Thursday, 29 September 2011

Booking Through Thursday: Aloud

1. What do you think of reading aloud/being read to?
    Does it bring back memories of your childhood?
    Your children’s childhood?

2. Does this affect the way you feel about audio books?

3. Do you now have times when you read aloud or are read to?

The BTT questions come from Deb at Booking Through Thursday.

Nowadays I get most of my ‘reading aloud’ through audio books. For me the increased popularity of audio books has been a blessing, especially over the past eleven years, when because of problems with my neck I’ve had to spend a lot of time just resting, and having difficulties holding and reading ordinary books. With audio books I’ve been able to keep on reading and relax at the same time, which has also served as a distraction from pain etc.


My bedside equipment ;)

My mother read aloud to me in my childhood, until I learned to read myself. Since my brother is six years younger than me, I also ‘listened in’ sometimes when mum read to him; and I think I probably also occasionally did some ‘big sister’ reading.

From childhood I also remember listening to children’s radio programs which included readings or radio dramatizations. No TV back then! Perhaps we got more practice just listening than kids do today (their world full of TV and DVDs and computers).


A drawing of ‘little me’ by my mother, from the 1950s.

I never had children of my own, so not all that many memories of me as grown up reading aloud to kids. A picture book or two now and then to friends’ children when they were “that age”… Which I rather enjoyed! 

I’m so used to audio books now that they do not automatically remind me of childhood – that depends more on what book is being read, or by whom. But sometimes (especially at night) I choose an ‘old favourite’  – because a story I already know requires less concentration, and it doesn’t matter if I fall asleep half through – and that does sometimes produce a cozy bedtime story kind of feeling.

All in all, I wish all young children the privilege of someone reading aloud to them – and not just from tape or CD. I think the physical closeness plays its part too. But audio books are good too. When listening to a story, just like when reading – but unlike watching a film - you create your own images in your head; and I think that’s good brain exercise.

Back in … when? early 90’s perhaps? …  I had some friends who took turns arranging a literary evening now and then. On these occasions, those invited were supposed to bring a poem or a short story to read aloud to the rest. A nice way to socialize and discover new sides to old friends.




  1. I don't remember ever being read to aloud when I was a child. How could that be? Maybe I was, and I just forgot. I love snuggling with the girls and reading aloud to them, I think the closeness brings them good feelings and memories when they grow up, and perhaps makes them love to read more. I will actually be sad when they learn to read-and they are already starting. Anne reads to her mother and me now!!!!

  2. I really like that drawing of you as a little girl, your mother was really talented as an artist. i do not listen to audio, can't concentrate, mother never read to me, i preferred to read to myself. my friend takes audio books on trips and as she drives she listens. i find it difficult to concentrate when listening to someone reading out loud. i would not mind reading out loud to others though

  3. I love the picture your Mother drew. What a wonderful keepsake.


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