Several hit titles are available at a discount, including “Fire and Fury” and “Lincoln in the Bardo”
OK Google, read me “Fire and Fury.”
Google Play will now offer audiobooks available for listening on your Google Home speaker or phone Assistant, the tech giant announced Tuesday. The new service is commitment-phobe-friendly, allowing listeners to buy individual books sans subscription like Audible. (Competitor Amazon Echo supports Kindle books and Audible audiobooks.) Google’s service is available in 45 countries and nine languages.
A series of discounted book offerings under $10 — “to celebrate the launch,” Google says — include Michael Wolff’s salacious, much-scrutinized White House tell-all, “Fire and Fury,” J.K. Rowling’s “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them,” “Why Not Me” by Mindy Kaling and “Astrophysics For People In A Hurry” by astrophysicist Neil DeGrasse Tyson.
There’s also “The Girl with the Lower Back Tattoo” by Amy Schumer and “America Again” by Stephen Colbert; for thrillseekers, there’s “The Rooster Bar” by John Grisham and “The Girl on the Train” by Paula Hawkins. George Saunders’ “Lincoln in the Bardo,” a Man Booker prize-winning New York Times bestseller, features an all-star voice cast including Nick Offerman, David Sedaris, Miranda July, Don Cheadle, Bradley Whitford, Carrie Brownstein and Lena Dunham.
Books are shareable for free in the Family Library, according to Google, which will also keep your place in the book across devices. Some simple commands include “OK Google, read my book,” “OK Google, who is the author?” and “OK Google, stop playing in (X) minutes.”
The burgeoning audiobook market totaled more than $2.1 billion in sales in 2016, according to an Audio Publishers Association sales survey last year — an 18% increase from 2015. More than 67 million Americans tune in to audiobooks every year, the report found, with almost half of frequent listeners younger than 35.
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