Home >> Who is Reading What? >> 1988 - 1990

Who is Reading What?
A Celebrity Reading List: 1988 -1990


Alan Alda  Doris Day Stephen King Jaclyn Smith
Jane Alexander Margaret Dickson Edward L. Koch Olympia Snowe
Armand Assante  Cassandra Peterson (Elvira) Angela Lansbury Steven Spielberg
Lucille Ball Elvira  John McKernan Jr. Maureen Stapleton
Eve Bither Malcolm Forbes Lorne Michaels James Stewart
Joseph Brennan Jan Fox George Mitchell  Jessica Tandy
Tom Brokaw Morgan Freeman  J. Gary Nichols James Tierney
Carol Burnett Arsenio Hall Tip O'Neill Lana Turner 
Barbara Bush Daryl Hannah  Jane Pauley  Ted Turner
Jimmy Carter Bob Hope Tom Poston  Betty White
Cher  Willis Johnson Lee Remick Oprah Winfrey
William Cohen Barbara Jordan Cybill Shepherd Joanne Woodward
Hume Cronyn Garrison Keillor Carly Simon  



Alan Alda 


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Top Horse at Crescent Ranch

by Howard L. Hastings


The Legends of King Arthur

by Sir James Knowles


The Congressional Record

"I read a lot of books as a kid and they were all very different. I think the three that had the strongest impression on me were these: Top Horse at Crescent Ranch. This was a children's book. I read it when I was eight and I immediately sat down and tried to write my own book about a horse. From then on, I knew I wanted to write. 

The Legends of King Arthur. I would read myself to sleep at night with the magic of Merlin and the decency and cleverness of the Knights of the Round Table. From then on, I knew I wanted to be a magician. 

The Congressional Record. For some reason, leather bound copies of the goings on in Congress lined the shelves of our living room and I poured over them when I was twelve. I had never read anything so funny. From then on, I knew I wanted to do comedy."

Alan Alda

Jane Alexander  
Actor and Chair of National Endowment of the Arts

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by Toni Morrison
"Ms. Morrison is simply one of the greatest writers of our time."

Armand Assante  

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Unbearable Lightness of Being 
by Milan Kundera

Lucille Ball  

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Black Beauty 
by Anna Sewell


Life of Samuel Johnson 
by James Boswell


Anatomy of an Illness 
by Norman Cousins

"I'm very pleased to help promote National Library Week because I enjoy reading so much. I have always read all kinds of books. I remember especially being so enchanted by Black Beauty when I was young - and Boswell's Samuel Johnson and Anatomy of an Illness by Norman Cousins. I love reading biography and history books. But, I think the important thing is to read and read and read.

Thank you for your interest in including me in your project."



Eve Bither  
Maine Commissioner of Education

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by James Gleick

Joseph Brennan  
U.S. Representative, Maine

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Killer Angels 
by Michael Shaara

Tom Brokaw  

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The Great Plains 
by Ian Frazier

Carol Burnett 

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The Yearling 
by Marjorie K. Rawlings
"This has been my favorite book since I first read it as a young girl. I now read constantly - I love biographies - but no book will ever have the impact of The Yearling read for the first time."

Carol Burnett

Barbara Bush 
First Lady

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The Autobiography of Frederick Douglass
by Frederick Douglass

Jimmy Carter  
Former U.S. President

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Let Us Now Praise Famous Men 
by James Agee


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Interview with a Vampire 
by Anne Rice

William Cohen
U.S. Senator, Maine

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The Essential Walter Lippmann 
Alistair Cooke's America

Hume Cronyn


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Treasure Island 
by R. L. Stevenson

The White Company 
by Conan Doyle

Clinging to the Wreakage
by John Mortimer

The Raj Quartet 
by Paul Scott

Doris Day 

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Kinship With All Life 
by J. Allen Boone

Margaret Dickson 

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Breathing Lessons 
by Anne Tyler 

"I've just finished Breathing Lessons, Glenna, and I thought it was a stunning technical achievement. But there are so many books I'd like to recommend! Let me just name some authors: Mary Stewart, Mary Renault, May Sarton, Dick Francis, Joyce Carol Oates, Sylvia Ashton-Warner, Barbara Tuchman, Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, Madeleine L'Engle, Steve King, Ruth Moore, Gladys Hasty Carroll, Dorothy Clark Willson, Susan Isaacs, Margaret Atwood, Margaret Drabble, Rosamunde Pilcher, Jessamyn West, Rumer Godden, John Irving, Phyllis Whitney, Susan Fromberg Schaeffer, Gail Godwin, Colleen McCullough, Andrew Greeley, John Ciardi, Taylor Caldwell, Frank Slaughter, Jean Kerr, John Tagliabue, Laurence Sterne, Jean Shepherd, Louise Erdrich. Dorothy Gilman -- did I mention her? 
These are just a few recent ones. There are many more poets and novelists. William Saroyan. Virginia Woolf. Mark Twain, Somerset Maugham. Steinbeck and Hemingway. Faulkner, Chute, Roger Zelanzny, Dorothy Gilman, Martin Dibner, R.D. O'Neal. Michael Kimball.  
Help me, I can't stop! Let's celebrate them all! And all those wonderful Maine writers we hear so much about! And let's keep going and going, reading and reading -- let's get excited! And let's not forget the most basic of all, the good old-time novelists, Bronte, and E.M. Forester, John Galsworthy, Mazo de la Roche, Trollope, James. Austen, Fielding. Dorothy Gilman -- no, I said her, and Mrs. Polifax is everywhere! 
And Glenna, the truth is, if you put me on a desert island, I'd want to have my Bible with me, and some Shakespeare, and maybe some William Wordsworth and some Yeats, and some Coleridge, to help me last. 
All thanks for your continuing concern and friendship -- with a habit like mine, I'm grateful to have such a fine librarian for a friend!"

