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Member: rocketjk

CollectionsYour library (2,610), Currently reading (9), All collections (2,610)

Reviews191 reviews

Tagsnovel (972), first edition (510), history (388), short stories (311), american history (201), baseball (188), biography (166), mystery (137), world war two (134), memoir (120) — see all tags

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About meI'm a used bookstore owner living in Boonville, CA. I grew up in New Jersey, went to college at Boston University and then went off to see America. I washed dishes in San Diego, bussed tables in Seattle, waited tables in New Orleans and spent a bunch of time exploring points in between. I got lucky and landed a spot first as a volunteer and eventually as a jazz/blues producer/host at WWNO, the NPR affiliate in New Orleans. I did that from 1980 through 1986, at which point I moved to San Francisco to get an MA in Literature/Creative Writing at San Francisco State. After that I was first a teacher and then the Publications Coordinator for the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco. That all led up to my establishing Rocket Words, my writing & editing business, in 2000. For 11 years, I did lots of different kinds of writing for lots of different kinds of clients and publications. For about five years, I concentrated pretty heavily on jazz journalism and then went back back mostly to client work. My wife and I bought Village Books in Ukiah, CA (the county seat of Mendocino County) in February 2011. I'm having a great time running the store and interacting with book lovers all day long! I'm a huge music (jazz/rock/blues/folk) and baseball fan. Also enjoy travel and hiking. I am deliriously happily married.

Please listen to my jazz radio show, The Jazz Odyssey, every other Monday afternoon from 2 to 4 Pacific Time (U.S.), streaming live at KZYX is Mendocino Public Radio, Listener Supported and fueled by passion.

About my libraryLots and lots of books waiting to be read, plus a bunch I've read and kept. My favorite authors are Joseph Conrad and Philip Roth. I also have a couple of nice, big shelves of books about baseball and a fairly well-stocked shelf about music, specifically jazz.

Groups50 Book Challenge, American Revolution & Founding Fathers History, Baseball, Bestsellers over the Years, Biographies, Memoirs and Autobiographies, Book Collectors, Books off the Shelf Challenge, Booksellers, Combiners!, Crime, Thriller & Mysteryshow all groups

Favorite authorsJoseph Conrad, Philip Roth (Shared favorites)


Favorite bookstoresGreen Apple Books, Laughing Dog Books, Village Books - Ukiah


Also onFacebook, Facebook

Real nameJerry Karp

LocationBoonville, CA

Account typepublic, lifetime

URLs /profile/rocketjk (profile)
/catalog/rocketjk (library)

Member sinceJan 21, 2008

Currently readingA Treasury of the World's Great Letters by Max Lincoln Schuster
The Best Short Stories of 1931 by Edward J. O'Brien
Jewish Times: Voices of the American Jewish Experience by Howard Simons
The Year's Greatest Science-Fiction and Fantasy: Second Annual Volume by Judith Merril
What Are the Seven Wonders of the World? by Peter D'Epiro
show all (9)

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I've thought of reading Advise and Consent, but I was unaware that it was the first in a series. Now that I've looked into it, Drury seems to have been some shrill right-wing nut job on the order of Glenn Beck, Rush Limbaugh and the like. Run away!
Happy Thingaversary, Jerry!
Same here, I think I found it. God bless
So I managed to pick up a copy of "The War in Eastern Europe" by John Reed. This version contains the chapters 'Arrest a la Russe' and 'Prison Life in Cholm'. Is that the unexpurgated version?
so a Jersey boy living in California and a Long Island girl living in England. We get around don't we? Love the idea of owning a used book store...been a dream of mine for as long as I can remember. Read your profile, sounds like you've got it all together and can appreciate someone who is "deliriously happily married". My music taste is more vocal jazz/lounge with Dinah Washington being my most favorite of all. Good luck with the book the Brits say, "sounds fab!"

Hey Jerry,

Just saw that you've added 'The Southern Journey of Alan Lomax' - which looks wonderful. Good spot!

I did notice your review, Jerry. I gave it a thumb, in fact. Glad to see we agree on the book and the music. I'm ashamed to say The Flying Burrito Brothers were never on my radar until I read this book, but I've ordered The Gilded Palace of Sin, and I suspect I'll be hunting down a few other albums in Meyer's recommended listening discography. My brother stole my Sweetheart of the Rodeo LP years ago--I'll let him read Twenty Thousand Roads if he gives it back!
Many thanks for getting in touch. I'll concede to Lola. I think she wants it more than I do.
Best wishes,
First of alla: Tervetuloa! I hope you'll enjoy your stay in Helsinki and Finland.

I guess giving recommendations on a city is about as much guessing game as on books but here we go anyway...

To me Helsinki is most importantly a city by the sea---sea for swimming, walking on the shore, for having a lazy day on seaside park or on a nearby island. Kaivopuisto, one of the seaside parks, is surely mentioned in guide guide books but it is still worth checking. Aurinkolahti and Herttoniemenranta are more urban alternatives for a walk by the sea. They are both located East of the center and can be reache by the Metro-train. Lauttasaari (an island but there is a bridge) is a nice place too, to the West of the center. Suomenlinna and Pihlajasaari are islands to be visited by boat. The former is more town-like setting and an old fort, and the latter is a park.

Kallio and Punavuori other cool city districts near the center, one to the NE and the other to the SW. There are nice bars and clubs in both areas but I have to confess this is second hand information for I have been too busy with my kids lately to do much clubbing recently.

Bookshopping: is worth seeing though it not an used book one., on the other hand, is specialising on used books in 'foreing' languages.

I saw in your profile that your into music and jazz especially, so is probably the club to check, and and Eronen ( the shops to visit. All the places I referred with an www-address are also physical places.

