Spotify teamed up with celebrities to record free audiobooks

Spotify is expanding its spoken word content by offering audiobooks to premium and free users.


What do Frankenstein and Jane Eyre have in common? They’re both free audiobooks on Spotify.

If you’re a Spotify subscriber, you might have noticed a collection of audiobooks titled, “Hear the classics.” That’s because Spotify rolled out nine audiobooks for its premium and free users last week. The books are classic novels in the public domain which include authors from Charlotte Brontë to Charles Dickens.

Spotify has become increasingly interested in spoken word content, backing companies like Anchor, which provides a free podcasting platform for creators. (Bookstacked’s podcasts are hosted by Anchor.)

This collection of audiobooks is especially notable because of some of the larger names attached to the books. Spotify teamed up with celebrities like Hillary Swank, Forest Whitaker and even YouTuber David Dobrik; all lent their voices for the recordings.

Here’s a quick look at the audiobooks available:

  • Frankenstein by Mary Shelley, narrated by David Dobrik
  • The Awakening by Kate Chopin, narrated by Hilary Swank
  • Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë, narrated by Sarah Coombs
  • Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, an American Slave by Frederick Douglass, narrated by Forest Whitaker
  • Cane by Jean Toomer, narrated by Audra McDonald
  • Persuasion by Jane Austen, narrated by Cynthia Erivo
  • Great Expectations by Charles Dickens, narrated by James Langton
  • Passing by Nella Larsen, narrated by Bahni Turpin
  • Red Badge of Courage by Stephen Crane, narrated by Santino Fontana

Each audiobook is also accompanied by a segment hosted by Harvard professor Glenda Carpio, according to CNET. Carpio dives into the history of each novel to add context to the story and bring perspective about their relevance in today’s world.

This isn’t the first time audiobooks have debuted on Spotify. The streaming platform has offered audiobooks for years, including the entire Hunger Games trilogy. You can find the first book below.

Do you plan to listen Spotify’s audiobook offerings?

Saul Marquez founded Bookstacked in 2014 and serves as the site's Editor-in-Chief. He primarily covers news for Bookstacked. He also co-hosts Bookmarked: A YA Book Podcast.

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