I have finally succumbed to the temptation to get an audiobook (that is, now that my iPhone has made it free). This is something I have put off for a long time. I just haven’t been able to reconcile myself to the fact that a) I’m going to need to pay someone to do something that I can do myself for free, b) I’m going to have to pay someone to say all this stuff in a tone of voice that I have no control over, and c) it seems kind of lazy.

So, my first two objections got most-of-the-way wiped out when I took out the word “pay”, but I still had this niggling little bit of doubt, because I’m still going to have to listen to it in someone’s voice, and to attach a single voice and actor to a plethora of personas seems a little bit like every time I ever remembered the story, I’d remember it the way someone other than the author or my own self told it.

This is why I HATE to watch a movie before I read it… not only because they skip out on all kinds of fun stuff, but also because when you read it after seeing the movie, you picture every person in the book as the actor who played the character.

For example… Harry Potter.

THIS just came up in your brain, didn’t it?







Actually, if you were lucky enough to read the books before seeing the movies, you might see this:







If you didn’t read the books and live in a cave, you might think of this:






THIS, on the other hand, is what comes up when you Google a less movie-adapted book, like “The Bedside Book of Beasts”:









Very refreshing! Pretty much just a book title! *whew*

Anyhoo, because I had these little nagging doubts in my head, I have kind of held off on the whole Audiobook thing. But I’m pretty sick and tired of my CDs in my car, because I go about 1/2 hour to work and 1 hour home every day… and I haven’t read in a while for a few reasons that aren’t really good enough to rob me of something I really enjoy, but they still do…

So, I thought, “Ok, if my FIRST TIME” has the potential to make or break this for me, what should I listen to?

The criteria:

1) Something I have already read, so that the experience can’t be ruined

2) Something told in the first person, so that I don’t hear the same person talking through a billion characters

3) Something I won’t have to pay a ton of attention to, since, after all, I am driving

4) Something that can be stopped and started with relative ease, because the drive isn’t all THAT long, compared to my regular reading, and someone reading aloud is going to take a lot longer

5) Something free

And, I came up with….

Black Beauty, which, after a Google search, will look like this:






But, if you look in my memory, still looks like this:










I got to chapter 6 today, to and from work. Nice, short, descriptive chapters. And one description was of BB, with “one white hoof and a pretty little star on my forelock” or something to that effect, and that he was thought “rather handsome”… which, after oh, about 20 years, brought the book rushing back to me.

I have to say, I am still not the greatest fan of listening to someone else’s voice telling the story, since I am so used to reading fluidly, but so far, it’s beating my old CD, and the Christmas tunes on the radio, and I’m getting a delicious little bit of my childhood back.

Audiobooks, you get a solid “B”! Yes, I do grade on a curve.