Radio Talking Book – August 2011

Life after Government Shutdown When  Radio Talking Book staff returned from three weeks of Government Shutdown, we were faced with […]

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Life after Government Shutdown

When  Radio Talking Book staff returned from three weeks of Government Shutdown, we were faced with several problems. The building had been locked so no volunteers had been able to produce programs; all mail delivery to the building had stopped so there were few materials for producing new programs; and the books, which are broadcast serially, had had their broadcasting interrupted with almost a three week hiatus. How were we to flip a switch and pretend that nothing had happened?

If people turned on their radios on Thursday, July 21, they may have noticed that most of the programming sounded like it did not come from Minnesota. We had phone calls asking why we were broadcasting the farm report from Kansas. We had made the decision that it might take a couple days for us to get the Radio Talking Book running at 100% and that another radio reading service (Kansas Audio Reader) was better than having nothing at all on the air.

Observant people will also notice that many of the books that we listed in July are actually airing in August. They could not air in July; they had been scheduled during that three week period when we were off the air. We are very glad to be back and we’re glad that you have stayed with us as our listening family.

Books Available Through Faribault 

Books broadcast on the Minnesota Radio Talking Book Network are available through the Minnesota  Braille and Talking Book Library in Faribault, MN. Their phone is 1-800-722-0550 and hours are 7:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Monday through Friday. Their catalog is also online, and you can access it by going to the main website,, and then clicking on the link. If you live outside of Minnesota, you may obtain copies of our books by contacting your own state’s Network Library for the National Library Service. 

Listen to the Minnesota Radio Talking Book, either live or archived programs from the last week, on the Internet at Call the staff at the Radio for your password to the site.

See interesting information about current RTB events on the Facebook site for the Minnesota Radio Talking Book Network. Register for Facebook at

Tuesday – Saturday, 4 a.m.

Self Comes to Mind, Nonfiction by Antonio Damasio, 2010. Damasio has spent the past thirty years studying how the brain operates. He believes the brain’s development of self becomes a challenge to nature’s indifference and opens the way for the appearance of culture. Read by Malcolm McLean. 14 broadcasts. Began August 4.

Wide Awake, Nonfiction by Patricia Morrisroe, 2010.  A fourth-generation insomniac, Morrisroe decided the only way she’d conquer her lifelong sleep disorder was by becoming an expert on the subject. Read by Diane Ladenson. 9 broadcasts. Begins August 24.


Past is Prologue
Monday – Friday, 9 a.m.

The Poisoner’s Handbook, Nonfiction by Deborah Blum, 2010. In early 20th century New York, poison was the perfect weapon because forensics didn’t exist. Then came Charles Norris in 1918 and the poison game changed forever. Read by Colleen Matz. 11 broadcasts. Began August 8.

Empire of the Summer Moon. Nonfiction by S.C. Gwynne, 2010. The Comanches were the most powerful Indian tribe in American history and their most powerful chief was Quanah. Read by Leila Poullada. 14 broadcasts. Begins August 23.


Monday – Friday, 11 a.m.

Safe from the Sea, Fiction by Peter Geye, 2010. Noah returns home to reconnect with his dying father, thirty-five years after the wreck of a Great Lakes ore boat that his father only partially survived. When his father finally tells the story of the disaster, the two men reconsider each other. Read by Bob Malos. 9 broadcasts. Began July 26.

My Name Is Memory, Fiction by Ann Brashares, 2010. Lucy Broward is an ordinary teenaged girl. But she has a crush on Daniel Grey who is not ordinary. Daniel has the memory, the ability to recall past lives and recognize souls of those he’s previously known. Read by John Beal. 12 broadcasts. Begins August 23.

Vestments, Fiction by John Reimringer, 2010. James was drawn to the priesthood. But after his ordination, he found himself still attracted to his first love.   Read by Dan Kuechenmeister. 13 broadcasts. Begins August 24.


Writer’s Voice
Monday – Friday, 2 p.m.

George Eliot in Love, Nonfiction by Brenda Maddox, 2010. As one of the most celebrated novelists in history, George Eliot’s books are as appreciated now as they were in the 19th century. Yet her nonconformist, captivating personal life is not well known. Read by Ilze Mueller. 8 broadcasts. Begins August 10.

How I Killed Pluto and Why It Had It Coming, Nonfiction by Mike Brown, 2010. When astronomer Mike Brown discovered a planet beyond Pluto, Pluto was downgraded to “dwarf” planet. As a result, Brown became a villain to schoolchildren and was launched into the public eye. Read by Dan Sadoff. 10 broadcasts. Begins August 22.


Choice Reading
Monday – Friday, 4 p.m.

The Queen of Palmyra, Fiction by Minrose Gwin, 2010. In 1963, white residents of Millwood avoid “Shake Rag,” the black part of town. One person who crosses the line is young Florence Forrest who attaches herself to her grandparents’ maid, Zenie. L – Read by Connie Jamison. 15 broadcasts. Began July 25.

