In praise of the audiobook

I cannot praise the audiobook enough.

Perhaps considered the plainer cousin of the ebook, or the slower version of the traditional book, the audiobook has never really been regarded with much appeal. By me. Until now.

I never really saw (or heard!) the point of an actor/actress drip-reading me the contents of a novel that I could devour by conventional reading methods in a fifth of the time. That was until I chose to take a seven-and-a-half-hour trip in my not-so-fast car from south of London to central Scotland.

I picked a gripping crime novel from the modest choice of audiobooks available from my small local library, believing that I would be so transfixed by the plot that the trip would simply fly by. Without actually being on a flight (my usual way of travelling north of the border).

And it did. The interminable monotony of the M6/M74 stretch of the trip transformed into a joyful distraction for a driver who didn’t even notice the cramp in her toes or the dragging in her lower back. Until later.

The audiobook had 10 CDs that stretched over 11 hours. I ended up listening to four CDs, with the fifth poised for play. I love to listen to local radio as I enter a new area/city, to help me feel oriented.

Being lost in a book is something that has made me feel alive and connected since I was first able to read.  I am so captivated by the plot and the exquisite diction of the actress reading the book that I cannot wait to hear what happens next.

I love being engaged with a book so that I lose track of reality. What better time or place to do that than on a journey where a book can enrich, enlighten and enquicken!

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