I’m really chuffed to see there are a few more audiobooks in Bertrand’s audio collection including their first by José Saramago. It’s A Viúva (The widow) which I think it was his first novel and although it’s not his most famous, here’s hoping it’ll be the first of many audio versions to come.
Vidadupla – Sérgio Godinho
Here’s a review of the audiobook of Vidadupla (“Double Life”) by singer, poet, author and rennaissance man Sérgio Godinho. I listened to it on the Bertrand “Biblio” app, but as I mentioned before, it’s a bit unreliable in that it seems to pause itself when the screen dims or… Something… Something isn’t quite right, at least in the Android version, so I had to keep pinging it to wake it up. That’s probably OK at home but it’s a bit annoying if you’re gardening at the same time, as I was. If you haven’t already seen it, there’s a whole page about different sources of Portuguese audiobooks here. Thanks to Patis12 and Dani_Morgenstern for the corrections
Acabei de “ler” este Audiolivro do Sérgio Godinho hoje. É uma coleção de contos e o vocabulário é bastante fácil para um aluno do meu nível. Mas tinha uns problemas.
É que… A narradora tem uma voz hipnótica portanto (estou envergonhado por admitir) dei por mim a ficar repetidamente distraído* pelo ritmo da leitura e logo depois perdi o fio à meada. Rebobinei a gravação várias vezes mas afinal não apreciei o livro tanto quanto merece. Ou talvez sou eu que não mereço livros bons.
Bem, de qualquer maneira, gostei do que ouvi. Nem sequer sabia que o Senhor Godinho tinha escrito livros. Já ouvi várias músicas dele. É óbvio que é um homem que sabe criar coisas bonitas.
Portuguese Audiobooks – A New Chapter?
I’m really chuffed to see Livraria Bertrand now has an audiobook section and an app for ebooks and audiobooks. You can find the page here, and it’s a little underdeveloped at the moment, but so was Audible when I first joined so I’m not giving up on it. The link takes you to the front page of the portuguese audio section, but if you look in the menu on the left-hand side you’ll see there are subheadings for history, science, classics and so on, so you can rummage around and see if anything takes your fancy.
The most annoying aspect of it is that it doesn’t have a preview feature so you can’t find out if the reader is European or Brazilian. Some are obvious, but I picked out a couple that I knew seemed like a good bet – O Vendeador de Passados by José Eduardo Agualusa and Vidadupla by Sérgio Godinho and can confirm that they are both european portuguese. Yippee!!! There are a couple of others by Godinho but as for the rest, I dunno. If you sample any, I’d love it if you could tell me what you thought in the comments. Share the knowledge!
I’ll add these to my Portuguese Audiobooks Page in the few days. In the meantime, if anyone knows anything about any of the other books, I’d love it if you could tell me about it in the comments. Let’s share the knowledge! We learners have to stick together!
New YouTube Channel
If you enjoyed the audiobook post a couple of weeks ago you might also enjoy this new YouTube channel started by Booktuber Silent Wanderer. It’s called Em Voz Alta and it’s looking to release two chapters per week of short stories read by Portuguese readers, many of whom I already know from their own channels. So far, they’ve finished O Principezinho (everyone’s favourite!) and they’re well into The Canterville Ghost.
Don’t forget, you can use the videos as audiobooks even if the screen is off by following the suggestions in my most recent post, Story Hour
One of the things that struck me after posting my list of audiobooks is that there aren’t many that are aimed at younger children, and if you’re a new reader that might be exactly what you need. I did check all the Portuguese children’s stories on Audible but with the exception of O Principezinho they were all Brazilian.
It seems like the best way to listen to stories for children is through videos. There are some on YouTube and some on the RTP Estudo em Casa site under “Hora da Leitura” (Reading Hour).
Here are a few lists you can tap into. If you want to listen to them as audiobooks, with the screen off and your phone in your pocket, there are a couple of settings you need to change on your phone, and I’ll put a video about that down at the bottom if you need it.
- Histórias de uma Quarantena (Contalá)
- Leandro Rei de Heliria (Conta-me um Conto)
- Leitura Terceiro Ciclo (Conta-me um Conto)
- My own YouTube playlist of children’s stories
- This one isn’t a playlist, but you can see the RTP Hora da Leitura videos here. Obviously, these are for home-schooling during pandemic lockdown so there’s a bit of discussion around each. If you’re reading this during a lockdown, consider watching them outside of school hours so as not to add to network traffic.
Obviously, you might be happy just to follow along with the video, especially since some of them show the actual text, or animations that can be good visual clues, but if you want to treat them like normal audiobooks, here’s a video that will explain how to set your phone up to play the audio only, even when the phone screen is off.
The Greatest Stories Ever Heard
As regular readers (hey, stop laughing – I have regular readers! I do!) will know, I am obsessed with audiobooks, so I have been trying for a while now to compile a definitive list of all the european portuguese audiobooks available, so I have been through every single audiobook in Audible and listened to the accent and I’ve wrestled with Kobo’s completely useless search function to bring a few golden nuggets from among the grit. You can find them all here. I’ll add to the list as new ones become available. If you know of any I’ve missed, please let me know. I feel like I’ve been pretty thorough but I’m just one person and it’s a big internet.
There are affiliate links on the page, by the way: I’m hoping my obsession will pay for itself one day.
One of the nice side-effects of exploring e-readers has been that I’ve come across a couple of proper portuguese audiobooks. I’ve had the most luck on Kobo but even that’s pretty hard to navigate, primarily because even when I tell it portuguese is my preferred language it insists on showing me english language titles and I don’t seem to be able to do anything as basic as search by language.
Anyway, I’ve come across Margarida Espantada which I’m reading now in conjunction with an ebiook version and Perguntem Sarah Gross, which has a good reputation. Naff all by Afonso Cruz, Joao Tordo, Nuno Nepomuceno, Ricardo Araujo Pereira – people who seem pretty mainstream, really. Still, though, it’s a good sign and I’m hoping to see more in the future.