Home >> Who is Reading What? >> 1997

Who is Reading What?
A Celebrity Reading List: 1997

Dear Readers,

This is the tenth annual "Who Reads What?" celebrity reading list offering diverse suggestions for your pleasure. This list began in 1988, when I was searching for a way to entice people to read the wonderful books in our core collection. The city of Gardiner, population 6735, is a small city serving four smaller towns with library service. Our small book budget was strained by demands for best-sellers requiring multiple copies, while many of our quality works were forgotten.

 

The list gives us a tool for promoting great books. I encourage you to try the recommendations by this year's respected people. Find out what grabs Lynn Redgrave by the stomach, what Richard Dreyfuss re- reads every decade, and what Barbara Walters thinks has stood the test of time. Jean Auel wishes she "had time to read everything I want to read," and Nanette Fabray says, "to read is one of the greatest gifts we can be given." Please give yourself a gift. Take time to read a book.

Regards,

Glenna Nowell, Editor
"Who Reads What?"

 

Rene Auberjonois Richard Dreyfuss Anthony Hopkins Jane Powell
Jean Auel Richard Dysart Kim Hunter Sally Jesse Raphael
John E. Baldacci Nanette Fabray Bruce Jenner Lynn Redgrave
Clint Black Douglas Fairbanks, Jr. Ted Kennedy Patrick Stewart
Gerry Boyle Louise Fletcher Cheryl Ladd John Tesh
Deepak Chopra Leeza Gibbons Peter Max Tommy Tune
Susan Collins Jackson Gillman Reba McEntire Barbara Walters
Robin Cook Celeste Holm Bill Mumy Vanna White

 

 

Rene Auberjonois  
Actor

To Top

Tales of Chekhov  
by Anton Chekhov translated by Constance Garnett
"This is a 13 volume collection of short stories by one of Russia's greatest writers. An amazing achievement. Deeply moving, funny, and mysterious."
Jean Auel  
Writer

To Top

East of the Sun and West of the Moon fairy tale 

 

Ring Trilogy  
by J.R.R. Tolkien 

 

Universe  
by Robert Heinlein 

 

Left Hand of Darkness  
by Ursula K. LeGuin 

 

The Adventurer, The Wanderer and The Egyptian
by Mike Waltari 

 

The Source and Hawaii  
by James Michener

"You asked me to recommend a 'favorite book,' but I found it difficult to choose just one. My favorite fairy tale was East of the Sun and West of the Moon, and much later the Tolkien Ring Trilogy. The science fiction book that turned me onto that field at age 12 was Robert Heinlein's Universe, and later, Ursula Le Guin's Left Hand of Darkness. Mike Waltari's The Adventurer, The Wanderer, and The Egyptian and the early Micheners like The Source and Hawaii made me learn to love historical fiction. 

My reading is wide-ranging, eclectic, and I wish I had the time to read everything I want to read. Most books I like have certain elements in common: I love a good story, with narrative, character and imagination. 

With good wishes for many hours of great reading,  
Jean M. Auel"

John E. Baldacci  
Member, U.S. House of Representatives

To Top

Truman  
by David McCullough
"Libraries are among my favorite places. I have always enjoyed reading, ever since I was a little kid visiting the Bangor Public Library. 

One of my favorite books is Truman by David McCullough. I majored in history at the University of Maine, and have always been fascinated by Harry Truman. His straight talking, 'show me' Missouri ways always impressed me. In this book, Mr. McCullough shares one on one discussions that had not previously been published. It makes history come alive for the reader, and I recommend it highly."

Clint Black  
Singer

To Top

The Bible
Gerry Boyle  
Writer

To Top

Any of the writings of Henry David Thoreau 

 

The Travis McGee novels by John D. MacDonald 

 

The Song of the Dodo: Island Biogeography in an Age of Extinctions  
by David Quammen

"Any of the writings of Henry David Thoreau. 

The Travis McGee novels by John D. MacDonald, who never forgot that he was a storyteller by trade. 

The Song of the Dodo: Island Biogeography in an Age of Extinctions by David Quammen. An engaging and ultimately chilling examination of the direction in which our planet is going."

