It’s really only been the last ten years when I’ve become completely obsessed with Audiobooks. Before that I think my listening time was exclusively devoted to music. It was actually a radio dramatisation that sparked my interest in audio narratives.
Just prior to the release of the Lord of the Rings films, I had discovered the BBC Radio Adaptation. Probably the best audio dramatisation I’ve ever listened to. And, to this day, I still think it’s superior to Jackson’s films (which I adore!). I cannot tell you how many times I’ve listened to the adaptation. Too many to count. But, it really did ignite an interest in audio productions, and lead me inevitably, I suppose, to audiobooks.
I think the audiobooks I listened to first were from Terry Pratchett’s Discworld. I’d been reading Discworld for decades, and when I realised just how many of them had been adapted as audiobooks, I set about collecting them, and listening to them voraciously.
My favourite discworld audiobook is definitely Small Gods. Pratchett’s knowing take on religion and belief is both profound and hilarious.
From Discworld, oddly, I moved onto Science books. Most notably, those of Professor Richard Dawkins. The Selfish Gene. The Blind Watchmaker. The Ancestors Tale. Again, these are all books I’ve read again and again and again.
And, that’s really why I wanted to write this little piece about them. The great thing about Audiobooks, is that you can listen to them, and parse them, while you are busy doing something else. That was amazing to me. I could be getting a load of important physical work done (most recently, in actually building, from the foundations up, vortex42studios, here in Denmark), and all the while you could be enjoying a story, or taking in extremely dense scientific ideas.
With a physical book, I might sit and read it through once… maybe twice if it was particularly special to me… But, with audiobooks I found I could happily listen to the same book again and again. And, it never lost its appeal.
I don’t like that myth that people cannot do two things at once. I find that with audiobooks, you most certainly can. You can work hard and learn at the very same time.
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