Audio Books - What are you listening to?

Audio Books - What are you listening to?

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a

Original Poster:

439 posts

51 months

Monday 22nd May 2017
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Anyone else into audio books?

It's been years since I had time to read. I joined Audible a few months ago, thinking I'd use the free credit and cancel - but since then have bought an increasing stream of more and more credits. I'm addicted hehe
My 2 hours a day of sitting in traffic struggling with god-awful radio has been transformed.

So far, I've listened to:
- A Song of Ice and Fire books 1-5, plus 'A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms'. All fantastic, couldn't put them down for a minute. I haven't seen Game of Thrones so can't comment how the books are compared to the TV series, but the books are great and exceptionally well read by Roy Dotrice.
- World War Z. I nearly didn't, because the movie was pants. But I'm really glad I did and would 100% recommend it. You really get into the story and feel for the characters.
- David Attenborough - Life on Air. Some great stories and really interesting background on early wildlife filming. And of course you get to listen to David Attenborough's voice for hour after hour cool
- Pretty much everything Bill Bryson has ever written. I'd already read most of them, but couldn't resist hearing them again. Bryson's voice can be a little grating, but you get used to it and there's so much more passion when he is telling his own stories, so I'd recommend the versions he narrated himself.
- The Martian. As with WWZ, the movie was a bit pants, but the book is 100% better. You get to experience all of the thought processes behind each decision, and the main character is so much more cheery with a far better sense of humour than Matt Damon's character. Also there are loads more obstacles to overcome in the book, more twists, more... everything. Thoroughly enjoyed it.

I'm currently getting through the Harry Potter books. Stephen Fry's narration is great and makes them really easy to listen to. I keep thinking though that someone should re-write the books for adults. I don't need to be told what to feel, I'm an adult with fully matured emotional responses. For example:
[i]*evil character does devastating thing which is really bad for all main characters*
"... which made Harry feel very sad indeed."[/i]
or
[i]*Harry wins the big Quiddich game*
"... which made Harry feel happier than he had felt in a very long time"[/i]
... yeah, I get it, human emotions rolleyes
Other than that, they're still enjoyable stories.

Oliver James

64 posts

50 months

Monday 22nd May 2017
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There's some rather well read audio-books of the Witcher on youtube, completely free. Worth a listen I'd say smile

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9oxLQjGJ_Ik

Flip Martian

14,360 posts

157 months

Monday 22nd May 2017
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I went through a stage of listening to Audible stuff a lot for a while - I stopped the subs after about a year in the end. I can't listen in the car as its too distracting but I listened on rail commutes, mowing the lawn, all sorts..

Favourites (all read by the author) were
Born Standing Up - Steve Martin
Dean and Me - Jerry Lewis
Lucky Man - Michael J Fox
Up Till Now - William Shatner

I also had the 2 radio series by Mitchell and Webb done before they went to TV some years back. I would have had the Bryson ones but at the time there weren't any he had read himself so I didn't bother.

Bone Rat

301 posts

130 months

Friday 9th June 2017
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Listen to a lot on the commute, staple was Terry Pratchett. Recently started listening to the unabridged Ian Fleming James Bond books. Been a bit of a revelation, familiar yet very different.
Very much period pieces picking up the flavour of the cold war with very different values, copious smoking, alcohol consumption and very un PC attitudes. However very good stories with much more 'realism' & believable story lines compared to the films. No gimmicks, toys or arched eyebrows, just a good yarn which suits driving very well. Has a peculiar tendency to give almost forensic details of card games & golf though.

a

Original Poster:

439 posts

51 months

Friday 9th June 2017
quotequote all
Bone Rat said:
Has a peculiar tendency to give almost forensic details of card games & golf though.
I thought the same of the 'A Song of Ice and Fire' series, regarding food. I occasionally had to zone out for a 10 minute detailed description of every aspect of the characters' meals. Never write on an empty stomach laugh

Mr2Mike

20,143 posts

222 months

Friday 9th June 2017
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I listened to Harry Bosch "The Wrong Side Of Goodbye" while I was in hospital. I've been a big fan of the Bosch series for years and having the book narrated by Titus Welliver who played Bosch in the excellent Amazon TV series made the book even better.

Junior Bianno

1,367 posts

160 months

Friday 9th June 2017
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I'm not sure why because I never read them, but I like listening to business/biography books. Some of the better ones have been:

Shoe Dog - Phil Knight (founder of Nike)
The Everything Store - Brad Stone (Basically a biography/history of Bezos and Amazon)
The Innovators - Walter Issacson (History of computer innovators from Ada Lovelace to Steve Jobs)
Elon Musk - Ashlee Vance
The 4 Hour Work Week - Timothy Ferris (it's interesting but not very practical, unfortunately)

Addicted to these now - so easy to listen to in the car with Bluetooth

TIGA84

4,994 posts

198 months

Friday 16th June 2017
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My tastes are fairly low brow it has to be said.

