8 Top Audiobook Listening Activities

A couple weeks ago, we asked you, as valued Libro.fm listeners, what you do while you listen to audiobooks. Some of the answers were fairly common (listed at the bottom of this post), but others surprised us! Need some new, interesting ideas for when you can listen to audiobooks? Look no further!


We heard from a few different people whose activity of choice while listening to audiobooks is knitting. As one listener said, “We attach the hum of our surroundings to the work in our hands.” One of our partner stores, The Bookshelf in Thomasville, Georgia, even hosts a knitting and audiobook club called “Stitches and Stories” in partnership with their local yarn shop. We recommend The Great Alone by Kristin Hannah.


Hitting the slopes and listening to an enthralling audiobook go hand-in-hand for some of our snow bunny listeners! Listen to Strong is the New Beautiful for lessons in strength, fitness, food, and attitude from the popular world champion skier and beauty icon—Olympic gold medalist Lindsey Vonn.

Grooming Dogs

A tedious, time-consuming task like grooming dogs isn’t quite as daunting when it also means hours of listening to one of your favorite audiobooks! We recommend The Art of Racing in the Rain.

Making Art

We heard from several customers that enjoy listening to their audiobooks while they’re working on their art. Whether your art is pottery, painting, or metal-working, hands-free listening allows you to create something beautiful while you listen. We recommend The Art of Asking by Amanda Palmer and Brené Brown.


Some of our listeners enjoy working in the garden as they listen to audiobooks. Getting outside, smelling the flowers, and listening to a good story like Euphoria is the perfect way to unwind.

Some more common activities that go along with listening:

Household Chores

Whether you’re washing that stack of after-dinner dishes, cleaning out your clutter closet, or vacuuming the whole house, listening to an audiobook will certainly make the mundane much more enjoyable! If you really want some inspiration while you clean, listen to Marie Kondo’s The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up.


Most of us wouldn’t call a work-out the best part of our day, but it certainly is better when you’re listening to a riveting audiobook rather than your own heavy breathing. For some work-out empowerment, listen to Born to Run by Christopher McDougall.


Audiobooks are key to a more pleasant commute, and for long road trips with kids, they can be lifesavers! (Try listening to the Harry Potter series with your kids during the next family road trip).

November 2017 Audiobook Bestsellers

Libro.fm is proud to present the November 2017 audiobook bestseller list that captures what’s selling in independent bookstores nationwide.


1. Manhattan Beach

By Jennifer Egan (Simon & Schuster Audio)

2. Turtles All the Way Down

By John Green (Penguin Random House Audio)

3. Little Fires Everywhere

By Celeste Ng (Penguin Random House Audio)

4. Lincoln in the Bardo

By George Saunders (Penguin Random House Audio)

5. A Gentleman in Moscow

By Amor Towles (Penguin Random House Audio)

6. Origin

By Dan Brown (Penguin Random House Audio)

7. My Absolute Darling

By Gabriel Tallent (Penguin Random House Audio)

8. It

By Stephen King (Simon & Schuster Audio)

9. The Hate U Give

By Angie Thomas (HarperCollins)

10. Exit West

By Mohsin Hamid (Penguin Random House Audio)


1. What Happened

By Hillary Clinton (Simon & Schuster Audio)

2. Al Franken, Giant of the Senate

By Al Franken (Hachette Audio)

3. You Are a Badass

By Jen Sincero (Tantor Media, Inc.)

4. We Were Eight Years in Power

By Ta-Nehisi Coates (Penguin Random House Audio)

5. The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck

By Mark Manson (HarperCollins)

6. Coming to My Senses

By Alice Waters (Penguin Random House Audio)

7. Born to Run

By Bruce Springsteen (Simon & Schuster Audio)

8. You Don’t Have to Say You Love Me

By Sherman Alexie (Hachette Audio)

9. Theft by Finding

By David Sedaris (Hachette Audio)

10. The Gene

By Siddhartha Mukherjee (Simon & Schuster Audio)

The November 2017 audiobook bestseller list is based on sales through independent bookstore locations during the month of October 2017.

Congrats, Summer Listening Challenge Finishers!

More than 40 independent bookstores participated in our first ever, Summer Listening Challenge.

Each participant was asked to log 20 hours of listening and tell us which bookstore they supported and what activities they did while listening. You can find the summary of results in the graphic below.

From booksellers to toddlers, and meditation to metalsmithing, there is an audiobook for everyone and no limit on the activities that can be accomplished while listening! But more importantly, with each listen through Libro.fm customers supported their local bookstore and their local community. Enough from us, hear what our finishers had to say after listening to more than 1,660 hours of audiobooks.

“I’ve completed my summer listening (I listened to sooo many books) and appreciate your encouragement!” – Sierra, supporter of Powell’s Books

“Thank you so much for offering this audio-focused reading challenge! I’ve always loved audiobooks, and my sons have gotten hooked in the past year.” – Pamela, supporter of Blue Willow Books

“So fun! I felt like a kid again, participating in my local library’s summer reading program!” – Jen, supporter of Vroman’s Bookstore

“Loved listening to books this summer! Thanks for being an amazing company!” – Kadine, supporter of Elliott Bay Book Company

September 2017 Audiobook Bestsellers

Libro.fm is proud to present the September 2017 audiobook bestseller list that captures what’s selling in independent bookstores nationwide.


