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The Best Audiobooks in Each Major Category

Let’s face it: With the hyperactivity of today’s busy lifestyles, more people have difficulty finding the time to simply read for pleasure. Between work, school and extracurricular activities, the downtime necessary to enjoy a good book has become necessary for completing all those other pressing tasks that fill our daily schedules. But, there is an option for those who want to get more reading done, without trying to find that extra hour in the day: audiobooks (formerly known as books on tape for all you b-boomers out there).

Skip to: Top Rated Books

Quicklook: Best Audiobooks in Each Major Category

How Audiobooks Work

These are the same books that are in print in a format that is more convenient for many people. After a book is written, the publisher records the book in the same manner that music is recorded, then offers it to the public in several different formats to cover the listener’s chosen means of playback.

Audiobooks are produced in either abridged or unabridged formats. Abridged audiobooks have the story shortened in a manner that leaves out none of the important information but offers all the flavor of the unabridged edition, as in the Reader’s Digest condensed books of years past. Listeners may want to take this into consideration when choosing an audiobook; because these are spoken, the same book that might take a few hours to read or that makes a two-hour movie can take seven hours or more to listen to.

Playback Devices

Audiobooks may be found as CDs, MP3s, or M4Bs, making playback easy. Computers, tablets, MP3 players, and smart phones all offer advantages, with the situation the user is in often being key to which device is best to use at the time.

  • Computers offer the most diversity and storage space for audiobooks, but tie the user to one position while listening and may disturb others in the room if headphones are not used.
  • Tablets offer some flexibility for location, but can be bulky to carry around.
  • Smartphones and MP3 players offer the greatest flexibility in where users can listen, but battery life is an issue; users may not get more than an hour at a time listening before the device needs recharging.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Formats

Audible

  • With the Audible Premium Plus membership, you gain access to hundreds if not thousands of books to listen to on all devices.
  • New titles are added every week.
  • Through Audible you can listen to podcasts, audiobooks, and even get access to Audible Originals which include documentaries, theater, and sleep programs.
  • You can download and listen to Audible books offline.

Kindle

  • The Kindle Unlimited subscription grants access to over one million titles from ebooks, to audiobooks, and even magazines.
  • Kindle is primarily based on ebooks, so you will have to see which options you are selecting when purchasing the book. An audio version will generally be an additional cost.

Why AudioBooks?

Audiobooks are what they sound like: books that are listened to rather than read. This offers users advantages over printed books or e-readers.

Who Benefits From Audiobooks

Audiobooks let users get more done while enjoying a great book.

  • Driving to work becomes an opportunity to catch up on the latest best sellers.
  • That workout in the gym or evening run is a chance to revisit a favorite old book.
  • Housework doubles as reading time.
  • Waiting in the doctor’s office becomes an occasion to explore new ideas.
  • Travelers and those who drive long distances for a living will find audiobooks a convenient way to keep entertained while on the move. With hours of material at hand, an audiobook becomes the perfect resource for non-stop listening. Users can catch the latest bestseller or learn a new subject while the miles pass by.

Those with physical issues can enjoy great reading with audiobooks.

  • For the elderly or those with poor eyesight, an audiobook is a perfect way to keep up with the hottest titles without the need for large-print books.
  • Those who have difficulty holding a physical book will also find audiobooks a great way to catch up on their reading, without putting a strain on their body.
  • Those who have difficulty reading or just don’t like to read can get into the debate over whether the book or the movie was better.

Students seeking to keep up, catch up, get ahead have great options with audiobooks.

For students, audiobooks are a great way to:

  • Reinforce classroom lectures.
  • Get that summer reading done.
  • Study for the SAT.

But, the learning does not stop there: With everything available from Machiavelli’s “The Prince” to Stephen Hawking’s “Universe in a Nutshell,” there is an audiobook that will expand the student’s mind, spark interest, and ignite a search for knowledge.

