© 2021
background_fid.jpg
In touch with the world ... at home on the High Plains
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00
0:00
Available On Air Stations
Block-RRBC-Fixed.png
HPPR Radio Readers Book Club

The HPPR Radio Readers Book Club is an on-air, on-line community of readers exploring themes of interest to those who live and work on the High Plains.

High Plains Public Radio’s tag line, "In touch with the world, at home on the High Plains," is the inspiration for the 2023 Spring Read. We have a baker’s dozen of works from authors and sites around the world. We’ll explore messages, insights and lessons from others’ lives through the lenses of culture, spiritual, conflict and history and at the final book discussion, we’ll explore the insights for those of us who live and work on the High Plains.

Each Radio Reader BookByte contributor will represent a particular country, period of history or point of view. We’ll be asking for each one’s opinion about whether or not readers across the High Plains might want to read each book and if so, what the works tell us about the value of women and children and about the book’s perspective on humanity.

For a printable bookmark click here and/or for a downloadable list of books, click here.

If you’re interested in joining the Radio Readers Steering Committee, serving as a book leader or contributing a Radio Readers BookByte, click here or contact Kathleen Holt at kholt@hppr.org for more information.

2023 Spring Read – In Touch with the World begins in January. Listen for Radio Readers BookBytes on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays during Morning Edition and All Things Considered. And join us for an on-air live discussion Sunday, May 7, 2023.

To download materials from previous seasons of the HPPR Radio Readers Book Club, either scroll back through previous listings or visit our archive.
_________________________________________________________

HPPR Radio Readers Book Club is made possible in part by generous contributions from Radio Readers Lon Frahm of Colby, Kansas; Lynne Hewes of Cimarron, Kansas; and Lynn Boitano of Edmond, Oklahoma. Please join us in thanking them for their support!

