This week writer Elizabeth A. Martina shares the books she savors.
1.Carmen Amato: What was the first book you read that marked the transition from reading kids’ books to grown-up fare?
EAM: The first book was one from the assigned reading list required to enter 9th grade. It was “The Axe” by Sigrid Undset, the Nobel Prize winning author. Adult themes and religious themes together for the first time. I was shocked at the complexity but bought the rest of the series. It was so intimidating that I never read the other three books.
EAM: First and foremost, the Bible. You can read that over and over and still find more you didn’t notice before. Then, I would like to find Butler’s Lives of the Saints, preferably the four volume edition. Third choice would be “To Kill A Mockingbird”. I figure if I am shipwrecked it might take a while to find me. I get bored quickly if I don’t have literature to make me think.
3. CA: What book would you give as a housewarming gift and why?
EAM: I tend to like to give books that will be read again and again. Books that direct your thinking. I often will consider a coffee table book featuring a subject that I know the person would value. For example, a religious book for a religious-minded person or a book on cats for someone who is really into cats. I once gave the book “A Catholic Mother Speaks to Her Children” by Marie Catherine-Sophie de Flavigny to a mother of six.
4. CA: You can invite any author, living or dead, to dinner at your home. What are you serving and what will the conversation be about?
EAM: I adore the couple writing team, Bodie and Brock Thoene. I would serve them barbequed spare ribs, mustard potato salad and moscal wine. Ribs, because they are country folk and would probably enjoy that. The wine, because it is sweet and my favorite. Conversation would inevitably turn to history of the 20th century, which is predominantly their book themes, and to Christianity which is always their secondary theme.
5. CA: Can you leave us with a quote, a place, or a concept from a book that inspired you?
EAM: This is from one of Glenn Beck’s books: “Good decent people are around. Good decent people can succeed.” I like this quote because so often, in today’s society, many people think there is no decency or value system anymore. Reminding people of the fact that values still exist will go a long way towards helping this world.
More about this week’s guest: Elizabeth A. Martina grew up in central New York and went to school in both New York and Massachusetts. She has a son and several foster children. Most of her storytelling ability comes from her grandmother, who told her tales of growing up in the 1910s and 20s. Her current project is a true crime story of passion and organized crime uncovered via historical archives in Italy, the US, and Canada.