Improve Yourself!

Posted on January 1, 2012 by | Posted in about LibriVox, Blog, For Volunteers, Monthly Picks, News | Comments: 3 Comments on Improve Yourself!

Happy New Year to everyone!

New Year – New Resolutions, which are more often than not thrown out shortly after the Christmas decorations. But maybe the following 10 gems from our catalog help you keep them for longer this year.

Top Resolution #1 is doing less of stuff: drinking, smoking, eating… The successful treatment in the clinic of Charles B. Towns inspired one of his patients to set up Alcoholics Anonymous. Read the doctor’s book Habits that Handicap how addictions of any type come to pass and how to kick them.

Top Resolution #2 is doing more of stuff: exercising, reading, studying… The problem with this is usually a lack of time. But Arnold Bennett knows exactly How to Live on 24 Hours a Day and how to make the best of each one of them.

With all this time on your hands, you should certainly spend some of it on Isabella Beeton’s Book of Household Management. After all, you never know when you’ll have to wean a calf, cook dinner for 25 people or advise a new butler about his duties.

At least the latter is not a problem for the grandfather of Little Lord Fauntleroy, who also tries to teach real British manners to the young American boy. However, it soon becomes clear in the charming novel by Frances H. Burnett who is really the one in need of lessons.

Obviously, you cannot start such lessons early enough if you want them to stick. The Goop Directory by Gelett Burgess contains a number of little poems to teach the right behaviour to children.

Such lessons were certainly not taught to Harvey Cheyne, who ends up a rather spoilt brat. When he is swept overbord on the Atlantic, a group of fishermen save his life. Refusing him any further indulgences is what turns his life around, as can be read in Rudyard Kipling’s novel Captains Courageous.

Another life-turning experience is the one by little Tip. He receives a Bible and is encouraged to use it as a guiding light to turn around his naughty ways. Pansy’s book Tip Lewis and his Lamp tells you whether he succeeds or not.

Louisa May Alcott tells the story of the four March girls during the absence of their father in the civil war. We hear about their lives, their ambitions and sorrows on growing up to become Little Women.

We all change profoundly while growing up, but often we do not recognize this along the way. A barely fictionalized account of the coming of age of James Joyce is his highly acclaimed A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man.

However you change, and whenever you do it, it’s best not to wait until the very end. Everyman can vouch for that, but not for having led a good life. Listen to our drama prodution to find out whether his friends help him through judgement.

Enjoy – and keep them resolutions!



  1. P.D. Asilomar says:

    Suggested resolution:

    Catchpenny will get “Two Years Before The Mast” done _this_ year, when the target date was December 2010.

  2. Meisie says:

    What a varied selection! Where to start though… ?

    Happy New Year to all at Librivox!

  3. Den2099 says:

    “The Power of Now” by Eckhart Tolle
    “Conversations with God” series by Neale Donald Walsch

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