Because the average Angeleno spends 56 hours a year in his car, and you can’t spend that entire time scanning hacked Sony files for your name, we present Wheel Talk: an occasional series that recommends the best audiobooks and podcasts for your daily commute.
By now you’ve probably heard of Serial — that weekly podcast that deep-dives into the real-life murder of a teenage girl in Baltimore.
It’s like The Wire, if The Wire were limited in scope to one murder and produced by This American Life.
It’s a great story, and we recommend you have a listen.
But should murder mysteries not be your cup of Earl Grey, we’re recommending four of our favorite audiobooks below.
Some are new. Some have been around, but are addressing of-the-moment topics. All of them are enjoyable.
Can we time travel the way McConaughey did in Interstellar? Listen to The Universe, a recently released audiobook in which leading scientists explore the origin, mysteries and future of the universe through a collection of simple essays. Then you’ll know the answer. Which is "Yes." Maybe.
Time: 12 hours and 46 minutes
A Billion Wicked Thoughts
Why do men like gang-bang videos? Or bukkake? And why do women really cotton to erotic fiction? The answers are in A Billion Wicked Thoughts, in which two randy neuroscientists explain that your seemingly lurid desires are purely biological. Translation: there’s no shame in what you’re doing. Unless you’re Cosby.
Time: Nine hours
Zero to One
In Zero To One, PayPal founder Peter Thiel argues that monopolies like Google and Amazon are good and explains (cogently!) why other companies fail and how to avoid those mistakes. A must-listen for anyone interested in business or the state of the Internet.
Time: Four hours
Last Night at the Viper Room
By Rolling Stone writer Gavin Edwards, Last Night at the Viper Room is the gripping tale of what actually went down the night that River Phoenix died. It was recently released on Scribd, along with 30,000 other audio titles. They’re giving InsideHook readers a discount. Here’s the promo code.
Time: Eight hours and 26 minutes