Stay Connected
Fall 2022
Summer 2022
Spring 2022
Fall 2021
Archives (ALL episodes)
Fall 2022
  • The 2022 Fall Read - Rural Life Revisited culminated in a lively discussion Sunday evening, November 13, 2022. Thanks to all who participated!
  • Hello, Radio Readers. Jane Holwerda here from Dodge City, Kansas. It’s almost the end of our Fall 2022 read, Rural Life Revisited. And of course, we’re gearing up for our on-air program in mid-November to revisit the ways our perceptions of rural life may have been challenged by our conversations about Sherwood Anderson’s Winesburg OH, Annie Proulx’s That Old Ace in the Hole, and Winfred Gallagher’s How the Post Office Created America.
  • As the United States expanded in the 1800’s, communication needs also expanded. Mail service was social media. People would write to tell relatives where they were and what they were doing. So, when Facebook’s subject line entices us with “Mamie Smith was in Hays …..” the line is far from new.
  • One of our most visible unnoticed most ubiquitous features of daily life was the result of the US Post Office solving a need and being sensitive to feelings. House numbers. Free city delivery by postal carriers to addresses. Much later, 1923, mailboxes on houses.
  • This is the first time for me to review a book for Book Byte. I am sitting at my kitchen table writing to you while my cat, Kitten, tries to take my pen away.
  • Hi, I'm Alan Erwin from Amarillo and I've been reading Winifred Gallagher's How the Post Office Created America.The American postal system is a marvel. Often maligned, it is a miracle of efficiency that every one of us takes for granted.
  • This is Mike Strong, in Hays, for HPPR. The book is “How the Post Office Created America” by Winifred Gallagher.As I was working on reviewing Winifred Gallagher’s book, I was also shooting photos and video for a dance concert. One of the pieces was nostalgic about physical, paper mail. Specifically, about getting paper rather than texts or email.
  • This is Mike Strong, in Hays, for HPPR. e book is “How the Post Office Created America” by Winifred Gallagher.
  • This is Mike Strong, in Hays, for HPPR. The book is “How the Post Office Created America” by Winifred Gallagher.To say that email and texts are no substitute for the emotional support of physical letters and packages is especially true for troops, in particular younger troops separated for the first time from friends and family.
  • This is Mike Strong, in Hays, for HPPR. The book is “How the Post Office Created America” by Winifred Gallagher.Winifred Gallagher does something I seldom see in journalism. She pitches plans and suggestions to solve current difficulties she may be writing about.
Summer 2022
  • In the novel Medicine Walk by Richard Wagamese, hunting is a major theme. Perhaps some readers are surprised by how young Franklin Starlight is when he learns to clean a rifle, age five, and by age seven, he is learning to shoot. He shoots targets and learns now to track. At the age of nine, he gets his first deer.
  • Hi, I am Phillip Periman from Amarillo, Texas and I am one of the discussants for the HPPR Reader’s book club. This spring we are reading “Neither Wolf nor Dog” by Kent Nerburn. This is a book I would never have bought except that it was chosen for this year’s read.
  • Hi, this is Sara Crow, owner of Crow & Co. Books in Hutchinson, Kansas, recommending one of my favorite books of the past year: When Women Were Dragons by Kelly Barnhill."I encourage you to consider a question: who benefits, my dear, when you force yourself to not feel angry?"
  • Raylene Hinz-Penner here, coming from central Kansas, North Newton east of Wichita, but I grew up east of Liberal in High Plains territory and am delighted to share in the Book Byte program. A retired college English professor, I am sharing a book that is not fiction, my normal pick, but a lyric genealogical history by notable historian, Tiya Miles, a most amazing book about an object, a sparkling masterpiece of African American women’s history published in 2021. Its title: All That She Carried: The Journey of Ashley’s Sack, a Black Family Keepsake.”
  • Hello, my name is Andrea Elise and I live in Amarillo, Texas.When you think of the different fairy tales you’ve read to your children or students, and those other people have read to you, what are the first four words that often come to mind?
  • Hello Fellow Readers. This is Jennifer Kassebaum, Owner of Flint Hills Books in Council Grove, Kansas for the High Plains Public Radio Readers Book Club.One of my favorite books this summer is LESSONS IN CHEMISTRY, a debut novel by Bonnie Garmus. I admit that I enjoy a book with a sense of humor, and LESSONS IN CHEMISTRY is witty and smart.
  • Hello, I am Jennifer Kassebaum, Owner of Flint Hills Books in Council Grove, Kansas.For my first review for the High Plains Public Radio Readers Book Club, I have selected a University of Oklahoma Press publication titled FOR WANT OF WINGS: A Bird with Teeth and A Dinosaur in the Family (2022) by author Jill Hunting. This book is about Hunting’s great-grandfather, Thomas Russell, who discovered 83-million-year-old dinosaur bones in western Kansas during an expedition with the legendary paleontologist O C Marsh in 1872.
  • Hello! This is Michelle Reid in Dodge City for HPPR’s Radio Readers Book Club Book Bytes. I’m the school librarian at Dodge City High School, and I will mostly be talking about some of the best young adult books I’ve read. Please don’t make the mistake of thinking that young adult books are only for teens. YA authors are producing some of the best written, most thoughtful books that are being published right now.
  • Welcome to “Book Bytes;” I am Dr. Mary Scott, Professor of Biology at Dodge City Community College. I want to introduce you to We are Not from Here by Jenny Torres Sanchez. This gut wrenching, acclaimed novel is based on factual research of the dangerous routes followed by undocumented immigrants desperate to get to the United States.
  • Hi, I am Holly Mercer, Library Director at the Dodge City Community College. If you are like me, you may have several authors you look forward to reading whenever a new book is published. For me, Brené Brown is one such author. Two of my favorite titles from her are Raising Strong and Dare to Lead.
Gilead (2004), Home (2008), Lila (2014), and Jack (2021) by Marilynne Robinson
Recommended by Jane Holwerda, Dodge City, KS

Camp Fossil Eyes: Digging for the Origins of Words (2009) by Mark Abley and Kathryn Adams (Illustrator)
Recommended by Andrea Elise, Amarillo, TX

Why Poetry? (2017), by Matthew Zapruder
Recommended by Dr. Phillip Periman, Amarillo, TX