Nice review of Sepharad Jerry! Makes me want to reread it already if I could find a gap in the TBR pile. It's certainly a book that makes a lasting impression.

Hi Jerry,

Yes, Sepharad is a very good read. I read it a couple of years ago and recall that for me it got better and better as I neared its end. I admit I was slightly confused in the early chapters, but I stuck with it thankfully and by the end everything made perfect sense to me. Beautiful writing.

If you ever come to Wales you'd be most welcome to visit us here, though I hope we'll be in a slightly bigger place than the flat we moved into a few months ago! Being an arborist is generally satisfying work, but alas I don't earn much money since becoming self-employed in 2008. Just about hanging on in there...

Over the years I've made some very special friends with people now living in California and when I eventually make it out there I'd love to come by and visit your bookshop. Your valley sounds like a beautiful part of the world. As is Wales of course - but your climate is much more to my liking!

Cheers to you to!
Hi Jerry! I just ordered "Sepharad" from Amazon, though I'm going to attempt to read it in Spanish. I say that not to brag; I used to be a fairly serious student of Spanish and I'm trying to resurrect it. We'll see how that goes. "Sepharad" seemed like it would be a good choice, and I'm happy to hear that you are enjoying it.

I grew up not too far from your neck of the woods, in Marin, but never got to see much north of Napa, which I mightily regret. But one of these days...And when I do, I will be sure to stop in at Village Books!
Hi, you asked about speaking English in Helsinki/Finland... I'd say there is always someone around who speaks at least some English, and more so in Helsinki and other cities. Welcome to Helsinki!k
Hi Jerry, just tried your link to your bookstore and got a weird page saying "server hacked". I've never seen such a thing before - I guess it means what it says?
Hey, Jerry, I went to B.U. too, back in the day. And San Francisco State. And lived in Berkeley awhile. Perhaps, seeing your interest in memoirs, I might interest you in the latter period, the early seventies, when, among other things, I was mailman in Oakland:

Hi Jerry, thanks for your kind words about my Anatomy Of A Murder review. I see that you gave it 4 stars. I made a full discloure on my thread on the 75-Book Challenge that it may have been a
4-star book; I just upped the rating because I used to live in the UP and my grandfather was an "extra" in the movie! I even posted a picture of him with James Stewart and Eve Arden.

Don't you see that this had to be my first 5-star book of the year? Sorry, I couldn't resist! I totally agree that repeated phrases in books like that can drive me up the wall.

Happy reading,
Just wanted to ask you to keep us all updated on the bookstore! You know, I think with BN going digital, small, indie bookstores have a much greater chance of success now. There will always be many people who prefer a store with paper and ink books, and most of all, knowledgeable booksellers.
Jerry, welcome back! Keep us all posted on your progress with the store. Sounds like a lot of people's dreams are riding on your shoulders. Best of luck,and happy New Year!
Jerry, honored to be your friend!
Rocket, didn't realize we had so many books in common--none of them, alas, by D. H. Lawrence :-) At least we can break bread over Somerset Maugham. Good to see you in the group!
I'm from Kansas. The high school was consolidated with the largest town in the county back in 1968 so the grade school library got all the high school books. There was no card catalog for the high school library so who knew exactly what was in it. The grade school and the high school were in the same building. (yes, there were still one room school houses in the county at that time, but they consolidated with the larger town schools soon after.) The grade school had in room libraries until the high school left. Then they got a whole room for the library and I don't think anybody knew what was in there. There was even a who complete series of the Wizard of Oz books - which had been removed from most school and public libraries in the 1950's for being communistic and socialist.

The Clansmen series was just a set of historical novels as far as I was concerned. I didn't know they were anything censored. I also didn't know that the series was the basis for "Birth of a Nation." Of course, I didn't know about "Birth of A Nation" because we didn't go to movies. There none in my home town. Which, is Munden, Kansas. Population 160. It is on the maps. Up next to the Nebraska state line. Anyway, I remember reading the books, because they were those old bindings with about three black and white smooth paper prints in each book. I know now that they are controversial, but I don't think reading them reinforced any of my opinions about civil rights or people and it certainly didn't make me view the Klan with any solicitude.
I read that series of books about the Ku Klux Klan back when I was in 8th grade. I lived in a small town and they had closed the high school and consolidated with another town several years before. The high school library was all smushed into the grade school library. Those books were there and I read all three of them. At that time I had no idea that they were controversial. I just read them. I do remember that they made the Klan seem like the great saviors of the south. What a difference the perspective of time makes! They were great action books. I liked them back then. Probably wouldn't now because I am not as easily pleased, but they were good back then.

I also read the entire series of the Wizard of Oz for the same reason.
I just came across a reply you left for me in a forum thread where you asked me about the Blues as Literature class I was taking at the time, last autumn.

Besides reading Hurston and Walker, we analyzed lyrics by Robert Johnson and Charlie Patton, studied early African American history and slave narratives, that sort of thing.

We watched a bunch of films. A documentary on Hurston, Amistad, and, believe it or not, Crossroads starring the karate kid, Ralph Macchio.

The instructor who taught the course was doing it for the first time, another professor having taught it previously, and I think the guy was having trouble really putting the course together. I wish it would've have went more in depth. All of the material seemed rather rudimentary and there wasn't a lot of in depth analysis of any subjects that were studied.
Thanks for your reply and for the advice on
Amazon, Al Llbris and Abe

Iʻll probably limit myself to finding
articles thrugh Google, or New York
TImes Online.
Bec ause I donʻt want o give a credit
card # on line, I donʻt deal with
Amazon -- or with Abe, which I
assume has the same rules. I think
my younger
son obtained my great-grandfatherʻs
book "Three Years a Soldier" from
Al Libris. My older son who intro-

But thanks for the effort.
duced us to the book got his copy--
I donʻt know where.
I wonder if you know of any biogaphy or
full-length book on the [Houston Astros]ʻ
pitcher of the 1970s, J. R. Richard?

