June is audiobook month. If you’ve never tried audiobooks before, now is as good a time as any to get started. Some say audiobooks don’t count as reading? I say who cares! As long as I still find out who dunnit in the end, does it really matter if it’s via eye or ear? I turned to audiobooks as a means of sneaking extra chapters into my jam packed days. Is there any better way to commute to work or clean the house than with a good book? What ultimately hooked me though, was the narrators. I find that they really do help to immerse me into the literary setting – especially ones with names, geographic locations and character accents that I am not entirely familiar with. Be honest – did you really get “Hermione” right the first time you read Harry Potter?
Audiobooks are great for a crowd too. Teachers – give your voice a break and try listening together as a class. You’ll surely captivate your students when you throw on a book written and narrated by Neil Patrick Harris (or – as they likely know him – Count Olaf). Travelers – try listening to an audiobook the whole family can enjoy on your upcoming summer road trip. My number one recommendation is STILL Harry Potter, even after all of these years. Listening to this series is an entirely unique experience.
Here at WPL we offer audiobooks in a variety of formats:
- Digital Audiobooks. Several of our library apps, including Axis 360 & Overdrive/Libby have audiobooks available to download and/or stream. Once you have downloaded your book you DO NOT need to be connected to the Internet to listen. Great for listening on the go.
- Playaways. These are a newer format. Each playaway unit carries a pre-loaded audiobook. All you have to do is plug in your headphones and press play. People really like these because they’re lightweight, small enough to fit in your pocket, but durable enough that they won’t break if you drop them. Selections are available for all ages. To search for playaways, choose Pre-loaded Audiobook in the library catalogue.
- Books on CD. We have hundreds of books on CD available to borrow; all you need is a CD player to listen. While changing the disc can feel a little clunky compared to some of the newer formats, Books on CD are certainly dependable. No need to worry about incomplete downloads or dead batteries.
- DAISY discs. DAISYs are a special format, similar to book on CD, available for customers with low or no vision. To learn more about DAISYs you can contact our Accessibility Services Librarian.
Not sure where to get started? I have put together a list of some of my favourite audiobooks, here. I hope you enjoy them as much as I did.