Posted on February 1, 2014 by | Posted in about LibriVox, Blog, Books, For Volunteers, Monthly Picks, News | Comments: 6 Comments on Together

This month, the 22nd Olympic Winter Games take place in Russia, and thousands of people from all over the world gather in a celebration of team spirit. More things we can achieve when we work together can be found in 10 gems from our catalog.

Our family is the closest group of people we ever know. In Five Little Peppers and How They Grow, Margaret Sidney tells the story of the Pepper family that, although very poor, goes through life together and meets all adversities with spirit and good humour.

Sometimes however, you need more than one family to accomplish things – raising a barn, for example requires the help of the whole neighbourhood. Read the Recollections of Life in Ohio from 1813 – 1840 by William Cooper Howells for more insight into neighbourly help and friendship.

Friendship is not all about mutual aid, but also about having fun. In Henry Wadsworth Longfellow’s book of poetry, a group of friends spend the night in a tavern telling each other a number of Tales of a Wayside Inn.

Sometimes, people need to join forces to help those who cannot help themselves. In 1837, An Anti-Slavery Convention of American Women did exactly that, and in An Address to Free Colored Americans they stated their intentions for the abolitionist movement of the time.

Similarly, The Dog Crusoe and His Master and two of their friends take on a journey through the prairies to bring about peace between the White and Red races. Read all about their adventures in the book by R. M. Ballantyne.

Much greater distances and even more nations are covered in The Story of the Atlantic Telegraph. The father of Henry M. Field spent 13 years of his life to connect Europeans and Americans by a cable laid through the ocean, the beginning of a world wide network.

From a connected Earth we move into space – where meeting The Aliens is inevitable. So seems war, but a small accident brings both sides together trying to avoid destruction. Read the story by Murray Leinster and find out whether they will succeed.

Wouldn’t you want to spend as much time as close as possible with your beloved? Imagine a Ten-Foot Chain binding you together for three days and nights – would your love survive that? Four authors have been asked the same question, and each of them came up with another story…

The last two books on this month’s list are two of the most prominent examples of what LibriVox volunteers can achieve together:

The Scarlet Pimpernel
by Baroness Emmuska Orczy took almost five years until completion – and 40 readers for all roles of this dramatic reading of the famous spy story set during the French Revolution.

In a similar league is our recently completed second version of James Joyce’s masterpiece Ulysses: More than 80 readers – the majority of them for the dramatized section “Circe” – took on this difficult book and brought it to completion in less than four years.

Enjoy – and read together!



  1. Not seeing how these books relate to the upcoming Olympics.

  2. HB says:

    Hi Valerian. It is pretty intriguing to find the threads that link them, isn’t it?

    The ones that sparkle the brightest for me are several among many, like gold and silver interwoven with commoner threads, and only visible in a certain sort of light.

    Striving was one. Yet striving alone seldom succeeds. In our modern world, we trick ourselves with the notion that personal independence is the goal to be honored above all others. Yet who could accomplish anything without a support network? Isn’t it the lone antelope or zebra which falls victim to the lion?

    So team effort is another. Individual efforts backed up by a host of supporting characters, often unsung but no less important.

    And there is the value of goal setting.

    And the way honor, or the lack of it, affect human endeavors,

    and the beauty of doing the best you can and then putting it all out there at the risk of having all your efforts dashed and getting your head swished off or (slightly less devastating, at least in most modern countries…) not winning a medal.

    Yeah. I could go on and on, but I think I’d rather just start listening!

  3. LibriVoxer says:

    I think it’s a loose tie. The theme is “together,” not “the Olympics.” :)

  4. HB says:

    Yea! The together factor! We are all part of the weave.

    I loved “Aliens,” and I would never even have known about it if not for all y’all at librivox! I’m so happy to have you as part of my team.

  5. tim says:

    Why is the site not loading books at this time for the last 4 nights?

  6. 2 tim: It was Internet Archive’s maintenance.

    2 librarians: the most recent listing ‘The Old Coast Road From Boston to Plymouth’ is displayed in the catalog as ‘SOLO’ but it actually ain’t.

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