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Audible and Beyond: A Guide to the Best Audiobook Services

A pair of headphones connected to physical books.

There’s more than one way to enjoy a good book. You can read it in the form of an eBook on a Kindle or take it in the good old fashioned way as a physical book. However, these options don’t always work. The good news is that audiobooks exist, and there is no storage of amazing audiobook services to help you enjoy them.

To help you select the best service to help you get your book fix, we’re highlighting the best audiobook services. We’re covering the better-known options like Audible and Scribd as well as services you might not have heard of like GraphicAudio. Also, keep in mind that Apple Books and Books on Google Play both have an excellent selection of audiobooks.

Best Overall Audiobook Service: Audible

an image shows the Audible website.
Audible, an Amazon company

If you ask a group of people to name an audiobook service, there’s a good chance one name will come up again and again: Audible. The service has become synonymous with audiobooks. This Amazon company provides awesome service and has a robust catalog with thousands of audiobooks.

When you subscribe to Audible Plus, you can listen to as many audiobooks, sleep tracks, meditation programs, and podcasts as you want each month. You have the option to stream titles from the app or save titles to your library for offline listening. If you’re looking for a little more, you can subscribe to Audible Premium Plus to enjoy all the benefits of Audible Plus as well as a monthly credit you can redeem for any audiobook.

Download on the Apple App StoreGet it on Google Play

Best for Those Seeking Variety: Scribd

an image shows the Scribd website.

Scribd is another prominent player in the audiobook service space. This service promises to provide “endless entertainment and knowledge” that allows you to “read or listen anytime, anywhere.” It’s a pretty big promise, but Scribd does deliver.

For one monthly fee, you can subscribe to Scribd to access more than 300,000 audiobooks and more than 2 million eBooks. However, that’s not all your membership gives you. You can also enjoy more than 1 million magazines and news articles as well as podcasts and even sheet music.

Scribd doesn’t officially place a limit on how much of this content you can enjoy each month. However, you may find that some titles say, “Available Soon.” When this happens, you’ll have to wait until your subscription renews the following month to access those titles.

Download on the Apple App StoreGet it on Google Play

Best Audiobook Service With No Subscription Fee: Chirp

an image shows the Chirp website.

If the idea of paying a monthly subscription for an audiobook service doesn’t appeal to you, you’re in luck. Chirp is a service that allows you to find excellent deals on audiobooks so that you only pay for the ones you want.

Chirp strives to offer great deals on bestselling audiobooks. In fact, some of these titles are available for as much as 95% off the retail price. To get started, you’ll sign up for an account and let the service know what types of audiobooks you enjoy. You’ll then receive personalized email recommendations for audiobooks that you can purchase for streaming or downloading. Chirp also gives you the option to search for titles by genre as well as explore the top picks and deals.

Download on the Apple App StoreGet it on Google Play

Best for Getting Audiobooks From the Library: Libby

an image shows the Libby website.

What’s better than accessing audiobooks for less? Listening to them for free, of course. It might sound too good to be true, but there’s a legitimate way to get your audiobook fix without paying a single cent. It’s all thanks to a powerful partnership between your local library and Libby.

The app formerly known as OverDrive allows you to borrow thousands of audiobooks, eBooks, magazines, and so much more from your local library for free. There’s no subscription or sign-up fee to get started. All you need is the app and a library card. You’ll find that Libby’s reach is impressive, as over 90% of North American public libraries work with the service as well as libraries in 78 countries.

Download on the Apple App StoreGet it on Google Play

Best for Full Cast Dramatized Audiobooks: GraphicAudio

an image shows the GraphicAudio website.

When you listen to a lot of audiobooks, you know that the reader can make or break the experience. GraphicAudio is an audiobook service that is well aware of this fact, so the company specializes in making high-quality audio entertainment.

While GraphicAudio doesn’t have as large of a catalog as the other audiobook services, what it does offer is very well done. You can purchase audiobooks from more than 1,600 titles and nearly 200 series in a wide variety of genres. Each title was created using the “A Movie in Your Mind” audiobook entertainment format. As a result, you’ll enjoy full case dramatizations with cinematic music and immersive sound effects to make you feel like you’re right in the story.

Download on the Apple App StoreGet it on Google Play

Best for Supporting Local Bookstores: Libro.fm

an image shows the Libro.fm website.

More people are looking to support local businesses with their everyday purchases. It might seem like you can’t shop local when you sign up for an audiobook service, but Libro.fm shows you the truth. With a monthly subscription, you can support your local bookstore while enjoying audiobooks.

Each month, your Libro.fm membership gives you an audiobook credit. You can use this credit to access one of the more than 275,000 audiobooks in the service’s ever-growing catalog. As a member, you’ll also receive 30% off when you purchase additional audiobooks. Best of all, whenever you buy an audiobook, Libro.fm lets you do it through a local bookstore. Doing so, lets you support the little guy and your local economy for the ultimate shop-local experience.

Download on the Apple App StoreGet it on Google Play
Shannon Flynn Shannon Flynn
Shannon Flynn is a freelance writer for Review Geek. This attorney turned writer has been creating content ranging from blogs to eBooks for nearly a decade. She has written on topics in several industries, including healthcare, retail, and law. However, she has a special interest in writing about tech products, including smart home devices, e-readers, Apple products, and Nintendo gaming. She also has a passion for trying out different apps and all things LEGO. Read Full Bio »