Category Archives for "Blog"

Feb 11

Audiobooks vs Reading: Which is better?

By audiobookhoarder | Blog

If you ask people about why they read, many will answer that they read to retain information because that’s what they taught you to do in school. But that isn’t reading. That’s called studying.

In reality, you read to train your mind the same way working out trains your body. Only instead of breaking down your muscle fibers by applying pressure and growing them back stronger. You are rewiring the neurons, the fibers of your brain, into a stronger more aligned version of yourself. A version that is more capable of lifting the weights life provides.

The misconception about reading is that its boring and has very little benefits. But this is the one habit that you should be doing consistently. Reading can open your mind to ideas, inspirations, ways of thinking and mental fortitude that will bring you to success that will allow you to achieve your dreams.

Audiobooks

As technology has progressed throughout time, it has given us an alternative to traditional reading known as audiobooks. Audiobooks are voice recordings of the text of a book that you listen to rather than read. They can be exact word-for-word versions of books or abridged versions. Audiobooks can be listened through many mediums like portable music player, cell phone, computer, tablet, home speaker system or through streaming audio in cars. They can be downloaded from digital music stores and you can also purchase them from online bookstores or download themfor free from public domain sites.

History

Audiobooks may seem as a relatively new way of reading, but their origins may be traced back to the 1930s. They were often used as educational medium and could be found in school and libraries. They were referred to as talking books and were sold in physical forms on analog cassette tapes and vinyl records.

Due to the advent of the internet, an extensive collection of audiobooks was made available online through many different sources.

Pros

  • Multitask: You can listen to it while driving, washing the dishes, cooking etc. It turns so much of your time into reading time
  • Faster: You can go through an audiobook faster than regular books by jacking up the narrator speed.
  • Narrators: They are real actors who give life to the lines and make your reading experience more immersive.
  • Stamina: You are passively listening so will not get tired easily. Reading causes more brain activity and that can get you tired more easily.  
  • Pronunciation: Even if you know how something is spelled, you can still get the pronunciation wrong. Audiobooks can help immensely in that department by pronouncing the word for you.

Cons

  • Distractions: If you are multitasking while you’re listening to an audiobook, it’s very likely that you will get distracted.
  • Rewind: It is harder to go back if you missed something. For example, your GPS can interrupt your audiobook while you’re driving and you have to pull over to go back to what you missed.
  • Spelling: Sometimes you wonder how a character’s name is spelled and you can’t see it through the audiobook.
  • Passive: You are not fully engaged and thus can easily miss things.

Reading

Experts say that when you are reading something, you are looking at symbols on a page and you brain is busy filling in all the blanks. The sound of the voices, the scene, the inflection, the deeper meaning, the plot etc. This can make physically reading a book a more personal experience because your inner voice is responsible for creating everything that’s not on the page from only the words on the page.

History

Reading is an integral part of culture as most experts agree that society only began when the first writing system was invented. That would take us back to some 5200 years. Hence you can say that reading is an ancient art form that was perfected throughout the ages.

Pros   

  • Leave room for Imagination: You can have your own vision of how the story is unfolding.
  • Potable: No need to charge. Take them anywhere with you at any time.
  • Taking notes: You can note down the important sections if you want to review them later.

Cons

  • Can get heavy: It can be cumbersome to carry around heavy textbooks
  • Waiting period: You have to order online or buy from a bookstore. Waiting too long for a book you need for class can get you in trouble.
  • Can create a mess: If you have limited space and collect books, you can clutter up a room quickly.
Jan 26

Top 21 Best Audiobooks for Road Trips

By audiobookhoarder | Blog

When on the road for a long journey, time passes by slowly and it can quickly become very boring. The landscape or some company along with you can help eliminate that boredom. But sometimes you’ll find yourself driving on an unsightly road all alone or with a passenger who is disagreeable. In that scenario, an audiobook can become your lifesaver.

There are countless audiobooks out there so we have compiled a list of the 21 best audiobooks for road trips that you can enjoy on the road without feeling that dreaded boredom.