He seems ot have had a very sad life
in retirement: I heard that he died some years ago--
in absolute poverty!

If nothing in books I will check Google.

Thank you for your excellent recommendations. I believe I'll do Sabbath's Theater, then Portnoy's Complaint, and then Zuckerman Bound. I am thrilled to see that my library has all 3!

And yes, I do love baseball--go Braves! I've recently read Stephen King's gorgeous new novella Blockade Billy, which you might want to check out.
I wonder if you could help direct me toward my next Philip Roth read. I've read Indignation, American Pastoral(favorite!), and Human Stain. I find his writing brilliant but am unsure if there is any order I should take in reading his books. thank you-- Jenny
Ah, that makes sense. Thanks for the link; I have you starred for future reference.

Nice review of "One Day of Life", Jerry; I'll have to look out for that title.

Can you send me the address of your 75 Books thread? I seem to have lost you somewhere along the way.

Darryl (kidzdoc)
Thanks for sharing.
Cheers, and I liked your review of As I Walked Out One Midsummer Morning. Laurie Lee gets so criminally ignored.
I actually read "Blind Assassin" for the Atwood in April read. Plus it got another old book off my shelf. I have had this one around for several years and just needed the extra push to get it off the shelf and into the done pile. When I clicked on your name to reply I was surprised to find out that you were a guy. Men don't usually like Atwood that much. However, I think this was a very interesting story with lots of ambiguity in it. Great characters and plot twists as well. I think this book was better than "oryx and Crake", which I read for a local live book discussion group. San Francisco area - WOW! Great place to live. All those wonderful coffee shops where a person can read and smell coffee. Two of my great passions.

Thanks for the warm welcome. I'm the GM of the Colts, this will be my 20th year working in baseball. Check out the Golden League, they might have a team near where you live. The pay is pretty low until you've got a few years under your belt, but even on the worst days, you're working at the ballpark. I noticed in your photo you have a couple of classic cars. I've got a collection of 1971's, a Mustang, a Buick Skylrark convertable and a Mercedes. Off season projects, to fill the days without baseball.

hi jerry,

pity that the weather was not too cooperative when you were exploring areas outside Sevilla. all the more reason to return then! whenever we travel, my husband and i also prefer to stay a few days outside the main touristic places in order to discover the local life. the weekly markets (in small town and villages) are always on top of our itinerary when we are in a new place -- in my opinion nothing beats them for local flavour and tradition (as well as fantastic photo opportunities!). a couple of years back we had planned to visit Coto Doñana National Park in Andalusia to discover the wildlife, but we changed plans and went elsewhere instead. i hope we will have the chance this year. just for something different next time you are in Andalusia, you may also want to cross over and spend the day in Tangier, Morocco (2 hours by ferry). now THAT is another place altogether to discover!

Re your recommendation I checked out from the library the bio of Satchel Paige. Will probably start it in a day or so.
>I suppose it's the most fun when books sneak up on us like that.>


I'll keep your recommendation in mind.
Again, i must comment on your review..this time THE RAPTURE OF CANAAN...i have waffled on reading this..for years. But your review?? i think i should..though i have serious issues with "organized" religion..and i do live in the Buckle of The Bible Belt....thank you for your wonderful review...

Hi Jerry:

Just saw your comments on Bonnie Book's my best of your best 2009. The Rapture of Canaan is one of my favorite books. I first read it shortly after it was published and decided then that it was a classic already.

On your profile you say you have "a couple of nice, big shelves of books about baseball." I hope you have THE PITCH THAT KILLED, by Mike Sowell (about Ray Chapman, the only major leaguer killed by a pitched ball, and Carl Mays, the man who threw the pitch). A killer book, pun intended. I've read it several times.

Also hope you have a novel called IF I NEVER GET BACK, by Darryl Brock. Sam, somehow transported from the present day to 1869, ends up playing for the orginal Cincinnati Red Stockings. There's lots of other things going on too. I've read this one several times too. It's probably the most compelling sports novel I've ever read.

Hey, you
Just read your review of THE LAST PICTURE SHOW the inimitable Larry McMurtry...and your review was a good one...i came to McMurtry in the late 70s/early 80s...with MOVING ON....and i recently acquired that title after umpteen years (have NOT reread..i'm scared a way)...oh..i read Moving On whilst in the mind that...Larry McMurtry is one of my all-time favorite writers..he can go sappy/happy/dour/western..he did write LONESOME DOVE after all.

