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Who is Reading What?
A Celebrity Reading List: 1998

Dear Readers,

This is the 11th annual "Who Reads What?" celebrity reading list with suggestions aplenty for all. This list began in 1988, when I was searching for a frugal way to entice people to read the wonderful older books already on the library shelves. This list was an instant local success. People read and enjoyed the suggestions and they wanted more. Our Gardiner reporter remarked that our list could soon be the national story for library week. Yes, in 1991 it went national. It's now amazing to see the Gardiner (population 6,735) dateline from newspapers all over the world.

 

Celebrities have been wonderful about sharing their favorite books, and it's obvious that books and libraries played a role in their lives. Fred Rogers remembers that his hometown librarian's "love of books and reading was contagious." I hope you find some of these titles contagious and pass them on many times. Regards,

Glenna Nowell, Editor
"Who Reads What?"

 

Tom Allen Dana Delany Bob Newhart Fred Rogers
Bob Barker Carrie Fisher Arnold Palmer Soupy Sales
Bonnie Blair Mel Gibson Chazz Palminteri Pete Seeger
Dyan Cannon Bo Jackson CCH Pounder Kevin Spacey
Bill Cohen Marsha Mason Mary Lou Retton John Paul Stevens
David Cohen Laurie Metcalf Debbie Reynolds Alex Trebek
Judith Crist Rita Moreno Joan Rivers Shelley Winters

 

 

Tom Allen 
Member, U.S. House of Representatives

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A River Runs Through It 
by Norman Maclean
"This short novel weaves together religion, family and fly-fishing in an exploration of how much we can really help each other through life. A great read!"
Bob Barker 
TV Personality

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Undaunted Courage 
by Stephen Ambrose
"I think any American, particularly young people, will enjoy Undaunted Courage!
Bonnie Blair 
Olympic gold medal speed skater

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A Winning Edge 
by Bonnie Blair and Greg Brown
Dyan Cannon 
Actor

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The Bible "It's the best book I know!"
Bill Cohen 
U.S. Secretary of Defense

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The Mind and Faith of Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr. 
by Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.
"I have kept a copy of this book on my desk for years. It has been a constant source of inspiration."
David Cohen 
Producer, writer

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Tales of the Grotesque and Arabesque  
by Edgar Allan Poe
"The best horror writer in the history of mankind!"
Judith Crist 
Film and television critic

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War and Peace 
by Leo Tolstoy 

 

The Last of the Wine 
by Mary Renault 

 

The Guns of August 
by Barbara Tuchman

"Fiction or fact, these books are among the rare ones that transport us to another time and place and make us feel at home in another world and its society."
Dana Delany 
Actor

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The Great Gatsby 
by F. Scott Fitzgerald 

 

Remembrance of Things Past

by Marcel Proust 

 

The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald - "It is the perfect novel." 

Remembrance of Things Past - "I used it in college and it still stays with me today. Someday I will have the nerve to tackle it again."

Carrie Fisher 
Actor, writer

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Middlemarch 
by George Eliot
"I think it's the greatest book ever written." 
Mel Gibson 
Actor, director

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Fahrenheit 451 
by Ray Bradbury
Bo Jackson 
Football and baseball player 

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The Old Man and the Sea 
by Ernest Hemingway
Marsha Mason 
Actor

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My Family and Other Animals 
by Gerald Durrell
"A book for children and adults." 
Laurie Metcalf 
Actor

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Any book by Anne Tyler "All of her characters are intricately developed and well written."
Rita Moreno 
Actor

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Angela's Ashes 
by Frank McCourt 

 

A three volume 
Autobiography 
by Sean O'Casey

"Both of these works written with power and passion speak to the tenacity and the resilience of the human spirit.  
Additionally, both authors have the ability to paint pictures with words --  
These are simply not just volumes -- they are treasures."
Bob Newhart 
Actor

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My Ten Years in a Quandary by Robert Benchley  "The book that most impressed me when I was growing up and influenced my approach to comedy would have been any book by Robert Benchley or specifically My Ten Years in a Quandary."
Arnold Palmer 
Professional golfer

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Final Rounds 
by James Dodson
"Jim Dodson has written a golf book that transcends the game and tells the warm and touching story of father and son that reaches all audiences. It offers an insight into how the love of the game can be so captivating."
Chazz Palminteri  
Actor, Writer

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How to Know Higher Worlds by Rudolf Steiner
CCH Pounder 
Actor

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Cambridge 
by Caryl Phillips
"I'm reading up on fictions from the African diaspora. C. Phillips, whose family hails from the Caribbean, is an English-educated writer whose books are steeped in Black History and culture. His other books include A State of Independence and The Final Passage. "
Mary Lou Retton Olympic gold medal winner in gymnastics

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As a child, Dr. Seuss 

 

As an adult, anything by  
Danielle Steele 

Debbie Reynolds Actor

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The Bible
Joan Rivers 
TV personality

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War and Peace 
by Leo Tolstoy
"Wonderful love story set in a fascinating moment in history -- if you liked Gone With the Wind you'll love War and Peace..."
Fred Rogers 
Children's TV icon

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The Little Prince 
by Antoine de St. Exupery
"Dear Neighbors,  
Thank you for inviting me to be a part of your Who Reads What project. I'm honored to be a part of this project. It seems like a wonderful way to encourage reading in your community, and we're always glad to help librarians. The librarian in my hometown was very much a part of my growing up. Her love of books and reading was contagious, and I know how important librarians can be for children and for adults. 

As my choice for your booklet, I would offer The Little Prince by Antoine de St. Exupery. One of my favorite quotes is in that book, and it's framed on my office wall: 'What is essential is invisible to the eye.' I've referred to that quote now and then on our television program, too. It's helped me remember how much there is to appreciate in each other that is beyond what meets the eye. 

Thank you for thinking of us, and best wishes from all of us here in the Neighborhood." 

Sincerely,  
Fred Rogers

Soupy Sales 
Comedian

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Lush Life: A Biography of Billy Strayhorn 
by David Hajdu
"If you love music you will love this book. It is a book of the love, frustration, triumph and success of a true musical genius!"
Pete Seeger 
Singer, activist

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Ishmael 
by Daniel Quinn
"There's no one book I'd take to a desert island, not even the Bible or Shakespeare. Perhaps a book on how to build a boat or raft. Ishmael is the book I buy 10 at a time and give away to all sorts of folks."
Kevin Spacey 
Actor

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Letters to a Young Poet 
by Ranier Maria Rilke
John Paul Stevens 
Justice, Supreme Court of the United States

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Hamlet, Prince of Denmark
by Edward de Vere, the Seventeenth Earl of Oxford, writing under the nom de plume of William Shakespeare
Alex Trebek 
TV Personality

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How Green Was My Valley 
by Richard Llewellyn 

Wuthering Heights 
by Emily Bronte 

Shelley Winters 
Actor

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Look Homeward, Angel 
by Thomas Wolfe 
"I first read it at 14 years old and have read it many times since. It is a very beautifully written book.  
Thank You!

 

 

Ex Libris

 

Libraries are an honest deal. Their costs are small, their value large. Anyone can walk in and benefit from books that educate, entertain and instruct. Technology now links the smallest collections with the largest in the world. Librarians are adept at interpreting collections for patrons' needs and searching outside sources when necessary.

 

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

 

Who Reads What? 1998 is funded by Thomson Gale Research, 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

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