January 2020 TBP Book Club Title Announced!

Please join us on Thursday, January 30 at 7 pm (Central Time) for our Book Club discussion of EDUCATED: A MEMOIR, by Tara Westover.

Book cover of Educated: A Memoir by Tara Westover

NLS Annotation:

Memoir exploring the author’s path from being raised in a fundamentalist, paranoiac Mormon family where she was homeschooled to eventually working her way to graduate degrees at Cambridge and Harvard. Discusses hardships faced by the family, abuse at the hands of a sibling, and more. Commercial audiobook. Bestseller. 2018. Violence and strong language.

Our book club meetings are hosted via toll free conference call,so all you need is a telephone to participate.  To RSVP call the TalkingBook Program at: 1-800-252-9605 (RSVP preferred by January 9th) or email us at: tbp.ral@tsl.texas.gov.  Please indicate if you would like us to mail you the book in digital cartridge, large print, or Braille format or if you prefer to download it from BARD.

We request that everyone remember the following:

  • Keep external distractions to a minimum.
  • Be courteous.  Try not to interrupt or talk over others.
  • Give everyone a chance to talk.
  • Be respectful of differing opinions.
  • Keep discussion points concise and relevant to the book.
  • If you feel comfortable doing so, preface your comments with your first name.

We look forward to having you join us on Thursday, January 30th!

DECEMBER 2019 BOOK CLUB TITLE ANNOUNCED!

Please join us on Tuesday, December 3 at 7 pm (Central Time) for our Book Club discussion of MY NAME IS LUCY BARTON, by Elizabeth Strout.

We host our Book Club meetings via toll free conference call.  All you need to participate is a telephone!

To RSVP, please call the Talking Book Program at 1-800-52-9605; or email us at tbp.ral@tsl.texas.gov.  RSVP preferred by November 12.)

MY NAME IS LUCY BARTON is available by mail in digital cartridge.  It is also available to download on BARD.

Please indicate if you would like us to mail you the digital cartridge, or if you prefer to download it from BARD.

We ask that everyone remember the following:

  • Keep external distractions to a minimum
  • Be courteous.  Try not to interrupt or talk over others.
  • Give everyone a chance to talk.
  • Be respectful of differing opinions.
  • Keep discussion points concise and relevant to the book.
  • If you feel comfortable doing so, preface your comments with your first name.

My NAME IS LUCY BARTON

Elizabeth Strout

In the hospital, recovering from what should have been a simple operation, Lucy Barton gets a visit from her estranged mother.  While her mother shares gossip from home, Lucy thinks back on her past and their difficult relationship.  Unrated.  Commercial audiobook.  2016.  DB 83379; BR 21890; LB 08482


We look forward to having you join us on Tuesday, December 3!


JULY 2019 BOOK CLUB TITLE ANNOUNCED!

Please join us on Tuesday, July 23 at 7 pm (Central Time) for our Book Club discussion of ELEANOR OLIPHANT IS COMPLETELY FINE, by Gail Honeyman.

We host our Book Club meetings via toll free conference call.  All you need to participate is a telephone!

To RSVP, please call the Talking Book Program at 1-800-252-9605; or email us at tbp.ral@tsl.texas.gov.  RSVP preferred by July 2.

ELEANOR OLIPHANT IS COMPLETELY FINE is available by mail in digital cartridge.  It is also available to download on BARD.

Please indicate if you would like us to mail you the digital cartridge, or if you prefer to download it from BARD.

We request that everyone remember the following:

  • Keep external distractions to a minimum.
  • Be courteous.  Try not to interrupt or talk over others.
  • Give everyone a chance to talk.
  • Be respectful of differing opinions.
  • Keep discussion points concise and relevant to the book.
  • If you feel comfortable doing so, preface your comments with your first name.

ELEANOR OLIPHANT IS COMPLETELY FINE

Gail Honeyman

Socially awkward and perpetually cranky, Eleanor works a boring office job and avoids dealing with other people whenever possible.  She begins to open up after she develops a crush on a local musician and also becomes friendly with Raymond, the new IT guy.  Strong language.  Commercial audiobook.  2017.  DB 87829; LB 09081.

We look forward to having you join us on Tuesday, July 23!

MAY 2019 BOOK CLUB TITLE ANNOUNCED!

Please join us on Thursday, May 23 at 7 pm (Central Time) for our Book Club discussion of GOD SAVE TEXAS: A JOURNEY INTO THE SOUL OF THE LONE STAR STATE, by Lawrence Wright.

We host our Book Club meetings via toll free conference call.  All you need to participate is a telephone!

To RSVP, please call the Talking Book Program at 1-800-252-9605; or email us attbp.ral@tsl.texas.gov.  RSVP preferred by May 2.

GOD SAVE TEXAS: A JOURNEY INTO THE SOUL OF THE LONE STAR STATE is available by mail in digital cartridge.  It is also available to download on BARD.

Please indicate if you would like us to mail you the digital cartridge, or if you prefer to download it from BARD.

