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In celebration of #ReadABookDay, Purdue University Press asked around the office to see what our team have been reading. We hope you enjoy their responses, and that you’re inspired to let us know what what you’re reading, let us know on Twitter and Facebook!


Liza Hagerman, Assistant Production Editor

I’m currently reading A Little Life by Hanya Yanagihara. It’s super long, but I’m finding it easy to get lost in the beautiful writing and intimate stories of the characters. I finally picked it up after several recommendations from friends who were incredibly moved by it—it’s intense, in a good way.

Katherine Purple, Interim Co-Director and Editorial, Design, and Production Manager

I just finished Difficult Women, by Roxanne Gay, which was a Secret Santa gift from December (it only took me eight months to finish — no fault of the author’s!), and before that it was David Sedaris’s Calypso. ​Now I’m focused on finishing another book I was reading concurrently, I’ll Be Gone in the Dark, by Michelle McNamara, a thrilling account of her research into the Golden State Killer. Next on my list is to revisit Gabriel Garcia Marquez’s One Hundred Years of Solitude, which is one of my favorite books in the world, and which I try to re-read every so often. Normally, however, my job keeps me so busy reading professionally that I often prefer long-form journalism to full books read for pleasure, and my go-to site is www.longform.org. Not a day goes by that I can’t find something enticing to read on that curated site.

Kelley Kimm, Senior Production Editor

I’m starting to read But Can I Start a Sentence with “But”? by the University of Chicago Press editorial staff. The title of the first chapter is “It’s not so much an issue of correctness as of ickiness.” That’s what attracted me.

Matthew Mudd, Marketing & Outreach Specialist

I’ve just started Gabriel Garcia Marquez’s Chronicle of a Death Foretold. It was a gift from my sister and I’m very thankful, as I’m really enjoying it and probably would not have picked it out otherwise. Also, I always have a sports book in progress and right now it’s Basketball (and Other Things) by Shea Serrano, which takes a takes a look at the game of basketball through questions like “Who is the Greatest Dunker of All Time?” and “What is allowed and not allowed in a game of pickup basketball?”, so it’s been a great read. Finally, I’m reading through the Harry Potter series for the first time (late to the party, I know), and just got to Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince. I’m finding I appreciate the extra character development and narrative that the movies could not quite provide!

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Marcy Wilhelm-South, Digital Repository Specialist

I’m reading Feedback and A Wrinkle in Time (and a few other books but I’ll restrict myself to two 🙂 ). “Feedback” is in a series I’ve read before but is the story of the first novel in that series told from a different perspective; because I loved that original book so much, I wanted to see what the new take was. What has been interesting has been seeing some small details included that seem to reflect on the changes that have happened in the world since that first book’s original publication. “A Wrinkle in Time” is just one of those kids’ classics that I’ve never read, and so my stepdaughter has become my excuse to visit it along with other children’s literature I was never exposed to back then – we are reading this one together. This is also how I’m introducing her to the concept of reading a book before you see the movie.

Nina Collins, Scholarly Publishing Specialist

I’m currently reading, Never Caught: The Washingtons’ Relentless Pursuit of Their Runaway Slave, Ona Judge by Erica Armstrong Dunbar (2017). I guess I just like being immersed in history. I recently bought an old sewing machine; and, I’ve been skimming The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Sewing. As all my grandmothers have passed away (and it’s been a very long time since they taught me how to sew), this is a valuable resource. I like the clever chapter titles, like chapter 10, “Win One for the Zipper”.

Susan Wegener, Acquisitions Assistant

I just finished reading The Blind Assassin by Margaret Atwood. It has one of the quirkiest, most brilliant, and sympathetic main characters I’ve ever read, and the story is like a Victorian novel combined with spy fiction. It is over 500 pages and I read it in two days!

Chris Brannan, Graphic Designer

The Man in the High Castle by Philip K. Dick imagines an alternate timeline where Japan and Germany have split control of the United States, and continue to fight for world domination. It is a story of mystery and intrigue in business and daily life living under totalitarian rule, and the glimmer of hope found in the myth of the man in the high castle.

Alexandra Hoff, Assistant Production Editor

I’m currently listening to the audio book version of The Hating Game by Sally Thorne, which is about two executive assistants to co-CEOs of a publishing company who are competing for the same job promotion. With a captivating story and brilliant, hilarious writing, this book easily takes a spot in my top-five list of favorite books of all time.

Bryan Shaffer, Interim Co-Directer, Sales & Marketing Manager

I just finished Catch Every Ball: How to Handle Life’s Pitches by Johnny Bench, arguably the best catcher to ever suit up in a Major League Baseball uniform. An easy read, yet gave some insight into how a normal kid can triumph over adversity and reach his goals and dreams. Another book I recently read was The Cathedral Builder: A Biography of J. Irwin Miller. This book hit home for me because J.I. Miller was an icon from my hometown of Columbus, Indiana. Because of him, that small Southern Indiana town is now rated in the top ten globally in architecture and is home to Cummins Engine, a global powerhouse in diesel engines. Finally, I just bought and look forward to starting Scholarly Communication: What Everyone Needs to Know by Rick Anderson.

What are you reading? Looking for something new for #ReadABookDay? Use discount code PURDUE20 for 20% off any book from our website and #ReadUP.