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Monday, November 28, 2016

World's First "Literary" Audiobook Found in Canada

One of the earliest audiobooks has been discovered in Canada.  A 1935 recording of Joseph Conrad's novella Typhoon has been discovered in Canada by Matthew Rubery, a professor of modern literature at London’s Queen Mary University.

Audiobooks, as aids for visually impaired people, have been around since the 1930s, but initially contained only short stories or poems.  Typhoon was one of three full-length books to be recorded as an audiobook, and the first “literary” audiobook.  The other two longer works were Agatha Christie's The Murder of Roger Ackroyd and the New Testament's Gospel According to St. John.

As It Happens on CBC Radio had an interview with Professor Rubery on Nov. 21; you can access it at and even hear part of the audiobook.