Naomi Shihab Nye shares her Nightstand Reads

Internationally beloved poet Naomi Shihab Nye, who is coming to Seattle September 19 for a SAL event, shares a mix of her recent favorites in fiction, memoir, nonfiction and poetry.

Nye is the author and/or editor of more than 30 volumes, including  19 Varieties of Gazelle: Poems of the Middle East (a finalist for the National Book Award), A Maze Me: Poems for Girls, and You & Yours. Her latest book for adults, The Tiny Journalist, is a collection inspired by seven-year-old Janna Tamimi, the “Youngest Journalist in Palestine,” who captured videos of anti-occupation protests with her mother’s smartphone.

Thanks to Naomi Shihab Nye for sharing her recommendations!

There There by Tommy Orange
Wow. Just wow. Have had to read very slowly because each scene and character is so absorbing and there is so much to think about.

The Long Take, Or, A Way to Lose More Slowly by Robin Robertson
Since “the short take” is exhausting most of us, this vivid “longer take” in narrative poem-form, from another time in history, by one of the world’s great poets originally from Scotland, is most appreciated.

Healing the Divide, Poems of Kindness and Connection, edited by James Crews, preface by Ted Kooser
Essential book of the season. Read again and again for sustenance.

The Words of My Father: Love and Pain in Palestine by Yousef Bashir
An exquisitely written, heartbreaking memoir which should be required reading for the American government as well as human beings interested in how people treat one another.

Spying on the South: An Odyssey Across the American Divide by Tony Horwitz
Incredibly ambitious, delightfully readable journey paralleling the travels of Frederick Law Olmsted.  You will learn more from this big thick book than from a whole history class. We had dinner with Tony when he came through Texas on his expedition and it’s devastating entirely that he died on his book tour. What a force!

And Now You Can Go by Vendela Vida
I would read anything by Vendela Vida.

Real American: A Memoir by Julie Lythcott-Haims
After hearing this writer give the most stunning presentation of the entire Sun Valley Writers Conference, it’s amazing to get more background and details of her life. Highly recommended.

Posted by Linda J. 

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