Types of Books Available

With thousands of books available, everyone is sure to find books in their favorite genres, and new books are released every week. Here is just a selection of the thousands of books available for users’ listening pleasure: Top Rated Books

Top Rated Books

Where the Crawdads Sing

Where the Crawdads Sing

The story is set in the 1950s and revolves around a young woman named Kya Clark, who is from extremely rural North Carolina. Known by others as the Marsh Girl, she lives alone in nature—but the draw of other people, and specifically love, brings her into contact with the greater world.

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Becoming

Becoming

In her memoir, a work of deep reflection and mesmerizing storytelling, Michelle Obama invites readers into her world, chronicling the experiences that have shaped her—from her childhood on the South Side of Chicago to her years as an executive balancing the demands of motherhood and work, to her time spent at the world’s most famous address.

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The Nightingale

The Nightingale

In the quiet village of Carriveau, Vianne Mauriac says goodbye to her husband, Antoine, as he heads for the Front. She doesn’t believe that the Nazis will invade France…but invade they do, in droves of marching soldiers, in caravans of trucks and tanks, in planes that fill the skies and drop bombs upon the innocent. When a German captain requisitions Vianne’s home, she and her daughter must live with the enemy or lose everything. Without food or money or hope, as danger escalates all around them, she is forced to make one impossible choice after another to keep her family alive.

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The Alchemist: A Fable About Following Your Dream

The Alchemist: A Fable About Following Your Dream

Paulo Coelho’s enchanting novel has inspired a devoted following around the world. This story, dazzling in its simplicity and wisdom, is about an Andalusian shepherd boy named Santiago who travels from his homeland in Spain to the Egyptian desert in search of treasure buried in the Pyramids. Along the way he meets a Gypsy woman, a man who calls himself king, and an Alchemist, all of whom point Santiago in the direction of his quest. No one knows what the treasure is, or if Santiago will be able to surmount the obstacles along the way But what starts out as a journey to find worldly goods turns into a meditation on the treasures found within. Lush, evocative, and deeply humane, the story of Santiago is art eternal testament to the transforming power of our dreams and the importance of listening to our hearts.

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The Girl on the Train

The Girl on the Train

Rachel takes the same commuter train every morning. Every day she rattles down the track, flashes past a stretch of cozy suburban homes, and stops at the signal that allows her to daily watch the same couple breakfasting on their deck. She’s even started to feel like she knows them. “Jess and Jason,” she calls them. Their life—as she sees it—is perfect. Not unlike the life she recently lost.

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New York Times Best Sellers

The Vanishing Half

The Vanishing Half

From The New York Times best-selling author of The Mothers, a stunning new novel about twin sisters, inseparable as children, who ultimately choose to live in two very different worlds, one Black and one White.

The Vignes twin sisters will always be identical. But after growing up together in a small, Southern Black community and running away at age 16, it’s not just the shape of their daily lives that is different as adults, it’s everything: their families, their communities, their racial identities. Many years later, one sister lives with her Black daughter in the same Southern town she once tried to escape. The other secretly passes for White, and her White husband knows nothing of her past. Still, even separated by so many miles and just as many lies, the fates of the twins remain intertwined. What will happen to the next generation, when their own daughters’ storylines intersect?

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The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue

The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue

In the vein of The Time Traveler’s Wife and Life After Life, The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue is New York Times best-selling author V. E. Schwab’s genre-defying tour de force. 

France, 1714: In a moment of desperation, a young woman makes a Faustian bargain to live forever – and is cursed to be forgotten by everyone she meets. Thus begins the extraordinary life of Addie LaRue and a dazzling adventure that will play out across centuries and continents, across history and art, as a young woman learns how far she will go to leave her mark on the world. But everything changes when, after nearly 300 years, Addie stumbles across a young man in a hidden bookstore and he remembers her name. 

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The Push

The Push

A tense, pause-resisting psychological drama about the making and breaking of a family – and a woman whose experience of motherhood is nothing at all what she hoped for – and everything she feared.

