My first venture into audiobooks was Storm Front (Book #1 of The Dresden Files) by Jim Butcher. My reason for venturing into the world of audiobooks was that the actor James Marsters (best known for playing Spike in Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Angel) was narrating the series and I was a bit of a fan! By the end of Storm Front, I was hooked and ordered book #2, Fool Moon, in audiobook format straight away. These were the days when audiobooks were only available on CD and weren’t exactly cheap either. As much as I enjoyed listening to James Marsters narrating The Dresden Files, I soon switched to paperbacks and hardbacks for the rest of the series. My brief love affair with audiobooks came to a swift end and I didn’t pick up another. That is, until recently.
I only read one book at a time, but with a few longed-for books landing around about the same time, I needed another way to “read” so I could consume books at a faster rate. Audiobooks are still fairly expensive compared to their hardback, paperback or ebook counterparts, however, they would give me the ability to listen to a book on the half hour drive home from work or whilst lay in the bath.
In stepped Audible. I realised I could get an Audible 30-day free trial which basically means 1 free audiobook (which you get to keep, even if you decide not to continue with a subscription). I chose Gary Barlow’s A Better Me: The Official Autobiography. I already had the hardback book, but what better than the man himself reading it to me?!
Gary Barlow is my all-time favourite singer/songwriter, lead singer of my favourite man-band (Take That) and seems to be maturing like a fine whiskey, just in case you didn’t know!
I listened to Gary recounting his life, from losing his baby daughter, fighting a never-ending battle with food, escaping the 7/7 bombings and the downfall of his career to the biggest comeback the British music industry has ever seen, organising The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Concert, stepping into the world of musical theatre and more.
I listened intently, every car journey, every relaxing bath. I didn’t want it to end! Gary Barlow could read to me anytime. I thoroughly enjoyed the audiobook and it made it all the more special that Gary Barlow narrated it himself (that isn’t always the case with some of these autobiography audiobooks).
So, have I kept the Audible subscription? So far, yes! I wanted to dive straight into another book, but I had a week and a half of my free month left and no new credit until those days were up. However, Audible has an Audio Shows section which is free to members, so I downloaded a couple to keep me busy until I received my next Audible credit.
I’m currently listening to Michael Palin’s Erebus: The Story of a Ship. I know, I know… I’ve got a signed hardback book from an evening with the author himself, but I really enjoyed him telling us the story that evening, so this audiobook is perfect!
My other current read, an ebook, is completely different! It’s Hogfather by Terry Pratchett. I’m working my way through the Discworld series and thoroughly enjoying it. This one is the 20th novel in the series and the Hogfather is Discworld’s version of Father Christmas, so it’s a great time of year to read it.
Do you listen to audiobooks? If so, do you have any favourites? If not, are you tempted?
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