...and his son JAMES is a kill-hell singer/songwriter

i said i would post you a note one of these days....guess it just happened

hey la

We'll look around and see if we can dig up something interesting.
Here's the list, Jerry. Go for it!
An Alphabetized List of Your Top Tens for 2009
Abani, Chris: GraceLand
Achebe, Chinua: Things Fall Apart
Ackerley, J.R. Hindoo Holiday
Adamson, Gil: The Outlander
Adiga, Aravind: The White Tiger
Adichie, Chimamanda Ngozi: Purple Hibiscus
Allen, Sarah Addison: Garden Spells
Alexie, Sherman: Absolutely True diary of a Part-Time Indian
Anderson, M.T.: The Astonishing Life of Octavian Nothing, Volume 1
Atwood, Margaret: Alias Grace
Atwood, Margaret: The Handmaid's Tale
Atwood, Margaret: The Penelopiad
Atwood, Margaret: The Robber Bride
Austen, Jane: Emma
Auster, Paul: The New York Trilogy
Azzopardi, Trezza: The Hiding Place
Bahr, Howard: The Black Flower
Baker, Russ: Family of Secrets
Bakker, Gerbrand: The Twin
Balzac, Honore: Old Goriot
Banks, Ian: The Player of Games
Barbery, Muriel: The Elegance of the Hedgehog
Barlow, Tony: Sharp Teeth
Barry, Brunonia: The Lace Reader
Batataille, Marion: ABC3D
Bauby, Jean-dominique: The Diving Bell and the Butterfly
Bauermeister, Erica: The School of Essential Ingredients
Bazell, Josh: Beat the Reaper
Bemrose, John: The Island Walkers
Benioff, David: City of Thieves
Benson, E.F.: Mrs. Ames
Benson, Mary: At the Still Point
Bishop, Holley: Robbing the Bees
Blixen, Karen: Out of Africa
Bolano, Roberto: 2666
Boyle, Kay: Thirty Stories
Boyne, John: Mutiny on the Bounty
Bourdain, Anthony: Kitchen Confidential
Bradbury, Ray: Dandelion Wine
Bruen, Ken: The Guards
Bryson, Bill: Notes From a Big Country
Bulgakov, Mikhail: The Master and Margarita
Butcher, Jim: Princeps Fury
Butcher, Jim: Turn Coat
Carroll, Lewis: Alice's Adventures in Wonderland
Chace, James: Acheson: The Secretary of State Who Created the American World
Chang, Jung: Wild Swans: Three Daughters of China
Chaon, Dan: Await Your Reply
Chaplin, Charlie: My Autobiography
Child, Julia: My Life in France
Coelho, Paulo: The Alchemist
Collins, Susan: The Hunger Games
Collins, Wilkie: The Woman in White
Cooper, Gwen: Homer's Odyssey
Courtenay, Bruce: The Power of One
Cullen, David: Columbine
Cummings, Quinn: Notes From the Underwire
Davies, Robertson: The Deptford Trilogy
de la Parra, Teresa: Iphigenia]
Diamond, Jared: Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed
Diamond, Jared: The Third Chimpanzee
Dickens, Charles: Little Dorrit
di Lampedusa, Giuseppe Tomasi: The Leopard
Dunn, Mark: Ella Minnow Pea
Du Marier, Daphne: Rebecca
Earley, Tony: Jim the Boy
Easterly, William: White Man's Burden
Erdrich, Louise: The Plague of Doves
Emecheta, Buchi: The Joys of Motherhood
Enger, Leif: Peace Like a River
Evans, Polly: On a Hoof and a Prayer
Fallada, Hans: Every Man Dies Alone
Ferris, Joshua: Then We Came to an End
Fforde, Jasper: The Big Over Easy
Figes, Orlando: The Whisperers
Findley, Timothy: The Piano Man's Daughter
Ford, Jamie: Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet
Francis, Brian: Fruit
Frank, Anne: Diary of a Young Girl
Frank, Thomas: What's the Matter With Kansas?
Fraser, Antonia: The Pleasure of Reading
Frazier, Charles: Thirteen Moons
Frost, Jeaniene: Halfway to the Grave
Funke, Cornelia: Inkheart
Galloway, Janice: Clara
Galloway, Stephen: The Cellist of Sarajevo
Garton-Ash, Timothy: The File
Gaskell, Elizabeth: Wives and Daughters
Genova, Lisa: Still Alice
Gibbons, Stella: Cold Comfort Farm
Gilbert, Elizabeth: Eat, Pray, Love
Gilman, Charlotte Perkins: The Yellow Wallpaper
Golden, Arthur: Memoirs of a Geisha
Goldsworthy, Peter: Jesus Wants Me For a Sunbeam
Goodwin, Doris Kearns: Team of Rivals
Grace, Patricia: At the Still Point; Waiariki
Grandin, Temple: Animals Make Us Human
Grann, David: The Lost City of Z
Green, Graham: The Ministry of Fear
Grenville, Kate: The Idea of Perfection
Groff, Lauren: The Monsters of Templeton
Grossman, Vasili: Life and Fate
Gruen, Sara: Water for Elephants
Gurnah, Abdulrazak: Desertion
Haddon, Mark: The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time
Hage, Rawi: De Niro's Game
Hajdu, David: The Ten-Cent Plague
Hale, Shannon: Rapunzel's Revenge
Halse Anderson, Laurie: Wintergirls
Hammett, Dashiell: Red Harvest
Harding, Paul: Tinkers
Hendry, Rebecca: Grace River
Hoffman, Alice: The Ice Queen
Hollinghurst, Alan: The Line of Beauty
Hosseini, Khaled: The Kite Runner
Hosseini, Khaled: A Thousand Splendid Suns
Hornby, Nick: The Complete Polysyllabic Spree
Hornby, Nick: Housekeeping vs. The Dirt
Horsley, Kate: Confessions of a Pagan Nun
Houellebecq, Michel: Atomized
Hustvedt, Siri: What I Loved
Irving, John: The Cider House Rules
Irving, John: A Prayer for Owen Meany
Kazuo, Ishigura: The Remains of the Day
James, Henry: Portrait of a Lady
Jamison, Kay Redfield: Touched with Fire: Manic-Depressive Illnes and the Artistic Temperament
Jelloun, Tahar: This Blinding Absence of Light
Johnston, Wayne: The Colony of Unrequited Dreams
Jones, Gail: Sorry
Jordan, Hillary: Mudbound
Jostein, Gaarder: Sophie's World
Kapuscinski, Ryszard: The Shadow of the Sun
Kawabata, Yasunari: The Master of Go
Kent, Kathleen: The Heretic's Daughter
Kidd, Sue Monk: The Secret Life of Bees
Kingsolver, Barbara: The Poisonwood Bible
Kirn, Walter: Up in the Air
Kluger, Steve: Last Days of Summer
Knisley, Lucy: French Milk
Kopelman, Jay: From Baghadad, With Love: A Marine, the War, and a Dog Named Lava
Kramer, Clara: Clara's War, One Girl's Story of Survival
Krazikov, Sana: One More Year
Lahari, Jumpha: Interpreter of Maladies
Lamb, Wally: The Hour I First Believed
Land, Brad: Goat: A Memoir
Larson, Stieg: The Girl Who Played with Fire
Larson, Stieg: The Girl With the Dragon Tatoo
Lawson, Mary: Crow Lake
Le Carre, John: Smiley's People
Lee, Harper: To Kill a Mockingbird
Lehane, Dennis: The Given Day
Levy, Andrea: Small Island]
Lipman, Elinor: Inn at Lake Devine
London, Joan: Gilgamesh
Longfellow, Ki: The Secret Magdalene
Lowry, Lois: The Giver
Ludum, Robert: The Bourne Trilogy
Lychack, William: The Wasp Eater
Lynch, Jim: Border Songs
MacDonald, Anne-Marie: Fall on Your Knees
MacDonald, George: The Highlander's Last Song
MacMillan, Margaret: Paris 1919
Maguire, Gregory: Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West
Mandel, Emily St. John: Last Night in Montreal
Mann, Charles C.: 1491: New Revelations of the Americas Before Columbus
Maraini, Dacia: The Silent Duchess
Marchetta, Melina: Jellcoe Road
Martel, Yann: Life of Pi
Matin, P.D.: Body Count
Matthieseen, Peter: Shadow Country
McCann, Colum: Let the Great World Spin
McCarthy, Cormac: All the Pretty Horses
McCarthy, Cormad: Blood Meridian
McCarthy, Cormac: The Road
McEwan: Atonement
McKinley, Robin: Sunshine
Maynard, Joyce: Labor Day]
Mercer, Jeremy: Books, Baguettes and Bedbugs: The Left Bank World of Shakespeare & Co.
Min, Anchee: Empress Orchid
Mitchell, David: Black Swan Green
Monroe, Alice: The View From Castle Rock
Moore, Christopher: Lamb
Morrison, Tony: A Mercy
Mortensen, Greg: Three Cups of Tea
Morton, Kate: The Forgotten Garden
Morton, Kate: The House at Riverton
Murakami, Haruki: Norwegian Wood; The Wild Sheep Chase
Murphy, Lynda and Julie Rugg: A Book Addict's Treasury
Nemirovsky, Irene: Suite Francaise
Newport, Jerry and Mary: Mozart and the Whale: An Asperger's Love Story
Niffenegger, Audrey: The Time Traveler's Wife
Obmascik, Mark: The Big Year
Ogawa, Yoko: The Housekeeper and the Professor
Olmstead, Robert: Far Bright Star
O'Reilly, Tim: The Twitter Book
Otsuka, Julie: When The Emperor Was Divine
Palahniuk, Chuck: Rant: An Oral Biography of Buster Casey
Patchett, Ann: Bel Canto
Pausch, Randy: The Last Lecture
Pears, Iain: An Instance of the Fingerpost
Peck, M. Scott: In Search of Stones
Pennell, Joseph Stanley: The History of Rome Hanks and Kindred Matters
Peterson, Will: Triskellion
Petterson, Per: Out Stealing Horses
Phillips, Jayne Anne: Lark & Termite
Pollan, Michael: Omnivore's Dilemma
Proulx, E. Annie: The Shipping News
Raabe, Tom: Biblioholism: The Literary Addiction
Remarque, Erich Maria: All Quiet of the Western Front
Rhodes, Dan: Gold
Rhodes, Jewel Parker: Douglas's Women
Robertson, Don: The Greatest Thing Since Sliced Bread
Robinson, Marilynne: Housekeeping
Rosenthal, Amy Krouse: Encyclopedia of an Ordinary Life
Ruesch, Hans: Top of the World
Rushdie, Salman: Midnight's Children
Russell, Mary Doria: A Thread of Grace
Sabato, Haim: The Dawning of the Day: A Jerusalem Tale
Safran Foer, Jonathan: Everything is Illuminated
Satrapi, Marjane: Persepolis
Savage, Sam: Firmin
Setterfield, Diane: Thirteenth Tale
Shaara, Michael: The Killer Angels
Small, David: Stitches
Sigman, Dr. Aric: Remotely Controlled: How Televison is Damaging our Lives and What We can do About it
Silvey, Craig: Jasper Jones
Singh, Khushwant: Train to Pakistan
Spiegelman, Art: Maus I; Maus II
Stanisic, Sasa: How the Soldier Repairs the Gramophone
Stein, Garth: The Art of Racing in the Rain
Stockett, Kathryn: The Help
Strout, Elizabeth: Amy and Isabelle
Strout, Elizabeth: Olive Kitteridge
Suskind, Patrick: Perfume: Story of a Murderer
Tan, Amy: The Joy Luck Club
Tartt, Donna: The Secret History]
Thackery, William Makepeace: Vanity Fair
Tinti, Hannah: The Good Thief
Toibin, Colm: Brooklyn
Tremain, Rose: The Road Home
Tsiolkas, Christos: The Slap
Tye, Larry: Satchel: The Life and Times of an American Legend
Verghese, Abraham: Cutting For Stone
Verghese, Abraham: The Tennis Partner
Young, Emily Hilda: Miss Mole
Waugh, Evelyn: Vile Bodies
Waters, Sarah: Affinity
Waters, Sarah: Fingersmith
Waters, Sarah: Nightwatch
West, Rebecca: Return of the Soldier
White, Antonia: The Lost Traveller
Wiesel, Elie: A Mad Desire to Dance
Wilde, Oscar: The Picture of Dorian Gray
Winterson, Jeanette: Written on the Body
Wouk, Herman: The Glory
Wouk, Herman: The Hope
Wroblewski, David: The Story of Edgar Sawtelle
Young, William: The Shack
Zafon, Carlos Ruiz: The Shadow of the Wind
Zakaria, Fareed: Post-American World
Zaniewski, Andrzej: Rat
Zusak, Markus: The Book Thief

