Finding Books, Magazines and Other Materials
in Alternative Formats
If you do not find the books or other materials that you want in the TBBL catalog, you might want to try some of the resources listed below. Unless otherwise noted, links on this page go to external web sites.
- National Library Service
for the Blind and Physically Handicapped (NLS): A division
of the Library of Congress, NLS administers a free library
program of braille and recorded materials, which are circulated
to eligible borrowers through a network of cooperating libraries
such as the New York State Talking Book and Braille Library.
- BARD: Download braille or audio digital books and magazines.
- NLS catalog: Search for all NLS recorded and braille books.
- NLS Kids Zone - Kids Catalog: Find audio, braille, and print/braille books for preschool through grade 8 in the NLS catalog.
- Talking Book Topics: Browse lists of new audio books and magazines (bimonthly). Note: The format of Talking Book Topics changed with the January-February 2014 issue.
- Braille Book Review: Browse lists of new braille magazines and books (bimonthly)
- Textbooks in Alternative Formats: A list, maintained by TBBL, of sources for textbooks in audio, braille or other alternative formats.
- Electronic Texts: Selected Sites: A sampling of the e-text resources on the World Wide Web. This link is part of the New York State Library's Internet Bibliographies.
- Bookshare.org: A web-based system that supplies accessible books in digital formats (NISO/DAISY XML-based format for the next generation of talking books, and the BRF format for Braille devices and printers). Access is limited to people with bona fide print disabilities and the schools and nonprofit organizations serving them.
- Audio Bibles
- Louis Database of Accessible Materials: Louis, from the American Printing House for the Blind, is a centralized source of information about accessible media materials, including more than 145,000 titles of books, music, and educational materials for people who are blind or visually impaired. It includes a streamlined search option for speech users.
- Free Braille Books Program: from the American Action Fund for Blind Children and Adults.
- The Poetry Archive: A searchable collection of recordings of poets reading their work. There are links to educational resources, including those for teachers seeking to utilize the contents of the site in their classroom and for those looking for a brief introduction to reading poetry.
- World Book Encyclopedia Articles in Braille - Available through the Rose Project from Seedlings Braille Books for Children, the encyclopedia articles service is offered free of charge for blind students in grades 1-12.
- Find Your Public Library - Many public libraries have collections of audio books, both on CD and, increasingly, in downloadable digital formats. This site, maintained by the NYS Library, links to all public libraries in New York State, organized by county, community, or library name.
- Audio Magazines on Digital Cartridge
- Magazines in Special Media - Information from the National Library Service
- Radio Reading Services: Special radio stations throughout New York State broadcast programs for blind and print-disabled people. Programs generally include readings of local and national newspapers, magazines, and sometimes books.
- Newsline: a free service to those who cannot read regular newsprint.
- Calendars in braille, print/braille, or large print: This factsheet from NLS lists various companies that produce calendars in braille, print/braille or large print. Some are free and some must be purchased.
- Federal Tax Forms - Many federal tax forms or publications are available from the IRS in accessible formats such as braille, text, or large print.
- Voter's Guide - The National Federation for the Blind has produced a voter's guide for blind users. The nonpartisan guide, which is available in braille, large print, and audio, was created to promote the full participation of blind people in the election process by providing materials in accessible formats.