Romance Readers Reading Challenges discussion

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RRR Discussions & Top-Lists > Audiobooks? What is your take on them?

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message 1: by Yz the Whyz, Moderator (new)

Yz the Whyz (whyz) | 9327 comments I love audiobooks. Ever since I've overcome my initial lack of focus and trained myself to listen right, I have been listening to audiobooks everytime I'm in my car.

I have used it to catch up on my TBR pile and there are some books I prefer to listen to than read. I enjoy Anita Blake books more on audio than on print, although I've read them on both format. I listened to almost all of KMM's Highlander series on audiobooks and love Phil Gigante's narration.

How about you? Do you ever listen to audiobooks or you can't get into it?


message 2: by [deleted user] (new)

i think its great to listen to the book. but don't think skip parts?


message 3: by Yz the Whyz, Moderator (new)

Yz the Whyz (whyz) | 9327 comments Stephanie wrote: "i think its great to listen to the book. but don't think skip parts? "

I always pick the unabridged version, one where you get the whole book with nothing missing. I would never listened to an abridged one. It would feel incomplete to me.



message 4: by Jodz (new)

Jodz (jodz87) I've never actually listened to one. I guess i prefer to read them.


message 5: by ♥Tricia♥ (new)

♥Tricia♥ (siddie) | 407 comments I actually was interested in getting some audio books then my sister told me they were awful for the romance genre.

I guess it would depend on how good the reader is..

It also depends on how fast or slow you are used to reading a book and if the reader is slower then you are used to, that might get frustrating.


Nichole (DirrtyH) (dirtyh) I've never listened to a romance audio book, but I've listened to a couple mainstream books over the last year, and I've decided I really don't like them. I think one of the best things about reading is that you get to do it in your own voice. It all takes place inside your head, and you get to give the character's their voices. I find when listening to an audio book that I have a harder time really relating to the story. And depending on the narrator, you can really miss a lot of the humor of a book, and other subtleties like that.


message 7: by Yz the Whyz, Moderator (last edited Jan 13, 2009 11:56AM) (new)

Yz the Whyz (whyz) | 9327 comments I think listening to an audiobook is an acquired thing. I remember the first time I tried it, I can't get into it.

However, I tried it again. I think it was an Anita Blake book, and I enjoyed it so much. Even when I read an Anita Blake book, it is the reader's voice I hear in my head. Same with Karen Marie Moning's Fever series. The reader's voice is now my idea of how Mac sounds.

Maybe it helps that I only listen when I'm driving and by myself. So I'm in an enclosed space and there is really no distraction, after all, driving work to home is almost mindless.

I have to admit I think I'm addicted to audiobooks aside from regular books. I picked up FaeFever, a Nora Roberts trilogy and Touch the Dark in audiobooks yesterday from the library. I never listen to the radio in my car, just audiobooks.




message 8: by Sarah (new)

Sarah  | 367 comments I love audio. I easily get tired of the music played on local radio, so audiobooks are a great alternative. I have a half-hour drive to work, so I can get a lot of quality listening time in each day. It really helps me keep my TBR pile moving along!

I would only recommend listening to unabridged stuff, though. I tried listening to an abridged Anita Blake, but it was impossible. They cut out a whole important development between Anita and Nathanial, which would've left me totally confused in the next novel if I hadn't gone back to skim the book.

If you like historical/action/chicklit, I'd highly recommend Lauren Willig's Pink Carnation series on audio. The story and narrator are both top notch.


message 9: by Yz the Whyz, Moderator (new)

Yz the Whyz (whyz) | 9327 comments I'm with you Sarah. I would never touched an abridged book, audio or not. For me, that is not the complete book.

I love audiobooks too. I will check out your recommendation, plus it has a flower in its title.


message 10: by [deleted user] (new)

thank u for letting know the difference between abridged and unabridged. If i am going to listen to a auto book i would want it to be the whole book..

I haven't really tired auto books before. for me it always felt like cheating. i couldn't say i read the book if i listened to it. :) but i think i might buy a few and check it out. cant hurt to try.


message 11: by Yz the Whyz, Moderator (new)

Yz the Whyz (whyz) | 9327 comments Try borrowing them first like from a library. They can be more expensive than books, so at least if you don't like them, you can simply return them.