We make some money when you purchase a product from a link on our website. If you found the content helpful, please use the link to get to the chosen provider of your choice. It doesn't cost you a thing and it helps us put out great content. The money involved does not effect the ratings of any given product or service, we just link to an affiliate if there is one available after we write the article.

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Bird Box by Josh Malerman

You can't ever look at it or you will go violently insane. That is basically the premise of this book. What is it? What are they? Why are they here? What is it that people see that makes them go crazy? You'll have to fasten your seat belt and prepare for a long night to find out.

Read by Cassandra Campbell.

The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien

It is about the happy-go-lucky hobbit Bilbo Baggins and his adventures as he is whisked by the wizard Gandalf and a company of thirteen dwarves. They all plan on raiding the treasure hoard of Smaug the Magnificent, a large and very dangerous dragon.

Narrated by Rob Inglis.

Harry Potter and The Sorcerer’s Stone by J.K. Rowling

Harry Potter has no idea how popular he is. But everything changes when Harry is summoned to attend Hogwarts, a school for wizards aged eleven to eighteen, and begins to discover some clues about his distinguished birthright.

It has two versions that are narrated by Stephen Fry and Jim Dale

The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman

A boy is taken in by the late residents of a nearby graveyard. And when the spirit of his newly deceased mother asks for their help, the residents agree to raise her son. He is given to the care of the Owens couple and named “Nobody,” Bod for short, as he looks like “nobody but himself.”

Read by Neil Gaiman himself.

What If? Serious Scientific Answers to Absurd Hypothetical Questions by Randall Munroe

Always curious about “what-if” scenarios? Then this book is for you. Get ready for answers to questions like “If a bullet with the density of a neutron star were fired from a handgun (ignoring the how) at the Earth’s surface, would the Earth be destroyed?”

Read by Wil Wheaton.

How To Win Friends And Influence People by Dale Carnegie

One of the best-selling books of all time that has for over 60 years has carried thousands of now-famous people up the ladder of success in their professional and personal advice through its rock-solid, time-tested advice.

Read by Andrew Macmillan.

Not My Father’s Son by Alan Cumming

Actor Alan Cumming’s memoir about the strained relationship with his abusive father. It is a powerful story of embracing the best aspects of the past and triumphantly pushing the darkness aside. It is at times suspenseful, at times deeply moving, but always brave and honest.

Read by Alan Cumming himself.

War and Peace

This all-time classic is set against the dramatic backdrop of the Napoleonic Wars and examines the relationship between the individual and the relentless march of history. The themes of love and hate, ambition and despair, youth and age are all expressed in this timeless novel.

Read by Neville Jason.

Frederick Douglass: Prophet of Freedom by David W. Blight

An impressive and revealing biography of a major figure in American history. It tells a story of self-creation and independence, supported by a relentless work ethic.

Marvelous example of inspirational writing that gives a new perspective to be explored, of the complexity and prowess that was Frederick Douglass.

Read by Prentice Onayemi.

Everything I never Told you by Celeste NG

The story starts with a small seed - Lydia Lee is dead - and blossoms in every direction. Through non-linear perspective shifts, each member of Lydia's family deals with their grief in different ways, reflecting on their lives and filling us in on more of the mystery. We come to understand the expectations and dreams each had for themselves as well as Lydia and how damaging they can be.

Read by Cassandra Campbell.

Pleasantville by Attica Locke

One of the most thrilling account of local election politics and hustling for power that you will ever come across. This succeeds as a courtroom drama and political thriller, showing how real human suffering is used for point-scoring. A very intelligent and well-written book, for lovers of intrigue and suspense, this is the total package.

Read by J.D. Jackson.

The Good Lord Bird by James McBride

A wonderful tragicomedy about the life of the abolitionist John Brown told from the perspective of a fictional mascot nicknamed the Onion, a freed slave boy assumed to be a girl. McBride's bravery and originality make this a very worthwhile read, even when some passages drag and others seem repetitive.

