Synopses & Reviews
With the goal of promoting literacy (and with proceeds going to the Read to Grow Foundation), here are 65 spirited testaments to the transformative power of reading from 65 distinguished contributors, as compiled by bookseller Roxanne Coady and editor Joy Johannessen.
Books change lives, and if you have any doubts on that score, you need only dip into this joyous celebration of reading by 65 people who have distinguished themselves in various fields, from sports, to cooking, to journalism and the arts. In brief and lively essays, the contributors wrestlers, actors, singers, monks, Nobel Prize winners, chefs, politicians, writers tell about the single book that changed the way they see themselves and the world around them.
A sampling of contributors includes: Elizabeth Berg on The Catcher in the Rye; Harold Bloom on Little, Big; Steven Brill on The Making of the President, 1960; Da Chen on The Count of Monte Cristo; Maureen Corrigan on David Copperfield; Nelson DeMille on Atlas Shrugged; Tomie dePaola on Kristin Lavransdatter; Anita Diamant on A Room of One's Own; Linda Fairstein on The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes; Sebastian Junger on Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee; Wally Lamb on To Kill a Mockingbird; John McCain on For Whom the Bell Tolls; Lisa Scottoline on Angela's Ashes; Susan Vreeland on To Kill a Mockingbird; and many more.
"For-the-love-of-books anthologies work like catnip on ardent readers and those who advise them, and what fun it is to discover which books writers love. Connecticut bookseller Coady, who believes so deeply in the power of books that she established the nonprofit Read to Grow Foundation (which book proceeds will support) to promote literacy and 'the joy of reading,' takes a refreshingly populist approach in this collection of 71 lively favorite-book essays" Donna Seaman, Booklist
"Most moving are the recollections of books that 'saved' someone and made him or her feel less alone or less strange." Library Journal
"You could think of it as a big bag of literary potato chips....Every essay has something interesting to say, and the books that are praised make a valuable guide to good reading." Hartford Courant
Sixty-five concise and lively essays by some of today's most successful writers identify the books that proved pivotal to the shaping of their careers, in a volume that includes Harold Bloom on "Little, Big," Nelson DeMille on "Atlas Shrugged," and Sebastian Junger on "Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee."
About the Author
Roxanne Coady, founder of R. J. Julia Booksellers in Madison, Connecticut, won the Publishers Weekly
Bookseller of the Year Award in 1995. In 1996, Coady founded the Read to Grow Foundation, which, in partnership with urban hospitals throughout Connecticut, has provided books and literacy information to tens of thousands of children and families.
Joy Johannessen has been an editor/executive editor at Grove Press, Oxford University Press, HarperCollins, and Delphinium Books. Among the writers she has worked with are Dorothy Allison, Harold Bloom, Michael Cunningham, Nien Cheng, and Arthur Miller.