In Which I am Schooled

Guten Abend meine leckeren kandierten Nüsse. (Yes, I just called you my delicious candied nuts because I LOVE YOU that’s why). How goes it? All well and good in your cozy den of iniquity?

Today, I will share with you a brief anecdote that just goes to show you that even your most hardened prejudices, your most firmly-held opinions, can change.

LIFE COMES AT YOU FAST, and if you need proof… I am listening to an audiobook! (?) Me! An audiobook! Right??? I am as confused at you, and yes, a little frightened.

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So as you might remember, I am running my branch’s book club, and believe it or not, I am struggling with some of the books that I myself picked (oh, the irony). Surprisingly, it is Amor Towles’s Rules of Civility that was giving the hardest time. I just couldn’t get into it. Which is weird, considering I loved his most recent book, A Gentleman in Moscow. So after doing that thing where you read one line over and over again until your eyes start to blur and realizing this was one book I couldn’t actually DNF, I decided to cave and yes, try the audiobook.

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I know. Listen, I hate audiobooks. HATE THEM. The way the readers do the voices…. *full body cringe* … and there’s something disquieting about the way hearing an actual human person reading a story influences my perception of it. Their interpretation of tone and inflection in character’s speech, their accent, their gender – these things colour the story too much for me. I need to read it with my own eyes and hear the words in my own internal narrator’s voice.

But I couldn’t see any other way to get through this book, and with the book club meeting approaching and me no farther than page 7, I checked out the audiobook on CD and popped it into my car’s player, determined to make use of my hellish daily commute. (And yes, ha ha, my car is old, get over it)

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Welly welly welly.

Guess who’s four CDs deep into the book and reading ahead in the paperback copy?

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Yeah, I still don’t like it… but I will admit, hearing the story – this story, as least – pulled me in.

So the moral of the story is that I ‘read’ an audiobook, and my ears did not start bleeding, I even kinda got into it. People are complicated, we’re all onions, and we are never too old to be surprised.

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But now… back to my paperbacks.

– xo, R



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