Last month was the first time I ever listened to an audiobook. I got myself a two week free trial to an audiobook subscription called Storytel and started listening to The Heir by Kiera Cass right away. It felt a little weird at first, but I enjoyed it so much! Just like physical books and ebooks, audiobooks have pros and cons. I love to discuss anything book related, so that’s why this week’s Book Babble (AKA bookish discussion!) is about audiobooks.
I was a little sceptic about Storytel, which is the Dutch audiobook service I used. Since I’m negative about pretty much everything that’s Dutch, I wasn’t very positive about it. Not gonna lie, I expected it only had “stupid” Dutch audiobooks, but I was so very wrong. I had enough to choose from! I listened to The Heir and The Crown by Kiera Cass and Incarnate by Jodi Meadows.
Listening vs. Reading
I loved listening to audiobooks on the train to college. I didn’t need to put a book in my bag (and possibly ruin it!) I had no extra weight or anything, and I didn’t have to uncomfortably hold a book. I could just put in my headphones, press play. put my phone away and listen. In that way, audiobooks are absolutely perfect. But that’s pretty much where the convenience ends for me. I like reading so much more! I like to hold a book, to look at the text, to create my own voices in my head. The narrators I listened to weren’t that bad, but I always found something that annoyed me or that put me off. When I read myself, I don’t have that problem.
The “annoying” thing was that I really had to focus. I couldn’t do anything other that sit down and listen, or else I’d miss important bits of the story. Eventually, I was able to prepare and eat food while listening to a book, but I had to be careful not to miss anything. When reading an actual book, you can’t do anything else, which makes it so much easier for me to focus! Audiobooks are basically only fun when you have the time to focus. It could just be because English is my second language, though! I probably wouldn’t be able to do chores around the house while listening to an audiobook (even though it doesn’t sound so difficult, I would still “zone out” or something anyway).
Pricing & Audiobook Services
Audiobooks are crazy expensive and that’s the biggest reason I never listened to them before. Audible isn’t all that bad, with $15 a month for one book. Storytel is somewhere around €10 a month for an unlimited amount of books each month – I think (which is actually really cheap!) But I’d never purchase an audiobook simply because they are so expensive. Also, it’s not really worth it for me. If I’d known about Storytel before, I might’ve continued my subscription, but the only time, when audiobooks are actually useful to me, is during the 2,5 hours I travel a day. Since I won’t be going to college for a few weeks and I’ll be moving closer to my internship after summer, it’s just not worth paying for something I won’t be using.
Have you ever listened to an audiobook? What did you think of it? Would you ever listen to an audiobook if you haven’t before?