Talking Books

Talking Books with Robert Kirkwood, weekdays from 3pm and 10pm

Now Playing ...

Three Men in a Boat by Jerome K. Jerome

Read by Michael Aspel

Martyrs to hypochondria and general seediness, J. and his friends George and Harris decide that a jaunt up the Thames would suit them to a ‘T’. But when they set off, they can hardly predict the troubles that lie ahead with tow-ropes, unreliable weather forecasts and tins of pineapple chunks, not to mention the devastation left in the wake of J.’s small fox-terrier Montmorency.

Three Men in a Boat is on Monday to Thurday at 3pm with a repeat at 10pm, and available on catch up now.

Catch-Up with ...

The Big Four by Agatha Christie

Read by Greg Wagland

Framed in the doorway of Poirot's bedroom stands an uninvited guest, coated from head to foot in dust The gaunt man's face stares for a moment then sways and falls Who is he and what is the significance of the figure four scribbled repeatedly on a piece of paper?

Catch up now. (Dissapears on Tuesday!)

Talking Books at 80

The Talking Books service from RNIB is 80 years old, and we have many special shows, features and documentaries coming up. More information is on the Talking Books at 80 page.

Read On

If you're passionate about books and reading, tune in every Friday from 3pm. Author interviews, book news, technology updates and everything you've always wanted to know about the RNIB Library. 

Head to the Read On Page now

Junior Talking Books

A children's classic, every Saturday morning at 9am and Sunday at 3pm and at the moment it's Black Beauty. Catch up on the latest episode or find out more about our Weekend Children's Show here.

Coming Soon

Round Ireland with a Fridge and The Invisible Man coming soon. Suggest a book by emailing or contacting me via Talking_Books on Twitter.

Booker Prize

Every year we feature the Man Booker shortlisted authors, here are the latest and a few from the awards over the past few years - Man Booker Prize authors

Podcast Shows

Author interviews, special shows, documentaries and more, all available to listen online or download as a podcast. Includes chats with Michael Palin, Bill Bryson, Michael Bond (the creator of Paddington Bear as pictured below), James Herbert's last ever interview, a full short story by Denise Mina and the man behind Parker and Brains in Thunderbirds and co-inventor of the voice of the Daleks. 

Podcast shows here.

Most recent podcasts for Talking Books

Julian Fellowes on Belgravia

The Chairman of the RNIB Talking Books appeal tells us about his new book, and the unique way it's being released, including on RNIB Overdrive.

AyeWrite! Memories

Chris Brookmyre, Denise Mina, Louise Welsh and more chat to me about Glasgow's Book Festival AyeWrite! and tell me about their favourite moments.

Short Story - Ida Tamson by Denise Mina

Doing anything it takes to look after the children in her care, enter the world of Ida Tamson. For the first ever 'Aye Write' in 2005, this story by Denise Mina was presented in the Glasgow Evening Times over 5 days and recorded by RNIB Scotland.

Listen Again

Catch up with our current featured book, and EVERY EPISODE of the last book featured on the show, both mid-week and weekend.


Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day

Starts Tuesday

Three Men in a Boat

Boat 1/7

Boat 2/7

Boat 3/7

Boat 4/7

Boat 5/7

Boat 6/7

Boat 7/7 (Early access to Bank Holiday Monday's show!)

The Big Four (Last Chance!)

Big Four 1/7

Big Four 2/7

Big Four 3/7

Big Four 4/7

Big Four 5/7

Big Four 6/7

Big Four 7/7

Black Beauty

Beauty 1/7

Beauty 2/7

Beauty 3/7

Billy Bunter

Bunter 1/5

Bunter 2/5

Bunter 3/5

Bunter 4/5

Bunter 5/5

About Talking Books

Robert Kirkwood presents the best of the spoken Word. The famous RNIB Talking Books studios have such a rich and varied history. Authors such as Ruth Rendell, Roald Dahl, P.D. James, A.S. Byatt, Fay Weldon, Doris Lessing, Lady Antonia Fraser and lots of other greats, making up a veritable Who’s Who of UK literature, have all visited us and recorded something.

Narrators over the years have included Joanna Lumley, Richard Baker, Sir John Gielgud, Joss Ackland and Jim Broadbent amongst hundreds of others. In the early days of the RNIB Talking Book service, there was no such thing as commercial audiobooks, so the RNIB library is the only place to hear people such as Peter Cushing and Joyce Grenfel read books aloud.

On Insight Radio's Talking Book show we've featured all of the above! Where else could you hear Peter Cushing read Sherlock Holmes followed by Victoria Coren talking poker, or Cherie Blair reading Postman Pat followed by Frederick Forsyth telling us about cocaine trafficking?

Tune in every day at 3pm (or 10pm or 3am) for exclusive audio, author interviews, behind the scenes features and our featured book or short story of the moment. I'll also keep adding content to the Talking Books podcast feed so make sure you subscribe.

Subscribe to the Talking Books podcast feed on itunes

RNIB Surf Right Accessible web site