We request that everyone remember the following:

  • Keep external distractions to a minimum.
  • Be courteous.  Try not to interrupt or talk over others.
  • Give everyone a chance to talk.
  • Be respectful of differing opinions.
  • Keep discussion points concise and relevant to the book.
  • If you feel comfortable doing so, preface your comments with your first name.
Book cover for God Save Texas: A Journey Into the Soul of the Lone Star State by Lawrence Wright

An examination of the history, culture, demographics, economics, and politics ofTexas in the early twenty-first century, along with personal reflections by the author of The Looming Tower (DB 63287). Unrated.  Commercial audiobook.  2018.  DB 90876.

We look forward to having you join us on Thursday, May 23!

March 2019 TBP Book Club Title Announced!

Texas Talking Book patrons: please join us on Tuesday March 26th at 7 pm (Central Time) for our book club discussion of LITTLE FIRES EVERYWHERE by Celeste Ng (DB   89018, BR   22149)

Book Cover for Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng

Our book club meetings are hosted via toll free conference call,so all you need is a telephone to participate.  To RSVP call the TalkingBook Program at: 1-800-252-9605 (RSVP preferred by March 5th) or email us at: tbp.ral@tsl.texas.gov.  Please indicate if you would like us to mail you the digital cartridge or if you prefer to download it from BARD.

NLS Annotation:

 Elena Richardson andher family lead an orderly existence in Shaker Heights, Ohio, until Mia and herdaughter rent a house from them. When a neighbor tries to adopt a baby, Elenaand Mia end up on opposing sides of the custody battle. Some strong language andsome descriptions of sex. Commercial audiobook. Bestseller. 2017.

 We request that everyone remember the following:

  • Keep external distractions to a minimum.
  • Be courteous. Try not to interrupt or talk over others; give everyone a chance to talk; be respectful of differing opinions.
  • Keep discussion points concise and relevant to the book.
  • If comfortable doing so, please preface your comments with your first name.

We look forward to having you join us on Tuesday, March 26!

July 2018 TBP Book Club Title Announced!

Texas Talking Book patrons: please join us on Tuesday July 24th at 7 pm (Central Time) for our book club discussion of MY GRANDMOTHER ASKED ME TO TELL YOU SHE’S SORRY by Fredrik Backman (DB 83204)

Our book club meetings are hosted via toll free conference call, so all you need is a telephone to participate. To RSVP call the Talking Book Program at: 1-800-252-9605 (RSVP preferred by June 26st) or email us at: tbp.ral@tsl.texas.gov. Please indicate if you would like us to mail you the digital cartridge or if you prefer to download it from BARD.

We request that everyone remember the following:

  • Keep external distractions to a minimum.
  • Be courteous. Try not to interrupt or talk over others; give everyone a chance to talk; be respectful of differing opinions.
  • Keep discussion points concise and relevant to the book.
  • If comfortable doing so, please preface your comments with your first name.

NLS Annotation:
Seven-year-old Elsa is acknowledged as weird. The grandmother she lives with is flat-out crazy, but she shares tales of the fairyland of Miamas. When her grandmother dies, Elsa is entrusted with delivering letters of apology and learns about her place in the world. Translated from the original 2013 Swedish edition. 2014

MARCH 2018 BOOK CLUB TITLE ANNOUNCED!

Please join us on Tuesday, March 20 at 7 pm (Central Time) for our Book Club discussion of HILLBILLY ELEGY: A MEMOIR OF A FAMILY AND CULTURE IN CRISIS, by J. D. Vance (DB   85796, LB   08948).

We host our Book Club meetings via toll free conference call.  All you need to participate is a telephone!

To RSVP call the Talking Book Program at 1-800-252-9605.  or email us at tbp.ral@tsl.texas.gov.  (RSVP preferred by January 4.)

HILLBILLY ELEGY is available by mail in digital cartridge or large print formats.  It is also available to download on BARD.

Please indicate if you would like us to mail you the digital cartridge, large print book, or if you prefer to download it from BARD.

HILLBILLY ELEGY: A MEMOIR OF A FAMILY AND CULTURE IN CRISIS

J. D. Vance

DB 85796, LB 08948

Memoir of growing up in the Ohio Rust Belt in a family culture rooted in Scots-Irish Appalachia. Explores political themes affecting these community cultures through the lens of personal and familial experiences. Discusses what it took to go from nearly failing high school to graduating from Yale Law School. Some strong language.  Bestseller.  2016.

We look forward to having you join us on Tuesday, March 20th!

JANUARY 2018 BOOK CLUB TITLE ANNOUNCED!

Please join us on Thursday, January 25 at 7 pm (Central Time) for our Book Club discussion of STRANGER IN THE WOODS: THE EXTRAORDINARY STORY OF THE LAST TRUE HERMIT, by Michael Finkel (DB 87555).

We hot our Book Club meetings via toll free conference call.  All you need to participate is a telephone!

