Poisoned Pen Press, the mystery imprint of leading independent publisher Sourcebooks, worked closely with the National Library Service (NLS) for the Blind and Print Disabled at the Library of Congress to ensure a simultaneous print and braille release of “That Affair Next Door” by Anna Katharine Green, the debut title in the new Library of Congress Crime Classics series.
“The collaboration between Poisoned Pen Press, the Library of Congress’ Publishing Office and NLS led to a big win all around,” said National Library Service Director Karen Keninger. “The Library of Congress is committed to being a library for all people, and accessibility is a big part of that. This will allow our patrons to enjoy ‘That Affair Next Door,’ and future books in the Crime Classics series, much sooner than if we followed the usual route to producing them in braille and audio.”
On Tuesday, the electronic braille version of “That Affair Next Door” will be available on BARD, the NLS’s Braille and Audio Reading Download website. Hard copy braille and audio editions were also intended for simultaneous release but were delayed by work disruptions related to the coronavirus outbreak. A new release date has not been set.
When the Library of Congress announced plans for the Crime Classics series last September, Alice O’Reilly of the NLS Materials Development Division worked with Becky Brasington Clark in the Publishing Office to make sure the NLS Studio got the full text of “That Affair Next Door” so it could produce a recording. Besides the original text, the Crime Classics edition includes additional features such as an introduction by Edgar Award winner Leslie S. Klinger and discussion questions.
Two more Crime Classics titles are scheduled to be released this year: “The Rat Began to Gnaw the Rope” (1943) by C. W. Grafton, father of bestselling detective novelist Sue Grafton, and “Case Pending” (1960) by Dell Shannon. Titles in the series are drawn from the Library’s collection of hard-to-find and out-of-print books, with cover designs inspired by images from the Library’s collections.