Speaking for themselves: audio books


Every Tuesday over at the  The Broke and Bookish we all get to look at a particular topic for discussion and use various (or more to the point ten) examples to demonstrate that particular topic.  The topic this week is :

Audio Freebie

In which I confess that I’ve never listened to a book.  I think if I was to pick 10 books though to give audio a try they would be as follows:

  1. The 3 Fairytale retellings by Sarah Pinborough: Beauty/Poison/Charm – because these are relatively short books, they’re retellings based on fairytales and they’re quite fascinating and cheeky takes on the original stories – I don’t think my attention would wander.
  2. The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman – because I understand Neil Gaiman narrates this one on audio and so I would love to listen to it.
  3. The Road Brothers by Mark Lawrence – this is a series of short stories all connected to The Broken Empire series – I think it would be very easy to listen to these, one at a time, not all in one go but just every now and again.
  4. Something spooky that would give me the chills – The Haunting of Hill House of Shirley Jackson – I have a notion that listening to something scary would be excellent – providing it was narrated well, I suppose it could go horribly wrong!
  5. Monstrous Little voices – 5 stories retold, based on some of Shakespeare’s most famous works but given a more modern voice.  Each five of the stories connect but I figure listening to these would be great – overall just shy of 350 pages but taken individually they’re lovely little chunks.  As a rule I don’t like short stories but when they all connect in this way they’re excellent.
  6. I think I would like to listen to some of the Sherlock Holmes books on audio – particularly Hound of the Baskervilles.
  7. I think a book with excellent dialogue throughout – such as The Sisters Brothers by Patrick deWitt
  8. Bram Stoker’s Dracula – because of the style of narration I just imagine this would be an excellent audio book.
  9. Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone by J K Rowling – I think the first in the series had a lighter feel and would be a good starting point
  10. Suggestions – given that I’ve read all of the above – do you have any suggestions that feel similar??



37 Responses to “Speaking for themselves: audio books”

  1. sjhigbee

    I haven’t listened to audio books since the demise of tape recorders! But I do have a Kindle Fire all ready to go – I just need to find the time to get it organised… Of all the books in your list, I’d choose the Harry Potter as it would bring back a shedload of happy memories, listening to Stephen Fry’s dulcet tones as a family in the car:))

    • @lynnsbooks

      I had no idea Stephen Fry narrated HP. I definitely would like to check those out.

      • sjhigbee

        They were fantastic… We’ve still got them – just no machinery to play them on!

      • @lynnsbooks

        Ahh yes! You never know though 😀

  2. Carmen

    I started listening to a novel and my attention wandered in the first paragraph. I have not tried another audiobook since.

    • @lynnsbooks

      That’s kind of what puts me off. That being said I haven’t even given it a try. I just don’t know if it will be for me but I suppose I won’t know for sure unless i try it.

      • litgreg

        I’ve got a long commute (2 hours a day) so audiobooks are pretty much the only way I get reading done these days! It requires retraining your brain a bit, but I find I actually retain more with audio than when I read because I tend to skim-read.

      • @lynnsbooks

        Ha, interesting. Yes, usually when I’m doing certain chores (such as ironing for example) I think it would be good to have an audio book – I just envision plenty of burnt clothing if I reach an intriguing part of the book though!
        Lynn 😀

  3. Jolien @ The Fictional Reader

    I really liked the narration by Stephen Fry of the Harry Potter books! I also liked the Gentleman Bastard narrations, and the audio books of the Riyria series by Michael J. Sullivan. All these narrators are easy to follow, in my opinion 🙂

    • @lynnsbooks

      I didn’t realise that Stephen fry narrated the HP series. Definitely intrigued to listen to those.

  4. cupcakesandmachetes

    I’ve never listened to an audio book. It seems like a good idea but I think I might be too much of a control freak.

    • @lynnsbooks

      I’m not sure why I haven’t given it a try. The rational side of my brain thinks it would be great but then the bit so rational thinks that I maybe only want my own voice in my head when I’m reading. Even though that sounds a bit crazy.

      • Carmen

        Believe it or not that doesn’t sound crazy at all.

      • @lynnsbooks

        Hey Carmen – just tried to leave a comment on your site – can you let me know if it worked as it looked as though it disappeared but it could just be waiting approval.
        Lynn 😀

      • cupcakesandmachetes

        My crazy agrees with your crazy.

  5. 4thhouseontheleft

    I never listen to audio books, either! I chose to do a TTT on podcasts, which I often listen to when I exercise.

    • @lynnsbooks

      I really should give it a go. The worst
      That can happen is that I don’t enjoy it after all. But if I do enjoy it it could be awesome.

  6. Jamie Wu

    I’ve not listened to audio books either, though I really want to try it. Sounds like something to do while I’m doing chores or playing games. Though I doubt I’ll be able to concentrate. Haha.

    • @lynnsbooks

      My thoughts exactly. Part of me thinks it would be great to be able to do chores whilst listening to books but part of me just thinks my mind would wander.

  7. readingmylifeawayblog

    I have listened to a lot of the Sherlock Holmes audiobooks, they are fantastic. I found a lot of them on Librivox and they were really well done 🙂

    • @lynnsbooks

      I think I would enjoy them. A lot of them are shortish compared to some books I read. Plus they usually kick off quite quickly.

  8. jessicabookworm

    I would love to have the Harry Potter audio books narrated by Stephen Fry 😀

  9. Lisa (@TenaciousReader)

    I haven’t listened to any of these, but if I were to read Haunting of Hill House, it would definitely be an audiobook! 🙂

    • @lynnsbooks

      Good choice I think. I think my attention would wander with a lot of books but I think this one really would keep me hooked.

  10. maddalena@spaceandsorcery

    I tend to get distracted with audio books, so they are not my preferred way of reading stories, still I believe that a good, well pitched voice could held me spellbound and make me pay attention! 🙂

    • @lynnsbooks

      I think I could like audio but I also think I would have to be sat down relaxing. Almost like having a story told to you. I think I would be distracted if I was doing some thing else such as chores.

  11. Amanda @Cover2CoverMom

    I literally just finished the audiobook version of The Graveyard Book today! It is indeed narrated by Neil Gaiman and it is FANTASTIC!

    • @lynnsbooks

      Yay – I really will try this one – I love Neil Gaiman (not in a creepy way of course!)
      Lynn 😀

  12. Mogsy @ BiblioSanctum

    Authors narrating their own books can sometimes be problematic – but I have to say Neil Gaiman is fantastic!

    • @lynnsbooks

      I heard him do a reading of one of his book and so I think I would enjoy his audio work – I think he has the ability to make it feel as though he’s reading especially to you!
      Lynn 😀

  13. cali

    What a great idea for an audio-themed list! Neil Gaiman does great narration. I don’t really listen to audiobooks either, so I can’t say anything about his reading The Graveyard Book, but he read A Christmas Carol for the New York Public Library and I’ve listened to that. It is, to echo the other comments, fantastic.

    • @lynnsbooks

      Thanks so much for that link – I’ve been away with no wifi but now I’m back I will definitely check that out – A Christmas Carol is a book I love and in fact I used to read it every year come December so that’s so timely!
      Lynn 😀

  14. Rebecca

    Tim Gerard Reynolds is a fantastic narrator, so anything read by him is a great performance! The Powder Mage trilogy is also really well narrated (Christian Rodska does these).

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