Listening is actually a different skill than reading, and although it's not an active action, it still requires some focus.


message 12: by ♥Tricia♥ (new)

♥Tricia♥ (siddie) | 407 comments I think I will try one out, which one do you recommend as a first?

Paranormal Romance preferred :)


message 13: by Sarah (new)

Sarah  | 367 comments Tricia,

It looks like you've got several of Kim Harrison's Rachel Morgan books in your TBR list. I'd recommend one of them. I know they come unabridged, and the narrator is fantastic with the voices. I love the voice she does for Jenks!


message 14: by ♥Tricia♥ (new)

♥Tricia♥ (siddie) | 407 comments Cool thanks!


message 15: by Melissa (new)

Melissa | 1243 comments I'm not able to focus on the audio books, my mind just wanders and then I realize I've missed something! I tried the Harry Potter books on audio because Jim Dale was the narrator and everyone told me he was so great, and he was, but I just couldn't stay focused. I've also tried listening to the Stephanie Plum series on audio even though I had read them all already because someone said they were done well. I agree, but I still couldn't stay focused! I personally, love books. I like the weight in my hand, all the different fonts publishers use, the smell of them. I'm also not in a position where I can listen at long lengths of time whereas I can read any time, any where.


message 16: by Tasha (last edited Jan 16, 2009 01:39PM) (new)

Tasha (tasha_avidbookaholic) | 85 comments I love audiobooks! I listen to alot of them on my ipod at work, b/c I sit at a desk for 10hrs a day. It's like watching a good movie, but audio instead of video. Like those old radio shows before we all went to tv.

All my Christine Feehan books I prefer in audio as well as Linda Howard and Janet Evanovich's romance novels. I like all of Susan Elizabeth Phillips in audio format, but it was more for the narrator, Anna Fields. That's also why I like Janet Evanovich's because of C.J. Critt.


message 17: by ♥Tricia♥ (new)

♥Tricia♥ (siddie) | 407 comments Hmm audio books on ipod.. how do you get them on your ipod? Teach me! lol


message 18: by Nichole (DirrtyH) (last edited Jan 16, 2009 01:54PM) (new)

Nichole (DirrtyH) (dirtyh) You just rip them onto your computer the way you would a music cd.
You can also download them from iTunes if you want to pay (though they sometimes have some for free), or there's a service called audible.com that has a monthly fee, but if you sign up for a trial service they'll give you one for free.


message 19: by ♥Tricia♥ (last edited Jan 16, 2009 02:01PM) (new)

♥Tricia♥ (siddie) | 407 comments Oh thank you :D

One more question! How big are the books? I mean like would a 1g ipod be sufficient to hold 1 or 2?

Ok I lied, another question lol.. If I join Audible and pay the monthly fee.. the charge of the audio books are brought down? or are the books free with the monthly charge..
That site is confusing!


message 20: by Yz the Whyz, Moderator (last edited Jan 16, 2009 02:05PM) (new)

Yz the Whyz (whyz) | 9327 comments Tasha,

I don't own an ipod..*hangs head in shame*...LOL...but I listen in my car. Anna Fields did a great job in most of SEP audiobooks, it's a shame she passed away. She was a talented narrator.

I haven't listened to C.J. Critt yet, but I'm planning to read the Evanovich's books soon, so I might just her in audio.

I also like Phil Gigante, the reader of KMM's Highlander series. Joyce Bean and Christine Holloway are also good readers. The couple that also do the Suz Brockmann's audio books are also good. I can't recall their names at the moment.


message 21: by Tasha (last edited Jan 16, 2009 02:09PM) (new)

Tasha (tasha_avidbookaholic) | 85 comments Most of my audiobooks I get from audible.com, and before downloading them it asks what device you'll be using to play them so it'll download in a format that is supported by that device. The ones I check out from my local library that are in cd format, I import into itunes on my computer and then transfer them over to my ipod. Before importing it into itunes you have to click on Edit and scroll down to Preferences, and once that opens on the General tab it should have Import Settings in the middle and click on that. Once that opens make sure that Import Using is set to AAC Encoder and change Setting to Custom. That should open another little window that says Stereo Bit Rate which you'll set to 32 kbps. Check the box that says Optimize for Voice and click OK out of all of that. When you put the disc in it will ask if you want to import it, but say no. You'll need to hit Edit and choose Select All. Then click Advance and scroll down to Join Tracks. Then begin importing your discs. Joining the tracks will allow you to have one continuous disc instead of all those individual tracks which is helpful when pausing and starting back up where you left off.