Blythe Connor is determined that she will be the warm, comforting mother to her new baby, Violet, that she herself never had. But in the thick of motherhood’s exhausting early days, Blythe becomes convinced that something is wrong with her daughter – she doesn’t behave like most children do. Or is it all in Blythe’s head? Her husband, Fox, says she’s imagining things. The more Fox dismisses her fears, the more Blythe begins to question her own sanity, and the more we begin to question what Blythe is telling us about her life as well.

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The Midnight Library

The Midnight Library

A dazzling novel about all the choices that go into a life well-lived, from the internationally best-selling author of Reasons to Stay Alive and How to Stop Time.

Somewhere out beyond the edge of the universe there is a library that contains an infinite number of books, each one the story of another reality. One tells the story of your life as it is, along with another book for the other life you could have lived if you had made a different choice at any point in your life. While we all wonder how our lives might have been, what if you had the chance to go to the library and see for yourself? Would any of these other lives truly be better? 

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Neighbors

Neighbors

In Danielle Steel’s gripping new novel, a reclusive woman opens up her home to her neighbors in the wake of a devastating earthquake, setting off events that reveal secrets, break relationships apart, and bring strangers together to forge powerful new bonds.

Meredith White was one of Hollywood’s most recognizable faces. But a personal tragedy cut her acting career short and alienated her from her family. For the last 15 years, Meredith has been living alone in San Francisco with two trusted caretakers. Then, on a muggy late summer day, a massive earthquake strikes Northern California, plunging the Bay Area into chaos. Without a moment’s hesitation, Meredith invites her stunned and shaken neighbors into her mostly undamaged home as the recovery begins. 

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Before She Disappeared

Before She Disappeared

From #1 New York Times bestselling author Lisa Gardner, a propulsive thriller featuring an ordinary woman who will stop at nothing to find the missing people that the rest of the world has forgotten

Frankie Elkin is an average middle-aged woman, a recovering alcoholic with more regrets than belongings. But she spends her life doing what no one else will – searching for missing people the world has stopped looking for. When the police have given up, when the public no longer remembers, when the media has never paid attention, Frankie starts looking. 

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The Return

The Return

In the romantic tradition of Dear John, Nicholas Sparks returns with the story of an injured Navy doctor – and two women whose secrets will change the course of his life in this number one New York Times best seller.

Trevor Benson never intended to move back to New Bern, North Carolina. But when a mortar blast outside the hospital where he worked as an orthopedic surgeon sent him home from Afghanistan with devastating injuries, the dilapidated cabin he’d inherited from his grandfather seemed as good a place to regroup as any. 

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Ready Player Two

Ready Player Two

The highly anticipated sequel to the beloved worldwide best seller Ready Player One, the near-future adventure that inspired the blockbuster Steven Spielberg film.

Days after winning OASIS founder James Halliday’s contest, Wade Watts makes a discovery that changes everything.  Hidden within Halliday’s vaults, waiting for his heir to find, lies a technological advancement that will once again change the world and make the OASIS 1,000 times more wondrous – and addictive – than even Wade dreamed possible.

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Star Wars: Light of the Jedi

Star Wars: Light of the Jedi

It is a golden age. Intrepid hyperspace scouts expand the reach of the Republic to the furthest stars, worlds flourish under the benevolent leadership of the Senate, and peace reigns, enforced by the wisdom and strength of the renowned order of Force users known as the Jedi. With the Jedi at the height of their power, the free citizens of the galaxy are confident in their ability to weather any storm But the even brightest light can cast a shadow, and some storms defy any preparation.

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Best Fiction

Gone Girl

Gone Girl

On a warm summer morning in North Carthage, Missouri, it is Nick and Amy Dunne’s fifth wedding anniversary. Presents are being wrapped and reservations are being made when Nick’s clever and beautiful wife disappears from their rented McMansion on the Mississippi River. Husband-of-the-Year Nick isn’t doing himself any favors with cringe-worthy daydreams about the slope and shape of his wife’s head, but passages from Amy’s diary reveal the alpha-girl perfectionist could have put anyone dangerously on edge.

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The Silent Patient

The Silent Patient

The Silent Patient is a shocking psychological thriller of a woman’s act of violence against her husband – and of the therapist obsessed with uncovering her motive. 

Alicia Berenson’s life is seemingly perfect. A famous painter married to an in-demand fashion photographer, she lives in a grand house with big windows overlooking a park in one of London’s most desirable areas. One evening, her husband Gabriel returns home late from a fashion shoot, and Alicia shoots him five times in the face and then never speaks another word.  

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All the Light We Cannot See

All the Light We Cannot See

Marie-Laure lives with her father in Paris near the Museum of Natural History, where he works as the master of its thousands of locks. When she is six, Marie-Laure goes blind and her father builds a perfect miniature of their neighborhood so she can memorize it by touch and navigate her way home. When she is 12, the Nazis occupy Paris and father and daughter flee to the walled citadel of Saint-Malo, where Marie-Laure’s reclusive great-uncle lives in a tall house by the sea. With them they carry what might be the museum’s most valuable and dangerous jewel. 

In a mining town in Germany, the orphan Werner grows up with his younger sister, enchanted by a crude radio they find. Werner becomes an expert at building and fixing these crucial new instruments, a talent that wins him a place at a brutal academy for Hitler Youth, then a special assignment to track the resistance. More and more aware of the human cost of his intelligence, Werner travels through the heart of the war and, finally, into Saint-Malo, where his story and Marie-Laure’s converge.

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Little Fires Everywhere

Little Fires Everywhere

From the bestselling author of Everything I Never Told You, a riveting novel that traces the intertwined fates of the picture-perfect Richardson family and the enigmatic mother and daughter who upend their lives.

In Shaker Heights, a placid, progressive suburb of Cleveland, everything is planned—from the layout of the winding roads, to the colors of the houses, to the successful lives its residents will go on to lead. And no one embodies this spirit more than Elena Richardson, whose guiding principle is playing by the rules.

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The Martian

The Martian

A brand-new production of Andy Weir’s modern sci-fi classic, narrated by the incomparable Wil Wheaton, and featuring bonus content from the writings of Mark Watney.

Six days ago, astronaut Mark Watney became one of the first people to walk on Mars. Now, he’s sure he’ll be the first person to die there. After a dust storm nearly kills him and forces his crew to evacuate while thinking him dead, Mark finds himself stranded and completely alone with no way to even signal Earth that he’s alive – and even if he could get word out, his supplies would be gone long before a rescue could arrive.

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The Handmaid’s Tale

The Handmaid’s Tale

Margaret Atwood’s popular dystopian novel The Handmaid’s Tale explores a broad range of issues relating to power, gender, and religious politics. Multiple Golden Globe award-winner Claire Danes (Romeo and Juliet, The Hours) gives a stirring performance of this classic in speculative fiction, one of the most powerful and widely read novels of our time. 

After a staged terrorist attack kills the President and most of Congress, the government is deposed and taken over by the oppressive and all-controlling Republic of Gilead. Offred, now a Handmaid serving in the household of the enigmatic Commander and his bitter wife, can remember a time when she lived with her husband and daughter and had a job, before she lost even her own name. Despite the danger, Offred learns to navigate the intimate secrets of those who control her every move, risking her life in breaking the rules in hopes of ending this oppression. 

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American Dirt

American Dirt

Lydia Quixano Pérez lives in the Mexican city of Acapulco. She runs a bookstore. She has a son, Luca, the love of her life, and a wonderful husband who is a journalist. And while there are cracks beginning to show in Acapulco because of the drug cartels, her life is, by and large, fairly comfortable.

Even though she knows they’ll never sell, Lydia stocks some of her all-time favorite books in her store. And then one day, a man enters the shop to browse and comes up to the register with a few books he would like to buy – two of them her favorites. Javier is erudite. He is charming. And, unbeknownst to Lydia, he is the jefe of the newest drug cartel that has gruesomely taken over the city. When Lydia’s husband’s tell-all profile of Javier is published, none of their lives will ever be the same.

