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Story time

Listen to audiobooks from AmblingBooks.com with this attractive player.

AmblingBooks.com is a purveyor of audiobooks, but it doesn't expect you to listen to its wares with just any old media player. Ambling BookPlayer Lite is a media player made especially for audiobooks. This free version of the player only lets you listen to audiobooks you've downloaded from AmblingBooks.com, so don't expect to use it with books you've acquired from other sources. But if you're already a fan of AmblingBooks or you want to try out this free edition before investing in one of the two paid ones, this program is worth a try.

The program's interface is sleek and minimalist, with tabs for the player, your library, adding books, and settings. We quickly created an AmblingBooks.com account and set about downloading one of the free offerings; it has quite a few public domain classics available at no charge. We selected Jane Austen's "Pride and Prejudice" and clicked the download button; the file opened automatically with Ambling BookPlayer Lite and the program downloaded all 61 separate chapters of the book, displaying them as one file. The player has options to skip forward and backward between chapters and to rewind or fast-forward either 15 seconds or 1 minute at a time. The program also saves the last five play positions in each book, making it easier to get back to where you were if you somehow lose your place. The program has no Help file, but this isn't a significant drawback; its limited features make it pretty easy to use. Overall, we found Ambling BookPlayer Lite to be a good option for playing audiobooks; we liked that it has features specially suited to book listening, and its attractive interface is easy to navigate and nice to look at.

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