Jerry- It's great to hear from you! I have to plead guilty to providing false information: I have not started the Krakauer book, but plan on it later tonight or tomorrow. Yes, I saw him on the Daily Show also and there is an excellent interview with him on C-Span Booktv, which you might be interested in. Have you read his other books? They are all excellent. I'm really glad you are enjoying "Dragon Tattoo".It started out a bit rocky for me but I ended up really liking it and will read the others.
I just finished "Zeitoun" by Dave Eggers and it was outstanding. Take care and stay in touch!
You are welcome! I thought only my mom and sister thought I am capable of writing something funny! I haven't seen The Time Traveller's Wife and certainly don't intend to. As for the book, I would advice anyone who appreciates good, nice, clean language and a non-rambling, coherent narrative NOT to read this book!
Hi Jerry- I finally read your MJF blog and was very impressed and jealous. Excellent job! I'm always interested in rising young talents. I was intrigued by Buffalo Collision. Do they have a cd out? I have heard Esperanza Spalding's latest and loved it. I also love the latest by trumpeter Sean Jones. I've been neglecting my jazz for awhile now, I need to get back aboard! It's great seeing so many LTers that are jazz fans! Any recommendations, are more than welcome! Have a great weekend!
Jerry my man! Have you been to avaland's new online journal/review about international women's writing yet?!? It's

