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Up To Date

The Book Doctors

It’s summertime, and with high gas prices, a vacation may be out of reach for your budget.  But no matter what your finances look like, you can definitely afford a trip to your local library.

Wednesday on Up to Date, the Book Doctors return with all the latest reads for the summer. Whether you’re a serial book worm, causal reader, or haven’t cracked a book in a while, there’s something for everyone.

So, grab a lawn chair, get some sun, as book doctors Jeff Anne Goudie, Gina Kaufmann, Mark Luce, and Grace Suh get ready to open up the coolest titles this summer.

Gina Kauffman's recommendations:
Discomfort Zone: A Personal History--Jonathan Franzen
Humorist Franzen recalls his misspent youth in the 1960s and 1970s, painfully recollecting his geeky, awkward high school years, failed pranks, and a torturous relationship with women.

Hideous Kinky--Esther Freud (Audio Book)
A British mother and her daughters find independence, Sufism, and self-discovery in 1960s Morocco.

Fraud: Essays--David Rakoff (Audio Book)
This American Life humorist applies his self-deprecating humor to his misadventures across America and beyond.

Grace Suh's recommendations:
Radioactive--Lauren Redniss
The love story of Nobel prize-winning scientists Marie and Pierre Curie, told as a graphic novel.

The Cat's Table - Michael Ondaatje
Two boys come-of-age while traveling a ship crossing from India to England during the 1950s.

Fraternity--Diane Brady
Fraternity is the true story of a young Clarence Thomas and other prominent African-American leaders during their formative college years.

On Canaan's Side--Barry Sebastian
An Irish-American immigrant struggles to come to terms with her grandson's suicide, while recalling the events of her life over the course of seventy years.

Diamond in the Rough: A Memoir–Shawn Colvin
Colvin's memoir shares her journey from a small town to stardom, along with all the ups and downs from her tumultuous career.

Jeff Anne Goudie's recommendations:
Lots of Candles, Plenty of Cake–Anna Quindlen
Not a full-blown memoir, but Quindlen's insights are born from her life experiences with marriage, parenting, and friendship.

The World Without You–Joshua Henkin
Grieving the loss of a son in 2005 to the Iraq War, a family gathers to memorialize and mourn, while revealing their own tangled histories.

The Age of Miracles–Karen Thompson Walker
A young girl struggles to deal with the dramas of her family and friends, while the earth's rotation is slowing and bringing about the end of the world.

Mark Luce's recommendations:
Home–Toni Morrison
Frank Money, a frustrated and angry Korean War veteran, must travel back to a town he hates in order to rescue his abused sister.

A Moveable Feast–Ernest Hemingway
Hemingway's personal papers are transformed into a portrait of a sparkling, post-WWI Paris, filled with encounters of the literary kind, including F. Scott and Zelda Fitzgerald, Gertrude Stein, and Ezra Pound.

Il Postino–Antonio Skarmeta
A passionate story set in the care-free years preceding Pinochet's dictatorship in Chile, two lovers are bound together through the poetry of Pablo Neruda.

Understanding Comics: The Invisible Art–Scott McCloud
For the comic book lover who longs to learn more, McCloud's book deconstructs the comic, explaining how comics are composed, produced, and interpreted.

Are You My Mother? – Alison Bechdel
This is not your child's bedtime story; instead, Bechdel's graphic novel explores her mother's unrealized dreams as an artist, her marriage to a closeted gay man, and Bechdel's own coming out as a lesbian.

Stephen Steigman is director of Classical KC. You can email him at <a href="mailto:Stephen.Steigman@classicalkc.org">Stephen.Steigman@classicalkc.org</a>.
When I host Up To Date each morning at 9, my aim is to engage the community in conversations about the Kansas City area’s challenges, hopes and opportunities. I try to ask the questions that listeners want answered about the day’s most pressing issues and provide a place for residents to engage directly with newsmakers. Reach me at steve@kcur.org or on Twitter @stevekraske.