Talking Book Library

Providing free recorded books to visually and physically impaired patrons in Grand Traverse, Antrim, Benzie, Kalkaska, Leelanau, Manistee, Missaukee and Wexford Counties.

Open Monday-Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

Contact us by calling (231) 932-8558 or send us an email.

About the Talking Book Library

The Traverse Area District Library (TADL) Talking Book Library provides qualified people with visual and physical handicaps with best-sellers, mysteries, westerns, biographies, how-to books, and other types of materials found in a public library. The only difference is that the books are digitally recorded on cartridges or printed in Braille and mailed to patrons’ homes through the regular U.S. postal service.

This convenient mail return system makes it easy for you to send your books back and get more. You can request specific books and authors you want, or you can have us select books for you based on your interests — or a combination of both!

Just like standard print books, these publications are unabridged (not condensed) and contain all of the information found in the print version – right down to the book jacket. And best of all, this service is FREE – there is not even a charge to mail materials to or from the library.

How to Become a Talking Book Library Patron

You do not need to be legally blind to use our services. If standard print has become difficult to read for you, a friend, or a family member, please call 1-877-931-8558.

You will need to complete an application for this service (this is not the same as a the Traverse Area District Library card application). Click here for a printer friendly PDF of the TADL Talking Book Library application.

Fill out the application and have it certified by a doctor, nurse, therapist, or other individual who is qualified to sign the application (see application for complete list of certifiable individuals). Send the application back to us by mail, or bring it to the Talking Book Library office located at the Main Branch of the Traverse Area District Library, 610 Woodmere Ave., Traverse City, MI 49686.

BARD (Braille and Audio Reading Download)

Once you are a registered TADL Talking Book Library patron you will also have permission to download books directly from the National Library Service for the Blind website to your assigned digital talking book player or another compatible player. There are more than 20,000 digital books and over 40 magazines available for download from this site, and new titles are constantly being added.  You or a family member, friend or assistant will need:

  • a high speed internet connection
  • an active email address
  • blank NLS cartridges
  • knowledge of how to download, unzip and extract files.

Please stop by the Talking Book Library if you have any questions.  BARD applications are available online by clicking here.  Select either “Individual” or “Institution” then on the next screen select “MI – The Grand Traverse Area Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped” from the Library pull down menu.

The TADL Talking Book Library program is made possible by the National Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped at the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C. in partnership with the Michigan Commission for the Blind’s Braille and Talking Book Library and the Traverse Area District Library and its supporters.