Alexa Can Read Books: How to Listen to Your Favorites

Control books from your Kindle or Audible library with your voice

If you're wondering can Alexa read books from your library, the answer is yes. Amazon Audible allows you to listen through your Echo smart speaker to audiobooks read by professional narrators, but Alexa can also read books to you using the text-to-speech feature. You can even purchase ebooks and control narration on any Alexa device with voice commands.

Information in this article applies to all Amazon Alexa-enabled devices including the Amazon Echo, Echo Dot, Echo Show, and Kindle Fire.

Kindle eBooks and Audiobooks That Work With Alexa

Only certain titles in the Kindle store are available as audiobooks from Amazon Audible; however, Alexa can read any book in your Kindle library, including your Kindle Unlimited titles. Just give the appropriate voice command to initiate text-to-speech narration or Audible narration.

Rather than giving voice commands, you can also choose an audiobook and control narration using the Audible mobile app. Audiobooks should sync so that you can stop listening on one device and continue from the same place using another device.

Select Account & Lists at the top of the Amazon home page.

Alexa Narration Voice Commands

Use these commands to listen to audiobooks and ebooks on your Amazon Echo and other Alexa devices:

Voice Command Result
“Alexa, read [title]." Read the chosen book using text-to-voice.
“Alexa, read my book." Read the book you listened to most recently.
"Alexa, read [title] from Audible." Play the chosen audiobook with Audible narration.
"Alexa, pause." Pause narration.
"Alexa, resume." Resume narration.
"Alexa, go forward [seconds/minutes]." Skip ahead the chosen amount of time.
"Alexa, go back [seconds/minutes]." Rewind back the chosen amount of time.
"Alexa, next chapter." Skip ahead to the next chapter.
"Alexa, previous chapter." Go back to the last chapter.
"Alexa, read faster." Speed up narration.
"Alexa, read slower." Slow down narration.
"Alexa, read at normal speed." Resume the default narration speed.
"Alexa, stop reading in # minutes." Set a sleep timer for the chosen time.
"Alexa, switch profiles." Change to a different user account when listening to Audible narration.
"Alexa, what's free from Audible?" Learn about free audiobooks.
"Alexa, start an Audible trial." Begin an Amazon Audible free trial.
"Alexa, buy [title]." Purchase the chosen ebook.
"Alexa, buy [title] from Audible." Purchase the chosen audiobook.

How Do You Listen to Audiobooks on Alexa?

It's possible to purchase individual audiobooks from the Audible website, the Audible app, or Amazon.com. Alternatively, you can add Audible narration to ebooks you've already purchased from Amazon by following these steps:

If you have an Amazon Prime account and Kindle Unlimited, you may even be able to access some audiobooks for free. Just look for and select Read and Listen For Free on selected titles.

  1. Go to Amazon.com and select Account & Lists at the top of the Amazon home page.

    Select Account & Lists at the top of the Amazon home page.

    You'll be required to provide your Amazon username and password if you're not already logged in to your Amazon account.

  2. Select Your devices and content.

    Select Your devices and content.
  3. Select Manage Digital Content.

    Select Manage Digital Content.
  4. Select the ellipses (...) beside the book you want to add narration to.

    Select the ellipses (...) beside the book you want to add narration to.
  5. Select Add Narration in the pop-up window.

    Select Add Narration in the pop-up window.

    You can also download Amazon Audible books to read on your mobile device or the Kindle app for PC.

Make Alexa Read to You on Kindle Fire

When reading a book on a Fire tablet, tap anywhere on the screen to bring up the app options, then tap the Play icon in the bottom-right corner to have Alexa narrate.

Tap the Play button in the bottom-right corner of the Kindle app for Amazon Fire tablets.

Make Alexa Read to You on Android and iOS

Although the Kindle app for Android does not support text-to-voice narration, you can still have Alexa read to you on any smartphone or tablet using the Alexa app for Android and iOS:

  1. Open the Alexa app and tap Play at the bottom of the screen.

  2. Scroll down and choose a book under your Kindle Library.

  3. Tap This Device.

    Tap Play, select a book, then tap This Device.

    Alternatively, tap the Alexa icon (the blue speech bubble) at the bottom of the app to give a voice command.