Audiobook downloads with no DRM or watermarks from Naxos

Naxos produces fantastic, professionally read audiobooks of contemporary and classic lit — and they distribute them on CD and as DRM-free, watermark-free MP3s. Basically, this is a company that assumes you're a valued customer, not a dirty thief. They're pioneers in the growing field of DRM-free audiobook providers, who, unlike market-leader Audible (a division of Amazon) allow publishers and writers to decide whether or not they want to their books crippled with DRM.

Back when Amazon bought Audible, they claimed that they would drop DRM if there was enough public outcry and now they claim that something may be in the works, but no one has seen any DRM-free audiobooks from Audible, and no one at Audible is available to do a deal for DRM-free books.

In the meantime, I was lucky enough to meet the Naxos folks at Book Expo America in LA last month and they were absolutely charming. I asked them if they'd be willing to post some MP3s of their stuff for the benefit of Boing Boing readers and they were only too happy to — so now you can download a free Sherlock Holmes story (the gloriously titled "Adventure of the Blue Carbuncle") and the first chapter of Tom Sawyer (including Twain's inspiring introduction).

I love having the chance and the choice to support audiobook companies that respect readers' rights and the author's right to decide whether DRM should be larded onto his books. Naxos's MP3 store works great and is filled with wonderful titles for your delectation.