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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.

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Nov 10

Veterans Day

Posted on November 10, 2020 at 4:09 PM by Maggie Witte

Veteran’s Day is a United States federal holiday established to honor military veterans- those who have served in the United States Armed Forces. This celebration was known as Armistice Day, until Alvin J. King of Emporia, KS (where Kansas Talking Books is located) proposed that it be changed to Veterans Day to honor “all veterans from all wars and conflicts.” President Dwight D. Eisenhower (of Abilene, KS) signed a bill that established Veterans Day as a national holiday, based on King’s proposal. Our nation celebrates Veterans Day each year on November 11. Learn more about Emporia’s role in the history of Veterans Day in this Emporia Gazette article:

Kansas Talking Books has a variety of books by and about military veterans, including both fiction and nonfiction titles. Below is a list of some of the books that are in our catalog, but please feel free to ask the Talking Books staff about any other veteran-related books!

Veteran Authors:
DB 97009 Thank You For My Service by Mat Best
Annotation: A memoir from a former Army Ranger, private military contractor, and social media phenomenon, discussing his time both abroad and at home. Gives insight into life on the front lines and civilian life for veterans. Unrated. Commercial audiobook. 2019.

DB 95368 A Dog Named Beautiful: A Marine, A Dog, and A Long Road Trip Home by Rob Kugler
Annotation: Memoir of a US Marine and the dog who was both a companion and comfort in bad times. When his chocolate lab Bella was diagnosed with bone cancer, the author decided to spend the time while they waited for a prognosis on an epic road trip with her. Unrated. Commercial audiobook. 2019.

DB 63743 Shades of Darkness: A Black Soldier’s Journey Through Vietnam, Blindness, and Back by George E. Brummell

Annotation: Memoir of Staff Sergeant George Brummell, who was blinded in Vietnam. Recalls growing up in segregated Federalsburg, Maryland, before joining the army at age seventeen. Highlights his rehabilitation, quest for a college degree, and career with the Blinded Veterans Association. Violence, strong language, and some descriptions of sex. 2006.

Adult Non-Fiction:

DB 70331 The GI Bill: A New Deal for Veterans by Glenn C. Altschuler
Annotation: Discusses the history of the GI Bill, a.k.a. the Servicemen's Readjustment Act of 1944, and its 1945 revision. Details the significance of the GI Bill for veterans and the country after World War II. Includes background information on Veterans Administration home loans and on alleged gender and race biases. 2009.

DB 75316 Wounded Warrior Handbook: A Resource Guide for Returning Veterans by Janelle Hill
Annotation: Second edition of a guide for injured U.S. military veterans and their families provides information on medical treatment, rehabilitation, mental-health counseling, family support, and transitioning to civilian life. Details benefits, taxes, and legal issues and discusses bereavement. Includes resources and success stories. 2012.

DBC06268 The Hello Girls: America’s First Women Soldiers by Elizabeth Hoffman Cobbs
Annotation: This is the story of how America's first women soldiers helped win World War I, earned the vote, and fought the U.S. Army. In 1918, 223 women were sent to France by the U.S. Army at General John Pershing's explicit request. They were masters of the latest technology: the telephone switchboard. The General demanded the female 'wire experts' keep him in constant communication with his troops. Upon their return home they were unexpectedly dismissed without veterans' benefits and began a sixty-year battle for those rights which a handful of survivors won in 1979.

Adult Fiction:
DB 97416 Beyond the Horizon by Ella Carey
1943. Eva Scott has been working as a riveter, but when she hears about a call for women pilots, she works to get her pilot's license. She joins the Women Airforce Service Pilots (WASP). Her work leaves scars. In 1977, she works to get WASPs recognized. 2019.

DB 76912 The Reunion by Dan Walsh

Annotation: Vietnam veteran Aaron Miller lost everything after he returned from the unpopular war. Reporter Dave Russo, looking for heroic stories from the conflict, is hired by those Miller saved to find him--but Miller doesn't feel like a hero. Commercial audiobook. 2012.

DB 85871 These Heroic, Happy Dead: Stories by Luke Mogelson
Annotation: A collection of short stories studying the ways in which war changes the lives of both soldiers and civilians. Characters introduced in early stories reappear in later ones, and choices made have lasting consequences. Violence and strong language. Commercial audiobook. 2016.

Young Adult/Juvenile Non-Fiction:

DB 31108 Always to Remember: The Story of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial by Brent K. Ashabranner
Annotation: Poignantly tells of the crusade of Jan C. Scruggs, the Vietnam veteran who spearheaded the drive for a memorial, of Maya Ying Lin, the architectural student whose memorial design was chosen, and of the effect of the memorial on those who visit it. For grades 6-9 and older readers.

Young Adult/Juvenile Fiction:
DB 80772 The Impossible Knife of Memory by Laurie Halse Anderson
Annotation: After years living on the road, Hayley Kincain and her father move back to their hometown to try to lead a normal life. But the horrors her father saw in the war threaten to destroy them. Some strong language. For senior high and older readers. 2014.

DB 68222 The Veterans Day Visitor by Peter Catalanotto
Annotation: Emily's grandfather comes to her second-grade classroom to talk about Veterans Day. Because he has narcolepsy, he falls asleep during the visit--but Emily figures out what to do. Beginning chapter book. For grades K-3. 2008.

DBC06645 America’s White Table by Margot Theis Raven

Annotation: The White Table is set in many mess halls as a symbol for and remembrance to service members fallen, missing, or held captive in the line of duty. Solitary and solemn, it is the table where no one will ever sit. As a special gift to her Uncle John, Katie and her sisters are asked to help set the white table for dinner. Award winner. For grades 2-4.