Saw that advertisement many times. Listening to a book? Fine. Listening to a book while riding a bike? Dangerous. Aesthetically or logically speaking, listening to a book is not as good as reading a book. A book is meant to be read, enjoyed, re-read and enjoyed again and so on… however, for those readers who cannot flex their mental strings and read a book themselves, the new invention of audiobooks is proving to be a help, a big help. Still, listening to a book while riding a book, as you see in the advertisements can be dangerous. Don’t read and ride.
Audiobooks are pushed in a big way. The books are also costly compared to the physical books that you read. Though there might be long debates on whether you need to read a book or listen to a book, you might love reading or listen or even you should read or listen, there are a few facts that should be put straight. There are advantages and disadvantages of reading a book and listening to a book. With both in mind, you can pick your format. However, still, never read (listen) and ride!
An audiobook can be entertaining because it has background effects, audio effects, musical injections and, if narrated by experts, an audiobook can be a wonderful experience that you will seldom forget. It is just like listening to those stories narrated by grandmothers and mothers that we still remember. However, while you need to recall a chapter for various purposes, it might be difficult compared to turning to a certain page number in a physical book (or even in an ebook, for that matter).
Audiobooks can be listened to at the night, in the day, during lunch hour or even when you want to skip your boring classes. It is a luxury that comes with audiobooks. And you pay for the same. Your luxury and experience become even costlier when you are told about the narrator’s abilities – a celebrity or a well-known author. Physical books are cost-effective and ebooks are even more cost-effective, most of the times.
Though it becomes comfortable when you listen to a story that is being told by others, some readers have also reported a feeling of alienation from the narrative… this happens because a reader might feel excluded from the centre of a story, from the events that are taking place and from a feeling of observing everything with a bird’s every view that happens when a person reads a story himself or herself. Have you experienced it? Do share in the comment section.
At last, it’s purely up to your preferences and convenience. You can read a book or you can listen to a book. The simple message from my side is that you don’t have to believe everything that an advertiser says. A bike does not necessarily have to be on the track all the time. You go to university or your office by road, crossing streets and navigating through markets with very little space to manoeuvre your bikes. Owning those corners sans grip with thinner tyres can be fatal! Likewise, you don’t need to read a book while you ride a bike… 😉
by Alka for Indian Book Critics