So this is one of those ‘hot takes’ people like to do, especially on TikTok, that audio books somehow don’t count as reading, or that they shouldn’t go towards your total book count.
As someone who has always listened to a lot of audio books, especially to help them sleep, I’ve always been hesitant about whether to count the audio books. However, as I listen to more of them, on my commute, at the gym, or whilst working, it started to seem a little ridiculous not to.
Don’t be so pretentious – any consumption of literature counts
So, a little context, I started a podcast: The Lazy Book Lovers Podcast with my friend Natali Topliff and one of the core concepts when we set up the podcast was that ‘all reading is reading’, we aren’t going to gatekeep how someone reads, or what they read for that matter. Graphic novels, audio books, kindle, fan Fiction or physical books.
For some people, whether they are dyslexic or have ADHD might struggle to focus long enough to read, or, you might be busy person, like a mum whose doesn’t have the time to read. There’s a lot of reason audio books might be preferable.
Why should these people be deprived of wonderful books out of some kind of weird shame or posturing that someone who sits and reads book-books is somehow superior, or that is what they ‘should’ be doing.
Audio books have their advantages
There are some books that would be too dense to read-read, there are some books that downright beautiful to visualise whilst listening to as an audio. There are mixed elements that can be conveyed better via audio, such as songs that are part of the narrative, phone calls and so on. Especially if you get an ‘live action’ audio withs sound effects that’s done with well. I definitely find non-fiction easier to consume as an audio.
Audio books have a purpose
Like I said, I use them to sleep. I use them to help me focus when I’m doing a mundane task. I use them to keep me entertained at work. I use them as a softer alternative to constant noise, such as if I listened to music, or the constant chit chat of a podcast. I have a busy brain and I use audio books to give it a direction. I always use them as a way to re-read books I’ve enjoyed, without it distracting from my tbr.
I think audio books are great for anyone, whether they are a big reader or not, to mix into their life. I know some people who have rediscovered their love of reading through audio. As for a big old book nerd like me, they are just another way to consume books, while I’m forced to participate in reality,
So there, a slightly less unhinged rant than I normally do. But I think I’ve made my point, please climb down of your high horse.