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Summer: Time for Audiobooks

devices to listen to audiobookTired of staring at the screen? Finished all the print books at home you had purchased in the past few years? Libraries still closed? How about trying something new? If you haven’t already tried them during long commutes or long flights, why don’t you give audiobooks a shot?

Listening to audiobooks might just become your new trick to immerse yourself in a story and chill this summer. Let’s face it: the next few months still seem to be far from normal, and who knows what the fall will bring. With chronic, excruciating screen fatigue, taking a break from the computer to listen to a good book doesn’t count as guilty pleasure at all!

Here is a collection of the silliest arguments for switching to audiobooks:

  1. Pocket your books! You can have your entire library with you when you go running or to the beach. No sweat with a waterproof mp3 player.
  2. Blend in! You won’t look like a total nerd with your backpack full of books among music lovers with their earphones.
  3. Beat Victor Krum trying to please Hermione! You will be able to pronounce the most difficult words correctly.
  4. Your birthday coming? You have an excuse to ask for the latest AirPods. And another pair, just in case.
  5. Daydreaming? You can read with your eyes closed. Just don’t try that while driving.
  6. Go environmental-friendly! You can put that old iPhone 5 to a good use instead of scrapping it for pennies.
  7. Reorganizing your sock drawer? You will actually enjoy household chores while listening to your book.
  8. Need me-time? You look totally busy and unavailable for unwanted disturbances with your earphones in.
  9. Jim Dale vs. Stephen Fry? You will fall in love with narrator‘s voice and will read new stuff just because of that.
  10. Got two left hands? You will finally learn how to multitask without ruining both tasks.

Here are the most popular and safest resources to find audiobooks, including their availability and unique features. If an audiobook is checked out, you will see the wait time and can still place a hold. You will be notified when it’s available.

  • Cloud Library  is one of the collections of audiobooks and eBooks that you can access with your library card from your public library, depending on the library system. Download the app and use your usual library account. Stream audiobooks or download them to listen offline.
  • Libby, the new app by OverDrive, is another platform offered by participating public libraries in New Jersey. Currently its entire collection is available with a temporary library card from many other library systems. Check your public library‘s page to see if your card qualifies.
  • Internet Archive offers nearly 20,000 free audiobooks from various authors, including contemporary titles and free public domain audiobooks read by volunteers from around the world via Librivox.
  • Open Culture has an alphabetical list of hundreds of freely accessible titles in various formats, such as streaming audio, mp3, iTunes, audible, and more from sites all over the world, all free for you to listen.
Listen to audiobooks on an old iPhone with earbuds or an iPad with speakers while cooking, or use a sweat-proof mp3 player for walks and runs. Sync them all with your current phone. Find new authors, listen to all your old favorites. Tell your friends about all the great resources you have discovered. Have fun, it’s your summer after all!
See more on audiobooks, including our recommendations.
Cartoon by Tom Gauld, The Guardian. Click on image to see more of his work.