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NLS: Overseas Outlook

January–June 2013; Volume 36, Number 1

Magazines

NLS has begun sending digital magazines to patrons. For a period of two months, subscribers will receive magazines on both cassettes and cartridges. Those who already have subscriptions to magazines will be transitioned automatically to digital cartridges. Talking Book Topics has begun shipping on cartridge and the order forms will be mailed separately to patrons. Those who wish to change their subscriptions may contact the overseas librarian. Patrons should return digital magazines after they finish reading them using the same container the magazine came in. Those readers who have not yet received a digital talking-book player, and those who wish to receive an advanced digital player to make accessing the articles easier, should contact the overseas librarian with their request.

Cassette players

Patrons requesting a four-track audiocassette player should know that though NLS continues to provide these machines, they are all refurbished. NLS makes every effort to send machines that are in excellent condition. However, handling during shipment can affect performance. If you receive a cassette player that does not operate properly, please return it for replacement and notify the overseas librarian.

Machines and books

NLS is unable to send machines and books to countries that do not participate in the United Nations’ protocol that allows matter to and from the blind and physically handicapped as free matter. Some countries that do participate in this program have occasionally asked patrons to pay customs duty on the machines. NLS strongly urges patrons not to pay the customs duty, instead please contact the overseas librarian immediately to receive the United Nations’ protocol to present to the customs officials.

Patrons who live in the countries that do not participate in the United Nations’ protocol should contact the overseas librarian to make alternate arrangements to receive machines and books.

Ensuring good book service

To receive books without interruption, patrons should order books on regular basis (each month) and return books as soon as they have finished reading them. Patrons who have access to a computer and the Internet may order books by e-mail at raj@loc.gov.

NLS also encourages readers to use the Braille and Audio Reading Download (BARD) service, which allows patrons to download books and magazines over the Internet. This service requires access to a computer or mobile device, a high-speed Internet connection, a USB drive or a blank cartridge and a USB cable, and an NLS digital player or NLS-approved commercial player. To sign up for BARD download, patrons should register by completing an application at http://nlsbard.loc.gov. Readers who have questions concerning BARD downloads may contact the overseas librarian.

Mobile applications

NLS is in the process of developing applications to enable the download and reading of its books using commercial mobile devices. Two versions are being developed independently―one for Apple iOS devices (iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad) and one for Google Android devices.

Some features of these applications include the ability to:

The applications are free to eligible patrons, but a BARD account is required to use them. The iOS application is at the internal testing stage. The NLS Engineering Section is evaluating this working version without all of its final features. NLS plans to have the beta version, with corrections and enhanced functionality, available for selected testers to evaluate in several weeks. The iOS version is expected to be available to patrons in the summer.

The Android application will only be available on Android 4.2 Jelly Bean OS and later versions because of poor accessibility support on earlier versions. The application is expected to be available in late summer. NLS will provide more precise dates as they become available.

2013 Magazine of the Month selections

Two NLS programs offer readers samples of magazines not otherwise available through network libraries. Subscribers to Magazine of the Month and Young Adult Magazine of the Month receive a different audio magazine each month. For a free subscription to either program, contact the overseas librarian. Subscribers may expect to receive one of the following selections each month:

Magazine of the Month

All You
Details
Gather Journal
Geek
Harvard Business Review
Mental Floss
More
Mother Jones
Real Simple
Reminisce
Self Magazine
Whole Living

Young Adult Magazine of the Month

Aviation History
Baseball Digest
Electronic Gaming Monthly
Girls’ Life
Miabella
Muse
SLAM
Star Wars Insider
Teen Vogue
Walking Dead
Writer’s Digest
XXL

Minibibliography: Antarctica

Each issue of Overseas Outlook includes a bibliography on a subject that may be of interest to our patrons. This issue features a minibibliography on Antarctica. According to Wikipedia:

Antarctica is earth’s southern most continent, containing the geographic South Pole. It is situated in the Antarctic region of the Southern Hemisphere, almost entirely south of the Antarctic Circle, and is surrounded by the Southern Ocean. For comparison, Antarctica is nearly twice the size of Australia. About 98 percent of Antarctica is covered by ice that averages at least one mile (1.6 km) in thickness . . . .
Although myths and speculation about a Terra Australis (“Southern Land”) date back to antiquity, the first confirmed sighting of the continent is commonly accepted to have occurred in 1820 by the Russian expedition of Fabian Gottlieb von Bellingshausen and Mikhail Lazarev on Vostok and Mirny. The continent, however, remained largely neglected for the rest of the 19th century because of its hostile environment, lack of resources, and isolation. The Antarctic Treaty was signed in 1959 by 12 countries; to date, 49 countries have signed the treaty. The treaty prohibits military activities and mineral mining, prohibits nuclear explosions and nuclear waste disposal, supports scientific research, and protects the continent’s ecozone. Ongoing experiments are conducted by more than four thousand scientists from many nations.

We hope readers will enjoy reading about Antarctica. To receive any of the books in this bibliography, complete the order form at the end of the newsletter and return it to the overseas librarian.

Alone: The Classic Polar Adventure by Richard E. Byrd
DB/RC 41488
This is an account of the explorer’s dangerous and dramatic five months’ isolation at an observation base in Antarctica. 1938.

Antarctica: Great Stories from the Frozen Continent by Ralph Lowentsein
RC 24306
Provides essays by some thirty-eight contributors on the fauna and flora, geography, climate, and history of the mysterious continent of Antarctica. The first section covers wildlife and weather; the second documents the travels, adventures, and misadventures of explorers; and the third discusses such diverse topics as the whaling industry, the Antarctica Treaty, and sledge dogs. 1985.

Aurora Australis by Sir Ernest Henry Shackleton
RC 30235
Sir Ernest Henry Shackleton, explorer, on his second trip to the Antarctic, had more in mind than just exploration. He planned to publish a book about the expedition. This edition has been reproduced from an original copy and contains an introduction that explains how the men lived in their hut during the winter of 1908, and produced between seventy-five and one hundred copies of Shackleton’s book. 1988.

Beyond Cape Horn: Travels in the Antarctic by Charles Neider
RC 17684
An account of a ten-week return visit to Antarctica in 1977, starting at McMurdo Station south of Tierra del Fuego, some 3,600 miles away. Traveling chiefly by water—aboard a Coast Guard icebreaker, a British Antarctic Survey ship, and a trawler—Neider conveys a sense of the beauty and terror of the Antarctic. 1980.

Beyond the Frozen Sea: Visions of Antarctica by Edwin Mickleburgh
RC 29319
A general history of Antarctica that traces the continent’s exploration throughout three distinct historical phases, beginning with Captain
Cook’s search for Antarctica more than two hundred years ago. This volume offers a personalized vision of the planet’s last true wilderness. 1987.

Cherry: A Life of Apsley Cherry-Garrard by Sara Wheeler
RC 55209
Chronicle of an Antarctic rescue gone wrong. In February 1912 Cherry-Garrard drove a dog team 150 miles across Antarctica’s ice to rendezvous with Robert Scott’s party, returning from an epic South Pole race. The men, however, had frozen to death on the homeward leg. Portrays Cherry-Garrard as haunted by his failure. 2002.

The Coldest March: Scott’s Fatal Antarctic Expedition by Susan Solomon
DB/RC 56195   (DB available only for download)
Scientist uses her meteorological expertise and personal knowledge of Antarctica to reevaluate Scott’s preparations for the 1912 polar journey that ended in his death. Interlaces the expedition’s accounts with contemporary scientific information, reestablishing Scott’s reputation as a competent, courageous hero foiled by unpredictable and exceptionally cold weather. 2001.

Crossing Antarctica by Will Steger and Jon Bowermaster
RC 34799
Steger is one of the six-man International Trans-Antarctica team that made its pioneering trip in 1989 and 1990. The team comprised scientists, explorers, dog trainers, and thirty-six sled dogs. In journal style, Steger describes the 220-day, 3,700-mile trek across the snowy frontier, including the traumatic death of a dog and the thirteen-hour disappearance of one of the men. 1991.

