Jenni’s Reading Insights

I always read several books at once so that I can alternate between them dependent upon my mood. I am currently reading:
• The Runner: Four Years Living and Running in the Wilderness by Markus Torgeby
• When Time Stopped : a Memoir of my father’s war and what remains by Ariana Neumann
• The Great Alone by Kristen Hannah (I am listening to this one, but have put it on hold because I’m finding it too depressing for the times)
• The Last day by Andrew Hunter Murray

And on a side note, I’ve recently finished Whose Names are Unknown by Sanora Babb. This was a fabulous book! It’s a family’s struggle through the Great Depression, the Dust Bowl, the migration and subsequent work in the migrant labor camps. It was written and meant to be published in 1939, but the publisher decided not to publish it at the last minute because Grapes of Wrath had just been published and had been so popular, they didn’t think another book of the same subject was necessary. The really interesting part is that the author was a native of Oklahoma and a volunteer with the Farm Security Administration in California. She did extensive research which was shown, by a colleague at the time, to John Steinbeck.

2. What is in your TBR pile?

• The Authenticity project by Claire Poole
• Through the embers of chaos : Balkan Journeys by Dervla Murphy
• Enemies and neighbors: Arabs and Jews in Palestine and Israel, 1917-2017 by Ian Black
• The Man who wasn’t there by Hjorth & Rosenfeldt
• Dying Fall by Elly Griffiths
• The Rise and Fall of Charles Lindbergh by Candace Fleming

3. Favorite Children’s book and why?

My favorite picture book of all times is Horton Hatches the Egg by Dr. Seuss. I still have my original childhood book, which was a hand me down at the time. It is very worn and falling apart. I also have another newer copy that my mom gave me when I went away to college. She made an inscription to me inside the front coverand this book invokes very happy memories of my mother.

As for favorite Children’s fiction, I have two favorite series. The Gregor the Overlander series by Suzanne Collins and of course, Harry Potter by JK Rowling.

4. Favorite Nonfiction book and why?

This is a really hard one, because most of what I read is nonfiction and I could never choose just one, or even a few, but I will try. My two favorite nonfiction genres to read about are World War II and Travel. I have had an obsession with the history of WWII since I was about 10 and have read extensively about it as well as visited countless historic sites. I think I must somehow have a connection to it in a previous life. I also caught the travel bug at a very young age and clearly have an obsession with traveling, so when I can’t travel, I read about other people’s travels!

Top 10 (In no particular order)

• Indifferent Stars Above by Daniel Brown
• Three Came Home by Agnes Newton Keith (WWII)
• Full Tilt : Ireland to India with a bicycle by Dervla Murphy (Travel)
• Twenty chickens for a saddle by Robyn Scott (Travel)
• The Airmen and the headhunters by Judith Heimann (WWII)
• Walking the Gobi by Helen Thayer (Travel)
• One year off by David Cohen (Travel)
• Floreana by Margrit Whittmer (Travel)
• The Long Walk by Stawomirrawicz (WWII)
• The Tunnels by Greg Mitchell

5. Favorite movie and why?

All of these questions about favorites is stressful, I really don’t like to have to choose!

• Sound of Music (No explanation necessary)
• Apollo 13 and the Martian (Because who doesn’t love a good space movie!)
• The Holiday and Sweet Home Alabama (Because you need to have favorite comfort Rom-Com movies)

6. Favorite TV series and why?

Enough with the favorites already!!

• The Crown – No idea why. I just love it.
• Amazing Race – Because, duh, travel (see question #4)
• Survivor – Because we started watching it when it came out 20+ years ago and we have some friends that we watch it with each week. They come to our house to watch it and since we have recorded it, we sit and talk for a long time and then watch the show at the end of our visit. It gives us a scheduled plan for getting together with our friends.
• The Astronaut Wives club (based on the book by Lily Koppel-only made one season, so no one else must have liked it)
There are probably many more, but I can’t think of them right now.

7. Favorite Fiction book and why?

Ack!! So many to choose from!

Top 10 (In no particular order)

• The Martian by Andy Weir
• The Sparrow by Mary Doria Russell
• One Second After by William Forstchen
• The Tomorrow Series by John Marsden
• How to stop time by Matt Haig
• Exodus by Leon Uris
• 11/22/63 by Stephen King
• The Help by Kathryn Stockett
• A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens
• The Stand by Stephen King

8. If someone was to play your favorite book character on screen who would it be?