What are you reading this summer? Residents, officials share book selections

There are five items every properly packed beach bag should contain: sunscreen, a towel, a bottle of water, munchies, and something to read. For the first four items, check out the nearest convenience store or supermarket. As for a good book, the Reporter asked Hudson County residents what they’ll be packing during long weekend getaways during the lazy days of summer.

Louise Rittberg

Literacy Coordinator, Secaucus Public Library

“I just read Jodi Picoult’s the ‘Tenth Circle,’ which is going to be on Lifetime Television soon. I’m not so sure I would recommend it. I read it because I wanted to see what it was about, because there has been such a big buzz about it. It was a good story, but when I finished it I thought, ‘That’s impossible.’ The ending is so far-fetched. Also, I just read Stuart Woods’ ‘Dark Harbor.’ Both of these books are mysteries, but they’re not the deepest, most complex mysteries you’ll ever read. You know, they aren’t James Patterson or John Grisham. They’re definitely light summer reading.”

Dora Marra

Secaucus school board member

“I want to read ‘The Best Life Diet’ by Bob Greene. That guy worked with Oprah and helped her lose weight. I want to eat better, eat more organic vegetables. If I read any book this summer it’s going to be that one. I’m really more of a magazine reader. I love InStyle. I used to read Cosmopolitan – but now it’s all about sex!”

Rob Robertson

Jersey City resident

“I’m reading ‘In Fury Born’ by David Webber. It’s very good, and I would recommend it. I happen to like science fiction. I think David Webber is an excellent author. I’ve read everything the man has written to date, about 25 books. I like the way he develops characters fully and I like the way he has an overall timeline tied into all of the books he does, which is useful.”

Richard Turner

Weehawken Mayor

“What I really want to read this summer – who knows if I’ll have time to get to it – is Doris Kearns Goodwin’s new book, ‘Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln.’ Goodwin is an historian. The book is about Lincoln’s cabinet. Essentially, it’s a biography of Lincoln’s cabinet and of the four or five main players in it, some of whom didn’t get along with each other, and some of whom didn’t even have the highest regard for Abe Lincoln. I already have the book I just haven’t had a chance to read it yet. I’m going to try to get to it this summer.”

Ed DeFazio

Hudson County Prosecutor

“What do I want to read this summer? You mean other than the Hudson Reporter? I’m actually reading a book now, ‘Land of Lincoln.’ What Mayor Turner is reading, that’s a little more serious. I haven’t read that book. ‘Land of Lincoln’ is by Andrew Ferguson and the subtitle is ‘Adventures in Abe’s America.’ This guy is going across the country, going to various locations that have something to do with Lincoln. In the last chapter I read he went to a convention of Lincoln re-enactors, which I know sounds strange, but was actually a very well-written and humorous appraisal of the various groups that are into that world. He had another chapter that dealt with collectors of Lincoln memorabilia. This guy’s a very entertaining writer. It’s a lighter look at Lincoln than your typical historical account.”

Gail Croce

Jersey City

“I’m reading ‘Term Limits.’ I really just started it. But so far it’s very exciting. It’s about three senators getting murdered, either in their homes or on their way to work. At this point I can only imagine what happens. It’s by Vince Flynn.”

Marc Sayles

North Bergen

“I’m not working right now. So I spend a lot of time at my house reading through my girlfriend’s books from college. She was an English major. I’m reading this book now called ‘Dhalgren’ by Samuel Delaney. I kind of like science fiction, which is why I chose this book from her collection. This is really more magic realism than science fiction. It’s about life in a post-Apocalyptic American city. I’m about half-way through it. I’d recommend it to anyone who likes this kind of stuff.”

Peter Cammarano

Hoboken City Councilman-at-Large

“Last night I just finished a very short, very-reader friendly biography of Teddy Roosevelt called ‘Lion in the White House.’ It’s a political biography, but it’s pretty light. Then the book that I started, upon finishing the T.R. biography, is called ‘Guests of the Ayatollah.’ It’s by Mark Bowden. I read everything this guy writes. He wrote ‘Black Hawk Down.’ He wrote ‘Killing Pablo,’ about the hunting and killing of [Colombian drug king] Pablo Escabar. He’s just a very, very colorful writer. He’s also a columnist for the Atlantic Monthly. I’d recommend anything written by him. ‘Guests of the Ayatollah’ is about the Iranian revolution and the taking of the U.S. hostages at the American embassy and their being held for 444 days from the fall of 1979 to January 1981.”


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