Talking Books Library

The Rhode Island Talking Books Library (TBL) program began in 1967 and is administered by the Rhode Island Office of Library and Information Services (OLIS). With funding from the National Library Service, Library of Congress, reading materials and equipment are provided free to Rhode Island residents who are visually impaired, blind or physically handicapped and unable to read standard print materials.

Today the Talking Books Library has patrons of all ages from across Rhode Island. TBL provides individual memberships as well as institutional memberships to libraries, nursing homes, senior centers, schools, etc. If you would like to speak to a member of the TBL staff, call them at (401) 574-9310 or email the Talking Books Library at talking.books@olis.ri.gov.

Talking Books Library provides the following free resources to its members:

  • Access to over 125,000 titles
  • Over 99,000 downloadable digital titles through BARD (Braille and Audio Reading Download service)
  • Over 80 magazine titles available for digital download
  • Over 100 descriptive DVDs
  • Digital players, cassette players and headphones loaned to members
  • Braille books
  • Talking Times Newsletter (news and information for members)
  • Talking Book Topics and Digital Talking Books Library book catalogs sent automatically to members
  • Interlibrary loan of titles available from the National Library Service network.

BARD (Braille and Audio Reading Download) is an online service available only to members of Talking Books Library. Patrons receive bimonthly catalogs with new titles for downloads to digital cartridges for the Talking Books device. If you do not have Internet access at home and would like a member of the library staff to download titles for you, call the Reference Desk to set up a convenient time.

For more information, contact the Reference Desk at 401-247-1920 ext 2.