My Audiobook Year

Well I dropped the ball a bit on preparing for Audiobook Week, despite having a conversation about it with Jen less than a week ago. So this post is going up late and will be kept rather short. But I will have more this week (including the return of my audiobook flowchart), I promise. Now, for my audiobook year:

Audiobooks (perhaps combined with baby pictures) have basically saved my blog this year.

During the last Audiobook Week, I was on maternity leave, still reading plenty in both print and audio (you have to do something while nursing a baby 18 hours a day). Since then, I have gone back to work. And this has impacted my reading in a huge way.

It seems I could handle reading when I was just working. And I could handle reading when I was just parenting. But once I combined the two, my reading plummeted. Gone were the days where I could come home from work and get lost in a book for hours. Instead, any free second I had was spent trying to catch up on sleep (we are only just now sleeping through the night).

But I still had audiobooks. So while I wasn’t reading anything in the evenings anymore, and almost nothing on the weekends, I was still listening in the car, around the house, and during those 1am (and 3am and 5am) feedings.

In the last year, I listened to:

  1. Blackout by Mira Grant (audio)
  2. How I Killed Pluto and Why It Had It Coming by Mike Brown (audio)
  3. The Selection by Kiera Cass (audio)
  4. A Discovery of Witches by Deborah Harkness (audio)
  5. Canada by Richard Ford (audio)
  6. Passion by Kate Lauren (audio)
  7. The Unbearable Lightness of Being by Milan Kundera (audio)
  8. Cinder by Marissa Meyer (audio)
  9. A Land More Kind Than Home by Wiley Cash (audio)
  10. The Bird Sisters by Rebecca Rasmussen (audio)
  11. Messenger of Truth by Jaqueline Winspear (audio)
  12. Battle Royale by Takami Koushun (audio)
  13. The Ugly Duchess by Eloisa James (audio)
  14. We Have Always Lived in the Castle (audio) (reread)
  15. The Doula by Bridgit Boland (audio)
  16. Carnival of Souls by Melissa Marr (audio)
  17. Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel (audio)
  18. Agent to the Stars by John Scalzi (audio)
  19. Freakonomics by Steven D. Levitt and Stephen J. Dubner (audio)
  20. Every Day by David Levithan (audio)
  21. Apollo’s Angels by Jennifer Homans (audio)
  22. Rapture by Lauren Kate (audio)
  23. Bringing Up Bebe by Pamela Druckerman (audio)
  24. Beautiful Ruins by Jess Walter (audio)
  25. The Casual Vacancy by J.K. Rowling (audio) 3.5 stars
  26. The Emerald Atlas by John Stephens (audio) 4.5 stars
  27. An Incomplete Revenge by Jaqueline Winspear (audio) 4 stars
  28. The Art Forger by B.A. Shapiro (audio) 4.5 stars
  29. Scarlet by Marissa Meyer (audio) 4 stars
  30. The Pluto Files: The Rise and Fall of America’s Favorite Planet by Neil deGrasse Tyson (audio) 3 stars
  31. Parlor Games by Maryka Biaggio (audio) 4 stars
  32. Unravel Me by Tahereh Mafi  (audio) 4 stars
  33. Being There by Jerzy Kazinsky (audio) 3 stars
  34. The Tao of Pooh by Benjamin Hoff (audio) 3.5 stars
  35. Among the Mad by Jaqueline Winspear (audio) 4.5 stars
  36. Lean In: Women, Work, and the Will to Lead by Sheryl Sandberg (audio) 4 stars
  37. The Absolutist by John Boyne (audio) 4 stars
  38. The Elite by Kiera Cass (audio) 4 stars
  39. Drama: An Actor’s Education by John Lithgow (audio) 3 stars
  40. Hand Me Down by Melanie Thorne (audio) 4 stars
  41. The End of the Affair by Graham Greene (audio) 4.5 stars
  42. Life after Life by Kate Atkinson (audio)
  43. Drama: An Actor’s Education (audio)
  44. Hand Me Down by Melanie Thorne (audio)
  45. If I Loved You, I Would Tell You This by Robin Black (audio)

I have finished 89 books since last June. As you can see, 45 of these were audiobooks. This is the first time in my life that audio has been the majority (however slight) of my reading. Without audiobooks, I don’t think I would have been able to keep this blog updated as *ahem* regularly as I do.

Every year, audiobooks play a more prominent role in my reading life. How was your audiobook year? (Check out other discussion posts on this topic here).



25 thoughts on “My Audiobook Year

  1. Sandy June 17, 2013 / 6:26 pm

    When my kids were little I don’t think I touched book in like five years. That was before audios. Even now though, if my kids are around, they will not tolerate me being plugged in. They have ISSUES to discuss and stuff and they want my full attention. But when they are in school and I’m doing my thing, whatever that is, I am plugged in.


    • Michelle June 18, 2013 / 9:04 am

      I assume my audiobook time will lessen when Evan gets older. Right now, he has no opinion so we listen in the car.


