Radio Talking Book – October 2010

Progress with Digital Radios Many people have been eagerly awaiting our new digital radios. Listeners in the Bemidji, Moorhead, Roseau, […]

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Progress with Digital Radios

Many people have been eagerly awaiting our new digital radios. Listeners in the Bemidji, Moorhead, Roseau, Warroad, and Thief River Falls area are now listening to us digitally. Recently, the digital conversion was made in St. Cloud and we are in the process of shipping those digital radios to local residents there. The next areas scheduled for conversion are Buehl/Hibbing and Duluth. 

The new radios are smaller than the old tabletop models most people have been using. The operation is fairly simple; one button controls the power, and a knob controls the volume. The antenna will be a bit different than the one on most of the old radios – it hooks onto the back but it looks more like a dangly wire than the traditional rabbit-ear antenna. It can be draped over a bookshelf, hung out a window, or wherever else you might want to use it for good reception. 

With the new radios, you may turn them on immediately and they will find the best digital signal and start working. You can then send back the old radio which will, at some point, no longer be able to pick up a signal. And, as always, if you have questions about the operation of your equipment, you may always call the Communication Center for assistance. We hope you enjoy the new radios.


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 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.

Heaven, Nonfiction by Lisa Miller, 2010.  The concept of heaven is one of our most cherished and shared ideals of spiritual life. Our beliefs have influenced the societies we have built and the lifestyles to which we have subscribed. Read by Art Nyhus.  11 broadcasts. Begins October 5.

The Art of Choosing, Nonfiction by Sheena Iyengar, 2010.  Choice is a powerful tool to define ourselves and mold our lives. But what do we know about the wants, motivations, biases, and influences that aid or hinder our endeavors?  Read by June Prange.  10 broadcasts. Begins October 20.


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

The Sisters Who Would Be Queen, Nonfiction by Leanda de Lisle, 2009.  The Grey sisters were great-granddaughters of Henry VII, legitimate successors to the throne and rivals to Henry VIII’s daughters Mary and Elizabeth. Read by Bonnie Smith-Yackel. 14 Br. Begins September 28. 

The Vikings, Nonfiction by Robert Ferguson, 2009.  The Viking age began in 793 with an attack on the monastery at Lindisfarne. It continued until the destruction of the temple to the Norse gods at Uppsala around 1090. Between those dates, the Vikings made their presence known throughout Europe.  Read by John Mandeville. 20 broadcasts. Begins October 18.


Monday – Friday, 11 a.m.

Becoming Jane Eyre, Fiction by Sheila Kohler, 2009. The Brontë family seemed cursed with disaster. Yet the three sisters had remarkable literary talent. Read by Isla Hejny. 7 broadcasts. Begins September 30.

Remarkable Creatures, Fiction by Tracy Chevalier, 2010.  Mary Anning is different. Poor and uneducated, she nonetheless has the ability to find fossils no one else sees. When she uncovers an unusual skeleton, she causes a stir in the religious community, among the townspeople, and in the scientific world.  Read by Audray Rees.  11 broadcasts. Begins October 11.

The Irresistible Henry House, Fiction by Lisa Grunwald, 2010.  Henry House was used as a practice baby for home economics classes when he was tiny. As a grown man, he needs to transcend that inner tumult of his childhood.  Read by Laura Rohlik.  15 broadcasts. Begins October 26.


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

Molly Ivins: A Rebel Life, Nonfiction by Bill Minutaglio and W. Michael Smith, 2009. She was groomed for a gilded life in moneyed Houston, but Molly Ivins reinvented herself as one of the most provocative, courageous, and influential journalists in American history. L – Read by Anne Obst. 12 broadcasts. Begins October 5.

The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks, Nonfiction by Rebecca Skloot, 2010.  Henrietta Lacks was a poor Southern tobacco farmer whose cells became one of the most important tools in medicine. The first immortal human cells grown in culture, they are still alive today, sixty years after her death. V,L,S – Read by Jeanne Burns.  12 broadcasts. Begins October 21.


Choice Reading
Monday – Friday, 4 p.m.

The Postmistress, Fiction by Sarah Blake, 2010.  Three women’s lives come together in wartime: Frankie, who broadcasts reports from London in 1940; Iris, the postmistress on Cape Cod; and Emma Fitch, whose new husband heads to London to offer his help.  Read by Bernadette Flynn.  15 broadcasts. Begins September 20.

