Page Turner: Her memorable books include ‘Grapes of Wrath’ and ‘The Scarlet Letter’

Editor’s note: This week’s Page Turner reader interview is with Sheryl Krieg, a reporter with The News-Sentinel.

“I usually am both a fiction and a nonfiction reader, but I’m finishing up my legal studies — working to be a paralegal — and so I’m reading a lot of law books and don’t have much time for pleasure reading. There are a lot of law terms to keep straight, but my Latin learning had mostly been confined to prefixes and suffixes when I was preparing to take the SAT in high school. Anyway, it’s interesting reading as I learn to understand jury instructions and learn how to be a lawyer’s right hand man in order to help him (or her).

“Blake Sebring (a News-Sentinel sportswriter) has kept me busy, too. I have edited many of his books. I love his writing. He is good at describing, and he makes me feel as though I know the people he is writing about. He’s a good writer.

“My mother is a mystery reader, and she loves all of Agatha Christie’s books. She is now blind, and I pick out her books. She has especially liked a new one about Walter Cronkite.

“I have loved poetry since elementary school. My second-grade teacher gave me a poetry book I still have. Most people don’t seem very interested in poetry anymore, but I wrote poetry even in elementary school — poetry for each character in favorite television shows like “M*A*S*H*.” Our teacher had our poetry printed in book form. Poetry was very big for me in high school, too.

“Among memorable books there is ‘Grapes of Wrath,’ by John Steinbeck. It’s about the Depression and people migrating, trying to find something to do. I could feel the desperation these people were experiencing. And I loved Nathaniel Hawthorne’s books, with emphasis on ‘The Scarlet Letter,’ even though I didn’t know what the “A” was or meant.

“In college, literature was about the Vietnam War. A wonderful book was ‘A Rumor of War,’ by Philip Caputo. It’s a true story — all the stuff he went through. Once I dreamt I was there surrounded by the Viet Cong. Anyway, it’s a powerful book that made me feel I was there.”