Mystery audiobooks and other things to pass the time
October 16, 2010 10:14 AM   Subscribe

My grandmother recently had a shoulder replacement and was never a huge television fan, so I'm looking for audiobooks and podcasts to put on a digital audio player for her.

I know she likes mystery titles, so any notable authors and titles in that genre would be good. She follows the news and politics, so maybe a few podcasts or interesting audiobooks would be good. In that department, she's not too far from your average mefite, maybe left of center in the American political spectrum. Any suggestions beyond NPR and Radio Open Source would be good. She was an artist in her past life, but I'm not sure she wants to hear about art right now...

Also, what is the best place to buy audiobooks nowadays? Amazon? Audible?

Thanks in advance!
posted by ayerarcturus to Media & Arts (5 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Slate's podcast, especially the gabfest, would be a great edition.

Audible is great, but Librivox is free.
posted by Spurious at 12:09 PM on October 16, 2010

Many public libraries offer audio books for download. I find it is nicer to hear a bad book by a good reader than the other way around so you might want to listen to the samples before you download.
posted by InkaLomax at 2:48 PM on October 16, 2010

Also many public libraries let you borrow books-on-cd, or even on a digital player. I recently borrowed and listened to 1776 by David McCullough, which I enjoyed.
posted by fings at 7:43 PM on October 16, 2010

This American Life usually offers something for anyone.
posted by iamgoat at 8:10 PM on October 16, 2010

Audible is great.

We've also had great luck with getting books on CD through the public library system. I don't know how it is in your state, but in Minnesota there is a site that lets you search and request via inter-library loan anything that any public library in the state has; if your local library doesn't have a particular title, there could still be a good chance that some other library has it.

I personally enjoy podcasts even more than audio books. NPR has a ton of podcasts. Your grandmother might enjoy American Public Media's The Story, PRI's Selected Shorts, This American Life, and maybe even Radiolab. For most of these podcasts, you can get older episodes as well as the current one, so if she finds one she likes, there will probably be hours of older episodes to listen to.
posted by beandip at 7:16 PM on October 17, 2010

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