January 2015 TBP Book Club Title Announced!

Texas Talking Book patrons: please join us on Tuesday, January 27th at 7 pm (Central Time) for our book club discussion of THE UNLIKELY PILGRIMAGE OF HAROLD FRY by Rachel Joyce (DB 76196).

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 January 13th) 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:

Six months after retiring, Harold Fry receives a letter from former coworker Queenie Hennessy, who is dying of cancer. Intending to post a reply, Harold instead walks the length of England to personally deliver his note, leaving behind his wife Maureen. Along the way Harold ruminates on his life. Some strong language. 2012.

The Night Circus — Book Club, July 16th, 2013 at 7 p.m.

We wanted to let you know about an upcoming book club event. On Tuesday, July 16th at 7 pm (Central Time), we will be discussing The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern.

Our book club meetings are hosted via toll free conference call, so all you need is a telephone to participate.

To RSVP for this book club event, please email the Talking Book Program at tbp.ral@tsl.texas.gov or call the Talking Book Program at:  1 800 252 9605 (RSVP preferred by July 2nd).

The Night Circus is available by mail in cartridge format or for download on BARD.

Title: NIGHT CIRCUS                                                         

Author: MORGENSTERN, ERIN                                 Original Date: 2011

At the Circus of Dreams magicians Celia and Marco are pitted against each other in an epic magical battle. Their mentors plan for it to have only one survivor, not foreseeing that Celia and Marco will fall in love. Some strong language and some descriptions of sex. Bestseller. 

DB   73783

TBP Book Club – March: Outlaw Tales of Texas (Download No Longer Available)

TBP Book Club Logo, the image is a star over and open book with audio signals coming from it.

The Talking Book Program will host a “phone in” book club on Tuesday March 19th at 7 pm to discuss “Outlaw Tales of Texas” by Charles Corvis. Please contact Shannon at 1-800-252-9605 or by email at tbp.ral@tsl.texas.gov by March 5th  to RSVP for the discussion.

This month’s selection was recorded in our Texas TBP Recording Studio and so it is not available on BARD. Patrons can download Outlaw Tales of Texas at the link below or call 1-800-252-9605 to order on digital cartridge. The book can be played only on authorized devices such as the DTBM. It cannot be played on your computer or iPod.

Downloading from the link below is similar to downloading from BARD. The file is in a compressed format that will need to be unzipped. Only TBP patrons may download the book.

Download the book here: Outlaw Tales of Texas (DT06996.zip)

 [Download link has been deactivated.]

TBP Book Club – January: No End in Sight by Rachael Scdoris

Our January phone book club selection is by sled dog racer and Iditarod competitor Rachael Scdoris (with co-author Rick Steber).  We are excited to announce that the author has tentatively agreed to join our book club discussion on January 24th, 7:00-8pm Central.

This is how the story begins:  “My perfect moment:  Dead of winter, dogs running flat out, air so cold I can taste its brittleness on the tip of my tongue. I know this trail…”

No End in Sight details Scdoris’ childhood experiences with her visual impairment and how she trained and developed the skills necessary to compete in the 1,000+ mile Iditarod race.  At 16, she was the youngest athlete ever to finish a 500-mile race that helped qualify her for the big race.  She details her struggle to convince Iditarod officials to allow her to compete and how, in 2005, she became the first legally blind person to do so.

We can’t wait to discuss this book in our TBP Book Club.  If you are a TBP patron, you can RSVP by calling 800-252-9605 or e-mailing tbp.ral@tsl.texas.gov.  You  must RSVP so that we can send you the book club phone number and code to attend.

Book Club Wrapup: Moonwalking with Einstein by Joshua Foer

Picture of Shannon, Saidah, and Dani sitting around a table, with a conference phone in the midddle of the table.

Thanks to all who spent their Tuesday evening with us last week as we discussed Moonwalking with Einstein, and a special thanks to author Josh Foer, who called in to discuss his book with us! For those of you who were unable to attend the conference call, we have recorded the call and it will be available online soon.

Josh gave us some great advice. He said that one thing he hopes people take away from his book is that with the right kind of deliberate practice, you can do more than you think you can. We look forward to reading more books by Mr. Foer, but in the meantime here is a link to his website (including some of his many magazine and newspaper articles):


We have also prepared a bibliography of similar reads, books mentioned in Moonwalking with Einstein, and a bibliography of books by Josh’s family members who write (his two brothers and his sister in law all have books in our library collection). You can find the bibliography here:


Since we did all the talking in our meeting on Tuesday we’d love to hear what you have to say about the book. Here are some questions for discussion (feel free to post your thoughts in our comments section):

1) Mr. Foer said that he started off thinking that these remember-ers were freaks of nature. What do you think: yea or nay? Do you think these people have average memories but train them, or that there is something innate that makes them better at this than the rest of us?

2) Do you do any brain training? What kind? Has it helped you?

3) What did you think about the book as a mix of brain science and the author’s personal story? Did it fit together well?

4) Of the characters Joshua met in the course of writing the book, who did you find the most interesting?

5) How important do you think memory is in today’s culture when we have other ways of remembering things (ie writing, photos, etc..)?

For more discussion questions see: http://www.litlovers.com/reading-guides/14-non-fiction/8342-moonwalking-with-einstein-foer

And just a reminder to TBP patrons –Join us at 7 pm on January 24th as we read and discuss No End in Sight by Rachael Scdoris. This title is available in Braille, cassette, cartridge or download from BARD.If you are a TBP patron that is interested in this program, please RSVP for this event at 1-800-252-9605.

TBP Book Club – “Moonwalking With Einstein” September 4th Author Event

The Talking Book Program is delighted to share the book “Moonwalking With Einstein: The Art and Science of Remembering Everything” in our upcoming book club event. We are particularly excited about this because the author, Joshua Foer, will be joining us.

I was lucky enough to attend an event at a local bookstore in Austin where Mr. Foer was speaking about his book. I explained that we were going to be discussing this title at an upcoming book club meeting at the library and asked if he’d be interested in discussing the book with patrons. Josh is a nice guy and said “yes”.

Please join us for a Q and A with the author of this title. Due to overwhelming response, we will be asking for patron questions before the call and use those to generate discussion with the author, rather than having patrons pose their questions directly. Please leave suggestions for questions in the comments section of this post.

I’m looking forward to reading and discussing “Moonwalking with Einstein” with patrons and the author on September 4th at 7 pm!! “Moonwalking With Einstein” is available in digital book, on BARD and in large print.