If you use windows media player instead of itunes, I couldn't begin to tell you how to do it. lol :) Happy listening!


Nichole (DirrtyH) (dirtyh) That I'm really not sure. I'm sure a 1G mp3 player would hold at least 2 or 3 books, but it could be a lot more than that. I don't do audio books much so I'm not as familiar with it as I should be...
They advertise audible.com on a lot of the podcasts I listen to, that's where I heard about that.


message 23: by Sarah (new)

Sarah  | 367 comments Speaking of Phil Gigante--Does anyone find it weird to hear a man narrate a romance novel?


message 24: by Yz the Whyz, Moderator (new)

Yz the Whyz (whyz) | 9327 comments Hmm...I never thought of it at all. Although when I was new to listening to audiobooks, I thought it was slightly funny when he does the female voices, but I got used to it. I like his voice for the male characters.


message 25: by Sarah (new)

Sarah  | 367 comments For some reason, hearing a man reading a romance novel makes me want to giggle. Call me immature. Maybe just because it's unexpected (since the "traditional" thinking is that more women read them than men). I've noticed, though, that Phil reads all the Highlander books, and maybe the Nora Roberts Circle Trilogy, too.


message 26: by ♥Tricia♥ (new)

♥Tricia♥ (siddie) | 407 comments I went to audibles.com and clicked on one of gena showalters books to listen to a preview and it was a man reading it!

I was like woah! I dont know if I could listen to the whole book that way lol.




message 27: by Yz the Whyz, Moderator (last edited Jan 16, 2009 02:23PM) (new)

Yz the Whyz (whyz) | 9327 comments Wasn't the Circle trilogy read by a male and female? I can't remember, but I love that trilogy, especially the last book. I actually found myself sitting in the dark in the driveway trying to finish the chapter before coming inside the house.

Oh, and don't get me started when the reader starts reading the sexy parts. I remember listening to Anita Blake, and I was at a red light, and my windows are down, and it was at a raunchy part and another car stop beside me. I know the driver probably can't hear what I was listening to, but I actually lowered the volume down..LOL..


message 28: by Tasha (last edited Jan 16, 2009 02:27PM) (new)

Tasha (tasha_avidbookaholic) | 85 comments I like Joyce Bean as well. Also Susan Ericksen and Sandra Burr are really good as well.

Speaking of Phil Gigante, doesn't he do Karen Marie Moning's Highlander series also? I've listened to all but 2 of those and I think he's the narrator. Some of the men are okay, but then again I haven't heard alot of them. Christine Feehan's Ghostwalkers series is read by a man, Tom Stechschulte. And her Dark series, I prefer the ones that are read by Richard Ferrone instead of those by Rebecca Cook and Juanita Parker. Those that are read by both male and female and great too.

As far as the ipod size, both of mine are 30GB. I have one with music and videos and the other with just audiobooks.


message 29: by ♥Tricia♥ (new)

♥Tricia♥ (siddie) | 407 comments Well I was asking what size ipod would be sufficient.. I gave my large ipod to my daughter so I would have to purchase one.. and I really dont wish to spend alot so I was thinking a 1g ipod would be ok if it would fit a couple books at a time on it. :)


message 30: by Yz the Whyz, Moderator (last edited Jan 16, 2009 02:33PM) (new)

Yz the Whyz (whyz) | 9327 comments Yes, all the Highlander books are Phil Gigante's work. I know Dark Possession by Feehan was also read by him. I read and I listened to Feehan's Dark books, and I can't remember the readers, but I preferred the male reader over the females for some reason.

I like Joyce Bean's work with some of the Amanda Quick and some Linda Howard that she reads with another guy...I can't think of his name right now.

