According to the users of GoodReads, there are some books that everyone should read at least once in their lifetime. You can find the list here. It is a list of 100 books that were voted on by the users of GoodReads. The Iowa Library for the Blind has every book on that list in at least one format (digital, Braille or large print). Most of the books the library has in multiple formats. There are books for all kinds of readers. Check out the list and see how many you have read and request the ones you haven’t!
Books about disasters make for compelling true stories that give us a look into real events. They can be difficult reads as we journey with both heroic and flawed characters through the story. The moral choices that these types of book can offer really can get us thinking about how we might respond or act in the different situations. They provide us with those character tests. Here is a list of some of our books found in our non-fiction collection:
Into Thin Air: A Personal Account of the Mount Everest Disaster by Jon Krakauer DB 44525
A journalist’s first-hand report on the ill-fated Mt. Everest expedition of May 1996 in which a freak storm claimed the lives of nine adventurers. Describes the grueling ascent of the climbers, their sense of elation at reaching the peak, and the tragic events that followed. Strong language. Bestseller. 1997.
Alive: The Story of the Andes Survivors by Paul Piers Read DB54741
The ordeal of sixteen young Uruguayan men who survived seventy days in the Andes after a plane crash in 1972. Facing starvation, they were forced to make an agonizing choice between cannibalism and death. 1974.
Miracle in the Andes: 72 Days on the Mountain and My Long Trek Home by Nando Parrado BR 16868, DB65781
A Uruguayan rugby player recounts surviving the 1972 plane crash that is remembered for causing acts of heroism and cannibalism. Discusses the physical perils of subzero weather, the group’s reaction upon hearing that the rescue operation was called off, and the author’s hike over the mountains for help. 2006.
Zeitoun by Dave Eggers DB 69795
Describes the experiences of the owner of a New Orleans house-painting business during the 2005 Katrina hurricane and flood. Recounts the fleeing of Syrian American Abdulrahman Zeitoun’s wife and children, Zeitoun’s decision to stay and help neighbors and clients, and his consequently inexplicable imprisonment and inability to contact family. Bestseller. 2009.
102 Minutes: The Untold Story of the Fight to Survive Inside the Twin Towers by Jim Dwyer DB 59954
Reporters interview survivors and read radio transcripts, phone messages, e-mails, and other accounts to describe conditions inside the World Trade Center between the first terrorist attack and the towers’ collapse on September 11, 2001. Documents communication problems, agency in-fighting, and building structural failures that caused unnecessary deaths. Bestseller. 2005. Co-author is Kevin Flynn.
A Night to Remember by Walter Lord LT5408, BR11461, DB09698
A detailed portrayal of what happened aboard the Titanic when it struck an iceberg and began to sink in the North Atlantic on April 14, 1912. Based on account of the survivors from first class passengers to steerage and crew. Bestseller. 1955.
The Johnstown Flood by David McCullough DB50905
A vivid description of the causes and effects of the Johnstown, Pennsylvania, flood of 1889 that killed thousands. Based on first-person accounts of the tragedy that occurred when a man-made dam broke, flooding the entire valley with twenty million tons of water and debris. 1968.
Five Days at Memorial by Sheri Fink DB77656
Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist reports on the aftermath of 2005’s Hurricane Katrina at Memorial Medical Center in New Orleans. Reconstructs the five days it took to rescue the hospital’s staff and patients and examines the life-and-death decisions made and the lawsuits that followed. 2013.
Dark Tide: The Great Boston Molasses Flood of 1919 by Stephen Puleo DB59335
Chronicle of the Boston waterfront’s molasses tank collapse that flooded the city’s North End with a sticky twenty-five-foot-high tidal wave, killing twenty-one people. Explores the tragedy from the tank’s 1915 construction to a civil lawsuit decided in 1925 and touches larger issues of immigration, WWI, Prohibition, and labor.