  2. Kate- Midnightbookgirl June 17, 2013 / 6:54 pm

    I love that you’ve found a way to work, be a mom and still be a reader! I think that’s one of the best endorsements for becoming an audio book listener. It really is the best of both worlds because it allows us to do what we need and still lose ourselves in a good book.


    • Michelle June 18, 2013 / 9:03 am

      Audiobooks are a good compromise that don’t even seem like a compromise!


  3. Tanya Patrice June 17, 2013 / 7:09 pm

    Audiobooks are so awesome that way! I don’t have a wee one but during the times when I’m not in the mood to read – audiobooks have helped tremendously.


    • Michelle June 18, 2013 / 9:02 am

      Yes, even when I’m in a reading slump, I keep listening.


  4. Literate Housewife June 17, 2013 / 9:07 pm

    Two years ago I wrote a post about how audiobooks saved me. My blog would have died a rather undignified death without them. At this point with my job I feel more like crocheting than reading or blogging, so audiobooks are a constant companion while I do that. I don’t know what I’d do without them. I guess have the TV on in the background or something.

    Looking at your list I have got to catch up to you with Maisie Dobbs! I planned to get caught up with that series this year. I’ve read one. Blah. 🙂


    • Michelle June 18, 2013 / 9:01 am

      I just finished the 7th Maisie book and I really, really liked it. I’m sad I only have 3 left.


  5. Julie S. June 17, 2013 / 9:42 pm

    That is a great list of books! I’m glad to hear you’re still finding times to listen to books with your busy schedule of work and baby. Gives me hope hehe. I feel like I’m stocking up on my reading now before we start having kids.


    • Michelle June 18, 2013 / 9:00 am

      It definitely becomes harder with kids, but I probably get the same amount of audiobook time (if not more). Until he starts caring what we listen to that is.


  6. Bella June 17, 2013 / 9:50 pm

    I wish I’d discovered audios after the birth of my twins, I know I would’ve loved them back then with all the the sleepless nights. I love that I can do so many different activities and listen to audios at the same time!!!


    • Michelle June 18, 2013 / 8:59 am

      Yes. I’ve never enjoyed cleaning the bathrooms so much. 🙂


  7. Laura Fabiani June 17, 2013 / 9:53 pm

    Oh, how I wish I knew more about audiobooks when my kids were small and I was breastfeeding. Believe it or not, I would read during the 1 am, 3 am, and 5 am feedings. But back then I wasn’t even blogging about books. I was just reading to keep sane. So glad I started blogging too.


    • Michelle June 18, 2013 / 8:42 am

      Oh I read a lot of print books during those feedings, too. I think I read 10 books the first month we were nursing.


  8. JoAnn @ Lakeside Musing June 17, 2013 / 10:11 pm

    When my kids were babies, there were years when I didn’t read a single book. How I wish I had known about audiobooks then. (Did they even have audiobooks 20 years ago??)


    • Michelle June 18, 2013 / 8:38 am

      I think there were books on tape!


  9. Melissa @ Mel's Books and Info June 18, 2013 / 12:37 pm

    Last year due to some family issues, audiobooks became my number one way to keep reading. And with work and parenting and the need for sleep there just aren’t enough hours in the day for me to pick up a book and read. The audios are a reliable way to keep me reading. Every day on my way to work, on my lunch, and on my way home I am guaranteed so good book time with my audio in my car. I can’t imagine what I would do without audiobooks!


    • Michelle June 18, 2013 / 8:42 pm

      Audiobooks to the rescue!


  10. Lucy @ The Reading Date June 18, 2013 / 1:16 pm

    I love that you listed all your audio titles! I spotted a few I have from audible – Scarlet and Unravel Me. I liked Discovery of Witches too but I wasn’t able to finish the sequel, though I’ll pick it up again sometime.


    • Michelle June 18, 2013 / 8:38 pm

      I haven’t tried the sequel yet. I didn’t love A Discovery of Witches like a lot of others so I’m hesitant. But I’ve heard it’s better.


  11. Faith Hope & Cherrytea June 18, 2013 / 7:52 pm

    Impressive, Michelle!
    combined with family commitments?
    no worries on your ‘reading’ commitments =)


  12. Care June 18, 2013 / 8:41 pm

    wow. I’m impressed.


  13. Gayle June 19, 2013 / 11:01 pm

    Totally agree that audiobooks are gifts for working moms. I read almost double the amount of books per year, thanks to audio. That’s a great list – and a very impressive # since last June. Didn’t you have a baby around when I did (last June)? I did a lot of reading while on maternity leave, and it took a serious nosedive when I went back to work.

    I LOVED the audio for A Land More Kind Than Home.


    • Michelle June 20, 2013 / 3:48 pm

      Yes – Evan was born at the end of may. I’d read so little without audiobooks now that I’m a mom.


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