Audiobooks: Raising the Bar for Reading
Before I started working at Rediscovered Books, I wasn’t sold on audiobooks. I didn’t know how to try them out and see if I liked them. Now that I’ve gotten my foot in the door, I’m in love! Sometimes our customers are surprised that our brick and mortar bookstore sells digital audiobooks, but it’s true! Most of us at Rediscovered listen to them and have found they’re a pretty wonderful way to enjoy a story.
We brought audiobooks into our store through an awesome Seattle based company called Libro.fm. In some unexpected ways, we’ve found that their audiobooks have become an essential part of how we help our customers access the stories they need. For me, they’re a great option when I’m busy or having trouble focusing. I can listen on my walk to work, when I’m painting, or while I do chores around the house– times when I wouldn’t be able to read a physical book. They are a powerful instrument for anyone who struggles with sight, could use help reading along, or just wants a new kind of reading experience.
We chose Libro.fm to help us bring audiobooks to the store for several reasons. First, they have a great mutual relationship with indie bookstores because if you’re a customer with us and buy audiobooks from Libro.fm, part of your purchases come back to us at Rediscovered Books, or other indie bookstores across the country that you’d like to support. They also have collections curated by us booksellers, so we can recommend our favorite audiobooks directly to you! When small businesses like us come together, we can help raise industry standards and provide competitive alternatives. Libro.fm’s monthly membership fee is the same as Amazon’s Audible and they are DRM free so when you buy an audiobook, it’s yours forever. To top it all off, their customer service is unparalleled. They care about bookstores and our customers, and it shows in the quality of their audiobooks, prices, and customer support.
Some of our favorite Libro.fm audiobooks use the audio format to tell stories in a uniquely immersive way. One of my current favorites is Meet Me at the Museum, by Anne Youngson, which is a book of letters written between an English woman and a Danish man who become friends over their many differences and the distance between them. The letters are read in the voices of the characters, with English and Danish accents included. I never wanted to stop listening! Another favorite is Sadie, by Courtney Summers, which is told in the form of a podcast that documents the twists and turns of Sadie’s adventure as she works to find her sister’s killer.
We are so glad we can share audiobooks through our store and through Libro.fm. If you’re still not sure about exploring audiobooks or Libro.fm, come in and talk to us! We’d love to share our experiences and answer any questions you may have. I hope that, like me, you find audiobooks to be an easy, rewarding, and engaging new way to read.
By Cora Lee Oxley