Books

Cops and Robbers

Posted on September 1, 2021 by | Posted in about LibriVox, Blog, Books, For Volunteers, Monthly Picks, mystery, News | Comments: 0

These days, summer is on the way out and we’re on the way back to work. Every day, criminals and detectives work against each other on different sides of the law. Let’s look at both sides with 10 gems from our catalogue.

A great and very bloody start is the German saga Das Nibelungenlied. It tells the story of Siegfried the dragon slayer who is murdered because of jealousy. His wife Kriemhild swears revenge, no matter the cost… This translation into modern German is by Karl Simrock. We also have this book in English and in Spanish.

If Cesare Lambroso had lived then, what would he have thought about the case? The Italian criminologist looks into Crime, its Causes and Remedies and in the end questions the real value of prisons.

As far as Karl Lomnitz is concerned, his jail time was not very effective. Despite his best intentions, his criminal past soon catches up with him. In Falsches Geld by Arthur Zapp we follow the police as they try to find evidence to arrest him again.

Criminal Investigation as a science is a relatively new field. The Austrian criminal jurist Hans Gross was a pioneer in defining rules for police officers and best practices to gather evidence.

What if there is plenty of evidence, but you can’t see it? Ernest Bramah created the world’s first blind detective, who nevertheless blows the criminals – and the competition – out of the water. Read 4 Max Carrados Detective Stories and judge for yourself.

Judgement was swift in the case of Dick Brewster, who is accused of murder. But his aunt Sarah – Alias Miss Sherlock – is ready to take matters into her own hands in the energetic play by Arthur L. Tubbs.

And so did Lizzy Borden – or did she? In 1892, her father and stepmother were killed and Lizzy was suspect #1. But she was aquitted in a spectacular trial. Read all about The Fall River Tragedy in the book by police reporter Edwin H. Porter.

Writing about crime surely is exciting, but it doesn’t pay much. Such is the realisation of a young novelist, who decides to put his knowledge to use and become Anthony Trent, Master Criminal. Wyndham Martyn’s novel tells what happens next.

What happened before is the topic of Les Confidences d’Arsène Lupin. Maurice Leblanc shares nine episodes from the life of the famous gentleman thief from Paris. We also have this book in an English translation.

What happened is clear: A teenage girl was shot with an arrow. But why? And by whom? And what is the victim’s family hiding? Detective Mr. Gryce tries to solve The Mystery of the Hasty Arrow in another masterful novel by Anna Katharine Green.

Enjoy – and stay good!

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Happy Libriversary!

Posted on August 1, 2021 by | Posted in about LibriVox, Blog, Books, For Volunteers, Monthly Picks, News | Comments: 2 Comments on Happy Libriversary!

On August 9, LibriVox celebrates 16 years of audiobooks. Since our last anniversary we have completed more than 1450 new projects, wow! Let’s celebrate with 10 gems from our new arrivals to our catalog.

One reason for our enormous growth in the last year was the pandemic. COVID-19 was not the first virus killing thousands, however. Learn more about the history of The Bubonic Plague in the book by Chief Medical Officer of Kashmir, Dr. Rai Bahadur A. Mitra.

If you go back far enough in time, history and myth often blend into each other to become one. Joseph Jacobs collected 20 More Celtic Fairy Tales from the early days of the British Isles.

Equally far back goes the history of the Macedonians. Krste Petkov Misirkov is one of their national heros. His book За македонцките работи (On Macedonian Matters) – our first stand-alone project in the Macedonian language – is a program for his people’s national liberation.

Liberation is exactly what’s disturbing the peace in the dystopian future imagined by Yevgeny Zamyatin, where the collective We is paramount. But what happens when people start to fight for individual freedom of thought and action?

Thought, or rather, stream of consciousness is the trademark of Virginia Woolf. She brought it to perfection in Mrs. Dalloway, one of the most anticipated 1925 books by LibriVoxers. Follow Mrs. D. and her friends throughout a single day that culminates in a party in the evening.

For The Great Gatsby life in the Jazz Age is one big party where he surrounds himself with upper class socialites. But he is also a big romantic, who would do anything to bet back his former lover Daisy. Watch what happens in the famous 1925 novel by F. Scott Fitzgerald.

Galileo Galilei was one of the greatest observers of the solar system in the Renaissance. His famous book Dialogo dei Massimi Sistemi explains the heliocentric world view and earned him a trial in the Vatican that forced him to choose between abjuration or death.

