Posts Tagged ‘Coming of Age’

Image result for images of madeleine kuninMadeleine Kunin — Vermont’s former three-term governor, who also served as the deputy secretary of education and ambassador to Switzerland under President Bill Clinton, and is the author of best selling books about her life in politics — has a new book, Coming of Age.

Governor Kunin will appear at 7 pm on Friday, November 16th at the Norwich Bookstore to discuss Coming of Age, her close and incisive look at what it is like to grow old. This event is free and open to the public, but reservations are recommended as space is limited. Please call 802-649-1114 or email info@norwichbookstore.com to save a seat.Coming of Age: My Journey to the Eighties Cover ImageAnd now, her answers to our three questions. We note the brevity of her responses with gratitude and laughter as we reflect on how many, many words other politicians are speaking as election day looms. We are also taking this opportunity to personally thank her for how well she governed our home state, and for how gracious, passionate, and diplomatic she remains in all that she does. (By the way, please VOTE on Tuesday, November 6th, even though we can no longer cast a ballot for Governor Kunin.)

Nancy Drew 01: the Secret of the Old Clock Cover ImageNutshell: A Novel Cover ImageDear Life: Stories (Vintage International) Cover Image

1.What three books have helped shape you into the writer you are today, and why?

It’s difficult to pin point what three writers shaped me—In my early years I loved Nancy Drew. Later [books by] Alice Munro, and Ian McEwan.

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2.What author (living or dead) would you most like to have a cup of coffee with and why?

Margaret Atwood

Exit West: A Novel Cover ImageCalypso Cover ImageSouth and West: From a Notebook (Vintage International) Cover Image

3.What books are currently on your bedside table?

Exit West, Calypso, and South and West.

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As part of our mission to promote authors, the joy of reading, and to better understand the craft of writing, The Book Jam has paired with the The Norwich Bookstore in Norwich, Vermont to present an ongoing series entitled “3 Questions”. In it, we pose three questions to authors with upcoming visits to the bookstore. Their responses are posted on The Book Jam during the days leading up to their engagement. Our hope is that this exchange will offer insight into their work and will encourage readers to attend these special author events and read their books.

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Listen now to Coming of Age or download http://www.box.net/files#/files/0/f/0/1/f_662856759

The flashy gum ball pink cover of the book, our relating so well to her previous work (I Don’t Know How She Does It) and an NPR interview with Allison Pearson had each of us hankering to read Pearson’s I Think I Love You.  So we did.

We appreciated this poignant tale whose laugh out loud moments reminded us that no matter how far you travel, you’re never too far removed from your teenage self.  And, as a bonus, when reading about David Cassidy  you just can’t help but “come on, get happy” (think Partridge Family theme song).

This got us thinking about other “coming of age” books that we love.  Of the thousands to choose from, we selected to re-read An Abundance of Katherines by John Green and E.L. Konisberg’s The View From Saturday. And thus, a theme was born: we realized all three books involve road trips, focus on young love and have characters trying their darndest to mature.

An Abundance of Katherines takes the reader on the road from Chicago to Tennessee with Colin a boy cursed with a heart broken 18 times by girls named Katherine.  Fortunately, Colin’s best friend Hassan decides that this affliction can only be cured by a road trip.  You will love their trip, their friendship and their attempts to break the curse of the Katherines using math, travel and often sophomoric humor.



We both adore books by E.L. Konisberg and count From the Mixed Up Files of Mrs. Basil E Frankweiler among our favorite books of all time.  However, for this show we chose The View From Saturday. This book won the Newberry in 1996 (30 years after she won for The Mixed Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler further endearing her as one of our idols).  It chronicles four members (and their unique teacher) of an extraordinarily successful 6th-grade quiz bowl team who are initially “stuck” with each other but grow to appreciate each other and all the quirks people bring to relationships. They learn humor and affection save the day.  Their road trip is to the state championship.

So there you have it – three great books about love, road trips, growing up and having fun along the way. ENJOY!

p.s. There is a road trip (or shall we say ‘train trip”) in “I Think I Love You” but you’ll have to read it to find out more!

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