Tui, LT member "tiffin" and a vile temptress, wrote this about "The Housekeeper and the Professor":

"When the thunder roils, the rains lash down and a Shinto temple is blasted by lightning, Yoko Ogawa shows us that certain loves are dangerous wild forces capable of great destruction. She handles this with great delicacy, avoiding with skill what might otherwise have been a cliché."

And now, damn and blast it, I *have* to read this book!!! The NERVE of the woman! I'll bet you'll find a few things to add to your reading pile, too, which is why I came to spread the pain...I mean news!

Mark and I have been discussing the possibility of another group read in November and want your input. We have narrowed it down to two books at this point. "The People of the Book" by Geraldine Brooks and "The Thirteenth Tale" by Diane Setterfield. So chat it up with friends or us and let us know if you are up for it and what you think. Probably the same plan as with "Pillars of the Earth" which seemed to work out perfectly for almost all of us.
Think it over and give one of us a shout.
hugs and looking forward to hearing from you,
The Mission project is on hold at the moment. I've finished my part of it, and the complete text and bio information is waiting to be scanned for the publisher. I am hopeful it will go to press by February, which appears to be best case.

Those two books are in my To Read stack. i am currently reading the recent biography of Vin Scully. So far it hasn't moved me too much.

Dick Beverage
I really like the way you responded to the stop creating topic by month thread.

nice library!

Thanks for the cover, "dude" (I understand that's the term now in use).
Hi rocketjk, thank you for uploading the cover of The Foreigner by Ralph Connor...that makes three of us with this particular gem!
Hey,Jerry! I was able to catch some of your show today and as usual ,it was very good. I work most Thursdays, so it's nice to be able to tune in. I'd like to see your playlist for the show. Is that possible? Also, I wish it was available as a podcast, like some NPR shows and then I could DL it and toss it in my ipod. I like your latin jazz choices ,it's one of my favorite styles. Nice job! See you on the threads!
Hey! First, I'm sorry to answer your question so late (you've asked me about Yevgeny Zamyatin's We a long time ago). I actually like it very much, but from time to time cannot keep myself from thinking that the 'math analogies' in D's diary are a little overdone. But his desperate attempts to shun I330 and be (sort of) infatuated with her at the same time, and trials of formulizing this relationship was greatly told.
Still, I would call the book Sci-Fi rather than a 'dystopian novel', when compared to other dystopian works.
Hi, Jerry! First David "Fathead" Newman left us and now Hank Crawford! The old school crew is quickly abandoning us. Major bummer! I enjoyed both of those guys ,quite a bit over the years and I was able to see both of them at The Jazz Showcase in Chicago.
Hi, Jerry- Great show today and yes I did shoot you a request. I should have got it to you sooner. I am on vacation this week, so I was able to tune in, otherwise I'm at work all day. I enjoyed everything you played, especially the Wayne Wallace cuts. I need to track down some of his work .I've always been fond of the trombone, Curtis Fuller being one of my favorites. I've been slacking off on my jazz listening (to much indie rock!) but I'm trying to get back in the groove. Thanks for the entertainment! Mark
All is well and quite warm down SoCal way... haven't read Another Hill yet, seems I've added more books to my wish list than I've had a chance to get around to lately, but your reccomendation pushed it up on the list! Thanks...
Hi Jerry,

We live in Tenafly now, after spending a large chunk of time in nearby Teaneck. Before that we were in Redondo Beach and West Hollywood. Before that I was growing up in Texas while my husband grew up in New Mexico. So we've kind of been all over.

Don't think I've ever made it to Caldwell, though I've been through Maplewood and frequent Newark quite a bit. Love the museum there and we keep meaning to see the Newark Bears. Maybe we'll make it this summer. They've got a great park.

Northern California? I'm jealous.

