Author’s books translate into braille

Fernley author Mary Jean Kelso recently received word that two of her books are now in English Braille. A copy of the translation into braille of her children’s book, “Andy and the Albino Horse,” arrived this week. “One Family’s Christmas” is also available in braille.

Kelso who writes for children, tweens, young adults and adults has been published in many formats including e-books, hardbacks, paperbacks and audio. These are the first braille editions. The books will be used to teach blind children how to read.

“I am very excited to know that my writing is touching sightless children and adults,” Kelso said. “I hope the books bring them much joy!”

The New York City organization, Xavier Society for the Blind, has been serving the blind since 1900.

“The data for the books is stored in “the mind of the computer,” according to a spokesperson at Xavier.

The books are produced when a client orders a book listed in their library.

(Direct link to the author’s listing on the Xavier Society for the Blind website

Xavier also works with the Talking Books for the Blind and does inter-library loan. They are listed in the National Library Service.

Kelso’s books are also available through The Anna B. Repicky Foundation. The Foundation is based on the idea that “children become readers on the laps of their parents,” according to a quote by Emilie Buckwald on their website (

The goal of the Anna B. Repicky Foundation is to provide a print book and a braille copy to clients so the sighted and non-sighted in families and classrooms can read together.

The two organizations have teamed up to expand the number of books available through their libraries. The books are provided to the clients to keep without charge.

“One of my uncles was blind. My best friend of many years is blind. I have seen the struggles the blind have to live a fulfilled life. If even one child learns to read because he or she enjoys one of my books, I am very happy about that,” Kelso said.

Kelso will be signing books at the Gift of Grace Lutheran Church in Fernley, Saturday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at 190 West St., Fernley High School Band Boosters craft show on Nov. 14 from 3-8 p.m. and Nov. 15 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Fernley High School.

She will also sign books at the Fallon Eagles Holiday Craft Fair on Nov. 21 from noon to 7 p.m. and Saturday, Nov. 22 from 9 a.m.. to 4 p.m. at 7977 Reno Highway.


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