Why Bother With Amazon Kindle and Audible Audiobooks?
I can think of at least ten good reasons for adding an audiobook and/or an eBook to your library.
- Audible Audiobooks Can be Shared For Free (Legally). Whereas one might get into trouble trying to cut and paste entire Kindle books and sharing the author’s copyrighted work, after finishing, Audible actually encourages users to send audiobooks to others. If it is the recipient’s first Audible audiobook, it is completely free. If they do not already have an Amazon.com account, the recipient just needs to create an Audible account for the free download. Visit the C4C Free Audiobook Library Listing page to download a free audiobook!
- Audiobooks Are Often More Convenient. One can enjoy an audiobook while commuting, shopping, running errands, cooking, doing laundry, even falling asleep! Unfortunately, I cannot promise that one will comprehend what is being read aloud while sleeping, nor can I promise any particularly enlightening dreams… But any task that does not require too much thinking can be spiced up by an audiobook, as we make the most of every opportunity (Eph 5:15-16).1
- Audible Narration Speed Can Be Adjusted. Won’t it take forever to listen to someone read an entire book out loud? Not necessarily. One can speed up the narrator’s voice up to 3.00x. At some point, for most people, certain narration speeds will be too fast to be comprehensible. However, I have personally become accustomed to listening between 1.50x and 2.00x speed comfortably. So if a chapter is one hour long, one can actually knock it out in as little as 30 minutes.
- Audiobooks Can Be Enjoyed Together. While only one set of eyes can usually read a book at once, multiple people can have a listening party.
- Kindle Books Can Also Be Read Aloud. Yep. If one has an Amazon Kindle Fire tablet, any Alexa-enabled device, or even a computer with the free Kindle for PC app (and I think the Kindle for Mac app, as well), Kindle Books can be read to you at an adjustable speed using the ‘Text-to-Speech’ feature. Although the Kindle Book would be read by Alexa’s voice and not a professional voice actor, one would essentially be killing two birds with one stone. Not to mention, not all Kindle Books are available as audiobooks.
- Kindle Books Can Be Searched. Can’t remember that perfect quote? Want to jump quickly to an author’s treatment of a certain topic? Need a quick response while engaged in a discussion? I cannot stress how crucial the Kindle Search feature can be. With a few keystrokes, one can quickly find any string of characters or words found in the text.
- Kindle Book Text Can Be Copy and Pasted. This makes it much easier to copy long quotes. For example, at the end of The Case For Christ, Lee Strobel quotes C.S. Lewis at length. Instead of spending time referring to the book and manually typing out the entire paragraph, after a few clicks, voilà:
I am trying here to prevent anyone saying the really foolish thing that people often say about Him: “I’m ready to accept Jesus as a great moral teacher, but I don’t accept His claim to be God.” That is the one thing we must not say. A man who was merely a man and said the sort of things Jesus said would not be a great moral teacher. He would either be a lunatic… or else he would be the Devil of Hell. You must make your choice. Either this man was, and is, the Son of God: or else a madman or something worse. You can shut Him up for a fool, you can spit at Him and kill Him as a demon; or you can fall at His feet and call Him Lord and God. But let us not come with any patronizing nonsense about His being a great human teacher. He has not left that open to us. He did not intend to.2
When copying and pasting quotes, Kindle for PC also spits out a citation. Furthermore, if a Kindle Book has the real page numbers, those will be included as well. For instance:
To hold that human beings are the product of nothing but the evolutionary process of the strong eating the weak, but then to insist that nonetheless every person has a human dignity to be honored—is an enormous leap of faith against all evidence to the contrary.
–“Keller, Timothy. Making Sense of God: An Invitation to the Skeptical (p. 49). Penguin Publishing Group. Kindle Edition.”3 This is incredibly helpful when writing papers, blogging, and anything that requires keeping track of and citing sources.
- Kindle Books Can Be Highlighted and Annotated. One can color-code highlights and make notes on particular sections of text, allowing one to read more actively. Moreover, these highlights and notes sync across all of one’s devices.
- Kindle Books and Audible Audiobooks Sync. One’s progress on any book (Kindle or Audible) syncs across all of one’s devices. You could read from your tablet while still in bed, type a few notes on your computer at your desk, and then listen to the audiobook on your cell phone in the car. As Amazon explains in the Kindle App:
- Kindle Books and Audible Audiobooks Are Cheaper Together. Not only are Kindle Books usually less expensive than their hardcover or paperback counterparts, if you already own either an Audible or Kindle version of a book, and you want to purchase the other version, Amazon discounts the version of the book you have yet to purchase. As Amazon explains:
All in all, in my view, Christian doctrine and apologetics are among the most important subjects one can study. In this field, does it not make sense to want to add more to one’s library to increase one’s knowledge? Given the reasons above, Kindle Books and Audible audiobooks may make this easier than ever before.
Can you think of any more reasons (yay or nay)? I enjoy fruitful discussion; see the comment section below.
- more literally, “redeeming the time.” As one scholar notes, “the verb used is exagorazō, meaning literally ‘buying from’. It has the sense of ‘redeem’ in Galatians 3:13 and 4:5…” Francis Foulkes, Ephesians: An Introduction and Commentary, vol. 10, Tyndale New Testament Commentaries (Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 1989), 154.
- Strobel, Lee. The Case for Christ: A Journalist’s Personal Investigation of the Evidence for Jesus . Zondervan. Kindle Edition.
- Keller, Timothy. Making Sense of God: An Invitation to the Skeptical (p. 49). Penguin Publishing Group. Kindle Edition.