In the last 6 weeks, I have listened to 6 audiobooks through my iPod. I’ve listened to them while walking, sitting down with a knitting project in hand, baking a cake, tidying up around the house, vacuuming, scrubbing the shower with a toothbrush, having lunch out on the porch, sitting on a bus, biking and lying in bed.
I wouldn’t have been able to read proper books at the same time as doing all of the above. And I think that’s the major plus for me when it comes to audiobooks vs “real books”. I actually go through books whithout having to make them a priority over some of those tasks that really need to be done.
As long as I can remember, I’ve been one of those people who check the ending of books before getting there. Holding a book in hand, I always get the urge to check the last sentence after having read only a couple of chapters. Sometimes it totally destroys the book as that last sentence reveals too much, but I can’t help myself. With audiobooks though… It takes so much more of an effort to get to the last sentence that I have enough time to tell myself to quit it. To not bother. And I have to say that stories often get better if I can still be intrigued by the end.
Yesterday I finished the latest book I’ve listened to (Darkness, Take My Hand by Dennis Lehane) and I realized I reacted so much more to suspense when I heard it rather than read it. The suspension at the end of the book got to me more than it would’ve if I’d read it. I couldn’t fast forward the voice the same way I push through text when using my eyes. Every syllable was there.
My boyfriend asked me yesterday, as I was loading my next audiobook into the computer, if I had given up on reading paper books altogether. No, I haven’t. But I have to say that I like the freedom that audiobooks give me.
I do wonder though, if my iPod will destroy some of the magic around books and reading…