Looking for a great Teen Series to read? This list will help you get started! Check out the series and summaries below and here is link to the titles in our online catalog
The Dark Artifices Series by Cassandra Clare
Summary: After the war that brought the Shadowhunters to the brink of oblivion in the Mortal Instruments series, Shadowhunter Emma Carstairs searches for her parents’ killer. But LA’s escalating body count proves to be a more pressing problem.
Red Queen Series by Victoria Aveyard
Summary: Seventeen-year-old Mare Barrow’s world is divided by blood–those with common, Red blood serve the Silver-blooded elite, who are gifted with superhuman abilities. Mare, a Red, scrapes by until she publicly discovers she has a deadly ability of her own.
Raven Cycle Series by Maggie Stiefvater
Summary: Blue Sargent, the only non-clairvoyant in her family, is cursed with the knowledge that her kiss will cause her true love to die. But on Saint Mark’s Eve, Blue’s future becomes much more complicated.
The Selection Series by Kiera Cass
Summary: When Prince Maxon comes of marrying age in the caste-divided nation of Illea, thirty-five single young women compete in the Selection–a chance to win the prince’s heart. America Singer reluctantly enters the contest and is chosen as a candidate, but loves another.
Lunar Chronicles Series by Marissa Meyer
Summary: Cinder, a teen cyborg and the best mechanic in New Beijing, labors to support her stepmother — and owner — Adri and Adri’s two daughters. But after Cinder’s only human friend, her stepsister Peony, is infected with the plague letumosis, Adri volunteers Cinder’s body for plague research.
The Young Elites Series by Marie Lu
Summary: Adelina Amouteru survived the blood fever, a deadly illness that killed many, but left others with strange markings and supernatural powers. Cast out by her family, Adelina joins the secret society of the Young Elites and discovers her own dangerous abilities.
The Remnant Chronicles Series by Mary Pearson
Summary: On the morning of her wedding, Princess Lia flees to a distant village. When two mysterious and handsome strangers arrive, Lia is unaware that one is the jilted prince and the other an assassin sent to kill her.
Red Rising Series by Pierce Brown
Summary: Sixteen-year-old Darrow works in a mining colony on Mars. He thinks he is improving the planet for future generations, but his wife Eo believes they are slaves. When Eo is condemned to death, Darrow infiltrates the governing caste to foment rebellion.
BARD is a web-based service that provides access to thousands of special-format books, magazines, and music scores provided by the National Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped (NLS). If you need to set up a BARD account, please contact the library.
Here are some of the most popular digital audio books on BARD in the last 30 days:
The Emperor’s Revenge by Clive Cussler DB84490
Among the Wicked by Linda Castillo DB84704
Family Jewels by Stuart Woods DB84345
She’s Not There by Joy Fielding DB84119
Chain of Evidence by Ridley Pearson DB51024
Campbell’s Rambles: how a seeing eye dog retrieved my life by Patty L. Fletcher DB83921
Rosemary: the hidden Kennedy daughter by Kate Clifford Larson DB83946
The Innocent Killer: the true story of a wrongful conviction and it’s astonishing aftermath DBC04706
Out of Sight: ten stories of victory over blindness by Al Sperber DB09731
SPQR: a history of ancient Rome by March Beard DB84098
Did you know you can read books from BARD (Braille and Audio Reading Download) on your smart phone or tablet? It’s like having a book in your pocket! Download the BARD app from the Apple App Store or Google Play Store and start reading today. BARD is a web-based service that provides access to thousands of special-format books, magazines, and music scores provided by the National Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped (NLS). If you need to set up a BARD account, please contact the library.
Here are some of the most popular titles on BARD right now:
15th Affair by James Patterson DB84176
Extreme Prey by John Sandford DB84172
Find Her by Lisa Gardner DB83828
Robert B. Parker’s Slow Burn: a Spenser novel DB84138
Board Island: an Anna Pigeon novel by Nevada Barr DB84240
Unlucky by James Patterson BR20492
Depraved Heart: a Scarpetta novel BR21284
One Summer by David Baldacci BR21321
Whenever You Come Around by Robin Hatcher BR21190
The Body in the Library by Agatha Christie BR03867
Summer is here and that means it is time for reading! Here are two book lists we put together highlighting some books for summer. The links will take you to our online catalog where you can find out more about the title and if you would like to read the title you can place it on hold and we will send it to you. Also, you can give us a call and have them put on your book list.