I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter (2019) by Erika L. Sánchez
Recommended by Mary Scott, Dodge City, KS

Watch Your Tongue: What Our Everyday Sayings and Idioms Figuratively Mean (2018) by Mark Abley
Recommended by Andrea Elise, Amarillo, TX

Diary of a Young Girl by Anne Frank
Recommended by Conny Bogaard, Holcomb & Garden City, KS

Pennies from Hamburger Heaven by Marcy McKay (2015)
Backstory by author Marcy McKay, Amarillo TX

Mountains Beyond Mountains, a Biography of Dr. Paul Farmer (2004) by Tracy Kidder
Recommended by Andrea Elise, Amarillo, TX

Lost & Found by Kathryn Schulz (2022) and Running Out: In Search of Water on the High Plains by Lucas Bessire (2021)
Recommended by Leslie VonHolten, Humanities Kansas, Lawrence, KS

Walking the Llano: A Texas Memoir of Place by Shelley Armitage (2017)
Remarks by author Shelley Armitage, Los Cruces, NM and Vega, TX

The Island of Missing Trees: A Novel by Elif Shafak (2021)
Recommended by Shelley Armitage, Los Cruces, NM and Vega, TX

1493- Uncovering the New World Columbus Created (2011) by Charles Mann
Recommended by Dennis Garcia, originally from Garden City, KS, now Chula Vista, CA

On The Great Highway: The Wanderings and Adventures of a Special Correspondent (1901) by James Creelman
Recommended by Mike Strong, KCK and Hays, KS

Modern Instances: the Craft of Photography. A Memoir by Stephen Shore (2022)
Recommended by Dr. Phillip Periman, Amarillo, TX

PrairyErth: A Deep Map by William Least Heat Moon (1999) and My Flint Hills: Observations & Reminiscences from America's Last Tallgrass Prairie by Jim Hoy  (2022)
Recommended by Michael Grauer, native Kansan, long-time resident of the Texas Panhandle and the Llano Estacado, and currently Oklahoma City

Empire of Pain: The Secret History of the Sackler Family by Patrick Radden Keefe (2021)
Recommended by Gaye Tibbets, Hutchinson, KS

Atlas of the Heart (2021) by Brené Brown
Recommended by Holly Mercer, Dodge City Community College, Dodge City, KS

Children Whose Names We Do Not Know by Jenny Torres Sanchez (2021)
Recommended by Mary Scott, Dodge City, KS

Amber & Clay by Laura Amy Schultz (2021)
Recommended by Michelle Reid, Dodge City, KS

Japanese Fairy Tales compiled by Lafcadio Hearn (1948 & 1958)
Recommended by Andrea Elise, Amarillo, TX

For Want of Wings: A Bird with Teeth and a Dinosaur in the Family by Jill Hunting (2022) and Lessons in Chemistry by Bonnie Garmus (2022)
Recommended by Jennifer Kassebaum, Council Grove, KS

Japanese Fairy Tales compiled by Lafcadio Hearn (1948 & 1958)
Recommended by Andrea Elise, Amarillo, TX

All That She Carried: The Journey of Ashley’s Sack, a Black Family’s Keepsake (2021)
Recommended by Ralene Hinz-Penner, born & raised in SW Kansas, currently
North Newton, KS

When Women Were Dragons by Kelly Barnhill (2022)
Recommended by Sara Crow of Crow & Co Independent Book Seller, Hutchinson, KS

Neither Wolf nor Dog: On Forgotten Roads with an Indian Elder by Kent Nerburn (2002)
Recommended by Dr. Phillip Periman, Amarillo, TX

Medicine Walk: A Novel by Richard Wagamese (2016) and
Good Seeds: A Menominee Foods Memoir by Thomas Pecore Weso (2016)
Recommended & reviewed by Thomas Pecore Weso, formerly of Lawrence, KS, now the San Francisco Bay Area, CA