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To Kill a Mockingbird

To Kill a Mockingbird

Harper Lee’s Pulitzer prize-winning masterwork of honor and injustice in the deep south – and the heroism of one man in the face of blind and violent hatred, available now for the first time as a digital audiobook.

A gripping, heart-wrenching, and wholly remarkable tale of coming-of-age in a South poisoned by virulent prejudice, it views a world of great beauty and savage inequities through the eyes of a young girl, as her father – a crusading local lawyer – risks everything to defend a black man unjustly accused of a terrible crime.

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The Goldfinch

The Goldfinch

The Goldfinch is a novel of shocking narrative energy and power. It combines unforgettably vivid characters, mesmerizing language, and breathtaking suspense, while plumbing with a philosopher’s calm the deepest mysteries of love, identity, and art. It is a beautiful, stay-up-all-night and tell-all-your-friends triumph, an old-fashioned story of loss and obsession, survival and self-invention, and the ruthless machinations of fate.

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1984

1984

In 1984, London is a grim city in the totalitarian state of Oceania where Big Brother is always watching you and the Thought Police can practically read your mind. Winston Smith is a man in grave danger for the simple reason that his memory still functions. Drawn into a forbidden love affair, Winston finds the courage to join a secret revolutionary organization called The Brotherhood, dedicated to the destruction of the Party. Together with his beloved Julia, he hazards his life in a deadly match against the powers that be.

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Best Nonfiction

A Woman of No Importance: The Untold Story of the American Spy Who Helped Win World War II

A Woman of No Importance: The Untold Story of the American Spy Who Helped Win World War II

In 1942, the Gestapo sent out an urgent transmission: “She is the most dangerous of all Allied spies. We must find and destroy her.”

The target in their sights was Virginia Hall, a Baltimore socialite who talked her way into Special Operations Executive, the spy organization dubbed Winston Churchill’s “Ministry of Ungentlemanly Warfare.” She became the first Allied woman deployed behind enemy lines and–despite her prosthetic leg–helped to light the flame of the French Resistance, revolutionizing secret warfare as we know it.

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Greenlights

Greenlights

I’ve been in this life for fifty years, been trying to work out its riddle for forty-two, and been keeping diaries of clues to that riddle for the last thirty-five. Notes about successes and failures, joys and sorrows, things that made me marvel, and things that made me laugh out loud. How to be fair. How to have less stress. How to have fun. How to hurt people less. How to get hurt less. How to be a good man. How to have meaning in life. How to be more me.

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Midnight in Chernobyl

Midnight in Chernobyl

The definitive, dramatic untold story of the Chernobyl nuclear power plant disaster, based on original reporting and new archival research.

April 25, 1986 in Chernobyl was a turning point in world history. The disaster not only changed the world’s perception of nuclear power and the science that spawned it, but also our understanding of the planet’s delicate ecology. With the images of the abandoned homes and playgrounds beyond the barbed wire of the 30-kilometer Exclusion Zone, the rusting graveyards of contaminated trucks and helicopters, the farmland lashed with black rain, the event fixed for all time the notion of radiation as an invisible killer.

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Dead Mountain: The Untold True Story of the Dyatlov Pass Incident

Dead Mountain: The Untold True Story of the Dyatlov Pass Incident

In February 1959, a group of nine experienced hikers in the Russian Ural Mountains died mysteriously on an elevation known as Dead Mountain. Eerie aspects of the incident—unexplained violent injuries, signs that they cut open and fled the tent without proper clothing or shoes, a strange final photograph taken by one of the hikers, and elevated levels of radiation found on some of their clothes—have led to decades of speculation over what really happened. This gripping work of literary nonfiction delves into the mystery through unprecedented access to the hikers’ own journals and photographs, rarely seen government records, dozens of interviews, and the author’s retracing of the hikers’ fateful journey in the Russian winter.

