Free Audiobooks Are Now Included With Amazon Prime, But Which Books Will Be Available?

Audiobook fans, take note. A Tuesday announcement revealed that Amazon Prime subscribers now get Audible Channels access as part of their memberships. Prime members will also have access to a rotating collection of 50 Audible audiobooks, which will resemble the Kindle Lending Library program.

First launched in July, Audible Channels is a podcast platform under the Audible/Amazon umbrella. The service features audio versions of articles from prominent publications, including The New York Times, McSweeney's, Harvard Business Review, and The Onion. Audible Channels also includes original programs, such as Hold On with Eugene Mirman, the standup series Limelight, and Nick Offerman's Bedtime Stories for Cynics.

On Tuesday, Amazon announced the launch of five new Audible Channels series to accompany its transition into a Prime perk. These programs will roll out "in the coming months." They are:

  • The Butterfly Effect, hosted by Jon Ronson, which explores the question, what happens when we expect things for free?
  • Ponzi Supernova, a fascinating look at Bernard Madoff, the man behind the largest Ponzi scheme in history, featuring exclusive jailhouse interviews with Madoff himself
  • Damned Spot, a series that examines the afterlife of places defined by tragic events
  • West Cork, a true crime series about an unsolved society murder, set on the south coast of Ireland
  • Extra Credit with Neal Pollack, in which the author, musician and comedian takes his 13-year-old son’s education into his own hands, and hilarity ensues

Amazon has yet to announce which Audible audiobooks, specifically, will be available to Prime members. The Tuesday press release hinted at a diversified library that will include "Top-rated audiobooks across a range of genres, ... celebrity-narrated classics, ... and shared listening experiences for the family."

Amazon Prime is available for $99 per year. Non-Prime members may subscribe to Audible Channels for $4.95 per month.

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