1. Mrs. Fletcher

By Tom Perrotta (Simon & Schuster Audio)

2. The Ministry of Utmost Happiness

By Arundhati Roy (Penguin Random House Audio)

3. A Gentleman in Moscow

By Amor Towles (Penguin Random House Audio)

4. Camino Island

By John Grisham (Penguin Random House Audio)

5. Ready Player One

By Ernest Cline (Penguin Random House Audio)

6. Magpie Murders

By Anthony Horowitz (HarperCollins)

7. The Nix

By Nathan Hill (Penguin Random House Audio)

8. The Stone Sky

By N. K. Jemisin (Hachette Audio)

9. Meddling Kids

By Edgar Cantero (Penguin Random House Audio)

10. Lincoln in the Bardo

By George Saunders (Penguin Random House Audio)


1. Al Franken, Giant of the Senate

By Al Franken (Hachette Audio)

2. Theft by Finding

By David Sedaris (Hachette Audio)

3. You Don’t Have to Say You Love Me

By Sherman Alexie (Hachette Audio)

4. Brain Rules for Aging Well

By John Medina (Pear Press)

5. Killers of the Flower Moon

By David Grann (Penguin Random House Audio)

6. Hunger

By Roxane Gay (HarperCollins)

7. Hillbilly Elegy

By J. D. Vance (HarperCollins)

8. The Book of Joy

By Douglas Carlton Abrams, Dalai Lama, Desmond Tutu (Penguin Random House Audio)

9. The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck

By Mark Manson (HarperCollins)

10. Thinking, Fast and Slow

By Daniel Kahneman (Penguin Random House Audio)

The September 2017 audiobook bestseller list is based on sales through independent bookstore locations during the month of August 2017.

Cage-Free Audiobooks

Imagine it’s Friday, you’ve worked a long week, and you’ve just arrived home from the bookstore, carrying a new hardcover by your favorite novelist, ready to be swept up all weekend in a story. You sink into that cozy leather chair that’s perfectly formed to your body, kick your feet up on the ottoman, and weigh the hardcover in your palms.

But there’s a problem. You can’t remove the dust jacket from your new novel. You can’t even open the book. It’s as if it’s sealed shut. There doesn’t appear to be anything wrong with the book itself; it just won’t open. You call the bookstore and ask them what gives.

“Where are you sitting?” the clerk asks.

“In a chair,” you reply. “Where I always sit.”

“Is that one of our chairs?” the clerk asks.

Our chairs? What does that even mean? You describe the chair, the brand, etc.

“Hmm, well that’s the problem,” the clerk replies. “It’s not one of our chairs. Our books only open when you’re sitting in one of our chairs.”

“You’re kidding.”

“I can give you directions to our showroom,” the clerk says. “We have many wonderful chairs.”

“What about my couch?” You love the couch in your living room almost as much as the chair. You found it at a garage sale. It called to you from the street.

“Is it one of our couches?” asks the clerk. “We also have wonderful couches.”

This is not an ideal reading situation. It probably seems rather absurd. But it’s kind of like what a big audiobook retailer is trying to get away with by selling their audiobooks with DRM. Here at Libro.fm, our 70,000 audiobooks are DRM-free, which means that when you purchase one of our audiobooks through one of hundreds of independent bookstores, it’s yours.

You can listen to it on any device, anywhere, anytime, through any app that will play it. Although, we certainly recommend our own Libro.fm app for iOS and Android for the best possible listening experience. There are features such as the sleep timer, bookmarking, and playing audiobooks at a faster rate that are not possible on other players, iTunes, or your desktop. We don’t think it’s right to insist our customers use our other products unnecessarily. Nor, for that matter, do we think we should we ever be able to take your audiobook away from you, or change it—another aspect of DRM that feels, well, a bit cagey.

Libro.fm is one of the few places where every audiobook is DRM-free, or as we call it, cage-free. A DRM-free model fits our independent nature and it means you can listen to the audiobook anytime, anywhere, on any device. Declare your independence, #chooseindie

For more about the dangers of DRM, and why we’re proponents of DRM-free audiobooks, check out the reasons why notable author/activist Cory Doctorow has slowed down on his writing life in order to better advocate for a DRM-free world.

Books of the Month: Before the Fall and Course Correction

For July’s Book of the Month, we’re featuring two compelling titles. The first, Noah Hawley’s gripping novel, Before the Fall (narrated by Robert Petkoff), explores the intertwined mysteries behind a fateful oceanic plane crash. The second, Ginny Gilder’s inspiring memoir, Course Correction: A Story of Rowing and Resilience in the Wake of Title IX — narrated by Janis Ian and free through Libro.fm for the entire month—follows the author’s struggle to reach the top of the rowing world while also finding peace with her sexuality.


“This award-winning writer’s newest novel opens with a real nail-biter: a private jet crashes into the Atlantic off the New England coast and the harrowing survival of two of its passengers raises more questions than answers. At first a hero for rescuing four-year-old JJ, artist Scott Burroughs soon becomes the object of suspicion. Through the stories of each of the passengers, this thrilling mystery unfurls to its spellbinding end.”
RobinForever Books, St. Joseph, MI

Before the Fall - 4
Get twenty percent off Before the Fall (and all Libro.fm audiobooks) thru July by entering this code at checkout: SUMMER2016

“Beautiful and important on so many levels, Course Correction is about rowing and about so much more—hope and hopelessness, fear and courage, loss and redemption. Ultimately it is about the transforming power of love, and, dammit all, it made me cry.”
Daniel James Brown, author of The Boys in the Boat

Course Correction - 8

Get your complimentary download of Course Correction (until July 31, 2016 at Midnight PST)

Listen to a preview of Course Correction

Join readers and listeners all month on social media to discuss Before the Fall and Course Correction. Use the hashtags #beforethefall and #coursecorrection, and find us on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook.