Services Available from TBBL
Eligible adults and children may borrow books in audio format and/or in braille.
Our book collection is similar to that found in a large public library. It consists of popular fiction and nonfiction, as well as general informational and recreational materials for all ages and tastes. There are also many magazines available in braille and digital formats.
- We do not have school textbooks. Please see Textbooks in Alternative Formats for sources of audio or braille textbooks.
Free Mailing: Playback machines are sent and returned via the US Postal Service without cost, as Free Matter for the Blind or Handicapped. Books and magazines may also be sent that way, although we highly recommend that you take advantage of the Braille and Audio Reading Download (BARD) service to download your TBBL books directly. The complete digital collection is only available via download.
Wondering if this service for you? In this brief video, NLS Braille and Talking Books and Magazines, NLS patrons speak about how receiving free braille and talking books, magazines, and music materials in the mail has given them the freedom to read their way.
TBBL loans special equipment for use with its recorded books. See the Equipment page for more information.
The library offers borrowers a variety of reader advisory services, including:
- help choosing books,
- subject bibliographies,
- investigation and correction of book supply and other service problems,
- locating and obtaining books through interlibrary loan,
- referral to alternative resources,
- reference services, and
- technical support for downloading books.
We offer an online catalog giving Internet access to outside users and registered library borrowers to search for braille and audio books in our collection. The catalog provides information about books, including author, title, book number, narrator, publication date, reading level, a short description of the contents, and how many copies are currently available.
While anyone can access TBBL's online catalog and search it, you must be a registered TBBL user to submit requests or view your patron record. To do this, you must first contact us to set up your user ID and password.
National Library Service (NLS) Catalogs
The NLS Online catalog includes books held in all Talking Book libraries in the United States. NLS provides two bimonthly magazines (Talking Book Topics and Braille Book Review), annual book cumulations, and subject bibliographies to help library users choose books. TBBL can obtain materials for users through interlibrary loan.