Where can I find free audio books?
I love my new RCA Lycos Mp3 player but am finding that listening to the same dozen songs over and over again is getting, dare i say it, boring. A friend turned me on to audio books and now I'm eager to listen to more, but I can't afford $25-$40 per book! Are there places I can get free or really cheap audio books?
I know exactly what you're talking about with audio books on these little Mp3 players - I listen to audio books just about every day while I'm walking to my office. Indeed, new mp3 players like the Microsoft Zune, with it's reputed wifi features, is going to be ideal for downloading audio content directly onto the device!
The problem is, well, yes, audio books are darn expensive, really pretty puzzlingly so. I know that the production price on audio disks is well under $1/disk so why shouldn't a four CD audio book cost $15 rather than $40? Ah, the great mystery of modern pricing.
As a result, one place you can get free audio books is the wild and dangerous world of peer to peer networks, also known by the names of the programs that people commonly use to access these networks, including Limewire and Bittorrent. But here's the rub: just about every single thing you'd find out there is going to be illegal, illegal to have made available and certainly illegal to download and enjoy. Proceed with caution.
An interesting alternative is your public library. I bet that they have a pretty good selection of books on tape and, to a lesser extent, books on CD, which you can then rip and copy onto your Lyra or other mp3 player (think "Apple iPod" here). Legal? Well, if it's for your personal use, one time, I think it's within the original vision of public lending libraries, personally.
A third place you can find audio content is the very cool site Librivox, which has a small but growing collection of fan-recorded public domain books from the Gutenberg Project. Here's a sampling of some of their available free audio books you might check out:
Finally, don't forget eBay, where there's a thriving market on used audio books from the expensive self-help items to the tawdriest romance and thriller.
Hope that helps you enjoy your RCA Lyra a bit more!
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Reader Comments To Date: 20
Amazon also has tons of used audiobooks listed right next to the same book's "new" listing. Those can be purchased without the hassles of eBay and can easily be re-sold back via the same program.
I've also gotten tremendous use out of SimplyAudiobooks.com, which is basically Netflix for audiobooks. If you can swing the ~$25/month for your audiobook addiction, you can go through them as fast as you can listen.
Our local library has a deal with netlibrary.com where you can download (mostly classic) audiobooks for free. It takes some "modifying" to get them onto a portable device, because of DRM, but it can be done.
You can also check out Podiobooks - http://www.podiobooks.com/ - they offer free serialised audiobooks (67, at the time of writing).
(Your milage may vary: These worked great for me in iTunes, but I've no idea about the software that comes with an RCA Lycos.)
I coordinate the digital audiobook collection at my library. We have two products, NetLibrary and Overdrive, that we use for downloadable audiobooks. I especially like the Overdrive collection, but both have good selections.
These collections have popular authors, current bestsellers, and books for all ages. We have audiobooks by James Patterson, Nora Robers, Dean Koontz, Carl Hiaasen, Jennifer Cruise, Daniel Silva, Eoin Colfer (Artemis Fowl series), and much more.
We have about 3000 digital audiobooks, and the collection grows every month. I know that many other libraries offer similar services. Visit your local library's web site. If you don't see digital books available, call them to request that they start a collection.
Hey, if you're interested in audio books. Why not check out downloadable audio books at www.RightAudioBooks.com
They are great audio books with over 7,000 titles and much cheaper than their physical counterparts.
The best part that I like is that you can listen to sample of audio books before you pay.
The best source of free audio books is your local library. Your library is usually a part of a big Network or a Consortium of libraries and funds. This Network comprises dozens of local libraries and has combined collections of millions of items. You can request audio books online.
There are many other places where you can download free audio books. You can find detailed information about those places at http://www.booksalley.com
Also at this site, check out the list of the mp3 players that are most suitable for listening to audio books.
Also check out www.smithaudiobooks.com everything is free and the site is updated once a week. Also if you have a book you would like to hear that is not listed, they take requests!
You should definitely check out YAKiToMe! (http://www.yakitome.com). A free website that converts any electronic text to an audio book podcast. Choose from many languages, voices, and reading speeds. A growing public library is available for immediate downloading and listening.
Just one comment on the whole "a CD only costs $1, so why do they cost $40"? You leave out the fact that the well-done audios are performed by talented narrators with good engineering behind them. Those people all have to be paid. Plus the author of the original material is compensated for their work.
You want to be paid for your work, right, not have someone steal your paycheck from you, just because they can? If you can't afford to buy, fair enough: rent or go to the library. But please don't support illegal download sites.
I love audiobooks, and often download them as podcasts into iTunes. Once completed (all chapters downloaded) I move the "podcast" files to the audiobboks section of itunes by "convert to mp3", delete the podcast, move the files with (windows) explorer, and reimport into itunes. Convulted but it works. 1) is there an easier way, that doesn't need the (lossy) conversion? and 2) My big question - how do I "move" video podcasts? iTunes 8 allows most files to change the media kind in "get into/options" but this doesn't work for podcasts
Check out the free/super-cheap audiobooks at www.audiopod.ca and the amazing approach to audiobooks they have adopted. Drag-and-Drop audiobooks, illustrated versions, automated bookmarks and I can send and receive them by email. It is about time that technology was used to bennifit the audiobook market rather than creating another hoop that we need to jump through. My 4 years old can do her own audiobooks! Thank you, Audio Pod.
Seems like Librophile.com have got it right. Just scroll through 4000+ free audio books or 70,000+ pay books. Browse by genre or search. You can listen or download. Nowhere makes it easier.
i need a free audioable book about communication equipment of aircraft for teaching with great thanx
audible books are much more enjoyable for people, as myself, that spend a lot of time driving.
The cheapest way to listen to professionally produced audio books of your choice is to get an unlimited CD rental plan. Mailing is prepaid and you can use iTunes to rip the CDs to MP3s. Yes this is legal. You can turn your rentals around as fast as you want. The MP3s are yours to keep. Almost any MP3 player including all Apple's IOS devices will play them. Plans start around $18/month.
found this one http://www.audiobooks.com
25 dollars a month with unlimited audibooks .
But it seems that they have a big library but not as many titles as audible.com
local libraries are a great resource but also check out this indiegogo.com/audiobooklibrary project. It will be a great resource as soon as it is live. Costing around $8 per month for unlimited books. The more people that get involved, the greater the selection will be.
Convert any Ebook or text into an MP3 audiobook for free at www.readthistext.com. The conversions are comparable to professionally narrated audiobooks.
I do have a lot to say, and questions of my own for that matter, but first I'd like to say thank you, Dave, for all your helpful information by
buying you a cup of coffee!||
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