Every personality or learning quiz I have ever taken always indicates that I am a visual learner. I have to look at things to process them, so it is no wonder that I love to read. Over the summers however, I have found that I thoroughly enjoy books-on-tape. I am sure that I am dating myself by calling them “books-on-tape;” I supposed audiobooks is the proper time but it hearkens back to when my children were young. When my kids were little, I remember checking out books-on-tape at the library for them to “read along with.” They enjoyed being able to follow the stories themselves and I found that it also helped them learn to read. I myself had never really enjoyed books-on-tape. I think that it is because I rarely have the time to sit down and focus on the story; if I am going to enjoy a book, I want to read it.
For the past eight years, my children have attended BookPeople’s Literary Camps; a later post on that awesome experience. Anyway, I have about seven hours of “me” time in Austin. For the first five years, both my husband and I came down and we enjoyed sight-seeing, eating, kayaking, eating, hiking, eating . . . you get the picture. Once our oldest moved out of the age range of the camp, we had to divide and conquer; I brought the girls down to camp and my husband stayed home with our son. The past two years, only our youngest has been eligible to attend.
I love Zilker Park and enjoy running . . . well, mostly walking with some short bursts of energy . . . along the river. I figured it would be a great opportunity to try out a book-on-tape; I had two plus hours of walking time each day to just listen to a story.
I found that I didn’t like it, I loved it!!! Every year I have chosen a different book to dedicate the trip to and each time it has been a book that I have previously read. This past summer, I listened to Anna Lee Huber’s A Grave Matter, the third Lady Darby mystery.
I found that listening to the story provides a refreshing perspective. It is fascinating how the descriptive details of a setting or ball gown become more visual by having them read aloud. I also love how the action comes alive, be it a fight scene or love scene, through the oral interpretation. I appreciate the talent of the narrator to create dimension to the story through the inflection of the words and the voices they choose for the different characters. Having a bit of a background in theatre makes me both appreciate and admire their talent.
I know that I have always loved to read aloud to my own children and make the stories come alive that way, but I hadn’t really known how much I would enjoy the same being done to me. I have not attempted a book that I haven’t read yet, but that will be next on my list.
How about you? Any commuters or hikers that listen to books-on-tape?