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Talking Books Talk

Talking Books Talk provides news and updates about the Kansas Talking Books Service (KTBS). Talking Books staff will highlight relevant announcements from KTBS and the National Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped.

Questions: or 800-362-0699

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Mar 20

Kansas Talking Books News Update – Spring 2019

Posted on March 20, 2019 at 8:11 AM by Michael Lang

Kansas Talking Books News Update – Spring 2019

From the Director’s Desk
Spring has sprung and I could not be happier. I don’t know if this winter was longer than normal or if having a toddler in the house just made it seem that way. Either way, I’m thankful for the change in season.

In this newsletter, we are asking for your help in a number of different ways. We need you to help us celebrate our 50th anniversary by sharing stories and your artistic talents. We need you to help us pick our next book club title. We need you to sign up for our brand new Youth Reading Club and our 2019 Summer Reading Program. And, if you’re selected, NLS needs you to respond to their nationwide patron survey.

That’s a lot of asks for a single newsletter, but I know you are up to the challenge. Thank you in advance for all of your help. 

As always, if you have any praise or concerns about the service please let me know, 1-800-362-0699 or

Keep safe, be happy, and read on.

–Michael Lang, Director
KTB News

New Youth Reading Club!
We are excited to announce our new Youth Reading Club!

The Youth Reading Club (YRC) is a year round reading program offering personalized reading recommendations and rewards for meeting your reading goals. It is open to Kansas Talking Books patrons under 18 years of age.

YRC will start Monday, June 3rd, 2019.For more information, visit our blog about YRC, or call our office at 1-800-362-0699. Let’s get reading!!

Phone-In Book Club
Due to popular demand, our Phone-In Book Club will now be held four times per year; and we need you to help us choose our next book. 

The next Phone-in Book club will be held on Wednesday, June 12th with conference calls at 10:00 a.m. and 12:00 noon. To find the titles up for consideration scroll down to our Reader’s Advisory Recommends section then email or call us with your thoughts; 1-800-362-0699 or

2019 Fall & Winter Phone-in Book Club dates
Wednesday, September 18, 2019
Wednesday, December 8, 2019

Summer Reading Program
This is Mission Control, inviting patrons of all ages to join us for the 2019 "A Universe of Stories Summer Reading Program" between June 1st and August 1st. 

Just by signing up, your name will be placed in a weekly prize drawing. There will also be one grand prize winner from each age group at the end of the summer. To be entered in the grand prize drawing, simply send in your reading log where you kept track of the titles you read! A name will be randomly selected from those patrons who submit a reading log.

We’ll have fun summer reading activities and book recommendations posted to our Facebook page and blog throughout the summer.

Sign up for summer reading by calling our office at 1-800-362-0699, dropping us an email at, or Click Here to sign up online.

2020 Fifty Years of Kansas Talking Books
2020 marks the 50th anniversary of Kansas Talking Books and we’re planning to celebrate all year long. We just need a little help from you!

Do you have a story you would like to share about how Kansas Talking Books has impacted your life? Do you have insights into how the service has changed during your time as a patron? Tell us your library stories and we’ll share them with the world. 

We are also planning a traveling art show, featuring the works of Kansas Talking Books library users. You may remember that we did this in 2014. We are still in the early planning stages. The full details will be out in our summer newsletter, but if you are interested in being contacted directly with updates, please let us know at 1-800-362-0699 or 

News from NLS

The Library of Congress Wants to Hear from You!
Beginning in early March, a sample of 10,000 reader/patrons across the country who currently use services provided by NLS will be invited to participate in a nationwide survey. The information collected from this survey will guide NLS as they move forward on a variety of projects to enhance and expand the braille and talking- book program.

As an NLS cooperating network library, Kansas Talking Books encourages invited patrons to respond to the survey at their earliest convenience. Insights gathered from this survey will help us better understand the needs of all of our patrons. You may receive an invitation by mail, email, or phone. In order to ensure ease of use, readers selected for the survey will be given the option of responding in a number of ways to their invitation. Once you have received your invitation, if you have questions, please feel free to contact Gallup Support at or call 1-888-297-8999.

Readers’ Advisor Recommends: Book Club
Help us select our next Phone-in Book Club book. Call Maggie at 1-800-362-0699, ext. 1 or email before May 1st to vote.

DB 90958Warlight by Michael Ondaatje
Annotation: Now an older man, Nathaniel Williams uses archival materials to investigate his parents and the reasons why, during the waning days of World War II, they would have left him and his sister in the care of two men who might have been criminals. Unrated. Commercial audiobook. 2018.

DB 87310 - The Bear and the Nightingale by Katherine Arden
Annotation: In fourteenth-century Russia, young Vasilisa Petrovna can see and talk to the ancient spirits of the house and the forest. When her stepmother and a new village priest speak out against the old ways, angering the spirits, only Vasilisa can save her people. Contains some violence. Commercial audiobook. 2017.

