Listening to Audiobooks

Audiobooks – don’t you love them?!

I remember listening to them as a teenager for what I thought was a quick way to read set literature texts. I have a clear image of travelling around Thailand and listening to Dostoevsky’s The Brothers Karamazov on a walkman – that was called revising! On reflection it was irresponsible and doing neither the country nor the novel justice.

I now love audiobooks for different reasons.  Of course they are no substitute for actually all curling up on the sofa reading a story but I can only read so many stories to the children with my own voice, and so they are a wonderful way to supplement our daily read aloud times.  The children love listening to them after lunch quietly in their room but we listen to the majority of our audiobooks in the car.  I used to think they only worked for long car journeys so you could get into them, but I have found they bring a wonderful peace even on short journeys to a swimming lesson or the shops. The bonus is I get to enjoy them too and we can chat about them together.  I cannot recommend them enough.


Audible is a brilliant place to download books from to listen on my phone or laptop, but there may well be other places and I believe there are some free sites out there. I would really commend audiobooks to you if you haven’t already got hooked. My only caution would be to make sure you like the narrator’s voice before you begin as this makes a big difference, and of course I choose the audiobooks we listen to in the same way I choose their reading books – looking for wholesome food (most of the time!).

Here is a list of some our family have enjoyed if you want some ideas to get you started:

Ages 3-5

A.A. Milne, Winnie the Pooh

Beatrix Potter, Favourite Beatrix Potter Tales

Michael Bond, Paddington

Ages 5-7

Roger Hargreaves, Mr Men

Enid Blyton, Famous Five

Enid Blyton, The Secret Seven

Enid Blyton, The Enchanted Wood

Enid Blyton, The Magic of Faraway Tree

Enid Blyton, The Folk of Faraway Tree

Enid Blyton, The Naughtiest Girl

Enid Blyton, The Brer Rabbit Book

Enid Blyton, Holiday Stories

C.S. Lewis, The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe

Astrid Lindgren, The Children of Noisy Village

Dick King-Smith, The School Mouse

Dick King-Smith, The Sheep Pig

Dorothy Edwards, My Naughty Little Sister

Michael Morpugo, Mr Skip

E. Nesbit, The Railway Children

Roald Dahl, The Giraffe, the Pelly and Me

Roald Dahl, Fantastic Mr Fox

Johanna Spyri, Heidi

David Angus, The Adventures of Robin Hood

Kenneth Grahame, The Wind in the Willows


Ages 7-9

Roald Dahl, The BFG

Roald Dahl, Matilda

Roald Dahl, Esio Trot

Roald Dahl, The Twits

Frances Hodgson Burnett, A Little Princess

Dodie Smith, The Hundred and One Dalmatians

L. Frank Baum, The Wizard of Oz

Colin Dann, The Animals of Farthing Wood

Benedict Flynn, The Adventures of Odysseus

David Angus, The Vikings

S.D. Smith, The Green Ember

Emily Bearn, Tumtum and Nutmeg

Lewis Carroll, Alice in Wonderland

Lucy Coats, Atticus the Storyteller’s 100 Greek Myths

Susan Coolidge, What Katy Did

Rudyard Kipling, The Jungle Book

Noel Streatfield, Ballet Shoes

Rosemary Sutcliff, Beowulf: Dragon Slayer

Happy Listening!

P.S. Age groups are a rough guideline and some versions linked here might be abridged versions and/or full dramatisations.

Related Posts:

Audiobooks for the Summer

Christmas Audiobooks

Living Books

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