A Sip of Chirp: Leaning on Audio — W Lance Hunt

W Lance Hunt
4 min readJan 19, 2022

I’ve been flogging Chirp, on and off, for a while. Lately, it’s become the way I consume most of my books. Not because I prefer audio-I’m ambivalent for the most part-rather, because it’s a way to turn tasks into reading time.

Walking to the store, getting shopping done. Another chapter or three read. (Odd to use that word and I’ve flip-flopped between reading and listening, but it’s a book. One reads books. So, I still use that word.)

Prep vegetables, cook, do the dishes-chapters fall one after the other.

Bus to the chiropractor and 24 block walk home. That’s reading time. As is the express bus or subway to Manhattan. Well, yes, I do usually read read, as in putting eyes on dark squiggles while on the bus or subway, but not always. And definitely not when walking or shopping or chopping or cleaning.

Well, including an omnibus of three novels a fellow writer gave me, I’m up to 26 books. Including the few I abandoned.

My first buy was Good Omens back on March 24th, 2020. So, 26 books in 10 months. Not shabby.
Now, Good Omens was hilarious, funnier than the TV version by far. (I kept laughing on the subway and people would look at me oddly….) Even better, it cost me only $3.99.

I’ve paid anywhere between $0.99 to $6.99 (only once and that for a book by Ursula K. La Guin-Audible price $34.22.) Most cost me between $1.99 and $3.99. (Note: these were all part of their Daily Deal email. Sort of Bookbub for audiobooks. Never sure what you’re gonna see, but there is plenty to snag. The prices for books that aren’t in their newsletter are discounted, yes, but not nearly as much as the Daily Deals.)

Enough of the sales pitch.

Let’s get to the sip.

Here is the first installment of A Sip of Chirp. A quick dip into 5 or so books with an out of 5 ⭐️ s rating, and a few words-is it good? Or is it a waste of time and money? Or does it float between the two-nothing I’d go out of my way for, but it’s better than listening to the sounds of dishes and utensils clattering as I wash, or traffic as I walk.

Hope to turn you onto something cool or warn you from something that’s not.

A Sip of Chirp

In loosely chronological order.
1) Good Omens 5 of 5 ⭐️ Outstanding. I liked the show, loved the book. Cracked me up repeatedly, garnishing odd looks on the subway and bus, but frankly, I didn’t care. I even felt sorry for those folks because they weren’t hearing what I was. Solid narration. Clever idea outstandingly executed.

2) The Hobbit 4 of 5 ⭐️ (Original NPR production, with full cast) If you love Tolkien, you’ll probably love this. Well done, but not my cup of tea.

3) The Murder on the Links3 of 5⭐️ (a Hercule Poirot mystery) Taught me that I’ve read too many gritty stories to be able to sink into these naive, old-fashioned tales anymore. Good narrator.

4) Dark Magic 4 of 5 ⭐️ A pleasant surprise from an author I wasn’t familiar with. Sharp idea of a small circle of wizards operating in Manhattan, and someone murdering them one by one. Enjoyed the world-building and backstories as they were unfolded.

5) Blood Lust 3.5 of 5 ⭐️ A strong starter from an author I hadn’t known. This one though ran out of steam late, and I won’t get the next volume. Some fun characters and strong reveals, but I doubt anyone will ever change.

Share Chirp with a friend: That’s you. Click here=>

Check out Chirp

Sign up, you get 20% off, and I get 20% off. So, yeah, I get something, but when the average book for me is ~$4.00, that’s $0.80. I ain’t making bank. In fact, I don’t get anything until I BUY something.

These sips will appear in my writing adventure newsletter. Along with street art finds and thoughts on wines I and my wife try. Thoughts on life and writing and even the writing life. It’s a little more cosy than a magazine like Medium. If you think you’d like this, along with a FREE Audiobook, narrated by yours truly (some short stories, some excerpts of longer works, literary fiction and high fantasy both—some that I read at KGB Bar in Manhattan, some debuts) check it out here. (Promise I won’t bother you more than once or twice a month.)

Originally published at https://wlancehunt.com on January 19, 2022.

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W Lance Hunt

Award-winning short story author, novelist, and popular live reader