The past hundred years or so have produced many well written books by well known authors that have entertained us, taught us and improved our mental and spiritual outlook on life. Reading has also been a way for us to relax and unwind from the rigors of life. The problem with reading the old-fashioned way is that you sit in one location and concentrate on the pages in front of you. This may or may not be a bad thing but for a busy person, the audio book can be a god send.
Audio books began to take off in the 1980s but have gained in popularity exponentially over the last few years. Advances in technology have given us great tools in the form of CD's and iPods that lend themselves perfectly for the audiobook. Cinema quality sound effects and music in combination with more actors and actresses lending their voices have helped bring about their popularity.
We live in a busy world so multi-tasking with audio books have become an excellent way to entertain or learn something new. Whether you are jogging, driving, taking public transportation or doing housework are all opportunities for listening to an audio book. Listening to an audio book with your eyes closed is also a great relaxation and stress relieving tool.
Actors' using their voice to enhance the quality of stories is not new. Animated feature films from the 1930s on up have greatly contributed the emotions and flavor of the characters portrayed. From the 1950s and up, famous actors such as Jimmy Stewart, Donald Pleasence and Danny Kaye began to telling children's stories on vinyl records which are now highly sought after collectors items.
There is a saying, "what was old is new again," applies to the latest batch of audio books being produced. We are talking about stories from the early 1920s to the mid to late 1950s, "The Golden Age of Pulp Fiction Stories!" I'm not talking about the Quentin Tarantino's pulp fiction movie but rather the era of the cheap pulp paper magazines that gave us timeless stories such as "Tarzan of the Apes, "Zorro," "Doc Savage," "The Spider," and "The Phantom Detective" etc. Many awesome story tellers and writers came from this era such as "Raymond Chandler", "Lester Dent" and "L. Ron Hubbard" to name a few and the stories are well worth revisiting, especially in the form of the audiobook.
These vintage stories can bring back fond memories to the old timers who may enjoy reading or listening to these stories again but is also a blank canvas for a younger generation that could benefit from these classic stories. The internet makes it very easy to find and purchase these books and audio versions of the stories.
The audio books of today have something for everyone because of the multitude of genres, including, fantasy, science fiction, mystery, romance, hard boiled detective, air and sea adventures, far flung adventure and tales from the orient. There are more but you get the idea.
Audio books are still great for long trips but they are equally popular when you are multi-tasking in cooking, cleaning, walking your dog, commuting etc. Got to love technology for giving us such great entertainment!