Indiana Insights

Maggie Ansty, Editor

317-232-3684 or 1-800-622-4970


Volume XXXIX No.3

Winter 2016

Grant Opportunity Returns in January

Following the success of the program in 2016, the Indiana State Library Foundation, in collaboration with the Indiana State Library’s Talking Book & Braille Library, is once again seeking applicants for a grant supporting patrons with the purchase of assistive technology devices. The grants provide monetary reimbursements in amounts ranging from $50 to $1,000 towards the purchase of an assistive technology device of the grant recipient’s choosing. These devices remove many barriers to education and employment for visually impaired individuals and may include: video magnifiers, optical character recognition systems, speech systems, etc.

Grant requests may be submitted any time after January 1, 2017. The requests will be reviewed by a committee and awarded on a quarterly basis until the funds allotted for the calendar year are expended. Grants will only be awarded to a particular individual or institution one time every three calendar years.

More information, including application instructions, can be found online at Questions may be directed to us by email at

The Indiana State Library Foundation was established in 2011 with a mission to serve citizens of Indiana through the support, enhancement and promotion of activities of the Indiana State Library, their programs and collections and to aid in development of library related programs benefiting libraries throughout the state and the library profession. To learn more about how you can help the Indiana State Library Foundation support the Talking Books program, contact

Your Input Is Needed!

One of our librarians, Laura Williams, is a member of the National Library Service’s Collection Development Advisory Group. They will be having their biennial meeting in Washington, D.C. in May and we want to make sure your thoughts about the Talking Book and Braille program are discussed during that meeting.

The Collection Development Advisory Group is made up of 12 people, which includes 3 representatives from consumer organizations (eg. NFB, ACB, and the Blinded Veterans), 4 library patrons from around the country, and 5 librarians; the group gives suggestions to NLS regarding the process by which titles are selected for the program. 

Suggestions can range from the general, such as book length, to the specific. For example, during the 2015 meeting the group suggested that length should not be a limiting factor when selecting braille titles for the library. NLS agreed and as a result longer books such as George R.R. Martin’s Game of Thrones series and Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell are now available in braille. The group can also recommend that NLS add books on certain subjects. In 2015 their recommendations included more historical mysteries and westerns, as well as books about wedding planning and protection against identity theft. Further, recommendations can be made by the committee regarding the Magazine on Cartridge program, the BARD website and Mobile App, narration, Talking Book Topics, and any other component of the National Library Service. 

Ideas and suggestions from readers are key factors in the success of the program and are thoroughly discussed in the committee’s deliberations. Please continue to submit your suggestions throughout the winter and spring. Laura can be reached at 317-232-0609 or

Holiday Book Requests

With the holiday season in full swing, it is time to start thinking about closures at the library and post office. The library will be closed Friday, December 23rd, Monday, December 26th, and Monday, January 2nd. As a result, there will be no incoming or outgoing mail on those days so your book deliveries may be interrupted.

We encourage you to take a few moments and order extra books to have on hand during that time; we recommend having all requests in before Friday, December 16th to ensure that your books have plenty of time to get to you. Since our mail goes out first thing in the morning, book requests made after Wednesday, December 21st will not be filled until we re-open Tuesday, December 27th.

The holiday season is a great time to think about signing up for BARD or downloading the BARD Mobile app (now available for iOS, Android, and Kindle devices). BARD will give you instant access to over 80,000 audio books, braille books, magazines, and music scores from the comfort of your home, even when the library is closed! For more information on BARD, please visit or call us at 1-800-622-4970. If you are interested in signing up for BARD, please be aware that we will not be able to approve your BARD application on days the library is closed.


Changes to Talking Book Topics Audio Magazine

Following feedback received from subscribers to the audio version of Talking Book Topics, NLS has resumed sending the magazine cartridge and order form in the same package. This caused quite a bit of confusion for both library staff and patrons with the September-October issue of the magazine.

While both the order form and cartridge come in a cardboard container together, they are both addressed and ready to go in the mail separately when you are finished with them. The order form goes in the mail, as is, with our address on it while the cartridge goes in its mailing container in the mail with no mailing card back to the magazine producer. NLS will be including a thorough explanation of the changes in the next issue (November/December) of Talking Book Topics.

2017 Braille Calendars Available

We have a limited supply of 2017 braille calendars, sent to us by the Michigan Braille Transcribing Fund, to give away. If you would like one, please contact us at 1-800-622-4970.  

NLS has also compiled a list of organizations that produce calendars in braille, print/braille, large print, or audio, which can be found at:

Book Recommendations: Best of 2016

Impress your friends by staying up to date with some of the best reviewed books of 2016:

The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead (DB 85212, LP 20247)

Cora, a third-generation slave, flees the plantation where she lives. She escapes with a man who claims to know how to get to the Underground Railroad. Once there, she discovers it is an actual railroad, and every stop shows her moments of horror and joy. Winner of the 2016 National Book Award for fiction. Unrated. Commercial audiobook. 2016.

Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City by Matthew Desmond (DB 83870)

Harvard sociologist examines the poorest neighborhoods of Milwaukee, Wisconsin, to relate the stories of eight families living on the edge, all of whose fates rest in the hands of two landlords. Desmond provides a close view of the issue of eviction, which so many American families face. Unrated. Commercial audiobook. 2016.