Read by Michael Boatman

The Adventures of Tom Sawyer by Mark Twain

There are few children's stories as memorable for boys as Tom Sawyer. Whether it is pre-adolescent fascination with girls, getting away with not working, or a late-night adventure - Tom Sawyer has it all in spades. It is a true reading pleasure which you should absolutely not deprive yourself of.

Read by Nick Offerman

Destiny’s Captive by Beverly Jenkins

Descended from a long line of pirates, when Pilar Banderas steals adventure-seeking Noah Yates’ ship, it’s not greed that propels her theft but a desperate effort to protect the beloved women of her family, who are her sole responsibility. Laugh and cheer as Pilar shows arrogant Noah what it really means to be heroic.

Read by Thomas Penny.

A Thousand Pieces of You by Claudia Gray

Marguerite's parents are physicists who have successfully created a machine (Firebird) that allows people to jump into another dimension. Each dimension is a reflection of possibilities that could have taken place in our world. Some dimensions are very similar to ours, while some are completely exotic.

Our protagonist sets out on a mission to find the person who murdered her father and is planning her parent's downfall.

Read by Tavia Gilbert

The Walls Around us by Nova Ren Suma

This is a tale of innocence, jealousy, darkness, obsession, madness, etc. It’s told from the perspective of two girls: Amber and Violet, but their stories are linked by Orianna, a ballet dancer convicted to Aurora Hills juvenile detention after a crime she may or may not have committed.

Read by Rachel Manwill.

Paris Letters by Janice MacLeod

With a single suitcase in hand, former Californian copywriter Janice Macleod abandons her stultifying career and heads off to Europe sharing her journey in this memoir, Paris Letters. MacLeod shares just enough of the gritty details that you can imagine doing the same.

Read by Tavia Gilbert.

Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand

Louis Zamperini was an Italian-American Olympic runner whose plane goes down in World War 2, and he and two other men drift on a raft for a long, long time.

If you’re wondering whether you should listen to this book or not then stop wondering and just play it. Even if you don't end up liking it, you just need to listen to it. Everyone does.

Read by Edward Herrmann

I Suck at Girls by Justin Halpern

In “I Suck at Girls”, Halpern details childhood and adulthood incidents with the opposite sex. As the title promises, there’s plenty of awkwardness, some of it sweet since the author finds the love of his life. It’s a hilarious read that has Halpern’s father as well with his foul mouth and words of wisdom.

Read by Sean Schemmel.

Self-Inflicted Wounds by Aisha Tyler

Self-Inflicted Wounds is a memoir of sorts in which Tyler recounts all the times in her life, beginning at the ripe old age of five, when she (inadvertently) screwed herself over. From setting the kitchen on fire to boy problems to broken bones, she’s had a remarkable number of incidents where she can blame no one but herself.

Read by Aisha Tyler herself.

The Emperor of All Maladies by Siddhartha Mukherjee

With beautiful metaphors, poignant case studies, breath-taking science and delectable literary allusions, Siddhartha Mukherjee takes us on a detailed yet panoramic trip spanning centuries.

Living, and breathing along with his patients, Siddhartha Mukherjee dives deep into the dark and the light side of cancer, and explores not only how the diseases spreads within the body, but through the lives of his patients, and the doctors and scientists who strived to defeat this complicated, deadly disease.

Read by Stephen Hoye.

Aug 29

Playster vs Audible – Audiobook Wars – Which is best?

By audiobookhoarder | Audiobook Wars , Blog

Welcome to Playster vs Audible - the showdown! Which audiobook subscription service is best? It's hard to say, both have their advantages and disadvantages, but in this post we'll be going through each of the pros and cons for each service and coming to a conclusion to help you understand which audiobook subscription service you should be giving your money.

We make some money when you purchase a product from a link on our website. If you found the content helpful, please use the link to get to the chosen provider of your choice. It doesn't cost you a thing and it helps us put out great content. The money involved does not effect the ratings of any given product or service, we just link to an affiliate if there is one available after we write the article.

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Contender #1 - Playster

Playster is our first contender in this battle of Audible vs Playster. Playster doesn't just offer audiobooks, Playster offers a wide variety of media including movies, music, regular books and even video games. However, they are all charged separately, so you can just get Playster for the audiobook service if that is what interests you.