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High Achiever: The Incredible True Story of One Addict’s Double Life

High Achiever: The Incredible True Story of One Addict’s Double Life

A raw and twisty page-turning memoir that reads like fiction, High Achiever spans Tiffany’s life as an active opioid addict, her 120 days in a Florida jail where every officer despised what she’d done to their brother in blue, and her eventual recovery. With heart-racing urgency and unflinching honesty, Jenkins takes you inside the grips of addiction and the desperate decisions it breeds. She is a born storyteller who lived an incredible story, from blackmail by an ex-boyfriend to a soul-shattering deal with a drug dealer, and her telling brims with suspense and unexpected wit. But the true surprise is her path to recovery. Tiffany breaks through the stigma and silence to offer hope and inspiration to anyone battling the disease—whether it’s a loved one or themselves.

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No Rules Rules: Netflix and the Culture of Reinvention

No Rules Rules: Netflix and the Culture of Reinvention

Here for the first time, Hastings and Erin Meyer, best-selling author of The Culture Map and one of the world’s most influential business thinkers, dive deep into the controversial ideologies at the heart of the Netflix psyche, which have generated results that are the envy of the business world. Drawing on hundreds of interviews with current and past Netflix employees from around the globe and never-before-told stories of trial and error from Hastings’s own career, No Rules Rules is the fascinating and untold account of the philosophy behind one of the world’s most innovative, imaginative, and successful companies.

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The System: Who Rigged It, How We Fix It

The System: Who Rigged It, How We Fix It

Using Jamie Dimon, the chairman and CEO of JPMorgan Chase as an example, Reich exposes how those at the top propagate myths about meritocracy, national competitiveness, corporate social responsibility, and the “free market” to distract most Americans from their accumulation of extraordinary wealth, and power over the system. Instead of answering the call to civic duty, they have chosen to uphold self-serving policies that line their own pockets and benefit their bottom line.

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Hillbilly Elegy: A Memoir of a Family and Culture in Crisis

Hillbilly Elegy: A Memoir of a Family and Culture in Crisis

From a former marine and Yale Law School graduate, a powerful account of growing up in a poor Rust Belt town that offers a broader, probing look at the struggles of America’s white working class.

Hillbilly Elegy is a passionate and personal analysis of a culture in crisis – that of white working-class Americans. The decline of this group, a demographic of our country that has been slowly disintegrating over 40 years, has been reported on with growing frequency and alarm but has never before been written about as searingly from the inside. J. D. Vance tells the true story of what a social, regional, and class decline feels like when you were born with it hung around your neck.

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The Great Influenza: The Story of the Deadliest Pandemic in History

The Great Influenza: The Story of the Deadliest Pandemic in History

In the winter of 1918, at the height of World War I, history’s most lethal influenza virus erupted in an army camp in Kansas, moved east with American troops, then exploded, killing as many as 100 million people worldwide. It killed more people in 24 weeks than AIDS has killed in 24 years, more in a year than the Black Death killed in a century. But this was not the Middle Ages, and 1918 marked the first collision between modern science and epidemic disease.

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The Four Agreements

The Four Agreements

In The Four Agreements, don Miguel Ruiz reveals the source of self-limiting beliefs that rob us of joy and create needless suffering. Based on ancient Toltec wisdom, the The Four Agreements offer a powerful code of conduct that can rapidly transform our lives to a new experience of freedom, true happiness, and love.

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Educational Books

Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance

Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance

The daughter of a scientist who frequently noted her lack of “genius,” Angela Duckworth is now a celebrated researcher and professor. It was her early eye-opening stints in teaching, business consulting, and neuroscience that led to her hypothesis about what really drives success: not genius, but a unique combination of passion and long-term perseverance.

In Grit, she takes us into the field to visit cadets struggling through their first days at West Point, teachers working in some of the toughest schools, and young finalists in the National Spelling Bee. She also mines fascinating insights from history and shows what can be gleaned from modern experiments in peak performance.