My Name is Lucy Barton by Elizabeth Strout (DB 83379)

In the hospital, recovering from what should have been a simple operation, Lucy Barton gets a visit from her estranged mother. While her mother shares gossip from home, Lucy thinks back on her past and their difficult relationship. Strong language, some violence, and some descriptions of sex.  Commercial audiobook. 2016.

The Girls by Emma Cline (DB 84920)

In 1960s northern California, teenager Evie Boyd becomes enthralled by Suzanne, who draws Evie into a cult with a charismatic leader. As Evie drops further and further out of her daily life, she is drawn closer to the burgeoning violence of the cult. Unrated. Commercial audiobook. 2016.

Before the Fall by Noah Hawley (DB 84691)

On a foggy summer night, eleven people--ten privileged, one a down-on-his-luck painter--depart Martha's Vineyard on a private jet for New York. The plane plunges into the ocean. The only survivors are the painter and a four-year-old boy, who is now the remaining member of an immensely wealthy media mogul's family. Unrated. Commercial audiobook. 2016.

Lab Girl by Hope Jahren (DB 84436)

Geobiologist chronicles her life in science. Describes growing up with a father who encouraged her interest in the field; research field trips that have taken her to Florida, the North Pole, and Ireland; and her enduring work relationship with lab partner Bill Hagopian. Unrated. Commercial audiobook.  Bestseller.  2016.

New Books from Indiana Voices

Indiana is celebrating its 200th birthday on December 11th; what better way to celebrate than by reading some Indiana related books from Indiana Voices! Here are some recent additions to the Indiana Voices collection, which can either be borrowed from the library or downloaded from BARD.

The Gentleman from Indiana by Booth Tarkington (IDB00130, DBC11011)

The classic tale of a young university graduate who becomes a newspaper owner and editor in a Western town, and wages war against "graft" and corruption. His crusade brings him into relations with the girl who had captured his heart at college, and their love story is subtly interwoven with his political campaign.

The Right Fluff: Weightless Observations about Life on Earth by Dick Wolfsie (IDB00129, DBC11012)

In The Right Fluff, you'll discover why Dick Wolfsie received permission from his wife to join a strip club, has only round numbers in his checkbook, is listed as female with Medicare, stole another man's underwear, and got caught pandiculating in public. Unrated.

The Best of George Ade by George Ade (IDB00124, DBC08165)

This comprehensive collection of George Ade's work includes samplings of Ade's famous fables in slang, his short stories and plays, his essays and his verses and songs, and a selection of his letters.

Rosalind from Red Gate by Meredith Nicholson (IDB00126, DBC08167)

Mr. Nicholson has scored another great success with Rosalind at Red Gate, in which once again we visit the locality of The House of a Thousand Candles (IDB00085). In this new story he has written a buoyant romance even more fascinating, witty and charming than its famous predecessors.

Get the Most out of Talking Books

Help us provide you with better service by following these simple tips:

·      Make sure you return your books as you finish them; the more often you return your books the more often we will send more.

·      Make sure you don’t have any overdue books sitting around; if a book does not interest you just return it, you won’t hurt our feelings.

·      If you keep getting books that don’t interest you, please let us know. We can work with you to add new favorite authors to your list or to tweak your list of subject preferences.

·      Make sure you know whether you are request only. If you are request only and you stop getting books, more than likely we are out of requests from you.

Indiana Voices Narrator Profile

The Indiana Voices Program relies on a dedicated group of volunteers in order to produce audiobooks with a “Hoosier connection” for our patrons to enjoy. Here is the latest in an ongoing series of narrator profiles.

Name: Carol Edgar

Current or previous occupation: Retired – Eli Lilly & Co.; Benjamin Harrison Home; Indiana Railroad; South Side H. S. – Social Studies Teacher.

Number of years as a narrator:  4 ½ years

Favorite types of books to read / narrate:  History, Biographies, Historical Fiction

Books Narrated: Adventures of Alexia: A Lake Maxinkuckee Girl (IDB00091), The Ripest Moments: A Southern Indiana Childhood (IDB00116), Traces of Midwestern History (magazine)

Reasons for Volunteering as an Indiana Voices narrator:

Two former Indiana State Librarians encouraged me to give narration a try. I was also involved for a number of years with cultural institutions like Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra Association and the Indianapolis Museum of Art Alliance as a volunteer. I enjoy working as a volunteer that serves to benefit others.


Indiana Insights is a publication of the Talking Book and Braille Library, Indiana State Library.   Indiana Insights is also available online, in Braille, or on a digital cartridge upon request.  Any mention of products and services in the Indiana Insights newsletter is for information purposes only and does not imply endorsement.  This project is funded in part with a grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services which administers the Library Services Technology act.

Indiana Talking Book and Braille Library Calendar:

Friday                 December 23, 2016              Library Closed

Monday              December 26, 2016              Library Closed

Monday              January 2, 2017                   Library Closed

Monday              January 16, 2017                 Library Closed

Friday                 April 14, 2017                       Library Closed

Monday              May 29, 2017                       Library Closed

Tuesday             July 4, 2017                          Library Closed

Monday              September 4, 2017               Library Closed

Saturday             September 30, 2017             Vision Expo

Monday              October 9, 2017                   Library Closed

Friday                 November 10, 2017              Library Closed

Thursday            November 23, 2017              Library Closed

Friday                 November 24, 2017              Library Closed

Monday              December 25, 2017              Library Closed

Tuesday             December 26, 2017              Library Closed


Indiana Talking Book and Braille Library Hours:

Monday – Friday          8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. __________________________________________________________


Free Matter for

the Blind