DB 89733 - Artemis by Andy Weir
Annotation: Jazz Bashara smuggles contraband into the moon city of Artemis as a way to make extra money. After she takes on a particularly lucrative job, however, she soon finds herself entangled in a conspiracy for control of Artemis itself. Strong language. Commercial audiobook. 2017.

DB 86234 - Hidden Figures: The American dream and the untold story of the Black women mathematicians who helped win the space race by Margot Lee Shetterly
Annotation: Daughter of a NASA engineer profiles the black women who worked for NASA, and its predecessor NACA, as human computers. Discusses their lives prior to joining NACA/NASA, the challenges they faced due to gender and race discrimination, and their impact on the space program. Basis for the 2016 movie. 2016.

DB 90090 - The Great Alone by Kristin Hannah
Annotation: 1974. Former Vietnam prisoner of war Ernt Allbright moves his family, including wife Cora and thirteen-year-old daughter Leni, north to Alaska. While the weather is temperate, the family survives on the generosity of locals. But when winter descends, Ernt's mental health fractures. Unrated. Commercial audiobook. 2018.

DB 85014 - Britt-Marie was Here by Fredrik Backman
Annotation: At the age of sixty-three, Britt-Marie has left her cheating husband. Socially awkward and aggressively neat, Britt-Marie gets a job as the caretaker of a recreation center in the small Swedish town of Borg, where she is put in charge of the town's losing soccer team. Translated from the 2014 Swedish edition. 2014

Services Spotlight: More Low Vision Support Groups in Kansas
After our winter newsletter was released, we were informed of another low vision support group in Kansas.

Wichita – Envision Low Vision Support Group (LVSG) from 9:30-11:30 am on the 2nd Tuesday of each month at the Envision building, 610 N Main, Wichita, KS 67203. Meeting is held in the lower level in the Intrust meeting room.

Recent Locally Produced Books
Check out our newly produced books, recorded by Kansas Talking Books and our wonderful volunteer narrators.

DBC15001- From Emporia: The Story of William Allen White by Beverley Olson Buller.
Annotation: He won two Pulitzer prizes, he received honorary degrees from Harvard and seven other universities, he advised presidents and he was acclaimed by Life magazine as "an American institution." Yet for William Allen White, home was always Emporia, Kansas, and his primary role was editor of the Emporia Gazette. In a half-century on the job, his engaging and perceptive writing brought the world to small-town Kansas and small-town Kansas to the world. For grades 4-7.

DBC08754 - The Roanoke Girls by Amy Engle
Annotation: After her mother's suicide, fifteen-year-old Lane Roanoke moved in with her grandparents and fireball cousin, Allegra, on their vast estate in rural Kansas. Lane knew little of her mother's mysterious family but quickly embraced life as one of the rich and beautiful Roanoke girls until she discovered the dark truth at the heart of the family and ran....Fast and far away. Eleven years later, Lane is adrift in Los Angeles when her grandfather calls to tell her Allegra has gone missing. Descriptions of sex, strong language, and violence.

KS 00513 - Kansas Tenants Handbook by Housing and Credit Counseling, Inc.
Annotation: The Kansas Tenant Handbook provides useful, practical information regarding the communication and business relationships between tenants and landlords.

DBC14981- Cartas en el bosque by Susan Isern
Annotation: Cada día, el Viejo cartero fielmente entrega cartas especiales a los animales del bosque., pero el cartero nunca ha recibido cartas dirigidas a él. Luego un día, todo cambia?

DBC14987 - Botoncito by Yoko Ogawa
Annotation: El mejor amigo de Botoncito era, sin duda, Ojalito. Eran inseparables. Pero un día, el hilo que mantenía a Botoncito sujeto a la blusa de Ana, de repente, se rompió... Es así como Botoncito va a parar a los rincones más inhóspitos de la habitación de Ana, donde conocerá a Sonajero, a Babero y a Osito, que yacen olvidados bajo los muebles del cuarto porque Ana ya no los necesita... Entonces Botoncito les explicará que Ana ya puede dejar de llorar, ya sabe comer muy bien y también sabe conciliar el sueño sola. ¡Y todo porque ellos le ayudaron a hacerlo cuando era un bebé!

DBC14994 - Wild About Books by Judy Sierra
Annotation: A librarian named Molly McGrew introduces the animals in the zoo to the joy of reading when she drives her bookmobile to the zoo by mistake. For preschool-grade 2.

DBC14973 - The Giant Jam Sandwich by John Vernon Lord
Annotation: When four million wasps fly into their village, the citizens of Itching Down devise a way of getting rid of them. For preschool-grade 2.

Upcoming State and Postal Holidays Reminder
Monday, May 29th – Talking Books Office Closed (Memorial Day)
Wednesday, July 4th – Talking Books Office Closed (Independence Day)
Monday, September 9th -- Talking Books Office Closed (Labor Day)

Contact Us
Kansas Talking Books
1 Kellogg Circle, Box 4055
Emporia, KS 66801


Monday – Friday
8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m

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