As a truck driver, you know how long the days can be on the road and how boring work can be. Especially when there is another tailback, the minutes drag on like hours. It is all the better if you can turn on an audiobook that will take your breath away with excitement, make you burst out with laughter, or give you comfort in bitter hours. Technology makes it possible for you to bring the whole world into the cab. Here are five very different popular audiobooks for long journeys.
1. On the Road – Jack Kerouac
“On the Road”, this novel was published in 1957 and is considered the most important work of the Beat generation. Whether you’ve already read the book or seen the film does not really matter – it’s basically fun to be captivated by the perilous adventures of the duo Dean Moriarty and Sal Paradise, also as an audiobook. Set in the US and in Mexico, the road trip of the two dissimilar friends who experience adventures like Tom Sawyer and Huck Finn – instead of the raft, there are trucks, freight trains, buses and even a stolen car. And also the references to drugs and women do not have much in common with Mark Twain’s adolescent heroes. Those who enjoy youthful transgression coupled with the view from the outside of the society of the 1940s and 1950s, truly get their money’s worth here.
2. Macbeth – Jo Nesbø
This audiobook contains recognisable hints of Shakespeare’s tragic figure, but the Norwegian cult author clearly puts his stamp on it. Inspector Macbeth is a tough cookie and a damn good policeman who works inexorably against crime. When he realises, however, that a man with his gutter past will never reach the top by legal means, he succumbs to the lure of the crime. Driven by his lover, he makes sure that the path ahead is comfortable, open and inviting – without realising that he has long been corrupted by the evil he has always fought… Nesbø’s strengths lie in the immediacy of his portrayals – he reels his listeners in, wrapping them up in his stories, allowing them to understand and root for and be very close to the protagonist. This is exciting to the point of fascination, even if it hurts.
3. Noir – Christopher Moore
Sammy is a bartender in a shop that has seen significantly better days. He is therefore surprised when suddenly a gorgeous blonde with the unusual name Stilton enters the bar. Before a delicate romance has chance to unfold, Sammy receives instructions from an Air Force general to take care of an urgent job. Suddenly the events come to a head. After a UFO sighting, the lovely blonde vanishes without a trace, and the search for her forces Sammy to contend with his own dark secrets. – The name says it all. Just like the film noir genre, the audiobook is bursting with mysterious women, dark alleyways, and even darker secrets. But Christopher Moore would not be one of the greatest satirists of the day if he did not exaggerate the eeriness and push it into the absurd with ingenious dialogues.
4. Unter der Drachenwand – Arno Geiger
Veit is spending is holiday at Mondsee in Austria, where he meets two women under the ‘Drachenwand’ (Dragon Wall) who fascinate him – but the war overshadows the kindling of tender feelings. It is 1944, and although it is clear that defeat can no longer be averted, no one knows how long the madness will go on for and how many more lives it will claim. Only the hope of normality and life keeps the young people going. – Arno Geiger’s audiobook tells hauntingly and incredibly truthfully of the nightmares that the insanity of war brings to the young men, the strange sense of dislocation they feel due to the horror and strangeness that emphasises the deceptive normality of the native village. At the same time he shows that love conquers all and permeates everything. It is an intense, very personal audiobook that allows time to fly by when on the road.
5. OnTour – Arbeitsgemeinschaft Fernfahrerseelsorge (pub.)
Norbert Jungkunz, who is the company chaplain in the archdiocese of Bamberg, describes the book as a bible for long-distance drivers. The many challenges life and work on the road pose to drivers can be extremely depressing over time, the pastor and his colleagues know. The book or audiobook is intended as an appreciation of the often unrecognised achievements of the drivers, as advice and support in times of trouble and loneliness. It relates Luke’s gospel to modern day-to-day problems and provides inspiration and food for thought when the situation seems hopeless. The chapter “Advice and Help”, which lists many help pages and contact addresses, is intended for people in emotional distress. It also includes the locations of the motorway churches.