• To Listen or Not to Listen ~ Learning to love Audiobooks

    Remember personal stereos? Yeah, me too. In fact, growing up our personal stereos were treasured possessions for my younger brother and I. We would while away hours on long car journeys to the South of France, plugged in and listening attentively. Our favourites were the first two Harry Potter books read by Stephen Fry. I think we must have worn them out, the number of times we listened to them.

    As you know, I read. A lot. (8 books ahead of schedule on my Goodreads Challenge, look me up) but audio books have not been on my radar for a long time. Recently, I was looking for something to do while using my adult colouring book (yes, I couldn't resist this particular trend) and I thought I'd give the Audible free trial a whirl, just so I could download a free book. I chose Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail by Cheryl Strayed. Having recently watched the film adaptation, I had decided that this was a story worth listening to.

    I must confess, I've not yet completed it; my bouts of listening are restricted to bleary eyed mornings (and evenings) where I'm simply too tired to focus on my Kindle on the train into work (though these are becoming more frequent with the onset of winter). The benefit is I can spend the entire journey reading, getting in a good 40 minutes story time. This book in particular is a wonderful memoir about Cheryl finally coming to terms with the premature death of her mother. I have found that I can appreciate the quality of the writing in an entirely different way, and I think I might be sold on it.

    You can start an Audible one month trial here*. You'll receive one free token which allows you to download one book (I recommend choosing something long to maximise the value of this). If you choose to continue the lowest subscription is £7.99 a month which gives you one download. Hot tip: if you discontinue your trial before it expires and select the reason as 'it's being too expensive', they'll offer you 3 months for just £3.99. That's what I did, and it will give me some more time to establish whether an ongoing subscription is something I will realistically use. Downloading the PC plugin allowed me to add the book to my MP3 player quickly and easily.

    The subscription process is very straightforward and you can cancel your subscription at any time very easily through the Audible dashboard, with no need to call them up! I recommend giving it a try. At worst, you end up with a free audio book.

    *Full disclosure, the link included in this blog is an affiliate link and I will earn a small amount of money should you decide to click through and begin your free trial (even if you cancel immediately afterwards).
  • You might also like


    1. What I find irritating with Audible is, if you've let your credits pile up, as you've just too many, and you want to cancel your subscription, you lose your credits. That doesn't seem very...decent. I know this seems mad, but I've always thought of as listening to audiobooks as sort of cheating, as you don't actually read the words! Having said that, I've found them wonderful for when driving long journeys alone - that and a lot of coffee! Btw, I looked at your Goodreads profile, as I thought it was going to say you read 150 books a year.(Seriously, they must read so quickly. How on earth do they find the time??) Currently, I've read 69 out of 70 and I am so chuffed - but I don't think it's a lot. But well done for being ahead of schedule - it encourages you to aim higher each year!

      1. Ha, my Mum is one of those 150 books a year people but she's retired so can spend all her waking hours reading! Nope, I'm aiming for a book a week which I will exceed this year. I actually love having a short commute because it provides valuable reading time. I know what you mean about audiobooks seeming like cheating and they'll never replace regular reading for me.