Israel’s national library offers raft of audio books free amid virus crisis
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Israel’s national library offers raft of audio books free amid virus crisis

With schools closed and pupils forced to learn at home, the organisation has made many works in English, Hebrew, Arabic and French free of charge

The reading room at Israel's National Library
The reading room at Israel's National Library

Audio books from the Jewish world’s best-loved children’s authors are now being offered for free by the National Library of Israel as the coronavirus pandemic forces more and more people to stay at home.

With schools closed for the foreseeable future and millions of school-age children now home-bound, the institution said it was making a raft of books available free of charge in English, Hebrew, Arabic and French.

The offer of free audio books through the ICast app is through ‘Pocket Library,’ a joint initiative of Israel’s National Center for Humanities Education (INCHE) and the Ministry of Education, and with the authors’ consent.

Among the already-available titles is ‘The Moroccan Boy’s Love’ by Dorit Orgad, a work of young historical fiction released last year, which tells the story of a 14 year-old who dreams of making aliyah amidst a background of pogroms in Marrakesh.

The book, which is aimed at teenagers, details the clandestine work of Mossad to bring the city’s Jews to the newly-founded State of Israel.

Another being offered is ‘Uncle Arie’s Adventures in the Tibetan Ocean,’ by Yannets Levi. Part of a series, it tells of Arie’s encounters, such as with people who live inside sea monsters.

“Listening to quality works of literature is a great way to ensure that children have meaningful and enjoyable educational experiences,” said INCHE director Neta Shapira.

“This is especially important during this difficult period when everyone is spending many hours at home and out of routine.”

 

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