Like many others in the Bay Area, I have a lengthy commute every day. When I get tired of listening to top forty radio, the news on NPR, or whatever CDs I have lying around my car I love listening to audiobooks. SJPL has a great collection of audiobooks for you to enjoy. Below are some humorous choices for your drive home.
David Sedaris, an NPR favorite, is consistently hilarious. In this audio version of his sixth collection of essays he reflects on, among other things, language barriers, his relationship with his partner Hugh, and trying to quit smoking. One listen to a Sedaris book and I am sure that you will understand why he is so popular. If you haven’t listened to one of his books before I suggest that you pick one up for your drive home.
Jim Gaffigan is probably most famous for his comedy sketch about the unpleasantness that comes with eating a Hot Pocket. In his first book of essays, he reflects on being a father of five in a two bedroom New York apartment and his own childhood. The book title comes from the first sentence his eldest son ever wrote on a whiteboard. If you enjoy sarcastic self-deprecating humor, you might want to give Gaffigan a try.
Sarah Vowell is a nerd. Not just a nerd but a nerd obsessed with American history, and these are not bad traits. In this collection of essays she ponders, why she is obsessed with visiting America’s gory past including Salem and Gettysburg? What should an ex-president include to make a truly great library? And what exactly is wrong about having a lunchroom in the middle of the Carlsbad Caverns? These and other thoughts compose the mind of a funny and true, albeit partly cloudy, patriot.
In this book of essays, Tina Fey recounts how she went from being a nerdy and awkward child to one of the leading women in television. She reflects on being a woman in comedy and the problems it entails with humor and grace. She also takes ownership of the word bossy, not as a derogatory statement but one of power. For fans of 30Rock it is sure to be a fun listen.
This book just won the 2014 Grammy for best spoken word album. In this sequel to I Am America: And So Can You, Stephen Colbert serves up his signature style. From healthcare to economics Stephen Colbert is here to help America reclaim its greatness. A shorter audiobook, that is sure to have you chuckling in your car.
Want more audiobooks recommended just for you? Check out 5forU, a service for readers.
This Tuesday, OverDrive released an update (v 2.6.5) to their Media Console app for viewing and searching for eBooks on Apple and Android devices. The update mostly takes care of "behind-the-scenes" issues like bug fixes and improved speed.
However, Apple users who download the update will need to re-authorize their Adobe ID. This is due to a change in Apple's privacy policies, which caused OverDrive to make changes to the way they handle licensing of EPUB eBooks and MP3 audiobooks. The update will de-authorize every users’ Adobe ID and prompt them to authorize again (see screenshots and instructions). So be sure to have your Adobe ID handy.
Apple users who only use Audiobooks may not be prompted unless attempting to download parts from a book that was only partially downloaded prior to the update. They'll receive an error message and will need to download the title again from their digital library website bookshelf to download the missing parts.
Android users do not need to re-authorize their Adobe ID.
Are you a young adult who enjoys listening to audiobooks? Or an adult who enjoys listening to young adult (YA) audiobooks? Or just someone with an interest in audiobooks? Then let me tell you about a great program happening this summer. For the third year in a row, SYNC, sponsored by AudioFile, is offering two free audiobook downloads per week from May 30 to June 5, 2013. The downloads consist of one current YA title thematically paired with a classic title. These eAudiobooks are yours to keep and listen to whenever you want to. Just visit this page every week starting Thursday, May 30, 2013 to download the two titles.
See the selections from SYNC for Summer 2013 below!
And if you can’t wait or you want to preview the offerings, you can always check out some version of each title from SJPL. See the link after each for SJPL’s offerings.
June 6 – June 12, 2013
The Incorrigible Children of Ashton Place, Book 1: The Mysterious Howling by Maryrose Wood (SJPL)
Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë (SJPL)
August is Audio Appreciation Month! Celebrate this event by checking out various audio book and music titles at your library! Here are a few recommendations for children.
* indicates Series
The library has audio book versions of many popular titles shown below in audio compact disc format.
