Archive for October 2011

Copyright… and an exciting new European venture

October 19, 2011

Let me start by saying sorry to listeners in the USA – this will not benefit you.

International copyright law is a mysterious beast. Most countries have laws that give copyright protection to authors for a certain number of years after their death. The USA is different. In fact, their copyright law is unbelievably complicated. Read about the Copyright Term Extension Act if you can bear to. LibriVox audio recordings are all hosted in the USA, so LibriVox needs to observe US copyright law scrupulously.

We non-US readers also have to consider the copyright laws of our own countries, so we are frequently unable to record works by, say, British authors which are in the public domain in the US, but not at home (e.g. early works by P.G. Wodehouse). This is frustrating. Very frustrating. But it’s the law, and we are a law-abiding bunch.

However, of course there are works that are in the Public Domain in Europe, but not in the USA – because the author died more than 70 years ago, but the books were published in or after the US cut-off point of 1923. Examples include The Prophet by Khalil Gibran and Lady Chatterley’s Lover by D. H. Lawrence.

Several individuals have been thinking about this for a long time, but the critical factor which has always stopped us, has been where in Europe to get the files hosted. The storage and bandwidth costs for audio files are substantial and of course we have no money :D.

There seems to be no European equivalent of the US Internet Archive, which, of course, generously hosts all LibriVox audio recordings free. Leastways, there are European archive sites, funded presumably by the EU, but they do not (yet!) seem interested in assisting. If anyone has any ideas or contacts, do please let me know.

In the meantime, we have decided to go ahead, finding free hosting where and when we can. Not ideal, but it is a start. It will be of interest to European listeners, whose laws specify 70 years of copyright protection following an author’s death, and also Canada, South Africa, New Zealand, Japan, China (50 years), Australia (50/70 years), India (60 years), Brazil, Israel (70 years) and many other parts of the world. Check your country’s copyright duration here. This means, for instance, that we shall be able to record later works of Conan Doyle, D. H. Lawrence, John Buchan and next year, Virginia Wolfe and James Joyce… and many European authors, increasing every year.

So (drum roll) I am pleased to announce that I shall also be recording for Legamus (let’s read aloud in Latin!). We are not up and running yet, but we will be soon. I will, of course, announce it here. And, you guessed it, those two I mentioned earlier will be among the first I record. 😉

These will be free downloads, but unlike LibriVox they may not necessarily be available for other people to sell.

New Iambik audiobook: Trencarrow Secret

October 7, 2011

My latest recording for Iambik Audiobooks, Trencarrow Secret by Anita Davison, is released today.

It is available in MP3 or M4B format directly from Iambik Audiobooks, nearly twelve and a half hours for just $6.99 at:

or you may even be able to win it free if you enter the Iambik First Birthday competition!

Set in 1882, this is the story of the Hart family who spend summer as usual at their country house on the Cornish coast. But this year, things are different. The sheltered and sensitive Isabel is approaching her 21st birthday, and there is talk of an engagement to Jared, the son of old family friends, whom Isabel has known since childhood. Isabel’s mother Marie is seriously ill. And Isabel sees something that turns her world upside down.

The events of this sweltering summer, leading up to Isabel’s birthday ball, form the framework of the story. It is more than a simple historical romance. The Harts must keep up appearances before their house guests and friends despite the tensions that arise within the family, and there are family secrets that Isabel has never been told. Can Isabel come to terms with her deep-seated fears and face reality?

The characters are well-drawn and I had no difficulty in visualising them as I recorded the book. I particularly enjoyed recording the indomitable Aunt Margot, Isabel’s widowed aunt, and Isabel’s brother-in-law Walter who does, oh does so enjoy his food. All in all, a book that I think you will enjoy.

No violence, sex or swearing – makes a pleasant change! 🙂

“With rich prose and compelling characters, Anita Davison weaves a magnificent Victorian era love story filled with dark family secrets and intrigues. Each chapter is more tempting than the one before it. Fans of eloquent and meaningful romantic historical fiction will want to savour every word. Not only are the historical details well presented, but the love story that unfolds is exhilarating and stunning. A deep, enriching lesson on the nature of life and love.” — Mirella Patzer – Historical Novel Review Blog

Read more about the book and some of the characters on the Trencarrow Secret website and more about the author on her blog, The Disorganised Author.

Iambik’s First Birthday Competition

October 5, 2011

Iambik Audiobooks are giving away free audiobooks in a competition to celebrate its first birthday on October 19th. The first prize-winner will have his/her choice of 10 free Iambik audiobooks, and there are more prizes too. You have two weeks to enter.

See Iambik’s Turning One! Let’s Celebrate with a Giveaway Bash

I have a new Iambik audiobook coming out on Friday. More details then!

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