Guess what. There are absolutely free and legal audiobooks. Don’t get me wrong, Audible.com is great and I’m a loyal (paying) member, but I ALSO love a good freebie.
So, you know how you can get all the books that are in the public domain right to your iKindlePad for free? It turns out, there’s this site called booksshouldbefree.com. (I wholeheartedly agree! Books should be free dot com!) While you won’t find anything new or sassy up there (no Bossypants, *lament*), it’s a great chance to catch up on the classics and did I mention(?)…it’s free. The books are read aloud by volunteers - some are aspiring actors, some are good Samaritans and some shouldn’t be allowed to hold a microphone but they do it anyway. I’ve been using this site for YEARS, and while I haven’t heard everything, I’ve got a pretty good handle on the ins and outs.
The key to loving booksshouldbefree.com is learning who the good readers are and being patient. Remember…these are free and they are read by volunteers, so if you hear a chapter and you don’t like the reader…just stop and switch books. It’s the price you pay for free! They have a Top 100 list which is pretty alright but you get some real losers in there. (Stay AWAY from Alice in Wonderland! I think the reader is standing in an empty banquet hall.)
So without further ado, here’s my list of my top 10 free audiobooks!
- Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain, read by this woman…Annie something. She does an awesome performance.
- Tom Sawyer by Mark Twain, read by John Greenman. Look out, at least 1/2 my recs are for books read by Greenman. He is phenomenal and better than 50% of the readers I pay for on Audible.
- Uncle Tom’s Cabin by Harriett Beecher Stowe, read by John Greenman (again). Disclaimer: this book is not a pickmeup.
- A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court by Mark Twain, read by John Greenman again. Clever story and pretty funny, too!
- The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett. Don’t judge me, but I totally cried at the end of it.
- Love Among the Chickens by PG Wodehouse. The reader’s alright, but I’m such a helpless fool for PG Wodehouse books, I probably would have still loved this one if the narrator was mumbling the whole thing.
- Gulliver’s Travels by Jonathan Swift. Read by…some guy. He’s no John Greenman but he doesn’t distract from the story which is really quite clever. I had the voice of the houyhnhnms stuck in my head for weeks!
- Anthem by Ayn Rand. Ever since Hunger Games came out, I can’t seem to get enough of dystopian fiction, so this one was right up my alley. I have a feeling that it was a difficult book to read (the characters never reference themselves in the first person), but he did an OK job.
- The Clicking of Cuthbert by PG Wodehouse. Wodehouse again. Love. him.
- That’s all I got. TOP 9!!!
When I moved to LA in July, I heard the same mantra over and over. “The key to loving life in LA is having a short commute.” But you know what? My job was in the hot sweltering suburban valley and I was hell-bent on living in not-that-close-Santa-Monica. So I made up my mind to learn to LOVE my commute. Thanks, audiobooks!