Great Beach Reads for Adults – these have the beach, romance, humor and more. Great titles to read in the sun or even on a rainy summer day.
Great Summer Reads – on this list there are classics, bestsellers, mysteries, science fiction and more. There is something for everyone on this list.
Happy Summer Reading!
The staff of Iowa Department for the Blind possesses such diverse interests, knowledge and talents that we thought it would be fun to share what their favorite books were in 2015.
The Martian by Andy Weir BR 21144, DB78389
My Heart Remembers by Kim Sawyer DB68450
The Girl from Krakow by Alex Rosenberg
Visit from Sunny Chernobyl: And Other Adventures in the World’s Most Polluted Places by Andrew Blackwell DB75336
One Summer: America, 1927 by Bill Bryson DB77749
Intensity by Dean Koontz DB41250, LT4745
Hell’s Angel: The Life and Times of Sonny Barger and the Hell’s Motorcycle Club by Sonny Barger
Presence: Bringing Your Boldest Self to Your Biggest Challenge by Amy Cuddy
Daring Greatly: How the Courage to be Vulnerable Transforms the Way We Live, Love, Parent and Lead by Brenne Brown DB75619
To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee BR12850, DB77672, LT10244
Hannibal by Thomas Harris BR12326, DB48524
After the Storm by Linda Castillo DB82360
The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah DB81189
The Goblin Emperor by Katherine Addison DB79198
The Moon is a Harsh Mistress by Robert Heinlein BRN20963, DB25524
The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern DB73783
The Silkworm by Robert Galbraith DB78834
Today the world will be celebrating Harry Potter Book Night. The theme this year is “A Night of Spells.” The first Harry Potter Book Night was held in February 2015, and there were an amazing 10,500 parties and celebrations held all over the world. It will be a night to join the world in celebrating, not only J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter Series, but reading and the impact books can have throughout generations. Which Harry Potter Book was your favorite? Or what is your favorite book to share?
On Feburary 4th the world will be celebrating Harry Potter Book Night, “A Night of Spells.” It is a night where booksellers, librarians, teachers and others plan events and discuss the popular Harry Potter Series. It is a great opportunity to share and talk about your favorite books and share them with a future generation of readers.
So for all you Potter Fans:
Who was your favorite professor at Hogwarts? Professor Snape, Professor McGonagall, Professor Lupin or Professor Slughorn
How many goal posts are there in a Quidditch Pitch? 2, 4, 5 or 6
As 2015 comes to an end, let’s look back on some of the best books.
The Goodreads Choice Awards are chosen by the readers. These are the picks for the best of the year. What are some of your favorites from 2015?
Fiction: Go Set a Watchman by Harper Lee BR20919 DB81896
Mystery & Thriller: The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins BR20688 DB80635
Historical Fiction: The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah DB81189
Young Adult: All the Bright Places by Jennifer Niven DB80476
YA Fantasy & Science Fiction: Queen of Shadows by Sarah J. Maas BR21194 DB82439
Humor: Why Not Me? by Mindy Kaling DB82596
NonFiction: Modern Romance by Aziz Ansari DB81878
History & Biography: Dead Wake: The Last Crossing of the Lusitania by Erik Larson DB80936
Science & Technology: Beneath the Surface: Killer Whales, SeaWorld, and the Truth Beyond Blackfish by John Hargrove DB81120
Science Fiction: Golden Son by Pierce Brown DB80643
Fantasy: Trigger Warning: Short Fictions and Disturbances by Neil Gaiman BR20791 DB81340
Horror: Saint Odd by Dean Koontz DB80776 LT11480
Food & Cookbooks: The Pioneer Woman Cooks: Dinnertime by Ree Drummond DB72395
Middle Grade & Children’s: The Sword of Summer by Rick Riordan BR21237 DB82749