Sometimes you're so busy and/or eager to drown out your thoughts while going through your to-do list that all you want is a nice audiobook to tell you a story. What if I told you that you can add to your listening list without spending any money or moving one inch off the couch? Let me tell you all about the best free audiobooks you can find.
Navigating the world of free audiobooks is a little tricky. A lot of the free offerings on Audible are podcasts in disguise or, like, The Mueller Report for some reason? Hard pass. Also, because most audiobooks are public domain classics like Peter Pan and Sherlock Holmes, there are 1000s of recordings to choose from. If you don't care so much about who is reading to you or what the production values are, you're likely to find what you're looking for. Librivox is like an online library where volunteers read public domain novels and anyone can listen for free, which is pretty rad.
There are also a ton of "free" audiobooks for Amazon Prime members, which gives you access to some more contemporary titles... but only if you've already paid the pricey subscription fee. Nobody has time for that! These are the really, really free audiobooks out there, curated by me for you.
Les Liasons Dangereuses
Okay, so if you're not familiar with this play it's what the movie Cruel Intentions is based on. Enough said... except that this audiobook adaptation also stars everyone's favorite 2020 scandal-monger, Dominic West. Ooh la la!
A Christmas Carol
Author Neil Gaimon performs the Dickens classic tale. Perfect for a spooky night snowed in with a hot bev and some candles, don't you think?
Hear Christopher Lee, whose booming voice you know from the Lord of the Rings movies and the Star Wars prequels, read Mary Shelley's science fiction novel. If you only know the monster and the doctor from the movies, I highly recommend listening to the book.
This adaptation of the Victor Hugo novel that inspired the Anne Hathway film (sorry, I had to go there) is not just in the style of a 1930s radio play... it's an actual 30s radio play. Settle in for a long listen and let Orson Welles tell you Jean Valjean's story.
Rise of the Dragon
Not every free audiobook is classic lit, however. Author Morgan Rice has a few titles available in a free situation on iTunes. This one in particular is rated really high on iTunes and is the first of a series—so be careful you don't get hooked!
The Secret Garden
Karen Gillan (Guardians of the Galaxy, Selfie) reads you Frances Hodgson Burnett's book on iTunes and it won't cost you a dime. There are quite a few secret free audiobooks read by celebrities on iTunes, actually, including...
The Wonderful Wizard of Oz
Narrated by Tituss Burgess from The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt! I can't think of anything more charming. But wait, there's more...
Pride & Prejudice
Kate Beckinsale reads Jane Austen's most famous book in this free iTunes download. Like I said, you can get pretty much all of Austen's works on iTunes for free because they're in the public domain. This one just has star power.
The Time Machine
The last of the free iTunes goodies is an H.G. Wells' science fiction adventure read by Kelsey Grammer, Frasier himself.
A full cast recorded this abridged version of the epic that will still take you 24 hours to listen to. They don't call it a whale of a tale for nothing!
The Raven Cycle
Escape into Maggie Stiefvater's contemporary fantasy series without breaking the bank. These books are about a girl and her guy friends on a magical quest to find a long lost king—and they're all on Spotify!
The Kiss Quotient
You better believe there's some free romance for you, too. Helen Hoang's book, available to listen to on Spotify, is all about sexy math. Give it a listen, you know you wanna.
"The Dream Keeper" & Other Poems of Langston Hughes
There are a ton of free poems on Spotify, to be quite honest, and no better place to start than this collection of Hughes poetry read by the man himself.
The Hunger Games
Oh, yeah, before you go... the entire Hunger Games series is available to listen to on Spotify for free. You're welcome!
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