GENERAL NEWS...

Just how magical is the grip Harry Potter has on Muggle wallets? Consider this: According to MarketWatch, the audiobook edition of “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them” was Audible’s most preordered title ever.

BroadwayWorld.com shares the story about this generous gift. Since launching the book club in January 2015, Recorded Books has given away 13 audiobook collections valued at $1,000 each. Libraries participating in the book club have six chances throughout the year to win one of the collections. More details about the contest are posted on the club's blog under the Contest tab.

In an article which relies heavily on Matthew Rubry's book "The Untold Story of the Talking Book" Spectator Magazine touches on historical reasons books were not recorded.

AUDIOBOOKS AND LEARNING...

This Star Tribune article focuses on a woman who listens to audiobooks while training for her first half marathon.

Super-achieving young people fight their FOMO ("Fear Of Missing Out") by listening to audiobooks, as cited in this qz.com article.

Business Insider.com featured an article in which the author confesses: "I belong to a sci fi book club where everyone picks on one guy for "reading" all his books on Audible. I have never told any of them this, but I have also listened to every book we have discussed. In fact, I have listened to every book I have read over the last two years."

TECHNOLOGY AND INDUSTRY UPDATES...

According to an article on TheBookSeller.com, the company is “breaking new ground" and intends to make audiobooks a "major force" in Russia. "Our local team has a strong set-up, and will work hard to make sure Storytel achieves its goals", he added. Storytel currently produces about 2,000 audiobooks in 10 languages per year.

Katie Eelman of Papercuts J.P., which recently announced its membership program, says that Libro’s plan ensures her store won’t be missing out on a growing segment of book buyers.“Audiobooks have had an annual growth rate of 30 percent,” Eelman says. “And this is a cool way to meet that demand, and for consumers to support local businesses.” The Boston Globe online carries this story.

The 50 initial Wattpad audiobook titles will be available beginning in the Summer 2017. Authors and titles will be named at a later date. The Publishers Weekly article describes that the partnership will focus on popular Wattpad writers, using actors to adapt their stories into audiobooks for distribution beyond the Wattpad platform.

According to Goodreader.com, Mazda will be bringing Android Auto to the Mazda3 that was released in 2014 and will also be porting it over to the later models. There will be a firmware update that will eventually get pushed out and it is very likely that Audiobooks.com and Audible will likely make a push to have their apps bundled on the service.