Nomad - Alan Partridge
I Partridge - Alan Partridge
How to Land an A330 Airbus - James May
White Heat - Marco Pierre White
The Ten Food Commandments - Jay Rayner
My Life - David Jason

wst

3,414 posts

128 months

Monday 26th June 2017
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a said:
- The Martian. As with WWZ, the movie was a bit pants, but the book is 100% better. You get to experience all of the thought processes behind each decision, and the main character is so much more cheery with a far better sense of humour than Matt Damon's character. Also there are loads more obstacles to overcome in the book, more twists, more... everything. Thoroughly enjoyed it.
There's one bit of that audiobook I really love. I was just lying in bed listening to it (with a timer so I don't have to consciously turn it off before sleep) and the character was just starting to feel some hope, and I'm barely conscious, just enough to listen to the story. Next chapter begins, and the narrator yells "I'm a f'in idiot and I am going to kill myself!" and it woke me right back up and I had to start going to sleep properly again laugh

I'm currently on Wyrd Sisters by Terry Pratchett. I'm slowly working my way through the greater works as a whole, the witch-based books tend to have a female narrator who can get the voices of Granny Weatherwax suitably crone-y, but I prefer the male narrator's voice of Dᴇᴀᴛʜ when he gets a few lines.

XM5ER

5,080 posts

215 months

Monday 10th July 2017
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I tend to do factual and educational stuff on Audio, usually on the commute.

Heave listened to a whole host of interesting stuff from Dale Carnegie to Tim Ferriss, just starting "the four hour work week" now.

a

Original Poster:

439 posts

51 months

Monday 24th July 2017
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Just finished the Hobbit and Lord of the Rings trilogy read by Rob Inglis. FANTASTIC!

I can't say the movies ever interested me so much, although I'm keen to watch them again now. But the books are pretty much perfect, and Rob Inglis's reading makes it all very engaging. My only complaint is that 4 books wasn't enough.

IMO (although I've Googled it and not everyone agrees) there's an obvious obvious theme of PTSD towards the later parts of the trilogy and I found it engrossing, you can tell Tolkien is writing from experience.

Mr2Mike

20,143 posts

222 months

Monday 24th July 2017
quotequote all
a said:
Just finished the Hobbit and Lord of the Rings trilogy read by Rob Inglis. FANTASTIC!
The last novel I listened to was around 10 hours long, the full LOTR trilogy must be a good weeks continuous listening biggrin

a

Original Poster:

439 posts

51 months

Monday 24th July 2017
quotequote all
Mr2Mike said:
a said:
Just finished the Hobbit and Lord of the Rings trilogy read by Rob Inglis. FANTASTIC!
The last novel I listened to was around 10 hours long, the full LOTR trilogy must be a good weeks continuous listening biggrin
  • checks audible account*
Took me 5 weeks exactly from starting the Hobbit to finishing the LOTR trilogy. About 62 hours of listening time...

It didn't seem long enough. Now the 'Song of Ice and Fire' series... that took some time eek

hairyben

8,516 posts

150 months

Friday 25th August 2017
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Does audible dominate audio books the same way kindle does ebooks?

I'd like to get into this as I spend a lot of time driving and alone working but I can see it costing me some $$ and I'm loathed to chuck good money at amazon.

Flip Martian

14,360 posts

157 months

Friday 25th August 2017
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hairyben said:
Does audible dominate audio books the same way kindle does ebooks?

I'd like to get into this as I spend a lot of time driving and alone working but I can see it costing me some $$ and I'm loathed to chuck good money at amazon.
There are online resources where audiobooks are read by volunteers I believe (never tried them though).

Edited by Flip Martian on Thursday 11th October 21:48

a

Original Poster:

439 posts

51 months

Friday 25th August 2017
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Also, I've never used it, but heard great things about https://www.overdrive.com/

It's a system for "borrowing" audio books from libraries. Many libraries are members, so check your local ones.

IroningMan

9,831 posts

213 months

Friday 8th September 2017
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Just spotted this.

Audible have the industry over a barrel; they were first to market and rode the dotcom boom, transitioning to Amazon ownership before they ran out of cash. They have more competition in the US, but booksellers in the UK have always been sniffy about audio and are only now waking up to its potential.

Rakuten are leveraging their ownership of OverDrive to finally add audio to Kobo and have just launched in the UK. There are other alternatives, such as Storytel and audiobooks.com, who will also offer some competition as they get their UK acts together.

As someone else has mentioned, there are also libraries: just about every local authority library service in the UK offers some kind of downloadable audiobook collection: probably only a couple of thousand titles, but reasonable coverage of mainstream stuff. There are a number of proprietary solutions for libraries to choose from, for eBooks, eAudio and eMagazines, and they all offer apps of varying quality. OverDrive is one of the platforms the libraries often use for eBooks, but for boring licencing reasons the eAudio catalogue available isn't great.

wst

3,414 posts

128 months

Friday 8th September 2017
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Slightly underhanded tip - CD audiobooks in libraries are trivial to duplicate. Useful if the lending-out time is shorter than the book.

IroningMan

9,831 posts

213 months

Friday 8th September 2017
quotequote all
wst said:
Slightly underhanded tip - CD audiobooks in libraries are trivial to duplicate. Useful if the lending-out time is shorter than the book.
Slightly...?

Fine if you're going to make a CD copy, but if you want to rip to MP3 then you might end up with 8 track 1s, followed by 8 track 10s, etc. If you must pirate then most of the library download lending platforms allow you to download an unprotected MP3 file to begin with.

wst

3,414 posts

128 months

Friday 8th September 2017
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It also has benefits of you not having to carry a discman around carefully trying to avoid it skipping like it's 2001, because you can pop it on your solid state pocket device of choice. The ethics of copying a CD that is borrowed are a whole extra kettle of fish, but from a practicality POV it's a godsend. You don't have to retain the copy indefinitely.