I’m not a huge audiobook listener, so it never really made sense for me to take advantage of Audible Escape, the unlimited romance package you can add on to your Audible subscription. But I recently got an offer for a free three-month trial that I couldn’t turn down, and while I don’t 100 percent love the service, I’m really glad I gave it a try!
If you remember my review of Scribd, I had planned to let my subscription to both Audible and Scribd lapse, catch up on audiobooks I already had, and then decide which one to sign up for again. As it happens, Audible gave me another crazy good offer where I could get a three month subscription for 50 percent off, so I decided to go ahead and sign up again, figuring I could just cancel at the end.
Then, after the new year, Audible offered me a free three-month trial subscription for their Audible Escape package. I know Jenica has raved about it in the past, and a lot of women in my book club are fans of it, too, but I don’t listen to enough audiobooks for it to really make sense, plus I’m a bit reluctant to listen to romance on audio. So I signed up, but figured I’d probably never use it.
The reality is, I probably wouldn’t have if Audible hadn’t had a special offer going on at the beginning of the year where if you listened to three audiobooks in the course of January and February, they’d give you a $20 credit (that can’t be used on digital content, unfortunately, but still). By mid-February, I’d only made my way through one audiobook, and nothing else that I owned was short enough to help me make my goal quickly, so I turned to Audible Escape.
Honestly, browsing the Audible Escape offerings is kind of a pain in the ass. It’s cool that they break it down by genre or trope, but I need them to break it down by genre AND trope. Like, it’s cool to get a list of recommendations for enemies to lovers, but what if I specifically want a paranormal enemies to lovers, or a historical one? Also, what the heck is up with all of the classics floating to the top of the recommendation lists? Don’t get me wrong, I love Jane Austen, but having her books flood the top of the recommendation lists was not particularly useful, especially since I’ve already read those books.
All in all, I didn’t love the browsing experience. I couldn’t sort their broken down lists by length or star ratings or anything, which I found rather annoying, and there was just SO MUCH. It was overwhelming to say the least. With this sort of setup, recommendation posts of what to listen to on Audible Escape (like Jenica’s!) are invaluable unless you know exactly what you want to listen to. I also don’t love that when I find something interesting, I have to add it to my wish list. I find the wish list more valuable for things I’m planning to buy with my credits, so it’d be nice to have a separate list for things I’m interested in checking out from Audible Escape, but it’s not the end of the world.
Anyways, I wound up settling on The Governess Affair by Courtney Milan for my first book. I’ve been meaning to read her Brothers Sinister series for ages, and it was a nice, short read perfect to help me hit my three-book goal quickly. I was prepared to like it since Milan is a good writer, though I was a bit hesitant about the length since romance novellas aren’t really my thing. So I was not prepared to absolute love it. The story was amazing and perfect for the length it was, and I was really impressed with the narrator. I wanted to keep listening!
I tried finding something else to listen to next, and Jenica was great about giving me all sorts of recommendations, but even though I wanted to read the Brothers Sinister series in order, I figured it couldn’t hurt to jump ahead to the next novella, A Kiss for Midwinter. So I wound up listening to that next, and honestly, between the book itself and the narration, I couldn’t put it down. I had to keep listening, and before I knew it, I had finished a second book.
I wanted to use Audible Escape to listen to a bunch of authors I’m excited to meet at KissCon, but honestly, I couldn’t walk away from the opportunity to listen to more Courtney Milan, so I decided to go ahead and do just that. I think what made this such an excellent experience for me is that I had digital copies of the Brothers Sinister, so I was able to read physical copies when I wanted to, and then switch to audio when I needed my hands free to clean up the apartment or go to the gym. Normally with an Audible audiobook, I spent a credit on it, and so I’m invested in solely listening to that book on audio. But I don’t always make an effort to pick up audiobooks like I do physical books, so it can take me a month or more to listen to an audiobook. And while I felt more free with Scribd, there was still a limit on how much I could pick out per months, so I felt the need to choose wisely.
With Audible Escape, I can check out as many books as I want and not worry about it at all. It was such a freeing experience! I could start reading The Duchess War, and then switch to the audio version when I went to the grocery store or did my laundry and then switch back when I wanted to read before bed. It was super easy to turn into a bit of an audiobook fiend since I had so much opportunity to listen!
Though I will say, it was really weird hearing some of these words pronounced correctly. I’ve been reading historical romance since I was about 12, and I’ve never known any French, so of course I’ve been pronouncing words like ton and chemise wrong for years. Not to mention some of the English words that we say differently in the States, like Leicester. Not going to lie, I’m happy to continue pronouncing them incorrectly in my head. It’s too late to change!
I had a lot of fun playing around with Audible Escape, but at the end of the day, I don’t want to pay full price to keep taking advantage of it, and I cancelled before they started charging me. I’d rather start using the audiobooks from my library more (Libby is the best!) and take advantage of different deals as I come across them. I definitely think it’s worth giving a shot, though, especially if you like romance. There’s a lot of content in there, and I think you can find yourself easily taking more advantage of it than you realize. Plus you can probably track down your own great deal to try it out. And if you listen to a ton of audiobooks, this is a great way to keep you fully stocked for a good chunk of time!