Checking out the Amazon books blog, I was amused by these witty profiles….
Mix one part casual anthropologist with two parts avid reader, add the occasional culinary inspiration and a penchant for haiku, and what you end up with is Anne Bartholomew. When she’s not working her way through the books on her nightstand, Anne tests new recipes and wishes she could write like Billy Collins.
Dave Callanan is a full-contact reader. A quick glance at him immersed in a book will always reveal the title’s genre. He grins broadly with comedies, furrows his brow at dramas, and nervously bites his lip during thrillers. It’s no surprise that even on a crowded bus, the seat next to Dave is rarely taken.
Daphne Durham: Rarely seen without a book, she reads while walking to work, at red lights, and before the movie starts. She keeps a “just in case” book in her purse for emergencies (like an extra long line at the grocery store). Reading taste ranges from literature to pure trash.
Jon Foro is not ogling you; he just wants to know what you’re reading. A word freak since age six when he ordered his first Big Boy Book with a coupon clipped from the back of a Cheerios box (“Hardy Boys 53: The Clue of the Hissing Serpent”), Jon enjoys ancient history, literary stylists (Nabokov and Amis), true-life adventures & nature writing (Abbey, J.W. Powell), and books about bears.
Lauren Nemroff insists on carrying her own bag (purse, suitcase, backpack, or beach bag). Not because she thinks chivalry is dead, but because it usually contains several pounds of books. The contents: new fiction, the latest art and photography books, mysteries and thrillers, a section of the Times book review, and a vintage Amazon bookmark (ca. 1998).
Tom Nissley knew he wasn’t like the other kids when they assigned Thomas Hardy’s “Return of the Native” in 10th grade and he spent dreamy afternoons in Wessex with Clym Yeobright and Eustacia Vye (Eustacia Vye!) and then came back to school to find that everybody else thought it was “boring.”
Once called “the Cameron Crowe of the food world,” Brad Thomas Parsons balances his pursuits equally between all-things literary and culinary. He has interviewed Mario Batali, Danny Meyer, Ina Garten, Anthony Bourdain, Giada De Laurentiis, and Marco Pierre White, along with Jon Stewart, Amy Sedaris, Don Rickles, Sarah Vowell, and Chuck Barris, among others. He is a regular guest on Tom Douglas’ Seattle Kitchen where he offers commentary on trends in cookbooks and food lit.
Heidi Broadhead and Paul Hughes have just started raising their first child, Silas, amidst piles of well-loved books. In utero, the little guy heard a steady stream of plays (including Macbeth and King Lear more than once) and poetry (by the likes of Elizabeth Bishop and Frank O’Hara). Now Silas is more likely to have Entertainment Weekly, the Sunday New York Times, or some random blog post read aloud to him, as his parents try to catch up on sleep and rejoin the world. (Until he can read on his own–and hopefully not even then–Silas will not be exposed to the NYT Sunday Styles section.)
Mike Smith reads a lot about geology, languages, and British history, and is working his way through an ad hoc self-made syllabus of British literature to cover up the gaps from his feckless undergrad days. As an adolescent he read way too much Robert E. Howard, Edgar Rice Burroughs, and Alistair Maclean. He is a staunch supporter of the Oxford comma.
Jeff VanderMeer’s sense of adventure is so strong that as a kid he hoped he’d lose his eye in a tragic accident so he could wear a pirate patch. Maybe that’s why as an adult he likes fantasy, SF, horror, magic realism, slipstream, interstitial, and whatever-you’re-calling-it- over-smokes-and-coffee-this-morning. An author inspired by everything from Nabokov through Hindu superhero comics and Hong Kong cult action films, he has been known to write about squid, frogs, and fungus. Once, he wanted to be a marine biologist, but only so he could putter around in tidal pools.