Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Free AudioBooks

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We have gobs of music, but what did I REALLY want to listen on Big Daddy? Audiobooks! The problem is... I'm stingy (and I have no income). I didn't want to PAY, so I did some digging around and came up with a few good places that you might look if you are cheap and stingy (and have no income) like me ;)

  • Overdrive - You can do a search here for titles and see if your public library offers the service. Lucky for me I still have a Davis County Library card. Downside to these is they do have DRM on them and you can only "check out" the books for a limited amount of time. You -can- burn some, but not all, of these books to CD if you won't get them entirely listened to within 3 weeks.

  • NetLibrary is another website some libraries use. You need to contact your local library and see if they offer this service. Davis County Utah uses both this service and Overdrive. Netlibrary works similarly to Overdrive, but does have a downside if you use an iPod or a Zune- neither of those devices will work due to DRM restrictions.

  • LibriVox "provides free audiobooks from the public domain." This is a great place to get the classics. Files are available in both ogg vorbis and mp3. Another cool thing is this service is completely volunteer based and there are books available in multiple languages.

  • Literal Systems- They have a small selection of audiobooks and short stories.

  • "is committed to delivering public domain literature paired with high quality audio performances. We pair together great literature and accompanying audio." This website has a few novels, some poetry, short stories, and children's books. Some books have embedded text which is kinda neat too.

  • I wanted to like this site more because it appears to have quite a lot of content. There -are- free audiobooks, but you will pay for them in terms of it being highly inconvinient to download them and the low bitrate (8kbps). For example: You want to listen to Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain. This isn't a short book by any means, and is divided into 43 files. 43 files that you must download ONE AT A TIME. That paired with the low bitrate makes this probably one of the last sites I'll look at. You can pay to have them zip the file and you can also pay more to have a higher bitrate. I'm not so sure it's worth it with the other options you have available to you.

  • has "serialized" audiobooks which are made in podcast format. You can download them via an RSS feed (using podcast software) or by directly downloading episodes from the site.

  • Project Gutenberg has both human read and computer generated audio books from the public domain. This site also has a wide variety of languages.

The last two I am going to mention aren't free, but sometimes have free offers.

  • Simply AudioBooks- A little bit like Netflix but for audiobooks. I used this service in the US for a little while and I actually really enjoyed it. It's about 15$ per month and they mail you the audiobook CDs. Right now they have a free download with no strings attached. I didn't like the book, but someone else might.

  • always advertises a free download, but this is usually if you've never been a member before and sign up with them. VERY occasionally they'll offer a free book with no strings attached. You get the most bang for your buck with their subscription service, but you can buy individual titles.

Free always works for me!


Wizardress said...

Very cool. Thanks for sharing those. Maybe I can find something for the plane. *hugs*

Unknown said...

Thanks for the links. I'm downloading Tarzan. :D

mub said...

Melinda- Enjoy Tarzan! That's one I haven't gotten to yet =)

Anonymous said...

Fantastic! I'll have to see if our library has any of those services! Thanks!

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