Hello my lovelies! What have you been reading lately?

I’ve been getting into audio more and more this year. My husband and I sometimes carpool, and we have very different tastes in music. While working on costuming, instead of listening to my usual music, one day he suggested we listen to this thing called Nightvale. “It’s free, and it’s supposed to be really cool, everyone we know seems to like it.”

“Is it scary?” I asked, looking over the website.

“I don’t know. Not very, I think,” he added, citing one of our friends who doesn’t like horror and yet likes the show.

It was broad daylight, a sunny spring afternoon, so I said, “sure, we can try an episode.”

Friends, if you have not heard the dulcet tones of Cecil Baldwin, you are missing out. His voice is like an auditory caress, and the story is compelling, without being too horrific. It’s a playful sort of horror, almost a pastiche. Things just, you know, happen that way in Nightvale. It’s nothing to be concerned about.

We started listening in the car when we carpooled, and I got hooked. Since then, I have listened to the entire archive of Nightvale, plus all of the first season of Alice Isn’t Dead (scarier than Nightvale but not by a lot), and I’m only a little behind on Within The Wires (I was afraid this one would be body horror, but it’s not). The trouble with catching up on something, as those of you who like to binge-watch probably know, is that you run out eventually. The slow drip-feed of twice-monthly updates feels like nothing compared to opening the faucet of the archives.

So I bought a few audiobooks on Audible. When I’m alone, I listen to Writing Excuses, so I was already familiar with Mary Robnette Kowal (who also has a lovely voice); furthermore, I quite adore the works of Seanan McGuire, and my husband had yet to start reading her October Daye series. So it seemed like an obvious fit: listen to the books in the car, narrated by a voice I like and written by an author I admire.

There’s something different about experiencing a book in audio form vs reading it. I learned to speed-read early, and often I have to read books in small bits and pieces on my phone, slurping up a chapter during a bathroom break or in the waiting room of a doctor’s office. Listening to the book forces you to slow down and really take in the small details that might have been overlooked. Listening to the first book in a series you’ve read many times can therefore open some of its secrets to you that you may have missed the first time through. Now I want to buy all my favorites in audiobook format and listen to them on plane trips, when I can sit and just bask in the writing.

So anyway, that’s my recommendation: Nightvale, and Rosemary and Rue.

What do you guys recommend I listen to? Tweet me at @janebaileybooks with your suggestions.