People have polarising stances on audiobooks. There appears to be a weird mistrust (and snobbery, let's be real) around the idea of listening as an alternative to reading. Sure, there's nothing quite like the unique pleasure of flicking through a physical book, inhaling wafts of that distinctive, musky book scent as your eyes get lost in the words that dance across the page. Reading IRL is indeed very romantic. But there are merits to audiobooks that even the most fiercely digitally sceptical must be able to understand. Like the fact that it's just easier.
We’ve all got books we meant to read. They're piled on our desks, on our bookshelves and by our beds; the unloved books we bought with the best of intentions. Some might've been ordered for bragging rights. Others may have been gifted by that all-knowing literary friend for a birthday. Try as we might to get through them, we can't seem to do it. It's not that we don't want to, it's just that some books can feel a little too much on paper. Intimidating, even. Too long, too intense or too heavy to lug around in your handbag. Too emotional or too complex to get into without dedicated concentration. It is in these cases that audiobooks are your saviour. Audiobooks ease the unspoken pressure that fair-weather readers know all too well.
Somewhere between idle consumption and conscious absorption is the humble audiobook. There is no need to get overwhelmed by starting to read a novel when all you have to do is hit play and go about your day. You can take in all the cultural capital that your next dinner party requires as someone's (perhaps a celebrity) dulcet tones talk you through the narrative, putting on different voices for different characters so you don't have to.
If you've recently thought about, and then against, picking up one of those books you really had intended to read but didn't, why not give audiobooks a go? Ahead, you can find a list of those books you should have read already which, actually, may work much better when they're read out loud to you instead.