Catawba County News

Discover Playaways

Discover Playaways

Published: July 24, 2020

People who love audiobooks and relish hearing a talented narrator draw out the elements of a well-composed story should know about the ease and convenience of the Catawba County Library’s Playaways.

These simple plug-and-play audiobooks are self-contained devices that feature a player with a preloaded book. They’re ready to enjoy without having to log in or download anything from the Internet – all a user needs is a set of personal earbuds to enjoy the story immediately.

The library’s Playaways are available for standard 14-day check-out from the library, just like any other audiobook on CD. Once the audiobook’s bright orange case is opened and the earbuds are plugged in, a user is all set to go. Playaways are also a good solution for people who listen to audiobooks while they drive. By 2021, 46% of cars sold in North America will not have CD players as a standard amenity, but with an auxiliary cord, a Playaway can be plugged into the car’s sound system, and drivers can continue enjoying books as usual.

Playaway selections include new releases and best sellers, and the large catalog offers options for adults, kids, and young adults. The audiobooks provide an entertaining way to pass the time during commutes, doing chores and housework, or while exercising or relaxing. A simple set of buttons lets users advance or rewind the story, and additional controls give listeners the opportunity to tweak the pace of the reading and to make adjustments for clarity.

Some parents also take advantage of children’s Playaways as a learning tool to help teach reading. They pair the audiobook with a print copy and allow kids to read along with the narrator. This technique gives the child a sense of independence while it removes the stress of decoding words and enables young readers to learn new vocabulary, increase comprehension, and cultivate a love of reading.

To see the audiobook options the Catawba County Library has available, check out the in-house selection of Playaways or browse the library’s collection by searching for the word 'playaway.'