To RSVP call the Talking Book Program at 1-800-252-9605.  or email us at tbp.ral@tsl.texas.gov.  (RSVP preferred by January 4.)

STRANGER IN THE WOODS is available by mail in digital cartridge.  It is also available to download on BARD.

Please indicate if you would like us to mail you the digital cartridge, or if you prefer to download it from BARD.

STRANGER IN THE WOODS: THE EXTRAORDINARY STORY OF THE LAST TRUE HERMIT

Michael Finkel

DB 87555

In 1986, twenty-year-old Christopher Knight drove to Maine and disappeared into the forest.  He did not speak to another human being until he was arrested for stealing food nearly thirty years later.  Discusses his survival in the wilderness in the intervening decades.  Unrated.  Commercial audiobook.  Bestseller.  2017.

We look forward to having you join us on Thursday, January 25!

October 2017 TBP Book Club Title Announced!

Texas Talking Book patrons: please join us on Thursday October 12th at 7 pm (Central Time) for our book club discussion of ROAD TO CHARACTER by David Brooks (DB   81325, LB   08536)

Our book club meetings are hosted via toll free conference call, so all you need is a telephone to participate.  To RSVP call the Talking Book Program at: 1-800-252-9605 (RSVP preferred by September 21st) or email us at: tbp.ral@tsl.texas.gov.  Please indicate if you would like us to mail you the digital cartridge or if you prefer to download it from BARD.

NLS Annotation:

The author of The Social Animal (DB 72914) looks at the lives of ten famous men and women known for having overcome personal weakness to achieve outward success and inner worth. Each exemplifies humility, hard work, and devotion to a cause. Commercial audiobook. Bestseller. Some violence, some strong language and some descriptions of sex. 2015.

Staff Pick – John – IN THE GARDEN OF BEASTS: LOVE, TERROR, AND AN AMERICAN FAMILY IN HITLER’S BERLIN, DB 73470

The Talking Book Program’s Phone-in Book Club recently discussed THE BOYS IN THE BOAT: NINE AMERICANS AND THEIR EPIC QUEST FOR GOLD AT THE 1936 BERLIN OLYMPICS (DB 77138).  While the focus of the book was on the University of Washington crew that rowed its way to a Gold Medal, it also provides glimpses of life in Nazi Germany under Adolph Hitler.

Not for the first time, I asked myself how good, decent people could fall under the influence of the likes of Hitler, Göring, and Goebbels.  While there are no truly “good” answers to that question, Erik Larson’s IN THE GARDEN OF BEASTS: LOVE, TERROR, AND AN AMERICAN FAMILY IN HITLER’S BERLIN offers a compelling and unique account of Germany’s descent into “savage darkness.”

A master of narrative nonfiction, Larson is the author of ISAAC’S STORM: A MAN, A TIME, AND THE DEADLIEST HURRICANE IN HISTORY (DB/DX 48811), DEVIL IN THE WHITE CITY DB/DX 55748), and DEAD WAKE: THE LAST CROSSING OF THE LUSITANIA (DB 80936).

Larson spotlights William Dodd, the U.S. Ambassador to Germany from 1933-1937.  Dodd is a modest History professor and native Virginian who courageously confronted Confederate Civil War veterans early in his academic career.  Dodd’s adult daughter, Martha, is an intriguing complementary figure.  At first enamored by the energy of the Nazi revolution, Martha is soon gripped by “deepening revulsion” at its brutality.

Dodd was one of the few diplomats or politicians who had both the foresight to recognize what Hitler would become and the courage to speak about the evils of Nazi Germany.  However, his superiors in the State Department ridiculed Dodd at every turn as a crude maverick, and he was eventually replaced by a career diplomat who stressed the “positive aspects of Nazi Germany.”

From the “Night of Long Knives” to Kristallnacht, IN THE GARDEN OF BEASTS casts Dodd as a “lone beacon of American freedom and hope in a land of gathering darkness.”

NLS Annotation: Follows the lives of U.S. ambassador William E. Dodd and his family, who moved to Berlin, Germany, in 1933. Discusses their attitudes toward the Nazi Party, obliviousness to Hitler’s true character, and naive reactions to the persecution of Jews and Americans and the enforcement of stringent laws. Bestseller. 2011.

Movie buffs should note that a film adaptation of IN THE GARDEN OF BEASTS is in the works, with Tom Hanks rumored to play the role of Ambassador Dodd.

To learn more about IN THE GARDEN OF BEASTS, and Hitler’s rise to power, listen to a 2012 interview with Larson on NPR’s “Fresh Air”: http://www.npr.org/2012/05/04/151378813/the-u-s-ambassador-inside-hitlers-berlin

A master of narrative nonfiction, Larson is also the author of ISAAC’S STORM: A MAN, A TIME, AND THE DEADLIEST HURRICANE IN HISTORY (DB/DX 48811); DEVIL IN THE WHITE CITY (DB/DX 55748); and DEAD WAKE: THE LAST CROSSING OF THE LUSITANIA (DB 80936).