Different ways of reading

I listen to a lot of audiobooks. In fact, looking over the list of books I read last year (yes, I keep a list), more than seventy percent were audiobooks. Why? Because I spend a lot of time in the car by myself commuting to and from my day job, and audiobooks are great travel companions.

Since a vast majority of those audiobooks are library rentals and I never know what I’m going to find at the library on any given day, I end up listening to books I might not read otherwise, like Wisdom of Our Fathers by Tim Russert or The Stupidest Angel by Christopher Moore, both of which I loved. I’ve discovered new favorite writers, like Nevada Barr and Joseph Finder, and listened to a book I couldn’t read — Cormac McCarthy’s The Road (still a harrowing tale, maybe moreso in audio).

Now I’m doing something totally different — reading and listening to a book: Stephen King’s Duma Key. A couple of friends and I are studying this book. They’ve read it; I haven’t, so I have some catching up to do. As it happens, I have it both on unabridged audio (18 cds!) and in paperback. So I’m listening to the audiobook in the car and reading the paperback at home, leap-frogging over sections in the book that I’ve listened to and skipping tracks for the sections I’ve read.

It’s an interesting way to read what I’m finding is a very compelling book. When I’m reading, I hear the narrator’s voice in my head, and since he gives the different characters their own characterizations, that’s a good thing. It’s also a way to totally immerse myself in the world of the book, so much so that I don’t want to put it down to go work on my own worlds, like I need to now.

But tomorrow? Back to Duma Key for me because I can’t wait to see what happens next. 🙂