The love-hate relationship I have with audiobooks

Although my husband has a short commute to work, he also drives a longer distance 2 or 3 times each week to visit his mom in the nursing home. So he started listening to audiobooks that I bring home from the library for him.  A few times I’ve gotten two copies of the same audio so we could listen simultaneously and discuss it, which is like having our own little book club of 2 people!

Most of the time Tom and the women I work with at the library in Middleboro hear about how very heavy and sad the books that my bookclub chooses to read and discuss. Right now I am hearing about life in the slums of Mumbai. Every now and then I intersperse it with music from the ipod for a change of pace. Broadway show tunes always lift my spirits!


from The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman

Certainly one of my favorite books that I listened to in 2013. Highly recommended by my downstairs neighbor who is an avid reader.


from The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman

Certainly one of my favorite books that I listened to in 2013. Highly recommended by my downstairs neighbor who is an avid reader.


Reading and listening for book club

My book club, or more accurately, the book club to which I belong because it is, by no means, MY book club, reads a wide range of titles. For the past 20 months, I’ve commuted 35 miles each way to work. For many, many people, this is most likely not a big deal. For me, it’s been a rough adjustment. Sitting in the car for close to 40 minutes is not how I want to start and end my day. (Especially when my commute used to be about 5 minutes…I know, I know, don’t remind me!)

Clearly some folks love talk radio and others are addicted to subscription radio stations. My oldest son listens to podcasts on his ipod. I like audio books. And, as Martha says, it’s a good thing. But listening to a story as I drove along, it can become very real and I become very wrapped up in the story. Subsequently as I arrive at work, I am sometimes still thinking about the books. So when I work in Middleboro, I will often vent to my co-workers about how this particular audiobook is making me feel or think. Since this library doesn’t open to the public for an hour after most of us arrive during the week, we can be attending to our duties opening the library while talking, or, again, in my case, ranting about an audiobook!

Last month the women in the group chose to read a book called The Outpost: an untold story of American Valor by Jake Tapper. Published in 2012 by Little Brown, the author is a journalist who spent time with soldiers in Afghanistan as research for this book. When it was decided that we would read this book as a group, another member asked if it be okay knowing that both my son and daughter-in-law have spent time in Afghanistan. At the time I didn’t think it would bother me to delve into this story but as it unfolded, I realized that it hit too close to home.

So I bailed out on this book and the audio book, choosing instead to listen as actor Jim Broadbent read the timeless words of A.A. Milne. A delightfully, relaxing change of pace for this children’s librarian!


Surrounded by books, I only want more books

No matter how many children’s books I’ve amassed in my home library and how many I add to the collections of the library where I work, I am still looking for ‘the one that got away.’ By this I mean that I am still looking for some of those children’s books that I recall from childhood and I didn’t save. There are even a few from my boys’ childhood library of books that I need to replace now. Replacing and adding books to the collection of the two sons who are now dads is very satisfying.

Right now there are more books than I care to count in what we lovingly refer to as the Junk Room in our house.  But I just can’t stop buying more!


Get your Tumblrs ready…
The Great Tumblr Book Search—The Sequel—launches on March 1st.


Get your Tumblrs ready…

The Great Tumblr Book Search—The Sequel—launches on March 1st.


The Internship on DVD

After reading Mr. Penumbra’s 24 Hour Bookstore by Robin Sloan, I wanted to learn more about Google so I borrowed The Internship on DVD from the library. Full disclosure, I truly enjoy Vince Vaughn. I think he’s quite funny but I wasn’t sure how this film was going to play out until the end. Have to say, both Tom and I enjoyed it a lot. Lots of laughs and only a tiny glimpse of what life may be like if you work at Google!


Ah audiobooks…

Today I started listening to a novel written by an author I admire. But so far I am finding it a challenge getting into the story. Not sure if it’s the reader or the story but it’s not coming together for me.

On the other hand, I will never forget the weeks I spent listening to “The Signature of All Things” by Elizabeth Gilbert and read by Juliet Stevenson. IT was a phenomenal!



Happy birthday, Lewis Carroll!

Today marks the 182nd birthday of Charles Lutwidge Dodgson, more famously known by his pen name, Lewis Carroll. Born in Cheshire, England in 1832, Carroll is perhaps best known as the author of the children’s classic, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, first published in 1865. The book, about a curious girl named Alice who falls down a rabbit hole into a fantasy world of strange creatures, is considered to be one of the best examples of the literary nonsense genre and is enjoyed by both adults and children all over the world. 

Stop by the NYPL’s amazing exhibit on children’s literature, The ABC of It All to learn more about Alice in Wonderland (we’ve included an image from the exhibit above!), and many other timeless children’s books today!


Minding Mother Goose

It’s strange to think that I’ve spent so much of my life surrounded by children’s books, professionally working with children’s books and just recently began delving into the lives of Peter and Iona Opie, the folks who did so much research into the Mother Goose rhymes and other commonly known rhymes and fairy tales.

Learning about their lives only reinforces my passion for children’s books because they are so relevant to so many people. Those who stop reading picture books are truly missing out.

← Older entries Page 1 of 5