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She’ll judge whether to buy a book by its cover

Saturday, January 26, 2013 - 12:01 am

Editor's note: This week's Page Turner interview is with Jennifer Neher, director of resource development for SCAN (Stop Child Abuse and Neglect).

“I just bought 'The Life Boat,' by Charlotte Rogan. I liked the book jacket — it just drew me in, and you can't go wrong with a best-seller. It's set in the 1920s and is about a shipwreck. It just piqued my interest.

“Before that, I read a memoir. It's by Mindy Kaling and the title is 'Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (and Other Concerns).' It is very funny. The author is an actress and a writer for comedies. I have seen some of the work she's done, and she is a very relatable person. I could identify with her life experiences although she's famous and I'm not.

“This is definitely a book for 30-somethings to enjoy. It was recommended to me by a friend, so I sought this book out. Usually I select best-sellers or judge by the book jacket — and I usually buy them. If they're very good, I'll hang on to them. Otherwise, I sell them in secondhand book stores. And I read both fiction and nonfiction — depending on my mood.

“No, I don't read John Grisham; his writing does not appeal to me. And I don't read suspense books. But I have a goal to read about every president of the United States. I now have two: 'Thomas Jefferson' and 'A. Lincoln.' This started because when I was in college I wrote a paper on President Franklin D. Roosevelt for a public policies course, and I want to continue.

“Yes, I read the Harry Potter books and enjoyed them very much. They are fast reads and a good escape.

“A favorite is 'Cannery Row,' by John Steinbeck. I've read it a couple of times. I started Steinbeck's 'The Grapes of Wrath,' but my dog ate that book, and I've never finished it. He also ate 'The Poisonwood Bible'!

“I like Tom Robbins and have read everything he has written.”