Soothing Audiobooks

Staff Picks

Soothing Audiobooks

Set Your Mind At Ease

It’s a pretty hectic world out there right now, so here are a few audiobooks to listen to with Overdrive. You can download or stream them, and listen to a relaxing book to distract yourself and de-stress.

Paddle Your Own Canoe, Nick Offerman
Nick Offerman is a renaissance man, and this book chronicles his movement through life, from scrappy young man working on the family farm to an actor and artisan. Narrated in his soothing voice, this book espouses the benefits of hard work, clean living, and romantic love. Offerman writes about his family life at length, and the bucolic upbringing that ingrained strong values in him. 

While Offerman does tend to linger on the subject of people being too “soft” and not valuing hard work, with too much focus on technology, this book has many nuggets of wisdom. It is also full of radical hope, one that will imbue any eager reader, that you can accomplish something, make something, do something amazing if you just put your mind to it. There are relaxing little musical interviews that make it feel like listening to NPR, and if you check it out, it will surely be a relaxing and comforting listening experience.

Gmorning, Gnight! Little Pep Talks for Me & You, Lin-Manuel Miranda

Lin-Manuel Miranda is a musical luminary, the mind behind the musical Hamilton and a movie star in his own right. He has written a book composed of affirmations, for those in need of a lift out of the doldrums. 

Miranda narrates this book of aphorisms, encouragement, and inspirational sayings that began with his Twitter account. Miranda reminds us all to be a little kinder to ourselves, something a lot of us could use right now. Check this book out for a soothing reminder to breathe, and remember that tomorrow is another day. 

Year of Yes, Shonda Rhimes

Shonda Rhimes is the woman behind so many of your favorite shows- including, but not limited to Grey’s Anatomy and Scandal- she’s a busy lady. So it was much to her surprise when her sister mentioned offhandedly that she never says “yes” to anything. This inspired a yearlong quest to do to the things that scare her, and embrace the unknown.

If you need to get yourself in gear, or you just want to get inspired, this is a great book to listen to. It’s heartfelt, joyful, and above all, a reminder to be true to yourself, and listen to the part of you that wants to say “yes!”  

Food, Jim Gaffigan

If you need a light, silly audiobook to remind you to laugh, Food is for you. Jim Gaffigan spouts his silly, but incredibly intense thoughts on food, from the disgusting (kale) to the gourmet (anything with bacon). Gaffigan’s book is an inane, hilarious journey through his culinary life. Gaffigan is charming, his basic vibe being that of a slightly uncomfortable father trying to help but not be too overbearing. He is a lover of food, and an enthusiastic consumer, and his thoughts on the subject will drag you out of the deepest funk.  

Bossypants, Tina Fey
Tina Fey is a comedy powerhouse, and this book is no exception. While it is laugh-out-loud funny, it is a gentler read that draws humor from the strong writing itself rather than from outrageous jokes or salacious celebrity gossip. This book is a series of funny essays telling the story of Fey’s life, from her early beginnings to her more recent successes. Fey writes about her job at Saturday Night Live, creating her own show, and having the most intense dad. 

If you like her other work, or just need a laugh, you should check out this audiobook. Once you’ve read or listened to it, it will stick in your mind. Essays cover being a woman in show business, being a working parent, and being Sarah Palin on TV. 

In Conclusion, Don’t Worry About It, Lauren Graham

Lauren Graham is a star of stage and screen, as well as being a writer. This book is an expansion of a commencement speech she gave in 2017, with the wisdom she has accumulated from life in the spotlight and behind the scenes. Graham is deservedly successful, but she wasn’t always. This book has her honest reflections on being the star and not getting the part, and how accomplishment does not define your value. 

Graham’s writing is full of kind reassurance, as if you remind you that you are enough, and everything is going to be alright. This book provides a little respite from the pressure, reminding you to take it easy, and not be so hard on yourself.