I guess, I need to be more attentive on who the readers are. I just recently started paying attention, when I started to recognize their voices and realized I'm developing favorites.


message 31: by Nichole (DirrtyH) (last edited Jan 16, 2009 02:37PM) (new)

Nichole (DirrtyH) (dirtyh) This is sort of on topic (actually, it's totally on topic) - I heard that James Marsters, who played Spike on Buffy (i loooove spike....) reads the Dresden File books.

As I've mentioned, I'm not a huge audio book listener, but that's pretty tempting.


message 32: by ♥Tricia♥ (new)

♥Tricia♥ (siddie) | 407 comments Oh well if spike reads a series I might just have to pick then up lol


message 33: by Yz the Whyz, Moderator (new)

Yz the Whyz (whyz) | 9327 comments Really Nichole...Oh, I would want to listen to that. I'm going to check if the library has them in audio since The Dresden files are onmy TBR list anyway. I even have the tv show on my queue in Netflix.


Nichole (DirrtyH) (dirtyh) Yz- I was going to take your suggestion and listen to the Sookie Stackhouse books on cd, but the wait for those at my library is HUGE. Grr.


message 35: by Yz the Whyz, Moderator (new)

Yz the Whyz (whyz) | 9327 comments Nichole,

Oh dear....Well, just put your name in...I'm sure you have plenty of other books to read in the meantime...LOL..so no rush to get to Sookie..LOL..


Nichole (DirrtyH) (dirtyh) That's very true.
But once I get an idea in my head, I want to do it right now! lol.


message 37: by Melissa (new)

Melissa | 1243 comments I just looked up the Dresden/James Marsters and YES! he is the narrator. I'm going to have to give that a try. I just saw him (James Marsters) in the P.S. I Love You movie. I love his fake british accent when he's Spike, so it's so weird to hear him speak for real. He's fun on Smallville too, but I will never see him as anyone but Spike.


Nichole (DirrtyH) (dirtyh) What do you guys think of audible.com?
I was just looking at it, and their "special deal" is $7.49 a month - and you only get one book a month for that price. Regular price is $15 a month for one book.
That sounds like a lot to me. Does anyone here use audible?


Nichole (DirrtyH) (dirtyh) Holy crap! I just checked iTunes and a single book is more than $20. So I guess audible is a deal...
I guess I won't be buying any audio books any time soon. :)


message 40: by Yz the Whyz, Moderator (new)

Yz the Whyz (whyz) | 9327 comments I heard about Audible.com but has never used them. It is my impression that audiobooks are expensive, so I never looked into buying them. I simply used the library as my major resource. They also have electronic downloads available. You might want to check what your library has to offer with this type of media.


message 41: by Tasha (new)

Tasha (tasha_avidbookaholic) | 85 comments I have an account with audible and I pay $22.95 a month for 2 credits. I've been debating with myself about canceling it because of the price. Doesn't it seem rather expensive? But then I get to thinking I'd be paying that price for just one audiobook anywhere else, so I end up keeping the account.


Nichole (DirrtyH) (dirtyh) Yeah, I think if your'e using it and would be buying audiobooks otherwise, then it probably is worth it. I had no idea audiobooks were so expensive. It kind of sucks that you're limited to only one or two books a month, though.

My library doesn't seem to have a huge collection of books on cd, though like Yz was saying, they have an option where you can download them, but it's complicated. You only get it for a certain amount of time and they come in a weird format that I couldn't figure out. It wasn't compatible with iTunes, whatever it was, and I would need to be able to play it on my iPod.


message 43: by Malena (new)

Malena (thefieryheartnz) | 72 comments I love audiobooks. I listen to them on my Ipod everywhere I go. I use my local library to find mine.


message 44: by Yz the Whyz, Moderator (new)

Yz the Whyz (whyz) | 9327 comments Maybe you can show Nichole how to download audiobooks from the library to her Ipod.


message 45: by tosca (new)

tosca (catatonichataholic) | 742 comments Decided to borrow a couple of audiobooks from work. Thought I'd start with a couple of stories I'd read and knew, so maybe it wouldn't seem so strange (Brockmann's 'Into the Fire' for a little bit of Marine hotness and Roberts 'Blood Brothers'). But I couldn't stop giggling over Gigante's falsetto for the female character in Blood Brothers. It didn't do it for me! Think next time I'll borrow a story I don't know and won't have a pre-conceived idea of already. Haven't totally counted 'em out, just have to find another way around it lol.


message 46: by Yz the Whyz, Moderator (last edited Jan 23, 2009 10:32PM) (new)

Yz the Whyz (whyz) | 9327 comments Tosca,

I've listened to both audiobooks. I love the performances in Into the Fire, and you just have to love Izzy's thoughts.