The Crystal Desert: Summers in Antarctica by David G. Campbell
RC 36818
Research biologist Campbell spent three summers in Antarctica at a Brazilian scientific station. Delving into topics ranging from Antarctic parasites to the camaraderie of his fellow scientists, he voices a scientific as well as a poetic appreciation of the ice-covered continent and all its denizens. Houghton Mifflin Literary Fellowship Award. 1992.

The Ends of the Earth: An Anthology of the Finest Writing on the Arctic and the Antarctic by Elizabeth Kolbert
DB/RC 66582
Fiction and nonfiction selections by scientists, explorers, and novelists spanning the twentieth century. Includes excerpts from journals of Antarctic explorers Ernest Shackleton, Roald Amundsen, and Robert Falcon Scott. Arctic contributions feature Robert Peary’s disputed account of reaching the North Pole and “Kasiagsak, the Great Liar,” a native legend. 2007.

The Endurance: Shackleton’s Legendary Antarctic Expedition by Caroline Alexander
DB/RC 47531 (DB available only for download)
Chronicles the survival of Ernest Shackleton and his crew of twenty-seven men who were marooned on ice floes off the coast of Antarctica in 1915. Recounts the entrapment and later destruction of their ship, the Endurance, by pack-ice and the hardships the men suffered before their rescue in 1916. Bestseller. 1998.

Ice Bound: A Doctor’s Incredible Battle for Survival at the South Pole by Jerri Nielsen
RC 51560
Former emergency room doctor records her ordeal with breast cancer during an eleven-month stay in Antarctica. Describes the dilemma she faced as the only medical officer for the forty-one members of the research team. Recalls the camaraderie that developed amid the extreme conditions of the 1999 polar winter. Bestseller. 2001.

Life at the Bottom: The People of Antarctica by John Langone
RC 11308
A newspaper editor relates his exhilarating experiences at the South Pole. Langone offers a frank and engaging portrait of the scientists, servicemen, and civilians who choose to live and work there. 1977.

The Race to the White Continent by Alan Gurney
RC 52189
Discusses the competing American, British, and French sailing expeditions in the 1830s to the then still unexplored continent of Antarctica. Explains the background of the national rivalries and depicts the personalities of the major figures involved. 2000.

Scott of the Antarctic by Elspeth Huxley
RC 45956
Recounts the arduous expedition of British naval officer Robert Falcon Scott to the South Pole in 1911, where he found that the Norwegian adventurer Amundsen had arrived one month earlier. Beset by blizzards, Scott’s entire party perished during their return. Based on Scott’s own journals. 1977.

Shackleton: His Antarctic Writings by Ernest Henry Shackleton, selected and introduced by Christopher Ralling
DB/RC 25435
Collection of letters, diaries, and Antarctic writings of the British explorer. Includes Shackleton’s own descriptions of his two famous expeditions, “Heart of the Antarctic” and “South.” Gripping tales of heroic adventures. 1983.

Shackleton’s Forgotten Men: The Untold Tragedy of the Endurance Epic by Lennard Bickel
DB/RC 51969
In 1915 Shackleton’s expedition was marooned in ice on one side of Antarctica. Meanwhile, on the other side a small team of men and dogs persevered to supply food depots for Shackleton’s expected transcontinental crossing. Relates the attendant tragedies of the two thousand-mile sledge journey to fulfill an obligation of honor. 2000.

South: A Memoir of the Endurance Voyage by Ernest Shackleton
RC 48292
Shackleton’s1914–1919 account of how his plans to lead the first trans-Antarctic expedition became a survival saga after his ship, Endurance, was blocked and finally crushed by pack-ice. Describes the courage of men facing extremely harsh conditions. Covers Shackleton’s valiant eight-hundred-mile trip in an open boat to bring back rescuers. 1919.

