Q: I am looking for software or a solution that can join multiple tracks of audiobook files into one single file—I know there are programs to convert MP3 files into a single file, but I’m not sure if these will work for audiobooks?
A: If your audiobook tracks are in MP3 format then any software that can be used to join MP3 files can be used. For all intents and purposes, an MP3 file is an MP3 file regardless of whether it contains audiobook data or music—only the tags within the iTunes database itself differentiate these files in terms of where they appear in iTunes.
If you’re joining longer audiobooks together, however, you may want to take advantage of the chapter markers feature in iTunes and on the iPod and iPhone to make it easier to navigate within your audiobook. There are a couple of audiobook-specific applications that can do this for you. MarkAble and Chapter Master from iPodSoft (http://www.ipodsoft.com) are a pair of applications for Windows that provide the ability to join audiobooks and add chapter markers to them, respectively. Mac users can use Audiobook Builder by Splasm Software (http://www.splasm.com), which handles both tasks in a single application, in addition to providing several other features.
Note that if you’re importing audiobooks from CD, you can also simply have iTunes merge the audiobook tracks during import without the need for any additional software, although the utilities above will still be necessary for adding chapter markers if you need this capability. Our Complete Guide to Audiobooks, Podcasts and iTunes U provides more details on how to handle this.