Talking Books

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

Now Playing ...

Driving Over Lemons by Chris Stewart

Read by Nigel Graham

Chris, eternal optimist and itinerant sheep shearer, moves with his wife Ana to a mountain farm in Las Alpujarras, an oddball region in the south of Spain. Misadventures gleefully unfold as Chris discovers that the owner has no intention of leaving and meets their neighbours, an engaging mix of peasant farmers and shepherds, New Age travellers and ex-pats.

Their daughter Chloë is born, linking them irrevocably to their new life. The hero of the piece, however, is the farm itself - a patch of mountain studded with olive, almond and lemon groves, sited on the wrong side of a river, with no access road, water supply or electricity.

Could life offer much better than that?

The final episode also includes an exclusive catch up with the author. Played with the very kind permission of the publishers Sort Of Books and of the author, Chris Stewart.

Every Monday to Thursday at 3pm with a repeat at 10pm, and catch up available now.

Catch-Up with ...

Bulldog Drummond by Sapper (H. C. McNeile)

Read by Adrian Lukis

Bulldog Drummond. Hero, patriot, sportsman and quintessential English gentleman.

An army officer in the First World War, he knows how to fight hard and play fair and there is not much that can shake him. Finding peace unbearably tedious he puts an ad in the newspaper offering his services to any client who can offer adventure.

An attractive young woman called Phyllis contacts him fearing for her father who seems to be under the power of blackmailers. Without hesitation Drummond accepts the commission and starts to investigate and uncovers a plot that threatens not just Phyllis and her family but the country itself.

Catch up with all 11 episodes now.

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 First Term at Malory Towers by Enid Blyton. Catch up on the latest episode or find out more about our Weekend Children's Show here.

Coming Soon

Lord of the Flies and To Kill A Mocking Bird 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

Marlon James - Booker 2015 Winner

I chat to Marlon James about 'A Brief History of Seven Killings' winner of the 2015 Man Booker Prize

Bill Bryson

Author Interview - I chat with Bill Bryson about his travel and history books, and ask him about his lost book, 'Palace Under the Alps'

Robert Burn's Kilmarnock Edition

Celebrating the publication of 'Poems, Chiefly in the Scottish Dialect' by Robert Burns with poets old and new.

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.


Driving Over Lemons

Lemons 1/11

Lemons 2/11

Lemons 3/11

Lemons 4/11

Lemons 5/11

Lemons 6/11

Lemons 7/11

Lemons 8/11

Lemons 9/11

Bulldog Drummond

Bulldog 01/11

Bulldog 02/11

Bulldog 03/11

Bulldog 04/11

Bulldog 05/11

Bulldog 06/11

Bulldog 07/11

Bulldog 08/11

Bulldog 09/11

Bulldog 10/11

Bulldog 11/11

Malory Towers

Malory 01


Heidi 01

Heidi 02

Heidi 03

Heidi 04

Heidi 05

Heidi 06

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