Over spring break, I borrowed The Mysterious Benedict Society, Audible Audio Edition (aren’t audio editions automatically audible?) from the library, and my younger brother and I listened to the CDs while I drove him to and from school and other places. Here are my thoughts on my first audio experience:
- I didn’t realize a book would be so long in audio format. We went through six or seven CDs and only made it to the fifth chapter–that’s about an eighth of the novel, by the way. Every time a CD hit its limit and looped back to the beginning, I was surprised to have to swap CDs so soon.
- The narrator for this audiobook was Del Roy. I didn’t like his voice at first, and then I acclimated, and now I think I do. After just a couple car trips, it was easy for me to settle into his narration and enjoy the familiar story.
- Hearing the book aloud really drew my attention to certain details or phrases. While I know large portions of The Mysterious Benedict Society by heart (my brother and I have read it so many times* that it’s probably the only book we own with a noticeably worn cover), the combination of me being a fast reader (and thus accidentally skipping words now and then) and me not having read it in a while meant that I was pleasantly surprised to hear certain lines in between the riddles and quirky details and snarky quotes that I did remember.
- It was a great bonding experience for my brother and me. The Mysterious Benedict has migrated between our rooms for years, and we do make frequent references to the book and engage in intense quoting sessions, but there’s nothing quite like listening to the same words at the same time–even reading silently is different. While listening, I really felt like we were not only on the same page, but on the same word and in the same exact moment; we laughed at the same times and anticipated the same sentences.
At any rate, it was a fun experience for my brother and me, and what better way for us to start our audiobook experience than with one of our all-time favorite books? I’m hoping it’s on the shelf when I get back from college so we can continue the journey.
*over a hundred, as estimated by our dad.