Deepak Chopra  
Doctor and Writer

To Top

Kim  
by Rudyard Kipling
"It sparked my imagination when I was a teenager and introduced me to the world of mystery, magic, wonder and adventure."
Susan Collins  
U.S. Senator

To Top

Pillars of the Earth  
by Ken Follett
Robin Cook  
Doctor and Writer

To Top

A Distant Mirror   
by Barbara Tuchman
"She makes history come alive to read like a novel -- at the same time it makes you question how far we have come or are we just as bad as the poor victims of the 14th century."
Richard Dreyfuss Actor

To Top

Scaramouche  
by Rafael Sabatini 

 

The Lion Alone  
by William Manchester 

 

Stranger in a Strange Land 
by Robert Heinlein

"I have re-read each of these books every decade since my childhood. There's more to each of them each time."
Richard Dysart  
Actor

To Top

Collected Works of Ralph Waldo Emerson

 

One Hundred Years of Solitude  
by Gabriel Garcia Marquez 

 

Grapes of Wrath  
by John Steinbeck

"Dear Glenna, 

The most important, vital and astonishing book I have ever read was the very first book I checked out of my first library. . .the Gardiner Public Library! The title and author escape me, but the joy remains. What a pleasure to recall, as I read your fine letter." 

Nanette Fabray  
Actor

To Top

The Lives of a Cell  
by Lewis Thomas
"Everything by Dr. Lewis Thomas, starting with The Lives of a Cell. He presents a dazzling and very funny insight into how and why all things in nature work. And I adore paperbacks, a must for those long plane rides to anywhere. Mysteries, ancient history, geology, biographies. . . 

To read is one of the greatest gifts we can be given."

Douglas Fairbanks, Jr. 
Actor

To Top

The collected works of Charles Dickens,  
Rudyard Kipling,  
William Shakespeare and  
Noel Coward
"As I am an avid reader and book collector, it's so difficult for me to choose just one book to be a favorite. May I suggest the collected works of the following outstanding authors? Charles Dickens, Rudyard Kipling, William Shakespeare, Noel Coward. 

I hope this list helps to entice readers of all ages to discover (or rediscover) what I think to be classic literature."

Louise Fletcher  
Actor

To Top

Black in Selma  
by J.L. Chestnut, Jr. and Julia Cass
"Black in Selma is a powerful and unforgettable oral history of the South in this century, the struggle for civil rights and the personal, courageous story of J.L. Chestnut, Jr., the only black lawyer in Selma, Alabama in that historic year, 1965.
Leeza Gibbons  
Talk Show Host

To Top

Black Beauty  
by Anna Sewell 

 

Healing and the Mind  
by Bill Moyers 

 

Ageless Body, Timeless Mind  
by Deepak Chopra

"Black Beauty by Anna Sewell. I loved the book as a child because it demonstrated the strength of the spirit. 

Healing and the Mind by Bill Moyers. I'm fascinated how thoughts and feelings influence our health. 

Ageless Body, Timeless Mind by Deepak Chopra. This book challenges you to question what we think we know about getting older. It opens the mind to using powerful tools within us to change our concepts about aging."

Jackson Gillman  
Entertainer

To Top

The Man Who Planted Trees
by Jean Giono 

 

Kinship With All Life  
by J. Allen Boone 

 

The Education of Little Tree  
by Forrest Carter

"I perform an adaptation of The Man Who Planted Trees and am continually amazed at this simple story's power. I can't put it better than Wendell Berry who said, 'In the figure of Elzeard Bouffier, Giono summarizes the best that can be said of our species.' 

Read Kinship With All Life with an open mind and it will forever change the way you perceive our fellow creatures. It is a challenging invitation for us human snobs to humbly broaden our horizons. 

After several specific recommendations over the years, and then receiving copies from separate individuals, I finally realized I was meant to read The Education of Little Tree. This Cherokee boyhood account so moved me that I've since bought many copies to give to my friends."

Celeste Holm  
Actor

To Top

The Wind in the Willows  
by Kenneth Graham 

 

The Sibling Society  
by Robert Bly 

 

The Laws of the Spirit  
by Dan Millman

"As a child I adored The Wind in the Willows by Kenneth Graham. I loved Dickens and Kipling. Currently we are very interested in The Sibling Society by Robert Bly and The Laws of Spirit by Dan Millman."
Anthony Hopkins  
Actor

To Top

The Great Gatsby  
by F. Scott Fitzgerald
Kim Hunter   
Actor

To Top

Any book by George Eliot or Mary Renault "I think I've collected everything both of them wrote, and of a rather large personal library, those are the two authors I tend to return to -- with delight."
Bruce Jenner  
Olympian Gold Medal Winner