All the best,


Cassandra Peterson (Elvira)  

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Beyond Power - On Women, Men & Morality 
by Marilyn French


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Interview with a Vampire 
by Anne Rice

Malcolm Forbes  

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It was on Fire When I Lay Down on It 
by Robert Fulghum

America in Search of Itself 
by Theodore White


Jan Fox  

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Bonfire of the Vanities 
by Tom Wolf

Winds of War 
by Herman Wouk

War and Rememberance 
by Herman Wouk


Morgan Freeman 

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Moby Dick 
by Herman Melville

Arsenio Hall 
TV Host, Actor

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Little Girl Lost 
by Drew Barrymore
"Since Drew is a part of our youth, you get the point of view of someone not only in the same age group as our young, but she has the same experiences and problems. Except, she is addicted to drugs and alcohol.

Daryl Hannah 

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Horton Hears a Who 
by Dr. Seuss

Charlie and the Chocolate Factory 
by Roald Dahl

by Kurt Vonnegut

Collected Stories 
by Gabriel Garcia Marquez


Bob Hope  

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Tom Sawyer 
Huckleberry Finn 
by Mark Twain

Willis Johnson

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by Knut Hamsun

Barbara Jordan  
U.S. Representative, Texas

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Lest Innocent Blood Be Shed 
by Philip Hallie
"Books have affected my life by enlightening me and increasing my knowledge about subjects of interest to me."

Garrison Keillor  

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by Paul Fussell
"WW II was my father's war, and my uncles', but they didn't tell me much about it. This book tells. It's written from the perspective of the soldier on the ground, and, along with Liebling's writing, and James Jones' and Norman Mailer's, it is indispensable."

Stephen King  

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Fifth Business 
by Robertson Davies

Lord of the Flies 
by William Golding

"I really enjoyed this book...you just couldn't put it down."

Edward L. Koch  
Mayor, New York City

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1968 in America 
by Charles Kaiser
"A superb book. It is interesting reading for those who experienced the sixties as well as for those who were too young to enjoy them."

Angela Lansbury  

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The Shell Seekers 
by Rosamund Pilcher
"A great story for all ages - but girls in particular!"

John McKernan, Jr.  
Governor of Maine

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One Man's Meat 
by E. B. White

Lorne Michaels  
T.V. Producer

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So Long, See You Tomorrow 
by William Maxwell

George Mitchell  
U.S. Senator, Maine

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The Great Triumvirate 
by Merrill Peterson

The Cycles of American History 
by Arthur Schlesinger, Jr.


J. Gary Nichols  
State Librarian, Maine

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West With the Night 
by Beryl Markham

Tip O'Neill  
Speaker of the House

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The Boys of Autumn 
by Roger Kahn

The Outermost House 
by Henry Beston


Jane Pauley  

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The Catcher in the Rye 
by J.D. Salinger

Tom Poston  

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Look Homeward, Angel 
by Thomas Wolf

Lee Remick  

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One Hundred Years of Solitude 
by Gabriel Garcia Marquez

Cybill Shepherd  

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Women, Sex and Addiction 
by Charlotte Kasl

Carly Simon  

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Tender is the Night 
by F. Scot Fitzgerald

Anna Karenina 
by Leo Tolstoy

House of the Spirits 
by Isabel Allende

Catherine the Great 
by Henri Troyat


Jaclyn Smith  

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Little House on the Prairie 
by Laura Ingalls Wilder

Gone With the Wind 
by Margaret Mitchell

The Great Gatsby 
by F. Scott Fitgerald


Olympia Snowe  
U.S. Representative, Maine

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Look Homeward 
by David Herbert Donald

Steven Spielberg  

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The Leatherstocking Saga
by James Fennimore Cooper

Treasure Island 
by Robert Louis Stevenson

Maureen Stapleton 

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The Brothers Karamazov 
by Dostoyevsky

James Stewart

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by James Michener
"Mr. Michener captured the history, romance and spirit of our 50th State as no other author has been able to do."

Jessica Tandy 

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Crossing to Safety 
by Wallace Stegner

What's Bred in the Bone 
by Robertson Davies

James Tierney  
Attorney General, Maine

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Among School Children 
by Tracy Kidder
"Tracy's description of life in a fifth grade classroom was a moving description of the realities of today's American education."

Lana Turner 

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Anatomy of an Illness 
by Norman Cousins
"It certainly inspired me."

Ted Turner  
TV Mogel

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Commodore Hornblower 
by C. S. Forester

Mutiny on the Bounty 
by Nordhoff and Hall

Betty White  

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by Edward Rutherford
"A wonderful overview of human nature from the earliest days. A great read for anyone fascinated by early England."

Oprah Winfrey
Actor, TV Host

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Their Eyes Were Watching God 
by Zora Neale Hurston

Kaffir Boy 
by Mark Mathabane

The Color Purple 
by Alice Walker

Joanne Woodward  

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Little Dorrit 
by Charles Dickens

Ex Libris


Our annual Who Reads What? List always inspires people to read books that are different from their usual fare. The early years of this project brought many intriguing suggestions from noted and respected people, graciously sharing their favorite reading.


The library is busier than ever. Part of this activity may be the economic times, but much is because whole families are now re-discovering the importance of reading and cultural activities. Please help us keep this movement growing by promoting your favorite materials to your friends and neighbors. Use your library. Tell us what services you want and join us in keeping libraries a strong and vital part of your community.


For questions or comments, please send mail to: webmaster@gpl.lib.me.us 

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