News Local

What books are on bedside tables this summer?

ALISSA MCARTHUR, 24 HOURS

Kevin Chong, novelist

What will you read this summer?

I'm working on a book about horse racing, so a lot of my reading has to do with that. Right now, I'm reading Kevin Conley's Stud which is a very well-written look into the inadvertently kinky, extremely moneyed world of horse breeding in Kentucky. Also, I'm reading Philip Roth's Exit Ghost.

What types of books do you like to read in the summer?

I used to read Russian novels during Christmas, but I have no preference in the summer. Last summer, I did read a lot of the Kurt Wallender series of detective novels by Henning Mankell.

What was your best summer read?

Maybe the summer I finished Thomas Pynchon's Mason & Dixon, because it took me three years to read.

What would you re-read?

Not Mason & Dixon. Ivan Turgenev's First Love, Haruki Murakami's Norwegian Wood, most of Ian McEwan, Denis Johnson, Philip Roth, and Kazuo Ishiguro.

Kyle Wellwood, Canucks forward

What will you read this summer?

I'm reading a book called Born to Run by Christopher McDougall about a tribe of runners in a long race. I'm getting into long distance running, so I thought it would be inspirational. I'm also going to read the Temeraire series by Naomi Novik.

What types of books do you like to read in the summer?

I like a wide variety - fantasy novels and stories, but I'll also read something harder like a science book.

What was your best summer read?

Probably the fantasy series by Terry Goodkind. It's super long - there are 11 books, and I probably went through six of them.

What would you re-read?

The Last Samurai. It's one of my favourites. It's just inspirational. It's about living your life, working hard and sticking it out.

Gloria Macarenko, CBC anchor

What will you read this summer?

I like to have a mix of reading material, and often have several books on the go to suit my mood. My summer book club selection is Middlemarch by George Eliot. Between chapters I'm reading Never Shoot A Stampede Queen by local author Mark Leiren-Young. It's about a rookie reporter in the Cariboo and it just won the 2009 Leacock Medal for humour.

Your best summer read?

One of my most memorable summer reads was when I was in my early 20s hitchhiking through Italy. My inspirational companion was The Agony And The Ecstasy, a biographical novel of Michelangelo by Irving Stone.

Re-read?

I love to re-read books that have left an impression on me. Oscar Wilde's The Picture Of Dorian Gray is a much different experience if you read it at 20 and then read it at 40. I've also re-read Tolstoy's Anna Karenina and Dostoyevsky's Crime And Punishment, and will surely pick them up again in the future.

Larissa Lai, novelist & UBC professor

What will you read this summer?

Monique Truong's The Book of Salt, Kelly Link's Pretty Monsters, Rudy Rucker's Hylozoic.

What types of books do you like to read in summer?

Speculative fiction, the new weird, or what some people call "slipstream."

Best summer read ever?

In recent memory, David Mitchell's Cloud Atlas. When I was 10, Madeleine L'Engle's A Wrinkle in Time.

Re-read?

Nicole Brossard's Mauve Desert.

Bill Tieleman 24 hours columnist

Summer read?

A book on Franklin D. Roosevelt - we may need a New Deal with this terrible economy and he was one of the most inspiring leaders of the 20th Century.

Best summer read ever?

To Kill a Mockingbird.

Re-read?

Homage to Catalonia by George Orwell.

Dianne Watts, Mayor of Surrey

Summer read?

I have Barack Obama's The Audacity of Hope ready to take with me to the lake. I'm a big fan of autobiographies.

What are some of your best summer reads of the past?

I enjoyed Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert and Wayne Dyer's The Power of Intention is always inspirational.

Alex Tsakumis, 24 hours columnist

Summer read?

America Alone by Mark Steyn, a superb book that documents how radical Islam is enforcing radical fundamentalism over the Western world. I will be reading through the summer, The Really Inconvenient Truths by Iain Murray, about seven environmental catastrophes that the mainstream liberal press want to hide and Winston Churchill's Memoirs of the Second World War.

Best summer read?

J. D. Salinger's The Catcher In the Rye - a true classic, and Dispatches from the Sporting Life by Mordecai Richler - an absolute monumental assortment of essays selected by Canada's greatest writer ever.

Re-read?

The Ten Thousand by Michael Curtis Ford and Jack: Straight from the Gut by former GE boss Jack Welch would be right up at the top of my list of re-reads.

Rachel Ditor, director, All's Well That Ends Well at Bard on the Beach

Summer read?

I have been reading Nigel Slater's The Kitchen Diaries. Being in rehearsals for All's Well That Ends Well at Bard has meant my recreational reading time is slim and I need something that will help me unwind late at night. The Kitchen Diaries details a year of cooking highlighting seasonal ingredients. The daily entries are short, personal and vivid, the recipes are simple, and Slater is an elegant writer. So even when I am too tired to read for long, I can drift to sleep feeling my imagination has been well fed.

What types of books do you like to read in the summer?

Canadian fiction, which is my first choice for summer reading and I have two reliable sources for recommendations: Marsha Sibthorpe (lighting designer, Arts Club Theatre) who last loaned me The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society, and writer Anosh Irani who usually loans me the latest draft of whatever he is working on.

Best summer read ever?

When I was 18, I packed a suitcase full of books and went travelling alone through Hawaii and California. It was Charles Dickens I loved the most. I remember how incongruous it was to be lying in a bikini on a beach in Maui reading Great Expectations, but I couldn't put it down.

Re-read?

Home: A Short History of An Idea by Witold Rybczynski.