10 Great Books on Audible for People Who Don't Have Time to Read

Updated 08/19/19

Imagestock/Getty Images. Graphic by Cristina Cianci

Between commuting to and from work, getting a healthy dinner on the table, and binge-watching the latest Netflix original series, I know from experience that carving out the time to sit down and crack open a book at the end of a long day can be a lot more difficult than it sounds. As someone who genuinely loves to read, I decided to take a serious look at my schedule in an effort to try to squeeze in the time for a page-turner, and I found a surprisingly easy solution—listening to books during my commute.

Personally, I've found that having a productive way to pass the time I spend behind the wheel each day has made me happier.

Considering it takes the average worker 26 minutes to get to the office, I know I can't be alone in wanting to make the most of my daily drive, so I'm sharing a list of some of the best books on Audible for anyone who also feels like they don't have time to read. Personally, I've found that having a productive way to pass the time I spend behind the wheel each day has made me happier. Ahead are the best books on Audible that will make your commute bearable and, dare we say, enjoyable.

For Hilarious Insights About Life

Sloane Crosley Look Alive Out There $28

Look Alive Out There
Written and narrated by Sloane Crosley

Many years after publishing her wildly popular collection of essays I Was Told There'd Be Cake, Sloane Crosley is finally back with another collection of witty, relatable insights. In the audiobook version of the collection, the author narrates her own writing with all the charm, humor, and sass that jumps off the page.

For a Critical View of Society

Morgan Jerkins This Will Be My Undoing $24

This Will Be My Undoing
Written and narrated by Morgan Jerkins

If you're a fan of Roxane Gay's Bad Feminist and Chimamanda Ngozie Adichie's We Should All Be Feminists, you need to listen to the audiobook version of Morgan Jerkin's This Will Be My Undoing, a brutally honest look at what it means to be a black woman in America today. It's compelling, insightful, and should be considered required listening.

For a Spellbinding Story

Luis Alberto Urrea The House of Broken Angels $30

The House of Broken Angels
Written and narrated by Luis Alberto Urrea

In this audiobook, Pulitzer Prize-nominated author Luis Alberto Urrea narrates his latest novel, which is a spellbinding portrait of a Mexican-American family, the De La Cruzes, and their pursuit of the American dream. Trust us when we say you'll be transfixed by this fictional account of the quintessential American story.

For a Musing on the Power of Language

Uzodinma Iweala Speak No Evil $24

Speak No Evil
Written by Uzodinma Iweala
Narrated by Prentice Onayemi and Julia Whelan

This highly anticipated novel from the acclaimed author of Beasts of No Nation tackles the topic of the power of words. Included in Audible's Editors Selects for the best new releases of March 2018, the audiobook version is narrated by "two seasoned veterans who complement each other and Iweala's aesthetic beautifully," says Audible editor Michael Duke.

For an Insightful Memoir

Sarah McBride Tomorrow Will Be Different $28

Tomorrow Will Be Different
Written and narrated by Sarah McBride

Sarah McBride's powerful memoir Tomorrow Will Be Different is made all the more impactful by listening to the author narrate her own story. In this audiobook, McBride, an activist and the national press secretary for the Human Rights Campaign, is captivating as she shares her personal experience with gender identity.

For a Terrifyingly True Story

Michelle McNamara I'll Be Gone in the Dark $31

I'll Be Gone in the Dark
Written by Michelle McNamara
Narrated by Gabra Zackman, Gillian Flynn, and Patton Oswalt

In this audiobook, journalist Michelle McNamara's gripping investigation into the Golden State Killer, a serial rapist turned murderer who terrorized California in the '70s and '80s, is bookended by a forward read by best-selling author Gillian Flynn and an afterword read by McNamara's husband, Patton Oswalt.

For a Thoughtful Look at Addiction

Leslie Jamison The Recovering: Intoxication and Its Aftermath $31

The Recovering: Intoxication and Its Aftermath
Written and narrated by Leslie Jamison

Leslie Jamison delves into the topic of addiction in her genre-defining book The Recovering. Part memoir, part cultural history, part literary criticism, the book shares Jamison's personal experience with addiction, as well as stories from Jean Rhys, Billie Holiday, and George Cain, in order to present a fascinating look at the recovery movement.

For an Updated Take on a Classic

Jane Austen Emma $10

Emma Written by Jane Austen
Narrated by Emma Thompson

This audible original recording features actor Emma Thompson (alongside actors Joanne Froggatt, Aisling Loftus, and Isabella Inchbald) narrating the witty Jane Austen classic. Austen fans, be forewarned: This isn't a word-for-word reading, but rather a modern telling of a classic.

For a Motivational Boost

Rachel Hollis Girl, Wash Your Face $26

Girl, Wash Your FaceWritten and narrated by Rachel Hollis

File this audiobook under refreshing self-help books that expose the misconceptions of having it all figured out. The utterly hilarious Hollis narrates her motivating New York Times bestseller, giving listeners a glimpse into her own messy life to inspire us all to get real.

For a Candid Conversation About Race in America

Ijeoma Oluo So You Want to Talk About Race $24

So You Want to Talk About RaceWritten by Ijeoma Oluo
Narrated by Bahni Turpin

Oluo's novel, which has been aptly described as "a current, constructive, and actionable exploration of today's racial landscape," is brought to vivid life by Bahni Turpin, whose name you might recognize from her acclaimed reading of Colson Whitehead's brilliant novel The Underground Railroad.

This story was originally published on April 10, 2018, and has since been updated.

Up next, the best audiobooks of all time might actually have you hoping for a traffic jam.

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