilee says:

    I really,really liked The Marriage Plot on audio, and thought the narration was great. If you are int he mood for a nonfiction read that was wonderful, I would suggest The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks. That audiobook was one of my favorites of last year. I do consider listening to audiobooks reading, and I love listening because it means that I can do things around the house, shop, and exercise all while being literary! I have a ton of audios on my ipod just waiting for me to get to them as well!

  2. Whenever possible I try to have the audio and print versions (it does faster as I have only a 7 mile commute each way to work).

    Non-fiction – The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks; Bossypants (funny); Life and Times of the Thunderbolt Kids (memoir Bill Bryson);

    Fiction – Cutting for Stone; The Help;Stockett; Horns; Joe Hill ; Reservation Road; Burnham-Schwartz; Revolutionary Road; Yates

    I love audio books so I’m sure I could come up with plenty more with good readers as well.

  3. Sofia says:

    1- I’s suggest “The Help” on audiobook, I started out with print, and midway switched to audio, it’s as if the book was written for audio. I then saw the movie, I still love the audio version better, and its the AB I recommend beginner audiobookers.
    2- I don’t think I’ve ever don the simultaneous reading thing, only while learning a foreign language.
    3- I select audiobooks over written word because it gives me the freedom of doing other stuff at the same time, like any chore around the house or commuting.
    4- I’d love to think that they do count as reading, but I go through so many audiobooks, it almost feels like cheating. I’m undecided about this one.

  4. FacetsofLucy says:

    My favorite audiobook, the one I’ve gone back to more than once is “A Year in Provence” by Peter Mayle. A humorous account of his first year living in Provence, its so well done you forget you’re not watching a movie. My husband and I both enjoy it and the characters involved. Its not new but it is a classic. Fun website; I’ll be back.

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