Playster was founded in 2014 and it can be accessed using any normal web browser on Windows or Mac. It is also accessible on iOS and android devices.

Regarding pricing, Playster is the definite winner here with $14.95 per month for the basic version (which allows access to all "basic" books) and $29.95 per month for the Premium plan. I've found that the premium plan is well worth the money as the variety and quality of the audiobooks on offer is much better.

Contender #2 - Audible

Welcome to our second contender - Audible. Audible is a big name in this space and it is owned by Amazon. They have a massive library with every kind of audiobook you can think of.

However, Audibles pricing structure is very different. You get credits that can be redeemed for audiobooks. for $14.95/month you get 1 credit per month and for $22.95 per month you get 2 credits per month. There is a rollover of credits of up to 5 credits for the Gold plan and 10 credits for the Platinum plan.

In terms of what is available, their is a much better selection for Audible compared to Playster, however Playster is much, much more affordable if you are planning on listening to more than 1 or 2 audiobooks per month.

If you're a bit of an audiobook addict, like me, you might want to try out Playster to see if they have the titles you are interested in.

So, who wins?

This was a tough one to compare two great services, but Playster clearly wins the best value for your money and if you're someone who listens to a lot of audibooks, it's definitely worth giving them a try. However, if you only have a few select audiobooks you want to listen to and they are not available on Playster, Audible might be the right fit for you.

Aug 23

Scribd Vs Audible – Audio Book Wars

By audiobookhoarder | Blog

Scribd Vs Audible - which is better? You're about to find out! Welcome to Audio Book Wars.

In this post we'll be comparing Scribd and Audible and highlighting the unique features each service has. If you're unsure which service to use, this post should help you decide! So without further delay, let's get started!

We make some money when you purchase a product from a link on our website. If you found the content helpful, please use the link to get to the chosen provider of your choice. It doesn't cost you a thing and it helps us put out great content. The money involved does not effect the ratings of any given product or service, we just link to an affiliate if there is one available after we write the article.

Disclaimer

Contender #1 - Scribd

Scribd is the underdog in this fight, they are a much smaller company than Audible, but they have plenty to offer! They were founded in March 2007 by Jared Friendman, Tikhon Bernstam and Trip Adler but it didn't start it's subscription service until 2013 and they added Audio books so it's service in November 2014. Since then it has grown to over 80 million users and it is often referred to as "the Netflix of books".

Scribd has apps for Android, iOS and also the Kindle Fire, Nook, Mac and Windows personal computers.

As a Scribd subscriber you can check out unlimited audio books and regular books a month from a variety of publishers including Lonely Planet, Perseus Book Group, Wiley, Workman, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, Harlequin, Bloomsbury and Simon & Schuster. The cost is only $8.99 per month and there is a 30 day free trial.

Contender #2 - Audible

Audible is the big boy in this fight, they're owned by Amazon after being bought in 2008. Their audio book catalogue is comprehensive and includes more than 200,000 audio programs from tons of leading audio book publishers.

Audible is compatible with iOS devices (iPhones, iPods and iPads), Android devices, Windows Phone, Kindle Fire, Kindle Oasis, Sandisk MP3 Players, Creative MP3 players, VictorReader Stream, BrailleNote, Garmin, Mac and Windows computers.

As an Audible subscriber you receive between 1 and 2 credits per month depending on your plan, there are no regular books included. Their plans are $14.95 per month for 1 credit and $22.95 per month for 2 credits. Most audio books can be purchased for 1 credit, however some books require 2 credits and some smaller, short books only cost half a credit.

So, who wins in the battle of Audible vs Scribd?

It depends on what books you want to read, but Scribd clearly wins in terms of bang for your buck, you don't have to worry about redeeming an audio book that you don't like and you also get regular books available as well if you fancy a regular text-based book. Audible does have some better publishers though. If you can find the books you want to read on Scribd, we recommend going with them. And with a 30 day free trial, why not give it a try?

Get A 30 Day Free Trial For Unlimited Books

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