Children's Audio Books
Harry Potter* by J.K. Rowling
One of the most popular fantasy series about a young wizard named Harry Potter. Harry attends the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry and makes new friends, learns new magic spells and goes on a quest to defeat the dark wizard Lord Voldemort.
The Extraordinary Education of Nicholas Benedict by Trenton Lee Stewart
Nicholas Benedict, an orphan afflicted with physical ailments and narcolepsy, is sent to a new orphanage where he encounters depraved bullies, difficult circumstances, and a mystery that could change his life forever.
39 Clues* by Various Authors
A series of intriguing adventure stories written by today's popular authors such as Rick Riordan, Gordon Korman, Peter Lerangis and more. These audio books will engage readers by combining card collecting, reading and online gaming.
Besides compact disc, you can also download audio books to your digital audio player, including your iPod, smartphone, or home computer via OverDrive Digital Library or OneClickdigital. Using your digital audio player, you can transition or navigate to other chapters of the book without having to change discs. Here are a few recommended digital audio book titles:
Children's Digital Audio Books
Artemis Fowl* by Eoin Colfer
A popular fantasy and action series about a young master criminal named Artemis Fowl. Artemis gradually develops his moral character as he works with the fairies to help defeat enemies and save the world.
The Mysterious Benedict Society* by Trenton Lee Stewart
Reynie Muldoon, an orphaned child with special abilities joins an elite team of four talented children and they become the Mysterious Benedict Society. They soon go on an adventurous journey of espionage to defeat a villain who plans to take over the world.
Percy Jackson and the Olympians* by Rick Riordan
A young boy named Percy Jackson discovers that the legendary Greek Gods still exists and goes on an adventurous quest to prevent a devastating war between the gods.
In addition to audio books, the library also has a substantial collection of new music CDs and downloadable new eAudio and eMusic for all ages! Please see a librarian at your library for more details.
Tina Fey’s Bossypants is awarded Audiobook of the Year 2012, by the Audio Publishers Association. For all of the 2012 winners and finalists listed in various categories, pleas visit the Audies Competition; the titles are grouped in more than two dozen categories including works of fiction, nonfiction, and children’s. Provided with the list are book reviews to read, as well as segments of the audios to listen.
Allan Wolf’s The Watch that Ends the Night: Voices from the Titanic won the award for Distinguished Achievement in Production. “This production tells the story of the passengers on the TITANIC through interlinked poems from multiple perspectives. Five narrators help listeners keep the large cast straight as they create appropriate and distinct voices for each character.” You may listen to an excerpt of this audiobook at the Audies Competition site. Currently in our neighborhood, there is a copy only at Santa Clara County Library though.
For downloadable audiobooks at SJPL, visit Overdrive; and use library card and PIN to download. Below are a couple high-interest titles:
Bossypants (Book CD)
Happy reading and listening!
I recently had a conversation with a colleague in which we agreed that movies based on books, no matter how good, are virtually never as good as the book itself. However, I've become a big fan of audiobooks, and I believe that many audiobooks are as good or even better that the print version of the book. Listening to books instead of reading them has obvious benefits for people who have a vision impairment or who want to enjoy a book while driving, walking, or exercising. But beyond that, some books seem especially cut out for the audio format because there are multiple narrators, each of whom can be supplied with a distinct voice. A well-read (acted?) audiobook can add intonation, accents, and other elements that enrich the story. Case in point: The Help by Kathryn Stockett.
Set in the early 60s during the civil rights era in Jackson, Mississippi, the book is told through the viewpoints of two black maids and a young white woman who wishes to write a chronicle of the maids' stories. Listening to the book, I find it hard to imagine that I could enjoy it any more in print format (although, with the book's bestseller status, the print version is doing just fine, thank you). Another book I found particularly suited to audio format is The Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger -- again, because the book is told from the standpoint of more than one narrator. San José Public Library has an increasing number of audio options available to customers. In addition to books on CD, you can download audiobooks with your library card via Overdrive, MyiLibrary, and NetLibrary. I was able to download The Help from Overdrive with no waiting, and transferred it to my iPod. I'm looking forward to the movie scheduled for release in August... but I doubt it will be as good as the (audio)book!