Libraries Make Audiobooks More Accessible Than Ever
You can borrow audiobooks without leaving home.
If you’re the 80s or 90s kid, some of your earliest memories of listening to audiobooks or books on tape, as we used to call them, may have been through the mouth of a Teddy Ruxpin doll. This storytelling bear was always available to read you a book, even when your parents were too busy, or you were supposed to be asleep already.
Now you have endless options for read-aloud, bedtime stories with your parents, your teacher reading a book during English class, or storytime at your friendly neighborhood library. But once you’re all grown up, that read-aloud often ends.
There’s nothing better than listening to a story read aloud; audiobooks do a great job of recreating storytime for adults. Although they are no longer referred to as books on tape since audiobooks are now available in multiple convenient formats, you’ll still experience the same nostalgia of listening to someone else reading to you.
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What Are the Benefits of Audiobooks?
First, let’s look at how audiobooks can enrich your life.
They’re a great way to enjoy a book while doing something else.
Many say they don’t have time to read, which is a shame. However, even the busiest person can find time to listen to audiobooks. Audiobooks are fantastic when you’re doing the dishes, folding laundry, or taking care of any other household chores. As a bonus, it also helps make the time spent doing chores fly by faster! Think of all the mundane tasks you do where your hands are busy, but your ears are available for listening.
They can reduce the stress of your commute.
Although remote work has exploded over the last couple of years, plenty of people still make the morning and evening trek to and from work. Listening to a book while driving can take your mind off the annoyance of traffic and never-ending construction work on the route. Instead of listening to the radio, why not stream an audiobook through Bluetooth?
They can give your tired eyes a break.
We spend a concerning amount of time staring at screens each day, working on a laptop, binge-watching Netflix, or scrolling through social media on our phones. It takes a toll on your eyes. Although you may enjoy the convenience of e-books, giving your eyes a screen break and listening to an audiobook instead can be beneficial.
They make reading accessible to all.
Some people may struggle to find the time to read. Still, for others, the challenge may lie in a health condition such as visual impairment, dyslexia, or ADHD. Audiobooks break down that barrier so everyone can enjoy a good book, regardless of limitations.
How Can You Get Audiobooks from Your Library?
If you’re ready to take advantage of audiobooks’ benefits, you may be curious about where to find them. The great thing is that audiobooks are now more convenient than ever since they no longer exist solely in physical format. While your library may still maintain a collection of books on CD, the bulk of their audiobooks can be found through their website in digital format. And, of course, they’re free to borrow!
Here are a few of your options when choosing your next audiobook from your library
Audiobooks on CD
Audiobooks have long since moved away from being books on tape, but you can still find them in physical format as books on CD. Since digital formats have become much more popular, your library’s collection of audiobooks on CD may be limited. If your local library is part of a more extensive library system, take advantage of their hold options to have books on CD sent to your neighborhood library from one of the other branches. You can also inquire about interlibrary loans, extending your reach to borrowing from libraries outside the system.
Audiobooks on Playaway
A Playaway is an audiobook pre-loaded on a digital device, like an iPod. You can borrow these from your library just like other materials. They usually come with batteries, so all you need to supply is a pair of earbuds or headphones.
With digital downloads, you can access audiobooks from anywhere. The most convenient option allows you to download free audiobooks to your smartphone, e-reader, laptop, or any other mobile device. If you enjoy listening to books on the road, you can connect your phone via Bluetooth to your car audio.
Pull up your library website or call your library to find out which e-book platforms they use. You’ll likely find one or more of the following:
With minor differences, you can borrow e-books from your library just like physical books. Depending on the platform and your library, there will be a specified lending period and borrowing limit. For example, your library may allow you to borrow up to eight monthly titles for 14 days each. Once the time is up, your book will return on time automatically. No worries about late fees!
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Check Out Your Library’s Collection of Audiobooks
Are you interested in bringing storytime back into your life? Look no further than your public library! You’ll find plenty of audiobooks to borrow in a variety of formats.
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