Another year is ending, and we at librivox celebrate the holidays and wrapped up 10 gems from our catalog.
In the German speaking countries in Europe, it is the custom to count the days until Christmas by opening one door daily of the ‘Adventskalender‘. We hope that you enjoy our acoustic one just as much – one small treat awaits you every day until Christmas.
December 2nd 1862, was the birthday of Florence L. Barclay. Her novel The Upas Tree is perfect for this season, although it is subtitled ‘A Christmas Story for all the Year’.
Something else to be aware of all year round are the “unalienable rights and freedoms to which all humans are entitled”. They originate in the French Revolution, but have been updated, adopted, and proclaimed by the UN on 10 December 1948. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights has been translated in over 300 languages, 53 of which have been recorded for librivox.
Every scientist working in Physics, Chemistry or Medicine strives to be in Stockholm on the evening of December 10, where – under the auspices of the Swedish King – their lifetime achievements are honoured with the Nobelprize. Find out who (and why) received the Nobelprize in 1904, in one of our multilingual collections.
The closer Christmas Eve, the more nervous the children become. “Was I good enough to deserve any presents? What if Santa can’t find my house?” Give them something to occupy their minds – like learning a poem by heart: Snow Bound tells of 3 days John G. Whittier was trapped in his house by a snowstorm in his youth. With a mere 750 lines, this will keep your children busy for a while.
If you children are not quite up to the task – or you find that listening to a one hour snowstorm is just too daunting, you can always put on our recording of Grimms’ Fairy Tales. We can thank the two brothers Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm from the early 19th century that “Snow White”, “Cinderella” and all the others are not forgotten today. We also have collections of their works in German and Danish.
Another story for all family to enjoy is The Christmas Angel by Abbie F. Brown. In a story reminiscent of Dickens, we hear of a grumpy old woman changing the way she thinks of other people.
Two more stories you may enjoy are “Merry Christmas” and “The Error of Santa Claus” by Stephen Leacock. However, somehow I feel they are more suitable for adults – why else would they be part of a collection called Frenzied Fiction?
Depending on where you live, you may celebrate Christmas – the birth of Jesus – on the 24 or 25 December. For hundreds of years people have asked whether the nativity story is just that – a story – or if Jesus was a real person. Follow Albert Schweitzer on his Quest of the Historical Jesus and see what he concludes.
Finally, we recommend Shakespeare‘s play Twelfth Night with hidden and mistaken identities, requited and unrequited loves, pranks and jokes abound in this romantic comedy, written for Christmas 1602.
Enjoy your holidays – hopefully with our books!
The book of Schweitzer, Quest of the Historical Jesus, is not yet in the public domain, if he died in 1965.
It depends on where you are in the world. Copyright rules vary. In the US, books published before 1923 have lost their copyright, irrespective of the year of death of the author (or translator).
For other regions, copyright only expires xx years after death of the author – so for example in Canada or any European country it is indeed still under copyright.
Sorry and thank you very much.
My heartfelt thanks to ALL Librivox readers. Their dedication is wonderful.This is a great project and I enjoy many happy hours listening to those great classics.