Top 3 Reasons You Should Be Listening to Light Novel Audiobooks

For many readers, audiobooks exist somewhere on the fringes of reading society—a hazy concept that you know a little about, but maybe have only dabbled in. Depending on your age, you might remember when audiobooks came as multiple CD’s in a chunky case!

These days, we’ve got dedicated audiobook platforms like Audible—and now, light novels are getting the five-star audio treatment, with popular franchises like Sword Art Online, Kumo Desu ga, Nani ka? (So I’m A Spider, So What?), and Overlord all getting adapted to audio format courtesy of Yen Audio—an offshoot of Yen Press.

Today on Honey’s Anime, we’ll be leading you through the new world of light novel audiobooks—and telling the Top 3 Reasons You Should Be Listening to Light Novel Audiobooks!

1. It’s Called ‘Acting’

Forget a generic-sounding narrator slowly dictating the prose like a high school English professor reading Macbeth—audiobooks have been employing genuine voice actors for quite a while now. Modern fantasy and Young Adult fiction are properly ‘acted,’ with full emotion given to prose and dynamic speaking styles for action setpieces.

If you thought audiobooks were a snore fest, think again, because you’ll be getting professional-grade voice acting delivered right into your eardrums! Yen Audio has managed to pull in the big guns, too—for example, Bryce Papenbrook and Cherami Leigh (the English VA’s for Kirito and Asuna, respectively) are the narrators for Sword Art Online, and Chris Guerrero reprises his role as Ainz Ooal Gown for Overlord!

Essentially, you’re having a light novel told to you by the character themselves—it’s a beautifully eerie sensation, and one we highly recommend!

2. A Win For Multitaskers and the Neurodivergent

Let’s be honest—books aren’t for everyone.

Sometimes, you’ll just end up waiting for a manga adaptation to come out because the idea of sitting down to read a 250+ page light novel (and 15 or 20 of those!) is a daunting proposition. And that’s perfectly okay—whether you have a busy life that doesn’t allow you the luxury of reading time, or you have a neurodivergent challenge like ADHD or dyslexia, reading a physical book might not work for you.

Audiobooks are a different way of consuming exactly the same material, so there’s no need to feel ‘guilty.’ Whether you’re commuting on the train, or doing chores about the house, having an audiobook on allows your brain to leverage its own multitasking capabilities.

3. Eyestrain Be Gone!

We’re not doctors (not the last time we checked, anyway), but you’re probably spending too much time on your screen.

Audiobooks are, by their nature, a great way to give your eyes a break. Many audiobook applications allow you to set a “sleep mode,” so you can listen to a book before going to bed. If, for some strange reason, you enjoy the outdoors, you can lose yourself in the wilderness and lose yourself in a good book at the same time, too—double the health benefits!

Giving your eyes a much needed break is good for your optical health, and also activates different parts of your brain than physical reading—according to some psychological studies, audiobooks can even boost your mood by disrupting negative thoughts!

Wait, Aren’t Audiobooks Expensive Though?!

We won’t lie, audiobooks are far more expensive than a regular novel.

Think about how much a voice actor might say during a typical anime season—now imagine them narrating an entire 50,000 word novel. That trickle-down price hits your wallet, making audiobooks at least twice the price of a regular light novel.

Love them or loathe them, Amazon has one of the best audiobook subscription services around, with Amazon Audible giving you credits each month that can be used to buy an audiobook. If you run out of credits, you can buy more, or simply purchase a book outright at a reduced price.

If you’d rather source your audiobooks elsewhere, Apple Books, Google Play Books, and Spotify have now all joined the competition, with varyingly different prices. You can also check out your local library, which might use OverDrive (or a similar digital service) that allows you to “checkout” an audiobook the same way you might take out a physical novel, completely for free.

Final Thoughts

Audiobooks aren’t for everyone, but then again, neither are physical books!
Just like eBooks, audiobooks don’t take up any (physical) space, so they’re perfect for minimalists or people that are storage-constrained. You can get a brand-new experience by listening to voice actors give their roles a new life, and even exercise new parts of your brain while you listen to the story!

How do you feel about light novel audiobooks? Let us know down in the comments below, and as always, thanks for reading!

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Author: Brett Michael Orr

I'm a writer, gamer, and reviewer of manga & light novels, from Melbourne, Australia. When I'm not creating a new world, I'll be absorbed in a good JRPG, watching some anime, or reading up a storm!

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