Audiobook read-along - do you log it?

I recently finished ひげを剃る。そして女子高生を拾う。 | L27 , and it’s the first “audio-read” I’ve finished (meaning: I read along to the audiobook). I’m torn on what to do with this. On one hand, I think it’s significantly different than normal reading (as the narrator is doing much of the work for you). Otoh, I still “read along”, which implies that I “read”.

I see it more or less like this:

  1. Reading: See kana/kanji → decode pronunciation and written words → generate meaning
  2. Read Along: Hear audio → match audio to written words → generate meaning
  3. Audio-only: Hear audio → decode spoken words → generate meaning

Colloquially, I don’t see a meaningful difference between the first two. If someone asked me about it, I’d say that I’ve read the LN. But for language learning, and specifically for this site, I’m not sure I can equate them. Then again, maybe it’s akin to watching an episode or movie with JP Subs vs No Subs - you’ve still watched it either way.

Anyway, I’m curious what other folks think/do here,

Do you log audiobook read-alongs as Finished books on Natively?
  • I log book read-alongs as Finished
  • I don’t log book read-alongs as Finished
  • I do something else to track these
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I log for myself to keep track of what I read. And sometimes I write reviews for other people so they can better gauge if a book would be right for them. In either case I don’t see a reason why I wouldn’t log an audiobook read along :thinking:


The main reason for me to use an audiobook is mostly to stay focused on reading. My ADHD tends to get me to go on long tangents where I just stare at the page while imagining everything that may possibly happen next (or think back to stuff that already happened or think of what I’m going to eat for dinner, or…). The voice nudges me back into the book. I don’t really feel a difference when it comes to parsing the text.

Another reason for listening to the audiobook is when I’m really invested in the story and want to keep going as fast as possible. In that case, I’ll listen to it during my commute as well and just skip those parts in the book. I still log the book as read in that case because the difference doesn’t really matter to me since I’m still reading a large chunk of it (I don’t consider myself to be learning Japanese anymore anyway).

Recently, I did a re-“read” of 本好き 1 only relying on the audiobook and I haven’t logged it in any way so far. I do agree that audio only doesn’t feel like the same thing as reading and I’m not quite sure what to do about it. Technically, Natively doesn’t support re-reads, so it doesn’t matter here, but I debated adding it to bookmeter for a while, before eventually deciding against it. I’m not sure what I’ll do if I ever do audio only on a book I never read before.


I even log audiobooks as books read. In terms of language learning, yes it’s a different skill, but I still consumed the book, the story. I do however, log audiobooks not as character count or pages but as listening time in my immersion log.
My audiobook read-alongs are usually not 100% with audiobook… sometimes I might listen only for a bit, sometimes I will read without listening… I tend to simply log those as 50% listening time, 50 % character count, but 100% book consumed. :sweat_smile:


bookmeter does support audible audiobooks. :+1:


For me, the processes are a bit different:

  1. Reading: See kana/kanji → decode pronunciation and written words → look up unknown words → read at my own pace to be able to reflect on complicated sentence structures → generate meaning
  2. Read Along: Hear audio → try to match audio to written words (as it may be faster than what I can follow with my eyes) → try to derive meaning of unknown words from kanji etc → try to follow complicated sentence structures at the speaker’s pace → generate meaning (while missing out on things)
  3. Audio-only: Hear audio → decode spoken words → try to recall spoken words, probably failing a lot → try to follow complicated sentence structures at the speaker’s pace → generate meaning (while missing out on many many things)


This has probably a lot to do with the level of books I usually read though. :woman_shrugging: And because of the “missing out” parts, I haven’t done any serious read-along or audio-only yet. I get the “missing out on many many things” already plenty in conversations :sweat_smile:, and my approach is that I want to read books with near-full understanding in order to learn about the language structures contained in them, and finally to get better (and faster) at Japanese and therefore (among other things, of course) miss out less in conversations.

So, to finally answer your question: No, I wouldn’t log read-along or audio-only books as “read” simply because I feel I am still missing out on too much that way. (I would log audio-only as “listened” though if I were to track that.)


My original description oversimplified… what you described is a lot closer to how things are for me. With ひげヒロ specifically, the gap for me isn’t so profound - but it’s not irrelevant either.

In any case, I appreciate the input from y’all. I might write out some more thoughts later, but for now I’ve decided I’m OK w/ logging ひげヒロ as Finished, and will do so for future books, (unless it’s a situation where I I’m read-listening without understanding). That approach will definitely keep things less cumbersome in the future. I’m curious to see if/how it effects vocab acquisition, and comprehension over time… not planning to measure that or anything tho.

Anyway… time for sleep!


It does?? I just looked around a bit, but I can’t really find anything.
In fact, I can only find volume 3 and it’s a custom entry from the person (mentioning 0 pages for the “book”)

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I don’t know if the search is broken or something, but I have logged audiobooks before. pages will be 0, of course, but that’s expected behaviour, no?


I kinda expected something else than “pages”, like the length or something? In the case of the book entry the person made by hand, it makes sense that the interface would not support it, but if it’s registered normally, I thought they would have thought of something (or just removed the field entirely) :person_shrugging:


I guess the difference for me is that I always read very similarly in that I don’t really care about the parts that I don’t understand and seldomly read extremely intensively anyway. For me reading with an audiobook is reading like usual + additional listening practice.

In my slavic TL there are no graded readers or easy material that I found (I settled on translations from Agatha Christie and literally didn’t understand anything the first few novels haha) and there are almost no ebooks, so I just brute forced my way through novels until I understood them. :sweat_smile: Now I can read books in that language and understand them even without lookups. To this day I haven’t found a proper online dictionary though :sweat_smile: (I would even pay for it.) (Disclaimer: This process sucks and is highly unrewarding but I haven’t had any ideas on what to do instead haha)

So I developed a high tolerance towards only understanding parts of the texts even in Japanese, where the process is so much better due to the sheer amount of material available and better tools. So reading with an audiobook doesn’t feel that much different to me. Sometimes I also read a book in my slavic TL first and then in Japanese and vice versa, that also makes things simpler in a way, but I’d still consider this books as read in both languages.


I tend to only use audiobooks as a listening exercise and not as a reading alongside listening thing. I struggle to focus on both at the same time so tend to do them separately. I don’t think I’ve noted anywhere except my learning log what books I’ve listened to. I probably should keep a note though :sweat_smile:

That being said, since most of my books are on audible, I think that notes sessions in the app and I can set up bookmarks if I wanted too (I only really use audible for Japanese and Spanish, think I only have 3 books in English on it :joy:)

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