Jennifer is the Head of the Business Insight Center at the Central Library of Rochester & Monroe County (NY). An avid reader since leaving the womb, she grew up going to the Paddy Hill Public Library in Greece NY every other day. She strongly believes you are never too old to read Pigeon books.
What are you reading right now?
Bastard Out of Carolina by Dorothy Allison. It’s my book club pick for this month.
The desert island question – What 5 books would you have to have with you if you were stranded on a desert island and why?
Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass – And What Alice Found There by Lewis Carroll. They have so many layers you could read them a hundred times and always notice something new.
Man’s Search for Meaning by Victor Frankl. If someone can find meaning while living in a concentration camp, then I can survive a desert island.
The Three Pillars of Zen by Roshi Phillip Kapleau. I may as well reach enlightenment if I have nothing to do.
The Poetry of Edward Lear. To remind me to be on the lookout for a sieve. They went to sea in a sieve they did, in a sieve they went to sea…
Who is your go-to author when someone asks you for a recommendation?
I love Anchee Min.
What book do you wish you’d never read?
Mein Kampf by Adolf Hitler.
Has any book defined your life, as in you would be a different person if you hadn’t read it?
Everyday Zen by Charlotte Joko Beck. Everyday, and everything, is practice.
Describe your favorite place to read.
On my deck in the summertime.
Book or movie? Is there a movie that you think was better than the book?
Share a favorite quote from a book you’ve read. Why is it meaningful to you?
“We’re all mad here. I’m mad. You’re mad.” – The Cheshire Cat. Don’t take yourself too seriously.
What book challenged you the most when you read it?
The Sound and the Fury by William Faulkner. I knew if I just stuck with it, that it would eventually make sense, and it did!
Is there a book you feel is highly overrated?
Infinite Jest by David Foster Wallace. One should be able to get their point across in less than 1,000 pages.
Are there any books that marked milestones in your life?
Are You There God, It’s Me, Margaret? by Judy Blume. I read it on a weekly basis from the ages of 7 to 9
Are you a “finisher” or do stop reading a book if you’re not connecting with it?
I’m a tried a true quitter. Which is why my book club hates me.
Why do you read?
It’s one of the most effective ways to get out of your own head.
Who would you choose to narrate your favorite book?
Someone British. They make everything sound better.
Where do you get your reading recommendations?
Friends, New York Times and Wall Street Journal.
Do you have a favorite book that you received as a gift?
More Annotated Alice (an annotated edition of Alice in Wonderland/Through the Looking Glass) from my grandmother Sophie.
Do you judge a book by it’s cover?
I try not to, but, I’m human.
What was your favorite book when you were a child?
I loved to steal my mother’s Danielle Steele books.
What book made you laugh out loud? What book made you cry?
I cry if I read Goodnight Moon; it reminds me of curling up with my daughter when she was little. Are You There Vodka, It’s Me Chelsea by Chelsea Handler. A rollicking good time.
If you are interested in doing a Reader Profile here, email me at puttaro (at) libraryweb.org.