The Lake Shore Limited, Fiction by Sue Miller, 2010.  Wilhelmina, who is called Billy, is a playwright who has written a play called The Lake Shore Limited, about an imagined terrorist bombing of a train. There is a man waiting to hear the fate of his estranged wife who was traveling on it. In a similar way, on 9/11, Billy had lost her lover Gus who had been on a plane used in that attack.  Read by Ann Hoedeman.  10 broadcasts. Begins October 11.

A Gate at the Stairs, Fiction by Lorrie Moore, 2009.  Tassie Keltjin is a farm girl who moves to a university town as a college student. She takes a job as a nanny. As she is drawn deeper into the life of this family, her life back home seems more and more alien to her.  Read by Sue McDonald. L –  12 broadcasts. Begins October 25.


PM Report
Monday – Friday, 8 p.m.

Renegade, Nonfiction by Richard Wolffe, 2009.  How did political newcomer Obama, with no money and an alien name, become the world’s most powerful leader? He learned skills in his youth and early career. L – Read by Kristi Sullivan. 17 Br. Begins Sept. 27.

The Nuclear Express, Nonfiction by Thomas C. Reed and Danny B. Stillman, 2009.  During the Cold War, the struggle was between East and West. In today’s world the collective fear is over terrorist organizations getting hands on a nuclear weapon and using it to effect chaos and societal collapse.  Read by Del Adamson.  15 broadcasts. Begins October 20.


Night Journey
Monday – Friday, 9 p.m.

The Black Minute, Fiction by Christopher Valen, 2009.  St. Paul Homicide Detective John Santana is assigned to the case of a dead Hmong woman on Harriet Island. But the routine case soon involves political intrigue and deadly secrets. S – Read by Joy Fogarty. 10 broadcasts. Begins October 4.

U Is for Undertow, Fiction by Sue Grafton, 2009.  Kinsey Millhone is approached by a man who claims he has remembered facts about the killing of a girl twenty years before. Reluctantly, Kinsey agrees to give him one day of her time. L – Read by Amy Morris.  15 broadcasts. Begins October 18.


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

Typhoon, Fiction by Charles Cumming, 2009. Joe Lennox, Secret Service agent for MI6, suffers a setback in Hong Kong, just at the cusp of Chinese rule. Ten years later, he’s back in China for the Olympics and old frictions resurface, as does the woman he loved. L – Read by Charlie Boone.  14 broadcasts. Begins October 5.

Blooms of Darkness, Fiction by Aharon Appelfeld, 2009. The Nazis have liquidated the ghetto, and Hugo’s mother has brought him to the local brothel where a prostitute has agreed to hide him. While she is entertaining Nazi soldiers, Hugo sits in her closet. L,S – Read by Alvin Apple. 8 broadcasts. Begins October 25.


Monday – Friday, 11 p.m.

The Snakehead, Nonfiction by Patrick Radden Keefe, 2009. Sister Ping ran a full-service bank for illegal Chinese immigrants, but her real business was smuggling people. V,L – Read by Colleen Matz. 14 Br. Begins September 28.

My Brain Made Me Do It, Nonfiction by Eliezer J. Sternberg, 2010. As scientists explore how the brain works, it seems likely that new findings will radically alter traditional understanding of human nature. One aspect of human nature already being questioned by recent developments in neuroscience is free will. Read by Yelva Lynfield.  11 broadcasts. Begins October 13.


Good Night Owl
Monday – Friday, Midnight

Pursuit of Honor, Fiction by Vince Flynn, 2009. After a terrorism act, Mitch Rapp has been ordered to find the remaining al Qaeda terrorists by any means possible. V,L – Read by Neil Bright. 16 broadcasts. Begins October 4.       

The Privileges, Fiction by Jonathan Dee, 2010. Adam and Cynthia believe in a future of boundless privilege. When that future doesn’t come fast enough, Adam is confronted with a choice. L – Read by Denny Laufenburger. 10 broadcasts. Begins October 26.    


After Midnight
Tuesday– Saturday, 1 a.m.

The Anthologist, Fiction by Nicholson Baker, 2009. Poet Paul Chowder is writing an introduction to a poetry anthology but he’s having a hard time starting. L – Read by Arlan Dohrenburg.  8 broadcasts. Begins September 30.

Birthmarked, Fiction by Caragh M. O’Brien, 2010.  In a future world, some live inside the wall and some outside. When Gaia’s parents are taken, she needs to question what she’s been taught about the Enclave.  Read by Colleen Matz.  13 broadcasts. Begins October 12.

Wanting, Fiction by Richard Flanagan, 2009.  In 1839, Arctic explorer Sir John Franklin and his wife adopt a young Aboriginal girl to conduct a social experiment on Christianity v. savagery. Read by John Schmidt.   7 broadcasts. Begins October 29.

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