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Who is Reading What?
A Celebrity Reading List: 1999

Dear Readers,

This is the 12th annual “Who Reads What?” reading list offering great suggestions. Many of our noted people are very inspired by reading. Kathy Bates claims, “if you can read, you hold the key to the secrets of the universe. Imagine.” Judy Blume says, “Books helped me learn to understand other people and they taught me a lot about myself.” She writes that she “loved getting lost in books” when she was young, and that she still does. George W. Bush notes that “our capacity for discovery is never lost as long as we continue to read, both for learning and for pleasure, throughout our lives.” Please try the suggestions offered here, talk about reading to your friends, read to your children, and help libraries promote lifelong reading in your community. Check our web site http://www. gpl.lib.me.us for many more reading suggestions by noted and respected people.

Regards,

Glenna Nowell 
“Who Reads What?” Editor 
Gardiner Public Library 
Gardiner, Maine 04345 

 

Bryan Adams  George W. Bush Kelsey Grammer Patricia Neal
Muhammad Ali  Julie Christie Alexander Haig, Jr. Jim Palmer
Alan Bates Bill Cosby Shirley Jones Shimon Peres
Kathy Bates Barbara Eden Jerry Lewis Cokie Roberts
Judy Blume Geraldine Ferraro Martin Mull Morley Safer
Eileen Brennan Billy Graham The Muppets  

 

 

Bryan Adams 
Singer, recommends

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Klee Wyck by Emily Carr Brilliant book on Canada's west Coast
Muhammad Ali 
Boxer, recommends

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The Qu’ran My favorite book is the Qu'ran.  It is a spiritual, guiding book, revealed to the prophet Muhammad by Allah (God).  The religion of Islam is based on the teachings of the Qu'ran.  I highly recommend reading the Qu'ran--it is a wonderful book!  Keep reading, my friends.
Alan Bates 
Actor, recommends

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The Mayor of Casterbridge by Thomas Hardy It seems to be a story that covers just about all our emotions one way or another.
Kathy Bates 
Actor, recommends

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To Kill a Mockingbird

by Harper Lee 


Gone With the Wind 

by Margaret Mitchell 

 
Beyond the Paw Paw Trees: The Story of Anna Lavinia

by Palmer Brown  


The poetry of Emily Dickinson, Edna St. Vincent Millay, and T.S. Elliot

  
The plays of Tennessee Williams and William Shakespeare

I love to read! When I was growing up, I always received books at Christmas and on birthdays. When I finished reading those, my mother took me to the library to check out others. I loved to read aloud, to pretend to be different characters in a play. And now reading is my work. Reading scripts and contracts. Reading books that might be made into films, that might help me research a character. These days everyone in Hollywood complains that it's getting harder and harder to find a good screenplay, that it's hard to find a good writer and I believe that's because good writers are good readers first. Good movies are well written scripts first. We all love to hear a good story. Learning to read is discovering a secret language so all the storytellers in the world can whisper their stories to us. True stories about everything that's ever been experienced by a human being on the face of this earth since time began. Imagined stories told so well that when we read them we travel so far into the story's world that the real world disappears like magic! Secrets about how to do all the things we've learned to do since we stood up on two legs and imagined the symbols that became the words to save our stories. We save our stories in books. We save our books in libraries. Libraries are the storyhouses' full of all those stories and secrets. If you can read, you hold the key to the secrets of the universe. Imagine. 
Judy Blume 
Writer, recommends

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Madeline 

by Ludwig Bemelmans 

 
Oz books

by L. Frank Baum  


Nancy Drew mysteries

by Caroline Keene 

 
Betsy-Tacy books

by Maud Hart Lovelace

Dear Friends at the Gardiner Public Library.  
When I was small my mother took me to the public library in Elizabeth, New Jersey, where I would sit on the floor and browse among the books. I not only liked the pictures and the stories but the feel and the smell of the books themselves. My favorite book was Madeline by Ludwig Bemelmans. I loved that book! I loved it so much I hid it in my kitchen toy drawer so my mother wouldn't be able to return it to the library. Even after the overdue notices came I didn't tell my mother where the book was. If only I had asked I'm sure she would have bought me my own copy but I didn’t know that was a possibility then. I thought the copy I had hidden was the only copy in the whole world. I knew it was wrong to hide the book but there was no way I was going to part with Madeline. I memorized the words in the book and though I couldn't really read I pretended that I could. When I did learn to read I was very proud. Not only could I read Madeline but I could read the back of the signs in the store windows and I could read the words in the schoolbooks. In class we were divided into reading groups with bird names. I was a bluejay in first grade and a robin in second. But the stories in our readers about Dick and Jane and Spot weren't nearly as much fun as the stories in the books I chose myself. I loved getting into bed at night with a favorite book and reading until my father said it was time to put out my light. Books opened up a whole new world to me. Through them I discovered new ideas, traveled to new places, and met new people. Books helped me learn to understand other people and they taught me a lot about myself. Many years have passed since I hid that copy of Madeline, and I've never done that again, but I can still recite the story by heart. And when my daughter was born Madeline was the first book I bought for her. Some books you never forget. Some characters become your friends for life. I loved getting lost in books when I was young. I still do! I hope you love to read too! 
Eileen Brennan 
Actor, recommends

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Harper’s Magazine Every issue from cover to cover. Authors: only the best we have. I read constantly— if I read Harper’s, I find I soar!! 
George W. Bush 
Governor of Texas, recommends

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The Raven: A Biography of Sam Houston

by Marquis James  


The Good Life and Its Discontents: The American Dream in the Age of Entitlement, 1945-1995 

by Robert J. Samuelson

  
The Dream and the Nightmare: The Sixties Legacy to the Underclass 

by Myron Magnet 


The Very Hungry Caterpillar

by Eric Carle  


Sarah’s Flag for Texas 

by Jane Alexander Knapik

  
James and the Giant Peach by Roald Dahl  


My Side of the Mountain 

by Jean Craighead George

  
Tuck Everlasting 

by Natalie Babbitt 


The Wind in the Willows

by Kenneth Grahame  


Just So Stories 

by Rudyard Kipling

When I was growing up, I preferred reading biographies about historical figures and baseball players. I still enjoy books about history, especially Texas history.  I also like studying forces that helped shape today's economy and social structure.  The Good life and its Discontents: The American Dream in the Age of Entitlement, 1945-1995 and The Dream and the Nightmare: The Sixties' Legacy to the Underclass each provide food for thought and discussion.  
Laura and I often read to our daughters when they were young.  One of their top requests was The Very Hungry Caterpillar.
Our capacity for discovery is never lost as long as we continue to read, both for learning and for pleasure, throughout our lives.
Julie Christie 
Actor, recommends

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Seven Gothic Tales 

by Isak Dinesen  


Explosion in the Cathedral by Octavio Paz  


The Crusades Through Arab Eyes

by Amin  Maalouf


Any book by Noam Chomsky

Anyone who saw Out of Africa (another favorite book by Isak Dinesen) will remember it was about a story-teller. Anyone who saw Babette’s Feast will attest to the magic of her stories. Anyone who reads Seven Gothic Tales will enter into the magic heart of these strange stories. Explosion in the Cathedral by Octavio Paz, part novel, partly history, the great Mexican writer whirls you through the French and Haitian revolution, part of the incredible journey he takes you on.  
The Crusades Through Arab Eyes by Amin Maalouf. Because our view of history is so narrow—a first step towards refocusing.  
Any book by Noam Chomsky. Each one serves to further uncover the fog of disinformation with which government and multinationals obscure their reasons for their actions. 
Bill Cosby 
Actor 
When I was a young man, I was unsure of what I wanted to become, but I knew I wanted to become something or somebody! I told my teacher that I didn’t know what to do with my life. I didn’t know what the various employment possibilities required, nor did I know how I could qualify to meet those requirements.  She told me that the best place to go is to the library. It is quiet, therefore I would have to be in touch with myself. If a thought occurred that I wanted to become a designer, a scientist, an engineer, a law enforcement person, go into forensic medicine, become a social worker, a househusband, an entrepreneur, a chef, a chess champion, a basketball player, a coach, a marathon runner...she could go on and on, but I got the point—the information is in the library. And, she said to me, that by reading, I would be in control of my own mind—and I have been reading ever since
Barbara Eden 
Actor, recommends

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London and Sarum 

by Edward Rutherfurd 

An exciting journey through the life of a city. Both these books put me in another world—just as Frank Baum did with his Oz books when I was a child. 
Geraldine Ferraro 
Politician, recommends

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Seasons of Her Life: A Biography of Madeleine Albright, Secretary of State 

by Ann Blackman 

 

Framing a Life: A Family Memoir 

by Geraldine A. Ferraro with Catherine Whitney 

This is a story of a fabulously successful woman who should be a role model for anyone, male or female. The book is a quick read. I have also written a book which has just been published...It is also the story of a fabulously successful woman but not the same kind of success as Ms. Albright's. My book is about my mother, a daughter of immigrants who was prohibited from going to high school because she had to go to work to help support younger brothers and sister. Her success was in raising two children as a single head of household in a world that was hostile to women. She too, should be considered a role model for both males and females. 
Billy Graham 
Evangelist, recommends

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The Bible The book Mr. Graham reads most is the Bible. He reads it regularly, and he bases all his sermons on it. Mr. Graham has always been interested in reading books about history and also biographies. He started reading a lot when he was 10 or 11. He traced the history of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire before he turned 14.  
In They Call Me Mother Graham, a book written by Billy Graham’s mother, it says, “Billy’s favorite spot for reading was right in the middle of the living room floor. He’d lie on his back, put his feet up, and read. At Christmas-time Billy read 10 or 11 historical books from the library.  
Sincerely,  
Mrs. Constance H. Hales  
Executive Assistant, Billy Graham Evangelistic  
Association
Kelsey Grammer
Actor, recommends

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A Passage to India 

by E. M. Forster 

A brilliant insight into colonial India. A clash of two worlds and the friendship of two men which sounds the depths and shortcomings of both cultures and captures a beautiful and tragic vision of history. I loved this book
Alexander Haig, Jr. 
former White House chief of staff, recommends

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Politics Among Nations 

by Hans J. Morgenthau 

Shirley Jones
Actor, recommends

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Contagious Emotions: Staying Well When Your Loved One is Depressed 

by Dr. Ronald Podell 

The book came in the mail when I married Marty Ingels!
Jerry Lewis 
Actor, recommends

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The Fountainhead by Ayn Rand  It’s a very profound book...Makes you think! 
Martin Mull 
Actor, recommends

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Three Novels

by Samuel Beckettz:

Molloy, Malone Dies, and The Unnamable

The ultimate drama of human existence. 
The Muppets 
Entertainers extraordinaire,  
recommend

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Green Mansions 

by William Henry Hudson  


How Green Was My Valley

by Richard Llewellyn  


The Greening of America

by Charles A. Reich  
(Kermit’s choices)

  
Charlotte’s Web 

by E.B. White (Miss Piggy’s choice) 


cookbooks (upside down) (the Swedish Chef’s choice) 

Jim Henson’s favorite children’s books were Winnie the Pooh, by A.A. Milne and The Thirteen Clocks by James Thurber. Jim’s favorite puppetry book was My Profession by Serge Obratzov. 
Patricia Neal 
Actor, recommends

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Death Be Not Proud 

by John Gunther

An extraordinary book that I read years ago. I recommend it. 
Jim Palmer 
Baseballplayer,  
recommends

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The Era 

by Roger Kahn 

The book presented baseball in the perfect world. Players that played the game for their love of it, fans that could identify and relate to their heroes in the most passionate way!!
Shimon Peres  Israeli politician, recommends

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In Light of India 

by Octavio Paz 

 I consider this work to be brilliant, opening windows of understanding between East and West.
Cokie Roberts 
Broadcast journalist, recommends

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The Moviegoer 

by Walker Percy

Morley Safer 
Broadcast journalist, recommends

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Darkness at Noon

by Arthur Koestler 

 

 

Ex Libris

 

Libraries everywhere offer their services free for research, information and pleasure. If you value libraries and reading  please help your community library by volunteering or donating. Kathy Bates said, “we save our stories in books, we  save our books in libraries.” Libraries need saving too.  This year, the Stephen and Tabitha King Foundation helped save the Gardiner Public Library’s 118 year old building by donating $60,000 to repair the leaky roof. In a city of 6,700 people, it would have taken several years to raise this money. Many libraries must choose between building repairs, technology, staff and books. No gift to a library is too small. 100% of your tax deductible donation can be spent on books if you wish. Libraries are still a place where your help can make a direct difference for everyone.

 

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

 

 

Who Reads What 1999? Who Reads What? 1999 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

 

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