Listen Local: Download audio books by Washington authors

If you’re looking for a downloadable audiobook, here are a half-dozen titles — general fiction, nonfiction, historical fiction, and fantasy —  by local authors.

She Regrets Nothing by Andrea Dunlop. Fiction
The forgotten granddaughter of one of New York’s wealthiest men is reunited with her family just as she comes of age—and once she’s had a glimpse of their glittering world, she refuses to let it go without a fight. Second novel from a Seattle author.

Whiskey by Bruce Holbert. Fiction
This Spokane author’s latest novel is set in Electric City, Washington. Brothers Andre and Smoker are navigating their own marriages along with their parents’ frequent collision with the law.  Fiercely loyal and just plain fierce, they’re bound by a series of darkly comedic and hauntingly violent events: domestic trouble; religious fanaticism; benders punctuated with pauses to dry out that never stick. Continue reading “Listen Local: Download audio books by Washington authors”

Telling downloads: Top downloadable books

Did you know that the company the library uses for digital books (OverDrive) publishes its top ten lists of titles downloaded every month? Me either. I took a look at the top ten adult fiction and nonfiction titles downloaded from libraries in the U.S., Canada and the UK to see if I could glean any useful information. Would the U.S. list be a repeat of the New York Times bestseller list? Continue reading “Telling downloads: Top downloadable books”

Lunchtime Errand: Download Audiobooks at the Library

My audiobook world just expanded exponentially, thanks to designated “download” stations at the Central Library. During a recent lunch break, I downloaded two audiobooks directly to my iPod, bypassing several steps that I need to take when downloading from home. And before I go any further, let me just say this: I LOVE this service!

Here’s how it works: You go to Level 5 and jump on one of the five Library catalog computers that has an “OverDrive Download Station” sign. Click on the “OverDrive” icon near the top to begin your search. There are four simple steps to a happy download — and they’re outlined right there next to the monitor.

  1. Connect your device. (There is an assortment of cable connectors right there to fit iPods, Zunes and other MP3 players. I used the one labeled “iThing” and plugged it into my iPod.)
  2. Check out a book.  (I checked out The Heights by Peter Hedges; I’ve been wanting to listen to it, and there it was, immediately available.)
  3. Download and transfer. (Just click through with the boxes already selected; the Library has it set up to the correct defaults, so I just clicked away, and then agreed to the terms of use.)
  4. Disconnect your device and log out.

It is seriously that easy.

Maybe you’ve been hesitant about downloading books. Maybe you’ve been thinking you should get over that, since so many titles keep coming up as “e-audio.” Or maybe you have an MP3 player, but no computer and/or Internet access at home. Perhaps you’re a Mac user like me and you get frustrated that there aren’t as many downloadable audio titles available to you. Then a quick trip to Level 5 of the downtown Library will open a new world for you, too.

If you want to search and check out titles before you go to the Library to download, start at the OverDrive Digital Books and Media page. And if you want to do the whole thing from home, cruise through this short video for tips on how to download books.

A Digital Bookmobile? Its on the road!

image-of-caedmon-record-courtesy-of-jacob-whittakerI remember when audiobooks were on vinyl! Really! (Shorter books and plays, mostly). Imagine listening to a book on a turntable, and having to flip it every 20 minutes. Imagine a part of the story skipping on a scratch …on a scratch …on a scratch. Sure, vinyl’s cool and all, and I won’t argue that I’d rather listen to the Rolling Stones on vinyl than any other way, but I’m glad the days of vinyl fiction are long gone. Audiobooks really took off when walkmen hit the streets and cassette tapes came into vogue. The library still owns a lot of books on tape, and they still get a lot of use, for now anyway. They only need to be flipped every 45 minutes. Then CDs came along, cutting down the size – and the flipping – still more. Continue reading “A Digital Bookmobile? Its on the road!”

My iPod, the best present ever!

Ah, what could be better than young love? How about young gadget love! Libraries are all about transformation and discovery, and we regularly enjoy our patrons’ enthusiasm as they discover new ways of experiencing life and culture. This account of one librarian’s thrilling honeymoon with her new iPod will bring back fond memories for some, and perhaps tempt others to take the plunge.  – Editor

image-of-blue-ipod-courtesy-of-mountainbreadDo I feel alive in the 21st century with a new blue iPod Nano, a recent gift! I’ve been jealous for awhile of those people walking around with white earbuds. It’s typical technology, coming with only a few brief instructions pages on that glossy paper. I click to the Apple site, Google some “how do I iPod?!” instructions, and dive in.

I download music from my personal music collection. First Taking the Long Way Home by the Dixie Chicks, then Verdi’s Requiem with Joan Sutherland and Luciano Pavarotti. I grin as my home computer’s cd drive makes that whir-whirring sound. The next adventure is with the audio-ebookLibrary’s digital book collection. I find a biography about Florence Nightingale by Laura E. Richards, and agree with the description that both children and adults would enjoy this short read.

I click on iTunes and bravely add the icon to the sparse computer desktop Continue reading “My iPod, the best present ever!”