I have to admit the first time I heard a male reader do a female voice like Phil does, I thought it was comical too. But later I get lost in the story, and don't notice it as much. After awhile, I'm just used to it, having listened to his voice in so many audiobooks.

I know the next book The Hollow is narrated by a female. Maybe you should check that out and see how you like a female reader doing a masculine voice.


message 47: by tosca (new)

tosca (catatonichataholic) | 742 comments Hi de hi Yz - have requested The Hollow audiobook. It's a long weekend for us here in Auckland, NZ so will have to wait 3 whole days! Bah humbug.


ஐ Briansgirl (Book Queen)ஐ (briansgirlkate) | 0 comments Melissa wrote: "I'm not able to focus on the audio books, my mind just wanders and then I realize I've missed something! I tried the Harry Potter books on audio because Jim Dale was the narrator and everyone told..."

I've listened to Harry Potter audio books, but only after I've already read them myself. This was a refresher, something to listen to so I wasn't bored while cross stitching.

I've got a couple audio books in the house. One's abridged so I havn't touched it. The other, for some reason, I just havn't listened to yet. I'd prefer to read the book and I don't have a commute or anything to kill time with an audio book.



message 49: by Kelley Anne (new)

Kelley Anne I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE audio books! I am like Tasha and can listen to headphones at work, so all that I do is listen to books. It's great! 40 hours a week of listening to books, and I get paid for it! But like was mentioned, always make sure that it says unabridged! Otherwise, it's just not worth your time.

If you get a lot of audiobooks, and you don't have a great selection at your library, audible.com is great. Personally, I buy the annual package that is $229.50 and you get 24 books. It ends up making the books $9.56 each. You have a year to use up all of the credits for books, but it never takes me anywhere near that long, then I just renew the package again. It's a little harder to always pay the money up front, but in the long run it does end up saving me money. One thing that I always watch for though is that sometimes I can get a book on audible for less that the $10 so then I don't want to use up one of my credits for it.

As for if a 1 GB mp3 player is big enough, it really depends on the book. I have some books that are pretty small, like Anne Frank, it's only about 150 MB. BTW, there are a 1,000 MB in a GB. But then there are really large books. Currently, I am listening to Acheron by Sherrilyn Kenyon and it's 1.27 GB, so that would be too big for your mp3 player. But the book is also about 24 hours long so you could always put the first half on, listen to that and then put the second half on.

There are some books that I just can't handle the reader and have to put the audiobook down, but for the most part I haven't had that issue. It can take a bit to get used to a guy reading a romance novel, but if you get a good actor it's not a problem. If you've never listened to a male do a romance novel, start with the Highlander series by Karen Marie Moning. They are great! The Undead and Unwed series by Mary Janice Davidson are hilarious. The actress does a great job of playing a ditzy blond! If anyone's interested, I could give a list of about 50 great audio books. There are a couple though that I would advise people to NOT listen too though. The first is The Host by Stephenie Meyer. I love the book, hate the actress. Then the other day I decided that I wanted to start the Magic Bites series by Ilona Andrews because I heard that they are great books. I couldn't even get through the first disk (and there are 7 disks) because I didn't like the actress. It sounded like she was either grimacing or scowling the entire time that she read. I'll have to pick up the paperbacks for that series.

Anyways, sorry that I pretty much wrote a novel on here, hope some of my opions and info are useful.


message 50: by ♥Tricia♥ (new)

♥Tricia♥ (siddie) | 407 comments Thanks for the info Kelley Anne, I havent started listening to these yet.. as I am not sure I want to invest in the MP3 player yet as well as the price of the books.. since I dont know if I would like listening over reading.

I read rather fast.. I can finish a book in a few hours, if I am uninterpreted anyhow lol.

But the idea intrigues me and I know I will try it eventually :P


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