Nicholas Carter faces an even more difficult choice: Does he help a good friend or does he try to arrest a scam artist? In the last year, we completed 14 novels about America’s greatest detective. This one, A Stolen Name, is our latest one.

Madrid dressmaker Madame Pepita is also on the lookout for scammers who she suspects behind every suitor of her daughter. But careful! In the play by Gregorio Martinez Sierra, luck and misfortune are both closer than she thinks…

In the late 19th century, three young poets from Luxembourg – Nicolas Gonner, Beckesch Klos, and Jean-Baptiste Nau – went to America to seek their fortunes. Together, they share their experiences on both sides of the Atlantic in Prairieblummen, our first stand-alone project in Luxembourgish.

Enjoy – and a big thank you to all our volunteers who keep LibriVox growing still!

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LibriVox Celebrates 2000 LOTE Audiobooks!

Posted on July 5, 2021 by | Posted in about LibriVox, Blog, Books, For Volunteers, News | Comments: 1 Comment on LibriVox Celebrates 2000 LOTE Audiobooks!

The LibriVox milestones come thick and fast this year! After cataloging 15,000 audiobooks in February, we can now celebrate 2000 books in a language other than English (LOTE).

Enjoy our Italian Antologia di poetesse italiane, a collection of poems by female poets, spanning 500 years from the 13th to the 18th century. This project was read by a group of Italian-speaking volunteers.

Don’t speak Italian? Nessun problema! We now have more than 15,600 audiobooks in 100 languages in our catalog – from Ancient Greek to Yiddish, from children’s fiction to books on writing and linguistics – there is something for you too, for sure.

And if not, add your own favourite and join the 11,500 LibriVox volunteers who make all of this possible in the first place: recording, proof listening, coordinating projects, designing covers, making m4b files, and all the small and big things behind the scenes.

Thank you all for making LibriVox what it is today!

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The World’s Favourites

Posted on July 1, 2021 by | Posted in about LibriVox, Blog, Books, For Volunteers, Monthly Picks, News | Comments: Comments Off on The World’s Favourites

There are stories that have been told and retold so often, they have become universal and known throughout the world. Let’s delve into the world’s collective memory with 10 gems from our catalogue.

Western civilisation is deeply rooted in the stories of ancient Greek and Rome. From Zeus to Venus, from Hercules to Ulysses, you probably know most of Thomas Bulfinch‘s Mythology: The Age of Fable by heart already.

The story of Jesus, as told for example in the Evangelium nach Matthäus, has been equally influential to our modern world. For the German translation, Martin Luther coined a number of new phrases that have found their way into common usage of the language.

When Alexander Afanasyev wrote down a selection of Russian Fairy Tales that before had only been transmitted orally, he didn’t expect to influence Russian culture so heavily. These stories are now known by Russian kids everywhere.

The Merry Adventures of Robin Hood have made everyone who takes from the rich and gives to the poor a namesake. However, this Victorian-age retelling for kids by Howard Pyle hasn’t much to do with the real medieval outlaw…

A similar feat was accomplished by Robert Louis Stevenson. His swashbuckling adventure Treasure Island – here as dramatic reading – has given us a rather romantic view on pirates that is quite far from the truth. We also have this book in a Spanish translation.

The Truth is out there – and aliens too, probably. H. G. Wells‘ idea of hostile aliens on a mission to kill or enslave all humans has a firm place in our consciousness ever since The War of the Worlds, which we also have as Spanish version.

Nobody has done more to explore human (un-) consciousness than Sigmund Freud. His thoughts Über Psychoanalyse influenced generations of psychiatrists and can now be considered general knowledge, even if poeple are still reluctant to discuss mental health. These lectures are also available in English.

Only one topic is more taboo: Sex. And yet, most people have heard of The Kama Sutra. Some may have even tried one or more of the 64 arts of love as written down in detail more than 1400 years ago by Mallanaga Vatsyayama.

Much tamer are Shakespeare’s Sonnets. In these 154 poems, playwright William Shakespeare, who changed theater forever, writes about love, beauty, mortality and other human feelings.

From feelings to logics and the best sleuth ever: Sherlock Holmes, created by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. The Hound of the Baskervilles is probably his best-known adventure, and the brilliant detective character has become a staple in crime novels all over the world. Our readers love this book too, and we have recordings in German, Spanish, and Polish.

Enjoy – and have fun exploring your own memories!

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