• The Hub

    News, Notes, Talk

    The future is depressing: a new app distills books into 12-minute-long audio summaries.


    November 17, 2020, 11:08am

    Professionals, rejoice? A new app verbosely called “The 12Min Micro Book Library” is trying to optimize your reading time. According to a depressing pitch from PCMag, the 12Min Micro Book Library “takes . . . game-changing books . . . and distills their key points into bite-sized chunks that you can absorb in—you guessed it—12 minutes or less.” That’s right: on your commute (if you still have one of those), instead of reading a book, you can live a joyless life.

    The library includes mini-versions of 1800 books, including Malcolm Gladwell’s Blink and Dale Carnegie’s How to Win Friends and Influence People. First step to winning friends and influencing people: tell them about how you’ve optimized your life by replacing reading with listening to 12-minute mini versions of books. (“In the 12Min version, he’s just called ‘Humbert!’”)

    The 12Min Micro Book Library currently features nonfiction titles—as of yet, no classic novels have been given the 12Min treatment. But the 12Min Micro Book Library is ever-expanding: any user can suggest a book they’d like to add to the library and the app’s employees will synthesize it into a short microbook. So new Franzen trilogy, here I come.

  • Become a Lit Hub Supporting Member: Because Books Matter

    For the past decade, Literary Hub has brought you the best of the book world for free—no paywall. But our future relies on you. In return for a donation, you’ll get an ad-free reading experience, exclusive editors’ picks, book giveaways, and our coveted Joan Didion Lit Hub tote bag. Most importantly, you’ll keep independent book coverage alive and thriving on the internet.

    %d bloggers like this: