In October 2017, a blogger I follow shared on Facebook about a sale Audible.com was running. She mentioned that when you begin a membership, you not only get a free title as an introductory bonus but also a free one-month trial with a credit good for any book in their database.
Two free audiobooks I can own forever with a one-month free trial?! After browsing through the expansive offerings I signed up on a whim.
“Our family spends more money each month on our movie and TV streaming subscriptions,” I told myself, “I’ll give this a try, and see if I like it enough to rearrange our monthly entertainment budget to accommodate an ongoing subscription. Taking in audiobooks seems like a more worthwhile way to unwind, anyways!”
At the end of the free-trial, it was clear that I was in the early stages of a passionate love affair with audiobooks. I found myself listening to books while I did the dishes, worked out on my elliptical trainer, folded laundry, and sipped wine in bed at the end of a long day.
Throughout my life, there’s never been ANYTHING like a great book to feed and fill my soul. Yet, motherhood places demands on my time and attention like no other role I’ve had. It also makes my soul hungrier and wearier than I thought possible. Sadly, I just have not been able to read the way I did before kids, and I have accepted that.
Now that I have been consistently listening to audiobooks and building up a library of wonderful titles for over two years, I feel like I have found a way to take in LOTS of great books, while still honoring my ongoing commitments.
My Favorite Audiobooks
Even though your taste in books might be completely different from mine, here are my favorites. If you have been on the fence about taking the audiobook plunge, hopefully, this will encourage you to give it a whirl!
The Harry Potter series, masterfully narrated by Jim Dale, is my audiobook mainstay. My husband and I enjoy listening to them together and reminisce about when we first immersed ourselves into J.K. Rowling’s world of “witchcraft and wizardry”.
When I was a teenager, I read and enjoyed lots of classic literature. It’s been fun to reunite with some of those titles and enjoy some for the first time. Some of my favorites are:
- Charlotte Bronte’s Jane Eyre, narrated by Thandie Newton
- Charles Dickens’ A Tale of Two Cities, narrated by Simon Callow
- Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, narrated by Dan Stevens
There is something truly energizing about actively learning and being willing to try something new. A few non-fiction books that have prompted me to make some changes in my daily life or simply look at the world differently have been:
- The Little Book of Hygge, written and narrated by Meik Wiking
- Marie Kondo’s The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, narrated by Emly Woo Zeller
- The Read-Aloud Family, written and narrated by Sarah Mackenzie
Best Audiobooks for Kids
And finally, here are some kid-approved favorites that our family has enjoyed together!
- Roald Dahl’s Matilda, narrated by Kate Winslet
- Beverly Cleary’s Henry Huggins, narrated by Neil Patrick Harris
- Beverly Cleary’s Ramona Quimby, Age 8, narrated by Stockard Channing
- James Herriot’s Treasury for Children, narrated by Jim Dale