Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Enjoying Audiobooks—with Authors and Actors

I had an eye surgery recently, and I was told to sit with my head down for 3 whole days. I prepared myself for this ordeal by downloading a few audiobooks and checking out more titles on CD.

I love Simon Winchester. I like his writing style. I like his topics. And I like the way he reads his own book. You can feel his passion in his voice. And he has a nice reading voice, too, which is a big bonus.

The Map That Changed the World is a great lesson on the birth of geology as an academic field. Winchester then takes off on a journey across the American continent. When he reaches San Francisco, he launches into the cultural history of the city around the time of its 1906 earthquake. When I finished listening, I passed my copy on to a geologist friend who told me he doesn't listen to books. He is now an audiobook convert.

Over the years, I've tried quite a few great author-read audiobooks. Barack Obama was great reading his own memoir, Dreams from My Father. Not surprisingly book-writing funny people, like David Sedaris reading Let’s Explore Diabetes with Owls and Amy Poehler reading Yes Please, left me in stitches in public places.

Big name authors can have big name actors to do the reading for them.

If you're interested in the process of book recording, this video series from Openbook Recording shows you how these books are recorded and edited.

Have you tried audiobooks? Are there specific genres or authors you prefer as audiobooks?

    Megumi L

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