Contact Talking Books Staff at (401) 574-9310 or email us at

You can also contact:

Alicia Waters
Library Services Coordinator

Neshmayda Calderon
Information Services Technician: Talking Books

Kelley Lima
Information Services Technician: LORI Services

What Is Available?


Books are available on digital cartridge, via Internet download or in Braille. Not all books are available in all formats. Check the online catalog for listings of NLS Books available via Talking Books Library.

Bibliographies of NLS Books

  • Talking Books Topics

    Talking Books Topics from 2014 to the current issue are available online from NLS.
  • Search the NLS Catalog

    Text only interface.
  • Search the NLS Catalog using Voyager

    The NLS catalog includes books that are available at cooperating NLS libraries across the country. Search for books by author, title, subject, book number, and keyword. Searches can be limited by language and various other criteria, such as age group. If books are not available at Talking Books Library, we may be able to obtain them through interlibrary loan. Contact Talking Books Library for details.


NLS produces certain magazines in special media at no charge for Talking Books Library patrons through the Magazine Program. Magazines are available in braille, digital cartridge, Internet download and large print formats. Contact Talking Books Library for information on subscribing.

Descriptive Videos

Descriptive videos are available from Talking Books Library through the Perkins Library. The audio-described DVD collection (Descriptive DVDs) provides members with access to more than 1,400 described DVDs for home use. A list of titles can be found by visiting the online catalog (DVD list). Or search for specific titles in the catalog: use “Refine your Search” on the left side of the screen and select “Descriptive DVD” under “Medium” to limit the search to DVDs.


Music services are provided directly to readers from NLS and not through the regional library. Music services include a circulating collection of braille, large print, and recorded instructional materials and a subscription program of magazines produced in braille, on digital cartridge, and in large print. Musical recordings intended solely for listening are not part of the music collection, as these materials are readily available local public libraries and commercial vendors.

Equipment and Accessories

Digital machines to play National Library Service and cartridges are provided free of charge. You can keep the equipment as long as you remain an active member, by borrowing one book or magazine per calendar year. There is no deposit payment for this equipment.

How to Use the Digital Player Machine (YouTube Video From InSight)

Watch this 7 minute video if you would like to see how easy it is to use the digital player (DS1).

DS1 (Basic Model)

Basic model, 6 by 9 by 2 inches, weighs slightly over two pounds. Machine has Play, Rewind and Fast Forward controls. Rewind and Fast Forward moves through the book more quickly the more times they are pressed and give audible feedback about how far ahead or back the user is moving. The Sleep button turns the player off thirty minutes after it is pressed. Volume, Tone, and Speed controls also give audible feedback, e.g. "tone lower," "tone higher," "tone middle.” The Speed control changes the speech from 50% to 300% of normal, with no change in pitch.

DA1 (Advanced Model)

Same size and weight as DS1, but has additional controls. The advanced controls are for setting and retrieving bookmarks and for navigating through the structured levels of a NISO standards compliant book.

High Volume Player

Requires a separate application. The high-volume player and headphones are designed for use only by patrons who are hearing impaired. This high-volume player and headphone combination will produce a sound level of up to 120 dB in adults. If you require greater amplification to hear the recordings, this high-volume player and headphone combination is not suitable for you. Contact the talking books staff if you need an application at or (401)574-9310.

Machine Repair and Maintenance

If your playback machine breaks, contact Talking Books Library to request a replacement. Replacement or repair is available at no cost. Members are allowed only one digital machine in their possession. If your records are in order, a new machine will be mailed to you immediately. Mail the defective machine back in its original container. Just turn over the card on the outside of the box and return the machine via the U.S. Postal Service.


  • Headphones are available to readers who require headphones where listening to talking books may disturb others, such as in hospitals or nursing homes.

Machines and accessories can be mailed under Free Matter for the Blind mailing privileges. Do not pay postage to return or exchange equipment.