The Girl Who Fell from the Sky, Fiction by Heidi W. Durrow, 2010. Rachel, the daughter of a Danish mother and a black G.I., is the sole survivor of a family tragedy. Moving to a new city with her strict African-American grandmother as guardian, she is thrust for the first time into a mostly black community. Read by Karen Wertz. 6 broadcasts. Begins August 15.

Third and Long, Fiction by Bob Katz, 2010. A dying factory town finds new life when a former Notre Dame football star is hired as the plant manager of Made Right Clothing. Then he is handed the job of saving the town. L – Read by Jim Gregorich.  9 broadcasts. Begins August 23


PM Report
Monday – Friday, 8 p.m.

I.O.U., Nonfiction by John Lanchester, 2010. Our financial implosion began with the proliferation of cheap credit, which led to an explosion of lending. Read by Hugh Jones. 10 broadcasts. Began August 3.

Were You Born on the Wrong Continent?, Nonfiction by Thomas Geoghegan, 2010. Thomas Geoghegan asks what our lives would be like if we lived them as Europeans. Social democracy may let us live nicer lives – it also may be the only way to be globally competitive. Read by Marylyn Burridge. 11 broadcasts. Begins August 17.


Night Journey
Monday – Friday, 9 p.m.

Freeze Frame, Fiction by Peter May, 2010. Forensics expert Enzo Macleod takes up a twenty-year-old murder case in which the victim left several clues to reveal his killer’s identity. But the residents of the area have no desire to be back in the news. L – Read by John Edmunds. 11 Br. Began August 8.

The Janus Stone, Fiction by Elly Griffiths, 2011. Ruth Galloway investigates a child’s death that happened more than forty years before. The question is: is it ritual sacrifice or just murder? L – Read by Esmé Evans. 9 broadcasts. Begins August 23.


Off the Shelf
Monday – Friday, 10 p.m.

Star Island, Fiction by Carl Hiaasen, 2010. Pop star Cherry Pye has a double who subs for Cherry whenever Cherry is too wasted for a personal appearance. So when Cherry is kidnapped, it’s actually her double, Ann DeLusia. The challenge is to rescue Ann without anyone knowing of her existence. L – Read by John Marsicano. 12 broadcasts. Begins August 8.

Long Time Coming, Fiction by Robert Goddard, 2010. Stephen finds that his uncle, whom he thought had been killed in the Blitz, has been in an Irish prison for four decades. L – Read by Dave Schliep. 13 Br. Begins August 24.


Monday – Friday, 11 p.m.

Unbroken, Nonfiction by Laura Hillenbrand, 2010. In May of 1943, Louis Zamperini’s bomber crashed into the Pacific, leaving him on a life raft amid thousands of miles of ocean and sharks. It was the beginning of an odyssey that would test his endurance with ingenuity, hope, humor, and rebellion. L – Read by Don Lee. 16 broadcasts. Began August 8.

Charlie Finley, NF by Green & Launius, 2010. The 1970’s Oakland Athletics was one of the most successful, most colorful, and most chaotic teams of all times. L – Read by D. Laufenburger. 14 Br. Begins August 30.


Good Night Owl
Monday – Friday, Midnight

Bliss, Remembered, Fiction by Frank Deford, 2010. At the 1936 Berlin Olympics, Sydney Stringfellow begins a love affair with the son of a Nazi diplomat. The affair ends when political forces tear them apart. Read by Judith Johannessen. 13 Br. Began July 25.

The Revenge of the Radioactive Lady, Fiction by Elizabeth Stuckey-French, 2010. Marylou Ahearn is going to kill Dr. Wilson Spriggs. In 1953, he gave her a radioactive cocktail without her consent as part of a government study. Fifty years later, she is still ticked off. L,S – Read by Kristi Sullivan. 12 broadcasts. Begins August 11. 

Spooner, Fiction by Pete Dexter, 2009. Warren’s dad died shortly after Warren’s birth, replaced by Calmer Ottosson, a naval officer who spent the rest of his life trying to salvage his stepson. L,S – Read by Jim Kern. 15 broadcasts. Begins August 29. 



After Midnight
Tuesday– Saturday, 1 a.m.

She’s Gone Country, Fiction by Jane Porter, 2010. When her husband left, Shey moved back to Texas with her teenage sons. But life on the ranch brings a new set of dramas. S – Read by Sue McDonald. 11 Br. Began July 29.

Veil of Night, Fiction by Linda Howard, 2010. Jaclyn loves her job as wedding planner but Carrie was a bridezilla. When Carrie is killed, Jaclyn becomes a suspect. L,S – Read by Lynda Kayser. 12 Br. Begins August 16.




Abbreviations: V – violence, L – offensive language, S – sexual situations

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