Native American Stories for Kids: 12 Traditional Stories from Indigenous Tribes Across North America by Thomas Pecore Weso (2022)
Recommended by Kathleen Holt, Cimarron, KS
Spring 2022
  • It's time for the new season of books, and we expect this one will really DRAW you in! Get ready for some illustrated works by some award-winning authors and artists.
  • Satrapi’s graphic memoir of growing up in Iran during the Islamic Revolution features powerful black-and-white comic strip images through which she tells the story of her life in Tehran from ages six to 14.
  • My background in wildlife biology and the history of science might make me an unlikely book leader for a graphic novel exploring growing up in Iran. I’m Kim Perez and currently, I serve on the faculty of the history department at Fort Hays State University.
  • Hello, Radio Readers! I’m Jane Holwerda from Dodge City KS. Welcome to 2022 and our kick-off for High Plains Public Radio Readers Spring Read: Graphic Novels—Worth a Thousand Words. For the next few months, we’ll be talking about the stories communicated in the graphic novels of Marjane Satrapi’s Persepolis; Nora Krug’s Belonging: A German Reckons with History and Home; John Lewis and Andrew Aydin’s March; and Yuval Harari’s Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind.
  • Hello, Radio Readers; this is Kim Perez, and I am coming to you from the history department at Fort Hays State University for HPPR Book Bytes. The books I will be discussing, the two-book series Persepolis and Persepolis 2 by Marjane Satrapi, are the first in our Spring 2022 reader’s theme: Graphic Novels: Worth a Thousand Words.
  • My name is Andrea Elise and I live in Amarillo, Texas. I’m here to talk about Persepolis, a two-part autobiographical narrative by Marjane Satrapi.
  • This is Leslie VonHolten calling in from the High Plains of Kansas with another HPPR Radio Readers Book Byte.Since its publication in 2003, Persepolis by Marjane Satrapi has become one of the most highly regarded graphic novels and memoirs. Her stripped-bare but expressive illustrations drive the narrative just as much as her words.
  • Hello, Radio Readers; this is Kim Perez, and I am coming to you from the history department at Fort Hays State University. The books I will be discussing, the two-book series Persepolis and Persepolis 2 by Marjane Satrapi, are the first in our Spring 2022 reader’s theme: Graphic Novels: Worth a Thousand Words. If you love a compelling story and appreciate the power of the graphic novel to convey the nuances of a story, then these books are for you.
  • Thank you for joining us on the High Plains Public Radio Station. My name is Jessica Sadler and I am a Science Teacher and STEAM facilitator in Olathe, Kansas. I am here with the other book leaders to discuss Persepolis: The Story of a Childhood and Persepolis 2 by Marjane Satrapi. These graphic novels are the author’s memoir of growing up a girl in revolutionary Iran. The photos in these two books, and the other book club picks, truly represent the theme Graphic Novels – Worth a Thousand Words.
  • This is Mike Strong, in Hays, for HPPR.There is little new under the sun. That includes graphic novels.In their present form graphic novels are book-length comic books. Most are drawn but some are combinations of photos and drawings.
Fall 2021
  • Welcome to the 2021 Fall Read Rivers – Meandering Meaning. To open the series and introduce the first book Elevations: A Personal Exploration of the Arkansas River by Max McCoy, you’ll enjoy a presentation made by our book leader Hannes Zacharias, formerly of Dodge City and Hays, Kansas...
  • Hannes Zacharias is a Professor of Practice at KU's School of Public Affairs and Administration. His 35-year career in local government concluded as Johnson County Manager, Hannes has spent 45 years paddling rivers, including the Colorado through the Grand Canyon, 1,000 miles on the Missouri, and down the Arkansas River...
  • Rivers. Perhaps it is the fact that the river of my childhood is but a memory today -- the dry riverbed a place for noisy 3-wheelers -- that brings such fascination. Or it could be harsh lessons taught by our river’s dry, sandy bed juxtaposed with the memory of sand being stuffed into bags...
  • I’m Hannes Zacharias from Lenexa for High Plains Public Radio, Radio Reader’s Book Club. The book is “Elevations: A Personal Exploration of the Arkansas River” by Max McCoy.This book, written by Max in 2018, covers his travels on the upper Arkansas River and his 742-mile journey through Colorado and Kansas…