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Character Building

Character Building

Booker T. Washington (1856-1915) was an American educator, author, orator, and adviser to multiple presidents of the United States. Washington came from the last generation of black American leaders born into slavery and became the leading voice of the former slaves and their descendants. 

Character Building (1902) is a collection of talks on self-development given to students and faculty at the Tuskegee Institute, of which he was leader. The author stresses the importance of developing oneself for life-long success. He cultivated the highest moral standards in his students, and these speeches represent the core of his teaching.

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30 Days to a More Powerful Vocabulary: The 500 Words You Need to Know to Transform Your Vocabulary…and Your Life

30 Days to a More Powerful Vocabulary: The 500 Words You Need to Know to Transform Your Vocabulary…and Your Life

Words. They’re the foundation of nearly everything of value in our world. They have the power to create and the power to destroy. The power to inspire and to terrify. The power to enlighten and also to obscure. And, more specifically for you, they have the power to attract wealth and success and guarantee your brighter future. This is not hyperbole – it is based on rock-solid research.

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Atomic Habits: An Easy & Proven Way to Build Good Habits & Break Bad Ones

Atomic Habits: An Easy & Proven Way to Build Good Habits & Break Bad Ones

No matter your goals, Atomic Habits offers a proven framework for improving – every day. James Clear, one of the world’s leading experts on habit formation, reveals practical strategies that will teach you exactly how to form good habits, break bad ones, and master the tiny behaviors that lead to remarkable results.

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The Philosophy Book: Big Ideas Simply Explained

The Philosophy Book: Big Ideas Simply Explained

An essential introduction to the history, concepts, and thinking behind philosophy that demystifies what can often be daunting subject matter, laid out in DK’s signature style.

Are the ideas of René Descartes, Mary Wollstonecraft, John Locke, and Thomas Hobbes still relevant today? The Philosophy Book unpacks the writings and ideas of more than 100 of history’s biggest thinkers, taking you on a journey from ancient Greece to the modern day. Explore feminism, rationalism, idealism, existentialism, and other influential movements in the world of philosophy.

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What If?: Serious Scientific Answers to Absurd Hypothetical Questions

What If?: Serious Scientific Answers to Absurd Hypothetical Questions

From the creator of the wildly popular webcomic xkcd comes this hilarious and informative book of answers to important questions you probably never thought to ask.

Millions of people visit xkcd.com each week to read Randall Munroe’s iconic webcomic. His stick-figure drawings about science, technology, language, and love have a large and passionate following. Fans of xkcd ask Munroe a lot of strange questions. What if you tried to hit a baseball pitched at 90 percent of the speed of light? How fast can you hit a speed bump while driving and live? If there were a robot apocalypse, how long would humanity last?

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Learn about the various levels of reading and how to achieve them, from elementary reading through systematic skimming and inspectional reading to speed reading. Learn how to pigeonhole a book, “x-ray” it, extract the author’s message, and critique it. The authors offer different reading techniques for various types of books, and finally, a recommended reading list and reading tests for measuring your own progress in reading skills, comprehension, and speed.

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Our Picks

The Girl on the Train

The Girl on the Train

Rachel takes the same commuter train every morning. Every day she rattles down the track, flashes past a stretch of cozy suburban homes, and stops at the signal that allows her to daily watch the same couple breakfasting on their deck. She’s even started to feel like she knows them. “Jess and Jason,” she calls them. Their life—as she sees it—is perfect. Not unlike the life she recently lost.

Check the Price on Amazon

The Martian

The Martian

A brand-new production of Andy Weir’s modern sci-fi classic, narrated by the incomparable Wil Wheaton, and featuring bonus content from the writings of Mark Watney.

