Thursday, November 6, 2014

Audiobook vs. Hard Copy - Do you mix medias when reading your book series?

For the first time, I am in the unique position of having to choose between getting an audiobook or a hard copy.


When I first listened to Etiquette & Espionage, I knew next to nothing about the series. In fact, I don't even know why I decided to use that as my free audiobook from I must have seen a recommendation somewhere, because honestly for how charming these books are, I hear very little about them. Luckily, I forgot to cancel my audible subscription so I ended up buying the second book in the trilogy as well before canceling my subscription.  This puts me in a bit of a (admittedly first world) dilemma. I knew so little about these books that I didn't even realize they were a trilogy, let alone an unfinished one! I finally finished the second book last month and was pleased to find out that luckily the third book is coming out next week.  It only occurred to me this week that since I'd listened to the series so far, it might be kind of weird to start reading it!

There's a few problems with getting this on audiobook, however:

1. Audiobooks are expensive.
2. I pretty much exclusively listen to them in the car, which requires them to be in cd format. (This series I actually own digitally, so I listened to them a lot when I was in the shower/cleaning, but it takes forever that way, since mostly my showers are like 5 minutes unless I'm washing my hair)
3. Ergo, I'd ideally own this in cd format, but then my formats won't match since I own the other two digitally.  So that's not entirely ideal either I suppose...
3. Did I mention they were expensive?

On the other hand:

1. I love the narrator, and I'm glad this was my first delve into audiobooks because Moira Quick is absolutely perfect.
2. I already own the first two books on audiobook, and I do like having all of everything in sort of the same format. And it would feel weird to have the first two on audiobook and the third one on my bookshelf.
3. It wouldn't kill me to make some free time to listen this, even if it means I won't get to it anytime soon.
4. The library isn't getting this book anyway, so regardless of all my options, I'm going to have to buy it.  Might as well buy it in the matching format!

We'll see. I mean it's not like I'm going to have moneys/time to listen to this soon so I suppose just because the book is coming out (came out this week?) doesn't mean I have to make a decision right now.  But I'm curious - do you guys mix and match how you read books in a series? Or do you stick to one or the other?  Does it feel weird bouncing between the two?

(And under rhetorical questions, WHY doesn't my library have a cd audiobook of the Abhorsen trilogy? Tim Curry narrates! I want it!)

*P.s. I'm in the market for any recommended book narrators/ones to stay away from/books that are particularly good as audiobooks! I'm limited by what my library has, but other than the Garth Nix trilogy, they seem to have a good selection at least so far!


  1. I used to be those people who were very reluctant with audiobooks. Every time I saw how long it’’ll take to listen, I shudder. But I tried it and see some pros when listening to it. I’m not jumping bandwagon; I’m more comfortable reading books. And to answer your question, I’m quite the OCD so I don’t like to mix and match.

  2. Waiting for audiobooks is the woooorrrrsssttt. I can't bring myself to pay for them. I've mixed a couple series and it was fine, but I did tend to prefer one medium over the other. Here are some of my personal recs: Scorpio Races (SO SO SO GOOD), The Raven Boys et al (it is narrated by a guy which threw me off at first, but I ended up loving it. Plus hearing Stiefvater's writing for this series out loud is a real treat), Code Name Verity (I'd venture to say that this book is best in audiobook form), and the Flavia de Luce series. Sabriel with Tim Curry was really really good too, though I had a harder time with Lirael for some reason. I'm trying to remember ones I didn't like. Oh! I was not impressed with Legend by Marie Lu. I'll think of the others...

  3. I do mix and match sometimes but I agree it's not ideal. In fact I'm having that dilemma with Alanna right now - I listened to the first and really enjoyed the narrator and really wanted to continue on audio but at the library it is only available for digital download which has a checkout limit which I am at etc... and so forth. I do have an Audible subscription and have time to listen to digital audio as I have at least an hour and a half each day walking the dogs plus cleaning and cooking etc...Obviously you need a dog;0).
    I looked up Sabriel on cd at my library and they have it - I put that sucker on hold!

  4. Meeee toooo! They take SO LONG. Like a book I could read in an hour or two? 8 HOURS LONG. But it is good for my commute for work :)

  5. I can understand why you would want to stick with the same format through a series. I think I would too. Does your library have the option to suggest a book to purchase? Or maybe they are connected to an online site? Our library works with Overdrive, so we can download audiobooks that they don't have physically.

    The holidays are coming up...Maybe you just need to put a bug in somebody's ear! :)

  6. Yeah, they're just so expensive! I mean, understandably, what with all the extra people/production costs. We'll see - if my library gets ANY copy at all, that's what I'll be going with (but usually if the library is getting a copy of something and doesn't have it yet, it shows, so it's not looking promising on that front).

    I'll have to bump Scorpio Races and Code Name Verity to the top of my list! (Well, maybe on Code Name Verity. I drive while listening to the books, and when one of my audiobooks took a twist I wasn't expecting in a sad way, I decided perhaps sad books and cars were not a good combo haha). I usually just walk into the library and pick something random up, but it will be good to have a plan, as I'm pretty sure this charmed audiobook run can't go on forever. I've not heard of the Flavia de Luce series - going to look that up right now!

  7. I guess I shouldn't be surprised that was on audiobook since it's been around so long, but I had no idea! I kind of want to know what the audiobooks are like...

    I checked out a digital book on overdrive, and then I couldn't frelling figure out how to return it! So it was checked out the full 3 weeks and I couldn't return it to make space for more books *grumble grumble*. I also couldn't get it to work on my phone no matter HOW MANY TIMES I cleared it off. So I swore off the digital ones, because they made me frustrated lol.

    GAH! So jealous! Tim Curry is the best *sobs*

  8. They probably do, so I might put a request in, even if I'm not feeling particularly hopeful about it (they don't have the first two books in any format either). Last time I checked Overdrive they didn't have a copy either, but it might have been before the release day, so it might have been added since then!

    And who knows? I do have family who read the blog :-p

  9. Yes, the digital through the library, while I am grateful they offer it, is clunky as hell. I HATE that you can't check a book back in and that there are limited check-outs. Bah!
    I really really liked the Alanna audiobook - I thought the narrator was pretty perfect for it though her voice is perhaps a little old for 10 year old Alanna.

  10. That's how I'm feeling about the narrator for Going Bovine. I think he's really nailing the style of speaking the main character has, but there is no way he sounds like a teenage boy haha


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