January 27, 2005

Are you listening?

I am not a huge audio book buff, but I have become addicted to certain types of books on tape. For example, although I have already read the Harry Potter books several times over, I have recently been making my way through the audio versions. While I could never recommend audio books over text, the audio versions of HP are a completely different experience than the written ones and make a great extension (i.e. I would never “listen” to them before “reading” them). The narrator, Jim Dale, is a mastermind of voices and performs remarkable renditions of the characters. In fact, he is so proficient; he could give Sally Field a run for her money. I find myself in the car getting chills down my spine in certain parts and laughing out loud in yet others.

I also found that listening to the Queer Eye for the Straight Guy book was so enjoyable that I can’t imagine actually reading this book. Since it was narrated by the Queer Eyes themselves, the book was equally entertaining as it was informative.

David Sedaris’ new book, Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim, is waiting for me at the library in audio form. I did check out the written book, but I think Sedaris’ writing style lends itself to narration – in print, he comes across as very dry. He is amusing, but I have heard his audio books are superior to his written ones and I can’t wait to find out.

So, while I don’t think I could ever get “all up into that” with audio books, I do think in the future I will be selecting certain types of book solely for listening – in particular, humorists, some non-fiction, and a few pieces of children’s lit that I have been wanting to re-read.


Anonymous said...

I listened to Christopher Reeve's autobiography on CD - he narrated himself. It's great.

Rozanne said...

And, of course, you can knit as you listen. That's what really rawks!

I'll have to check out the Queer Eye audiobook. That should be hilarious!

Goofy Girl said...

I don't leave my house without an audiobook in my car! I have no less than 8 in there now. (Note to self: must drive more!) The QE audio was excellent, although the recipes were lost somewhat in the reading. I'm currently listening to "Dare to Succeed", which is Mark Burnett's (producer of Survivor) biography. He's led a very interesting life!

I love learning, and if the time driving around town can be used for that, I'm all for it!

Anonymous said...

I'm not much for audio books, but my former boss copied "Dress Your Family In Corduroy and Denim" for me onto CDs and I simply cannot remember to take them with me when I'm near a CD player for any length of time. I had a 600 mile round-trip drive late last year that I endured with only the radio because I forgot the CDs. I may never hear the whole thing.

- Jane

Mojavi said...

I am totally addicted to anything audio, I have a whole blog on how I am addicted to them.. Here is a good hint, if you open up a book on audiotape and the first tape is half used, i.e. they never rewound it. Chances are the person narrating the story is horrible or the book just sucks! It has happened to me numerous times and I find it funny that when I finally eject the tape I am at almost the exact same spot as the user before me... later...