An Independent Literary Publisher Since 1917
What is your favorite Grove book?
Legends of the Fall. I dare you to read — or reread — this collection of novellas. A relatively new addition to our treasured backlist from Jim Harrison — but a true masterpiece.
My favorite (that I had nothing to do with) is probably Why Be Happy When You Could Be Normal? — a book for anyone who loves books and takes refuge in them when life is rough.
What is the first book you read to your children?
The Little Bear stories by Elsa Holmelund Minarik and Maurice Sendak. I learned to read with them when I was five aboard the Queen Elizabeth II sailing to Japan. I couldn’t enter first grade in Tokyo until I knew how to read. I had nine days. I love those stories still.
What is your favorite book from childhood?
A collection of fairy tales that had originally belonged to my mother as a child, possibly even my grandmother; it was beautifully illustrated and falling apart at the seams.
How do you organize your books?
The big bookshelf in our living room has a few fuzzy ‘zones’ of generally very fine books (with a second row of merely fine books behind), NYC-related books, books from the south, recent arrivals, and “to give away.”
Which book have you re-read the most?
I frequently re-read Calvino’s If on a winter’s night a traveler. Such a brilliant opening: “You are about to begin reading Italo Calvino’s new novel, If on a winter’s night a traveler. Relax. Concentrate. Dispel every other thought.” I always obey the book.
You’re organizing a literary dinner party. Which three writers, dead or alive, do you invite?
George Orwell, George Eliot, and Joseph Conrad. Arthur Conan Doyle would be a close fourth, along with David McCullough.
Before I moved, I organized my books by fiction and nonfiction, alphabetically by author. Since I moved (most of my books are in storage), new books are now stacked everywhere we can find room. We really need to buy some bookcases.
Hanya Yanagihara, Virginia Woolf, and Elena Ferrante (who can teleconference in if they’d rather).
Stephen King, O. Henry, and Jack London.
What is your favorite book?
I was moved and inspired by Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert. As she says, “I think I deserve something beautiful.”
In tote bags! I’ve racked up quite a collection. I keep a book waiting in each bag — like short stories in my designated Central Park picnic bag — so I’m never without something to read.
What is the first book you
read to your child?
The Carrot Seed (board book). Story by Ruth Krauss, pictures by Crocket Johnson. Still have it; can’t seem to let it go. My son is almost 15. 🙂