In order to up my chances of actually hitting my goal of reading 100 books this year, I decided that I would supplement my usual reading material with audiobooks that I could listen to while doing other things like housework or when driving. Audiobooks, however, are expensive. Even subscriptions to services like Audible don’t really seem worth it. I buy audiobooks as luxuries and even then, I usually buy them from overstock outlets like Book Warehouse. My only exception to this has been the books in the Dresden Files, the audio of which I usually pre-order months in advance.
But I love listening to audiobooks! It is a pleasant and enjoyable thing, to be read to. So what’s a girl to do?
Thank God for Librivox.org, that’s what she does. Librivox.org is a website that houses free audiobooks from the public domain. You can find almost anything that was published before 1923 there, and it’s a great way to catch up on your classics. Librivox got me though several of my literature classes. It was a godsend when I had to finish certain novels on the same days that I had disabling headaches (my headaches are generally intensified more by eyestrain than by sounds).
Of course, there is a downside. Librivox’s offerings are all based on volunteer readers, meaning that most are not professionals. Most of the readers are still anywhere from decent to excellent, but occasionally you’ll come across some that are absolutely unbearable to listen to. Luckily, many titles have multiple readers and you can choose your favorite.
Don’t see your favorite book/poem/whatever that you know for certain is in the public domain? Volunteer to be a reader!
Do you listen to audiobooks? Where do you get most of yours from and what do you do while listening?