Six days ago, astronaut Mark Watney became one of the first people to walk on Mars. Now, he’s sure he’ll be the first person to die there. After a dust storm nearly kills him and forces his crew to evacuate while thinking him dead, Mark finds himself stranded and completely alone with no way to even signal Earth that he’s alive – and even if he could get word out, his supplies would be gone long before a rescue could arrive.

Check the Price on Amazon

Dead Mountain: The Untold True Story of the Dyatlov Pass Incident

Dead Mountain: The Untold True Story of the Dyatlov Pass Incident

In February 1959, a group of nine experienced hikers in the Russian Ural Mountains died mysteriously on an elevation known as Dead Mountain. Eerie aspects of the incident—unexplained violent injuries, signs that they cut open and fled the tent without proper clothing or shoes, a strange final photograph taken by one of the hikers, and elevated levels of radiation found on some of their clothes—have led to decades of speculation over what really happened. This gripping work of literary nonfiction delves into the mystery through unprecedented access to the hikers’ own journals and photographs, rarely seen government records, dozens of interviews, and the author’s retracing of the hikers’ fateful journey in the Russian winter.

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What If?: Serious Scientific Answers to Absurd Hypothetical Questions

What If?: Serious Scientific Answers to Absurd Hypothetical Questions

From the creator of the wildly popular webcomic xkcd comes this hilarious and informative book of answers to important questions you probably never thought to ask.

Millions of people visit xkcd.com each week to read Randall Munroe’s iconic webcomic. His stick-figure drawings about science, technology, language, and love have a large and passionate following. Fans of xkcd ask Munroe a lot of strange questions. What if you tried to hit a baseball pitched at 90 percent of the speed of light? How fast can you hit a speed bump while driving and live? If there were a robot apocalypse, how long would humanity last?

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The Hobbit

The Hobbit

The original American full dramatization as broadcast on National Public Radio.

Bilbo Baggins, a gentle hobbit who loves the comforts of home, reluctantly joins a company of dwarves on a journey to recover plundered gold from a fierce dragon. It’s a tale of high adventure and astonishing courage―and a magical prelude to the Lord of the Rings trilogy.

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The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy

The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy

One Thursday lunchtime Earth is unexpectedly demolished to make way for a new hyperspace bypass. For Arthur Dent, who has only just had his house demolished that morning, this is already more than he can cope with. Sadly, however, the weekend has only just begun. And the Galaxy is a very, very large and startling place indeed …

The Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy became a massive cult success when it was first published and continues to sell all over the world. It introduced such memorable characters as Arthur Dent, Marvin the Paranoid Android, Zaphod Beeblebrox and, of course, the Vogons, and remains one of the funniest, most irreverent and entertaining novels ever.

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Black Beauty

Black Beauty

Black Beauty was first published in 1877 and had an almost immediate impact on improving the treatment of animals-horses in particular-in England. Saddened by the animal abuse she had seen throughout her life, Anna Sewell wrote a novel using a horse’s voice. Beauty tells the powerful story of his own descent from a well-groomed carriage horse to a mistreated cab horse.

More than one hundred years after its first publication, Black Beauty remains a popular novel as well as an effective tool for teaching about animal cruelty

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Frequently Asked Questions

Can I rent audiobooks?

Renting an audiobook requires a subscription service with a company like Audiobooks.com. The advantage to renting is that the user is guaranteed a minimum of one book a month for the subscription fee, depending on the rental agreement, may be able to stream the book instead of downloading it, saving disc space and the cost, compared to buying twelve audiobooks a year, is lower. For those who want more than one book a month, rental companies offer options that may equal to or less than the standard subscription price.

Are audiobooks expensive?

There are also online sites that offer free audiobooks, such as the LibriVox free audiobook Collection. One disadvantage here is that these books are going to be ones that are in the public domain (outside their copyright), and that are read by volunteers. While this is not really a disadvantage to those who are interested in classic literature, listeners who are seeking the latest bestsellers will be disappointed to find that those books are not available.

With all the benefits that audiobooks offer, from subject matter to convenience, the chance to increase the amount of reading in a person’s life is endless and can only grow.

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