A plethora of audio books available at public library

In the Stacks

Posted: Sunday, July 27, 2003

The Juneau Public Libraries has new books on CD hitting the shelves this week.

A frequently asked question about books on CD is "How do you find your place if you stop in the middle?" Well, the CDs have tracks, much like music CDs (but without the audible pauses), so all you have to do is remember the track number you ended on or else scroll through the tracks (they are at 3-minute intervals) until you hear something you don't recognize. Some CD players even remember the track you were last at if you haven't opened the player. If you are an audio-book fan who wants to be in the know, take a look at Audiofile magazine at the downtown library, which is full of articles, interviews and reviews of audio books.

Same bestsellers, new format: "The Lovely Bones" by Alice Sebold, "The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency" and "The Kalahari Typing School for Men" by Alexander McCall Smith, "Unnatural Exposure" by Patricia Cornwell, "Tourist Season" by Carl Hiaasen, "Two for the Dough" and "Four to Score" by Janet Evanovich, "Terms of Endearment" by Larry McMurtry, "The Hobbit" by J.R.R Tolkien and "The Fortune of War" by Patrick O'Brian are all available as books on CD.

A few for the kids:

"Absolutely Normal Chaos," by Sharon Creech, read by Kate Forbes Thirteen-year-old Mary Lou has to keep a journal over the summer for her English class. At first, she doesn't think there's anything in her life worth writing about. But then her cousin Carl Ray comes to visit from West Virginia. He mysteriously inherits money and ends up in a coma. Then her best friend turns boy-crazy and goes on a first date, and Mary Lou discovers that the "permanently pink" Alex Cheevey has a crush on her. By the time summer is over, Mary Lou is hoping that her teacher won't read her journal after all!

"Triss," by Brian Jacques, read by the author and a full cast After escaping from the evil ferret King Agarnu in his own boat, Triss, a young squirrel sails to Redwall Abbey, where she and her friends can live safely. But all is not well in Redwall: There is a three-headed monster devouring Mossflower Forest inhabitants one by one, and Triss takes up arms to save her new home.

Some non-fiction:

"The Middle East: A brief history of the last 2,000 years," by Bernard Lewis, read by Richard M. Davidson From Morocco to the Central Asian steppes, the Middle East has long been mysterious and fascinating to Westerners. Lewis, a noted authority on the Middle East, draws back the veil and gives listeners a look at the day-to-day life, traditions, religions and history of the area.

"Selling Ben Cheever," written and read by Ben Cheever When Cheever, a thrice-published novelist, has his fourth book proposal rejected, he's got to go to work. But in 1995 jobs are becoming scarce, and he finds himself applying for jobs where, for the first time in his life, his qualifications matter less than the results of his drug test. He's called "Gramps" by the other employees at one job and earns less than minimum wage as a Cadillac salesman. A lighter read than Barbara Ehrenreich's "Nickel and Dimed," but with some important things to say.

And some fiction:

"The Course of Honor," by Lindsey Davis, read by Diana Bishop Davis is well-known for her mysteries set in ancient Rome, but this is a departure for her - a love story. In AD 31, a slave named Caenis, who is a scribe in the household of the Emperor Tiberius, sits down to her breakfast only to be interrupted by the arrival of two men. One of them is a senator, and the other, his brother, is destined to be Emperor someday. Through them, Caenis' life will change.

"Keeping Watch," by Laurie King, read by Richard Ferrone In this suspense-filled story, Vietnam veteran Allen Carmichael has found his calling rescuing women and children from abusive situations and finding new, safe homes for them. Now, many years and many rescues later, Allen is ready to retire. But his last rescue, a 12-year-old boy, needs some more help. Stepping back into the case, Allen realizes that everyone involved - foster parents, the boy and even Allen himself is in deep danger.

"Murder Among Us," by Ann Granger, read by Judith Boyd A quaint English village is being corrupted by modern life as one of the village's historic structures is converted into a stylish hotel. At the grand opening, to which the whole village is invited, the planned protest (a "streak" across the hotel lobby by the head of the Society for the Preservation of Historical Bamford) is upstaged by the discovery of a body in the wine cellar. Chief Inspector Markby is called in to investigate in this cozy English mystery.

•If you'd like to place a hold on any of these titles, call the Juneau Public Library at 586-5249. If you have internet access, your library card and a PIN, you may place your own holds by going to our Web site (www.juneau.org/library) and looking at our catalogue. Placing holds on items featured in In the Stacks is now even easier. The new columns are hyperlinked to the catalogue: Simply look up the column, click on the title you want and you will be ready to place a hold.

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