Audio Books: Is Hearing the Same as ‘Reading’?

I was talking to a coworker a couple weeks ago about books and she mentioned that she enjoys listening to audio books more than actually reading from a book (or an e-reader). This lead me to start thinking about the differences, if there any, between just listening to a book on an audio tape and actually sitting down and reading.

One of the questions that I kept asking myself was, is the comprehension of the story the same? Especially if you don’t have the actual book in front of you while listening? Audio books makes me think of listening to music, which is something that is easily allows for me to space out – something that I think I would do with an audio book.

Is the experience the same when a plot twist or surprise character development happens? Is it you reading and coming across it or is it the narrator on the audio tape?

I know that these questions may seem weird, but I think audio books are ones that I never gave a second thought to, maybe because when I read, I like do it as a single activity, not trying to read and do something else at the same time.

What are your thoughts on audio books??


4 thoughts on “Audio Books: Is Hearing the Same as ‘Reading’?

  1. I find with audio books that I want to multitask: listen to a book and do two or three other things. Consequently, I miss important pieces and have to repay The section (if I realize I missed it in the first place). The only time this hasn’t been the case is with The Chronicles of Narnia where I followed along in the book as I listened to it being told to me. I get less out of a book when I only hear it than when I’m reading the words right off the page.


    • Thanks for sharing! I think I would be the same way – for me personally I would probably get distracted to easily with an audio book


  2. I don’t listen to audio books very often. I am a dedicated reader of books I can hold in my hands. They makes me feel like I am interacting with them; I feel closer to the characters. I dislike hearing someone else’s voice narrate the story. It takes away the creativity of being able to imagine the characters on your own. If the author is the one narrating the audio book I may listen to it. It depends.


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