My best,

I completely understand about not wanting to be pushed into reading certain books at a certain time. It just happens that there are a few books on the list (the Zweig, for instance) that I plan to read anyway. Feel free to jump into the conversations anytime!
I read, with varying levels of skill, Old Norse, Old English, and Middle Welsh; Italian too, but that's obviously not dead. Re: Brittany -- I'd count that as Northern Europe. You'd be looking for things either in Breton (a Celtic language related to Cornish and Welsh) or Gallo (a Romance language, and therefore related to French). In the middle ages, many around there took up French, so perhaps Old French, too. Unfortunately, I don't know any of these, and so have nothing to recommend.

I catalog for Dan Wyman Books, which is now located in New York City, but does a great amount of business online. Aside from strictly Jewish material, he has a lot of stuff in Eastern European languages, and on topics such as immigration, the labor movement, leftist politics, and the like.

On another note, though I'm now on the East Coast, and have been all my life, I'm hoping for a move to CA next summer. My partner and I are hoping to attend UC Davis -- he for a Ph.D. in evolutionary biology, and I for one in comparative literature.
I have read that Frisch bio, but I like Pilot Light of the Gashouse Gang by Bob Broeg. The bio is good, too.

I haven't looked at the comments for almost three months so apologize for not getting back to you.
I do indeed!

Thanks very much!

OOPS! You left SF . . . does that mean you are too far tocome to GreenDragon "Meet-Up" in Pleasanton October 19th? Writing in hopes you can come. . . would really make our day!
It is strange how so many Russian writers and artists are virtually unknown in the west - Repin, Suvorov, Leskov, Bunin, Bulgakov, and many more. Repin is a real head scratcher - you would not hear of him in almost any western art class.

I hope the collection included "The Enchanted Wander" "The Steel Flea" and "Lady MacBeth" - all those are great.
Thanks for your comment! Leskov is certainly a favorite of mine, and virtually unknown in the West.
Hi Jerry......have you read Eric Clapton's autobiography yet?? It's awesome. He was a very tortured soul ~ it's a miracle he survived that wild lifestyle for all those years ~ thank god he did, he's one of my all-time favorite musicians. Saw him on Larry King Live several months ago and he seems alot more centered and serene now that he's finally "grown up". I think the fact that he finally has settled down with his wife Melie and their 3 kids has done him a world of good. I am so happy that he is finally happy, and at peace.

If you haven't read his autobiography yet, I highly recommend it.

Have a great weekend!

~ Julie
Yo ho ho Jerry: I read the thread. Here's what I just posted:

Yes, jk, that's a generous 3-star rating. I'd personally give ol' Joanie here -1.125 stars. Hated everything about this one. However, to be completely fair, I only read a Pearl-rule plus 20, for a total of 70pp. So had I soldiered through the trenches of Woolfolk's muddy prose, would I have reached No-Man's-Land or an actual machine-gun emplacement? Alas, I shall never know, because this book was donated to Goodwill with loathing and distaste.

So now do you post the other 23?

Hey Jerry.....thanks for the add.

Here's a link from for the programming, so you can see when to tune in for jazz and blues. They used to have blues music on the streaming website 24/7, but now it looks like they have added in the NPR programs.....anyway, just wanted to share this ~ you may have already found it if you've browsed the site.

Have a great evening!

~ Julie
Hi rocketjk....saw you on What Are You Reading Now and happened to check out your profile. I see you enjoy blues and jazz. We have a great blues/jazz/news radio station here in Central Illinois, and they have a streaming website that you should check out when you get a chance. Go to and find where it says Listen To Live Stream in the center at the top. Then scroll down and choose which player you want to listen to the live stream it....and enjoy! (any problems or questions, let me know)

I'm a huge blues fan myself. We have a blues festival every year on the Riverfront on the Labor Day weekend here in Peoria. We've had some big names come to sing for us....Koko Taylor, Lonnie Brooks, Albert Collins, Clarence "Gatemouth" Brown to name a few.

Check out WGLT and let me know how you like it. Enjoy! I'll see around on LT.

~ Julie (porchsitter55)
Oh, also BTW, cool old Caddy! Is it a 1947?
Thank you! It is occasionally refreshing to meet a fellow reader who doesn't say 'this' book by the author is better than 'that' book because...

I like to think that all of an author's books can be stellar on some level.
A man who reads H. Allen Smith, Jasper Fforde, and Edith Wharton has to be a rarity. I'm going shopping in your library for ideas very soon, since we're both (obviously) eclectic readers of weird stuff.

Thank you for the recommendations on Joseph Conrad. "Typhoon" in particular sounds highly intriguing. I've read many opinions that argued as to whether 'Lord Jim' or 'Heart of Darkness' was the more superior novel. What do you think? Can one be superior to the other, or are they both masterpieces in their own right?
Iused to be a player, Jerry, when my son, also named Jerry, was very interested in baseball, but that was many years ago now. Haven't played in prbably 20 years. I recently received an Apba game which featured Pacific Coast League players of the '40's and '50's.

Thanks for the research offer. I'm about at the end of the tunnel but if I find I need something, I'll let you know.

Each year in August a group I head has a baseball reunion at the Oakland Museum, and you're cordially invited. I'll let you know the exact date. It will be on a Saturday.

Richard Beverage
Jerry-I apologize for the tardiness in answering your January post. My son has been posting all of my new books, so I haven't been looking at librarything for quite awhile. I haven't read the stratomatic book either, It is in my stack of to reads which is much too large. I live in Southern California but lived in the Bay Area for 10 years many years ago. Earned an MBA at Golden Gate University during that period. My current connection with SF is writing. I am working with several fellows on a collaborative history of the Mission Club of San Francisco, a Pacific Coast League club that shared the City with the Seals, 1926-37.

