Looking Outward

It’s Week 4 of AudiobookSYNC’s free eAudiobook program! This week, the pair of audiobooks invites listeners to consider what might be happening around them. Stepping away from attending to our own self-interest to notice how others are affected by circumstances and events is a big step toward developing empathy.

First, Dan Poblocki’s suspenseful The Gathering keeps listeners holding our breath. What would you do if you were one of the five kids trapped inside this menacing house?

In the nonfiction title In Our Backyard: Human Trafficking in America and What We Can Do to Stop It by Nita Belle, listeners discover that slavery in America is not a thing of the past. Immigrants, abused women and children, and other vulnerable people can and do fall prey to imprisonment and servitude in homes and small businesses. While that reality may be difficult to acknowledge, this eAudiobook takes us a productive step further by discussing how to approach and respond to this evil.

Empathy, we know, empowers youth to lead positive civic lives. We also know that experiences with reading about others’ lives—including reading with our ears—goes far to build the empathy muscles we need to engage with the larger world.

Available for a Limited Time
Remember — grab these titles before they are replaced by a new pairing on 5/25/2017! While the download time is limited, your listening time is not. Once you have downloaded the MP3 files, the audiobook is yours to keep.

New to SYNC? Learn more to get you started!


Adapted from Looking Outward

Teen Voice Power

Week 3 of AudiobookSYNC 2017 celebrates teens who speak from the heart. Poetry and diaries both cut to the essence of what we need to say, and the voices you hear this week may inspire the articulation of your own feelings, thoughts, and concerns. Both of these audiobooks are short, offering good listening introductions for those new to audiobooks.

Coretta Scott King Award-winning Bronx Masquerade by Nikki Grimes offers proof of literature’s capacity to build empathy in the audience. The diverse group of narrators speak compellingly as the high school class members who find ways to confront their hopes and fears by sharing their poetry in weekly open mic sessions.

In Teenage Diaries: Then and Now, four real-life audio-diarists recorded their lives, both as teens and, a few years later, about how their lives have developed in young adulthood. Juan, Frankie, Josh, and Melissa have handled a variety of circumstances, including immigrant life along the Rio Grande, early stardom and later stumbling, Tourette’s syndrome, and teen parenthood. 

This week’s AudiobookSYNC pair features two short and powerful selections that can serve as inspirations for group discussions, open mic programs, and cross-generation interviews.

We want to know: What interests you most about each of these? How can you aspire to follow the leads recorded here to create their own personal power of words? 

Available for a Limited Time
Remember — grab these titles before they are replaced by a new pairing on 5/18/2017! While the download time is limited, your listening time is not. Once you have downloaded the MP3 files, the audiobook is yours to keep.

New to SYNC? Learn more to get you started!

Adapted from Teen Voice Power

 

What’s the Human Future?

Week 2 of AudiobookSYNC 2017 features a pair of eAudiobooks that take us into possibilities for the future of humanity. Both have been popular in audio since they first became available, and every new listener can quickly understand why.

Since its publication in both print and audio more than 15 years ago, the status of Feed by M.T. Anderson has only grown in the worlds of both teen lit and sci-fi. There is an important audio element here in addition to the voice acting of its stellar full cast performance: that chip implanted in the head of each human in this future provides ongoing instruction—and static. The use of such an enhancement to deliver what the print book can only describe in words speaks to the power of audiobooks. 

Another speculative investigation of the human future is brought to us in the cult favorite by Douglas Adams, The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. The wonder of the author’s imagination and carefully crafted passages emerge through Stephen Fry’s reading, with color, light, and action all made vivid in words alone. This performance will delight Adams’s fans, and it offers listeners new to this corner of the galaxy everything they’ll need to become fans as well.

The future has a lot of problems humanity is likely to face. But these titles also provide important reminders that heart, ingenuity, and humor aren’t going to disappear, and that these human qualities will remain important as we face that future head on. We’re in good company for that with Titus, Violet, and the rest of the characters in Feed, and the array of sentient beings peopling The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy.

Available for a Limited Time
Remember — grab these titles before they are replaced by a new pairing on 5/11/2017! While the download time is limited, your listening time is not. Once you have downloaded the MP3 files, the audiobook is yours to keep.

New to SYNC? Learn more to get you started!


(Adapted from What’s the Human Future?)