Talking Books Blog
The BARD Mobile app allows our Talking Book customers to access Braille and talking books directly from NLS (BARD). BARD offers a collection of nearly 50,000 books, magazines, and musical scores, with new selections added daily.
BARD is up and running again despite the government shutdown. There has also been a mobile app set up for iPhones or iPads. You can obtain the free app from the Apple iTunes store.
The Talking Books program has changed its magazine format from cassettes to digital cartridges. Now, all National Library Service-produced magazines are circulated on digital cartridges. You will notice a big improvement in the enhanced sound quality and navigation capabilities.
Facing forty, Benjamin Benjamin finds himself in a dingy church basement attending a class called The Revised Fundamentals of Caregiving, which is also the name of a poignant novel by Jonathan Evison. Benjamin has lost his home and family, and a caregiver certificate might be his only chance at finding his way back to normalcy.
The most recent issue of the Virginia Libraries featured an article about our very own Subregional Library for the Blind. The article has been very well-received for its educational value. The staff has also been delighted with the lovely photos of CRRL staff Mutahara Mobashar and Robert Solka, along with the Montross and Headquarters Talking Books displays. Thank all of you so much for making this Subregional Library an invaluable part of the Central Rappahannock Regional Library.
One of my favorite customers called me to tell me that he loved the book Until Tuesday. I am sure that this story about a veteran spoke to him since he is also a veteran who happens to love dogs.
Until Tuesday is the true story of a highly-decorated Iraqi war veteran who returns home as a war hero. However, Luis Carlos Montalvan has such incredible injuries to his body and his psyche that he cannot cope with everyday life. He hovers on the brink of suicide until he meets Tuesday, a golden retriever who also had an emotionally difficult journey to get to Luis.
I admit that I have not read this book, but one of my customers just called to say that he enjoyed The Aviator’s Wife, by Melanie Benjamin, so much that he couldn’t put it down. It is the story of Ann Morrow Lindbergh. I was given Gift From the Sea, by Ann Morrow Lindbergh, as a Christmas present and was struck by the beauty of this wonderful, little book. I was immediately impressed by the tremendous intelligence and fierce independence of this famous woman. How could anyone not admire such an incredible woman who struggled to maintain her own identity with such a famous husband?
This Thursday and Friday, September 27 and 28, Volunteers For the Blind (VFB) is having a book and bake sale at its 1101 Caroline Street offices from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. both days. Everyone is cordially invited to browse our entire audio cassette book collection, enjoy home-baked items, meet VFB’s staff and learn more about our organization.
VFB is a local, non-profit, tax-exempt, 501 (c) 3 organization. It provides volunteer shopping assistants and readers primarily for Fredericksburg residents who are blind. VFB also offers training, especially for high school and college students, to work appropriately with volunteers. In addition, VFB has an unpaid internship program either for people who are blind and want to gain work experience before entering the competitive employment market or for those who wish to return to it after losing their sight.
One of my customers recently called to tell me that she really enjoyed Hinds’ Feet on High Places. This is an inspirational novel that has been described as Christian fiction at its best. It got its name because the girl in the novel wants to be like the deer in her mountains that have special feet that allow them to leap and play high up. She, too, wants to be free of fear and strives to be a courageous person who can overcome her limitations with the help of her God. She wants to rework herself into a better and more spiritual person.
A customer recently called me to tell me that he loved The President’s House, by Margaret Truman, so when I gave a talk in Northern Virginia a few days later, I passed on the recommendation to the group. The next customer who read it just called to tell me that he is really enjoying this book, too. Several of the book reviews said that it is a fun and interesting look at the White House written by a woman who has a deep love for this national icon because she was lucky enough to grow up there.
A patron called me this week to say that he loved Crashers, by Dana Haynes, so much that he didn’t even want to stop the audio book to go to sleep at night! That is an excellent endorsement! He wanted more books by this author, and we found out that this was the debut novel of Dana Haynes.
It is about an airliner that crashes outside of Portland, Oregon, and a team of experts assembled to investigate the cause of the crash. Some of the members of the team are: Kiki Duvall, a “sonar witch”--a recorder specialist who can hear things that other people cannot; John Roby, a former cop and bomb expert; Walter Mulroney who can build any plane given the right number of bolts; engineer Peter Kim, pilot and former F.B.I. agent Isaiah Grey; pathologist Tommy Tomzak; and the leader, Susan Tanaka who is an intergovernmental liason. They soon discover that this plane crash was no accident--it was a trial run.