Richard Beverage
You are the only other person who shares Masterpieces of Adventure with me. I love that little four-volume set!
Jerry - responding to your comment in my 50 book challenge - my Conrad experience has been Nostromo, Lord Jim, and Heart of Darkness. I remember liking Lord Jim better than I did Nostromo, which I almost quit on. Heart of Darkness, I think, may need a second read. I'm pretty sure I missed a lot in there. I'm getting The Secret Agent from the library now. The title sounds intriguing - I hope the book lives up to it!
Greetings. I am not good at keeping up on my library thing. so i did not see the note you posted in feb. until today when i checked in to add a few books. i treasure this old book on Daniel Webster. My grandmother's mother was a Webster - family line going back to Daniel's brother. Much of the family still lives near Franklin, NH. About 10 years ago I visited Daniel's birth place, the farms in Franklin and Marshfield and other sites mentioned in the book. I love the old letters in the book. I have camped on Brant Point where Webster shot ducks back in the 1840's.
It is a wonderful old book!
Cheers, Ned

Thanks for the cover to the 1974 Guide, and for the note. I like to have the covers, but not enough that I'm taking the time to generate the pix it would take to do that (lots of unusual/older books in my library). Mebbe sometime after I get caught up on--well, everything. (Fat chance....)

Thanks for the info on the best route to Mendocino.

Hubby and I drove to Los Vegas via Yosemite once -- it is beautiful country.
No more taco truck! Dang!

Actually, I'll be bombing through your area in April, but heading to Medocino to meet a client. Worse,I will be leaving SF at about 1:00 to meet her at 4:00. I don't think that is really possible. I have always gotten to Mendocino through Booneville because it is pretty -- but is there a faster way to go?

I so wish I could spend more time in Anderson Valley, but this won't be the trip . . .
Thank you very much for posting the cover-photo of 'Ozarks Country.' 'Tis a lovely land :)

Happy reading!
Too bad about the car, but at least your wife had the taste to pose you in front of it - she sounds like a keeper. My wife helped me dismantle our '68 Firebird coupe to get parts (including a transmission) for the '67 convertible so I guess we're meant for each other.

If you are going to read just one collection of short stories from the period you should read a Lu Xun collection (they usually include The True Story of Ah Q, his best known work).

Take care,


I've been collecting books about Chinese Modernism - literature and art - for quite a while now (in the original and in translation). There seems to be more interest in the period lately which is good. I particularly like Lu Xun (everyone's favorite from the period probably).

I noticed from you pic that you drive classic American - I have had a '67 Firebird convertible since '93 and love it - great for the LA weather.

Jersey Jerry- I live in Sparta. This was our weekend retreat for many years and we moved fulltime in 2000 but now that our son is graduating college we are probably heading back to NYC where I am originally from. Caldwell is right down the road, my son played a lot of tennis in West Caldwell.

I like the photo and guess you are into restoring old cars...I know quite a few guys in Brooklyn who are into some quality restorations.

its always fun exchaging ideas about books and I have enjoyed "meeting" you at the Jewish Fiction group.

planning to stay in touch.
Hi, Jerry,

I just checked out the Trudeau book on, and it certainly looks worthwhile. I've added it to my never-decreasing list of books to be bought on the Civil War! Thanks for the tip.

Hi Jerry- thanks for the cover tips on Hemingway's library. Just wondering if you'd like to take the lead on selecting/uploading appropriate covers for EH's library (rather than just suggesting them!).. let me know, and I'll shoot you the password.

Welcome - and thank you for your posts. I keep meaning to become more of a contributing presence at the R & R group and hope to do so soon. I love SF, by the way. I stayed there for a few brief weeks before moving to unlovely LA in 1981. My younger brother lives there now, somewhere near the Mission district.
Thanks for posting the cover, and your comments. My Pyreneean walking is limited to two treks across from St Jean Pied de Port to Roncevalles/Roncevaux, but I keep meaning to do more e.g Col de Somport.

I must also do something about the missing covers, possibly as part of a shelf-check.
Welcome to LT from a couple of ex-San Franciscans. We've been here since 2005 and still haven't catalogued nearly all our books. We got into the LT social scene for a while but these folks are too interesting for mere casual shmoozing and we lack time for anything more. You'll find some of your neighbors at the group we started, Ancient China. Enjoy.
welcome aboard. we share a few books together XD
Thanks for the comment! I'll have to change the cover on the Felipe Alou book. Judged against other sports autobiographies, it's not bad.

Welcome to Lt. Thanks for you comment. If you liked "Dust On the Ocean" by E.L. Beach, then you should enjoy his first book of is submarine trilogy "Run Silent Run Deep". The third one is called "Cold Is The Sea".
If you are interest in historical events then his book "The Wreck of the Memphis" is excellant. It's about his fathers ship the USS Memphis that was wrecked by a tidal wave in 1916.
Hi there! Sounds like we have a lot in common! My husband and I also live in San Francisco and we have a weekend house in Philo (Holmes Ranch), just up the road from Boonville as I'm sure you know. Yep, another pair of weekenders. I haven't read those stories yet--another of way too many on my unread pile. Maybe we'll see you around the valley!
Hi Jerry! Sorry about the delay. I have been kind-of remiss here.

Yes, I did read "The African", but that was a long time ago. At that time, I bought every single book I could find by an African author (not much--see my library--although some other volumes went into storage and never emerged) and read them all. I tend to do that kind of thing. :-)

I see we have other things in common. I majored in Journalism, although I never worked in that field. Also, I see you spent some time in Boston.

Erstwhile Editor
I would love to hear more about your trip to Newfoundland. Where exactly did you and your wife go while there? Did you make it to the Rising Tide Theatre in Trinity? Did you buy lots of books while there?

Thanks for joining Newfoundland Literature!!

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