I might get struck down for what I am about to say but I do believe in being honest with all of you who pop by Savidge Reads, so here goes… I have always thought that audio books are cheating. I know, I know I should be expelled from the book blogosphere but do bear with me while I explain and also why I might be changing my tune.
The reason I have previously never believed that an audio book really counts as a book is because you don’t actually read it. Oh and I must mention I am only applying this to me (myself and I personally – not everyone else) and audio books. I am not saying that I feel like this about people who use them as some people may need them as they are sight impared etc and other people just really like audio books when they are driving, cleaning or simply whenever they fancy! So lets close the lid on that can of worms before we go any further…
I know some people would strongly disagree with that statement, and I am fine with that and invite you to leave a comment saying why that’s wrong below. I just think that if you say you have ‘read’ a book then you have to actually have ‘read’ it. I wouldn’t for example watch ‘Revolutionary Road’ on DVD and say I had therefore read the book too. Do you know what I mean? Note: Having said that films are generally a rather abridged and often highly edited adaptation of a book, an audio book is the book word for word. That doesn’t mean I don’t like audio books, I just seemed to loose my way with some slightly (and I am being really honest here) snooty thoughts on them.
However the author Paul Magrs (who blogs too if you didn’t know, do pop and have a look if you don’t already) kindly lent me and audio book or two which he thought might be right up my street, and he was right…
Yes, I have now got some wonderful Agatha Raisin novels on my iPod and with the wonderful Penelope Keith being Agatha they are an absolute joy to listen to though not to read and have been with me on several trips into town and on shopping expeditions. I have been highly entertained by them and now want to get my mitts on the rest of the set, with one small condition… I have to have read the mysteries first, rather like I would if I was going to see a film adaptation I guess.
I do wonder though if audio books might make good companions to a book. For the first time in a long while I considered downloading an audio book when I was reading ‘Brighton Rock’ and had found myself floundering somewhat. I wouldn’t have switched exclusively to the audio version. Maybe just turned to it and then back to the book and so on while I got a grasp on Pinkie and all he was up to.
I am wondering if I am missing a trick though and so thought I would start a little light discussion on audio books today to get your thoughts. Are there any you would recommend? Have you read a book and found it so tough you’ve turned to an audio version and suddenly sailed on with or without the actual novel? What are the pro’s and con’s of audio? Do you think if you have listened to an audio book you have then read it and if so why, what makes the distinction? Looking forward to your thoughts, you might convert me. Maybe I could end up reading a book and then listening to the audio and see how they compare… ooh I already have a possibility in mind.
Update note – Paul Magrs has done a brilliant post in response to this please do have a look!