  • This is Leslie VonHolten traveling through the High Plains of Kansas, with another HPPR Radio Readers Book Byte.I love the metaphor of rivers when we consider our life experiences, the way our days and our stories ebb and flow. Some spots are rough, too fast for us to steer the kayak. Others are languid, slow and easy. And like life, we never know what is around the bend.
  • I’m Denise Low reading poems about rivers as part of The Radio Readers Book Club’s 2021 Fall Read Rivers – Meandering Meaning. Rivers make me meander back to some of the first poetry I ever read, like this poem about the Nile by an unnamed Egyptian, translated by Ezra Pound,Nothing, nothing can keep me from my loveStanding on the other shore...
  • I’m Hannes Zacharias from Lenexa for High Plains Public Radio, Radio Reader’s Book Club. The book is “Elevations: A Personal Exploration of the Arkansas River” by Max McCoy.As Dan Flores says “it is a Blue Highway kind of book about a swipe of America…a riverline biography”.The book encourages me to reflect on my similar two solo kayak trips on the “Ark,” -- one in 1976, the other in 2018.
  • I've been asked to say a few words about my book, "Elevations." It was published in 2018 by the University Press of Kansas and the subtitle is, "A Personal Exploration of the Ark River." That just about says it all.
  • Hello, Radio Readers – I’m Jane Holwerda from Dodge City, Kansas. It’s great to be back with our Fall 2021 Book Read: “Rivers and Meandering Meanings.”In his genre-defying book Elevations, Max McCoy, who directs the Center for Great Plains Studies at Emporia State, recounts his journey – by kayak, on foot, and by Jeep—following the Arkansas River from its headwaters in Leadville, Colorado, through southwestern and on to southeastern Kansas.
Archives (ALL episodes)
Latest Episodes
  • The 2022 Fall Read - Rural Life Revisited culminated in a lively discussion Sunday evening, November 13, 2022. Thanks to all who participated!
  • Hello, Radio Readers. Jane Holwerda here from Dodge City, Kansas. It’s almost the end of our Fall 2022 read, Rural Life Revisited. And of course, we’re gearing up for our on-air program in mid-November to revisit the ways our perceptions of rural life may have been challenged by our conversations about Sherwood Anderson’s Winesburg OH, Annie Proulx’s That Old Ace in the Hole, and Winfred Gallagher’s How the Post Office Created America.
  • As the United States expanded in the 1800’s, communication needs also expanded. Mail service was social media. People would write to tell relatives where they were and what they were doing. So, when Facebook’s subject line entices us with “Mamie Smith was in Hays …..” the line is far from new.
  • One of our most visible unnoticed most ubiquitous features of daily life was the result of the US Post Office solving a need and being sensitive to feelings. House numbers. Free city delivery by postal carriers to addresses. Much later, 1923, mailboxes on houses.
  • This is the first time for me to review a book for Book Byte. I am sitting at my kitchen table writing to you while my cat, Kitten, tries to take my pen away.
  • Hi, I'm Alan Erwin from Amarillo and I've been reading Winifred Gallagher's How the Post Office Created America.The American postal system is a marvel. Often maligned, it is a miracle of efficiency that every one of us takes for granted.
  • This is Mike Strong, in Hays, for HPPR. The book is “How the Post Office Created America” by Winifred Gallagher.As I was working on reviewing Winifred Gallagher’s book, I was also shooting photos and video for a dance concert. One of the pieces was nostalgic about physical, paper mail. Specifically, about getting paper rather than texts or email.
  • This is Mike Strong, in Hays, for HPPR. e book is “How the Post Office Created America” by Winifred Gallagher.
  • This is Mike Strong, in Hays, for HPPR. The book is “How the Post Office Created America” by Winifred Gallagher.To say that email and texts are no substitute for the emotional support of physical letters and packages is especially true for troops, in particular younger troops separated for the first time from friends and family.
  • This is Mike Strong, in Hays, for HPPR. The book is “How the Post Office Created America” by Winifred Gallagher.Winifred Gallagher does something I seldom see in journalism. She pitches plans and suggestions to solve current difficulties she may be writing about.