To Top

Finding the Champion Within  
by Bruce Jenner
"Came out in January."
Ted Kennedy  
U.S. Senator

To Top

John Brown's Body  
by Stephen Vincent Benet 

 

The works of Thomas Merton 

 

Bruce Catton's books on the Civil War 

 

How the Irish Saved Civilization  
by Thomas Cahill

"The Civil War was the epic movement in the history of our nation's formation, and Stephen Vincent Benet has captured the personal stories of great courage and determination with vivid poignancy in his magnificent book."
Cheryl Ladd  
Actor

To Top

The Adventures of Little Nettie Windship  
by Cheryl Ladd and Brian Russell
"Ages 4-7. My husband and I wrote it together! We are so proud of it! Good values and good fun."
Peter Max  
Artist

To Top

Autobiography of a Yogi  
by Paramahansa Yogananda
Reba McEntire  
Singer

To Top

The Horse Whisperer  
by Nicholas Evans
"Very moving story."
Bill Mumy  
Actor

To Top

The Prophet  
by Kahlil Gibran 

 

Rabbit Run, Rabbit Redux, Rabbit is Rich and Rabbit at Rest  
by John Updike

"I always bring a copy of The Prophet with me whenever I travel. It's a constant source of inspiration and positive energy. It puts things in perspective for me. 

The four Updike novels that tell the life story of "Rabbit," Harry Angstrom, are nothing short of brilliant! Nothing is missing! Updike holds a mirror up to the face of our culture and it's not always pretty, but its heart is undeniable."

Jane Powell  
Actor

To Top

I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings  
by Maya Angelou 

 

Time and Again  
by Jack Finney

"Such beautiful writing, on a sensitive subject, from a glorious lady. 

The history and description of the period takes you around the corner to this wonderful time." 

Sally Jesse Raphael  
Talk Show Host

To Top

Self-help books  
and mysteries  
by Mary Higgins Clark,  
Ken Robert, and  
P.D. James
"Pertaining to the show, I love reading self-help books, anything that will educate me and my audience. For pleasure I really love reading mystery novels that take me out of my own life for a while. I read Mary Higgins Clark, Ken Robert and P.D. James."
Lynn Redgrave  
Actor

To Top

Map of the World  
by Jane Hamilton
"A haunting study of a modern day witch hunt. A family is taken apart forever when a child dies and a woman is wrongfully accused of child abuse. Told by both the husband and wife. This novel grabbed me by the stomach. I could not put it down. Brilliantly written."
Patrick Stewart 
Actor

To Top

Mayday  
by Johathan Lynn
"An ironic, satirical, funny -- and finally tragic story about an English author living in Hollywood and, suffering from writer's block, desperately looking for a story. Jonathan Lynn is co-creator of the brilliant 'Yes, Minister' and 'Yes, Prime Minister' series and as an English actor living in Hollywood I found the context recognizable and amusing."
John Tesh  
TV Personality and Musician

To Top

Look Homeward, Angel  
by Thomas Wolfe
"This is my all time favorite book!"
Tommy Tune  
Choreographer and Actor

To Top

Winchell  
by Neal Gabler 
Barbara Walters  
TV Journalist

To Top

The Little Prince  
by Antoine de Saint-Exupery
"My favorite book is The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint-Exupery. 

This is a book that can be read by both children and adults. It has a message of love that is true and touching, and it is a book that has stood the test of time."

Vanna White  
TV Personality

To Top

Autobiographies "I love reading autobiographies that are written by the person themselves. It gives you the 'real' story and I always find them interesting."

 

 

Ex Libris

 

Libraries need your help. Those of us who love reading must promote it. Please talk about what you are reading and encourage others to try your favorite books. Read to a child and take children to visit libraries.

Gale Research helps promote reading by printing and distributing 20,000 copies of this list. You too can help by remembering a library with your charitable, memorial or endowment monies. 100% of your dollars can be spent on books.

Please help keep the world's public libraries strong and free.

Who Reads What? 1997 is funded by Thomson Gale, North America's leading publisher of information tools for home, offices, and libraries.

 

To order additional copies of Who Reads What? send a self-addressed, stamped envelope to: Thomson Gale, attn. Corporate Communications 835 Penobscot, 645 Griswold, Detroit, MI 48226.

For information on becoming a Friend of the Library call 1-800-9-FOLUSA. 

To Top