Terra Incognita: Travels in Antarctica by Sara Wheeler
DB/RC 48147 (DB available only for download)
Detailed account of seven-month sojourn spent physically and metaphorically exploring Antarctica. While recounting her own experiences and perceptions, Wheeler includes commentaries on famous earlier explorers of the frozen expanse. Describes the landscape, people she encounters, and personal changes. 1996.

Voyage through the Antarctic by Richard Adams and Ronald Lockley
RC 19092
Adams, the author of Watership Down (DB/RC 35730, BR 10831), and Lockley, a renowned ornithologist, collaborate on a lyrical account of their extraordinary journey through the least-explored area on earth. They describe landscapes and icescapes that exist nowhere else on earth and the brilliance of the southern lights, as well as the astounding array of animals, birds, and sea creatures. 1983.

Where Hell Freezes Over: A Story of Amazing Bravery and Survival by David A. Kearns
DB/RC 63930
Reporter chronicles the two-week ordeal of U.S. Navy airmen― including his father―who were stranded in Antarctica after their plane crashed in December 1946. Describes the shelter the injured survivors created in the wreckage, their use of smoke signals to alert searchers, and the ten-mile trek they endured to reach a rescue seaplane. 2005.

The Worst Journey in the World by Apsley Cherry-Garrard
DB/RC 58594
Epic tale of two-and-a-half years of exploration and survival in Antarctica as recounted by the youngest member of Robert Scott’s last expedition to the South Pole. Describes the difficult crossing of the Beardmore Glacier, Cherry-Garrard’s scientific mission to obtain emperor penguin eggs, and his discovery of Scott’s body. 1922.

Order Form

Mail to:

Y. Rathan Raj
National Library Service for the
Blind and Physically Handicapped
Washington, DC 20542
USA
Fax: (202) 707-0712

Your Name__________________________________________

Cassette

Book Number Title
RC 41488 Alone: The Classic Polar Adventure
RC 24306 Antarctica: Great Stories from the Frozen Continent
RC 30235 Aurora Australis
RC 17684 Beyond Cape Horn: Travels in the Antarctic
RC 29319 Beyond the Frozen Sea: Visions of Antarctica
RC 55209 Cherry: A Life of Apsley Cherry-Garrard
RC 56195 The Coldest March: Scott’s Fatal Antarctic Expedition
RC 34799 Crossing Antarctica
RC 36818 The Crystal Desert: Summers in Antarctica
RC 66582 The Ends of the Earth: An Anthology of the Finest Writing on the Arctic and the Antarctic
RC 47531 The Endurance: Shackleton’s Legendary Antarctic Expedition         
RC 51560 Ice Bound: A Doctor’s Incredible Battle for Survival at the South Pole
RC 11308 Life at the Bottom: The People of Antarctica
RC 52189 The Race to the White Continent
RC 45956 Scott of the Antarctic
RC 25435 Shackleton: His Antarctic Writings
RC 51969 Shackleton’s Forgotten Men: The Untold Tragedy of the Endurance Epic 
RC 48292 South: A Memoir of the Endurance Voyage
RC 48147 Terra Incognita: Travels in Antarctica
RC 19092 Voyage through the Antarctic
RC 63930 Where Hell Freezes Over: A Story of Amazing Bravery and Survival
RC 58594 The Worst Journey in the World

Digital

Book Number Title
DB 41488 Alone: The Classic Polar Adventure
DB 56195 The Coldest March: Scott’s Fatal Antarctic Expedition
DB 66582 The Ends of the Earth: An Anthology of the Finest Writing on the Arctic and the Antarctic
DB 47531 The Endurance: Shackleton’s Legendary Antarctic Expedition
DB 25435 Shackleton: His Antarctic Writings
DB 51969 Shackleton’s Forgotten Men: The Untold Tragedy of the Endurance Epic
DB 48147 Terra Incognita: Travels in Antarctica
DB 63930 Where Hell Freezes Over: A Story of Amazing Bravery and Survival
DB 58594 The Worst Journey in the World  

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Posted on 2013-06-28