Summer Reading Series – KKRN

Feed the Hungry Bookworm

There’s a hungry bookworm in us all, searching through endless reading lists to add to the infinity that is our own “To Read” lists. And now there is a need to respond to attacks on science and facts with diverse thought and logic.

Reading isn’t just about collecting knowledge, it’s about stretching our world views in ways that may sometimes be uncomfortable. It’s not always about agreeing with what you’re reading, but understanding the point of view of the people who wrote those words. Community radio gives a space for a diversity of voices and thought; to go beyond their comfort zones and listen instead of planning a response.

KKRN is a community radio station, and Pacifica Affiliate, in Round Mountain, CA. Station manager Ellen Sugg felt that this reading list was a great reflection of the station, as it included books from youth, volunteers, and producers like Professor Pamela Spoto, whose show Dig This! Environmental Watch influenced her book choices.

Ellen herself submitted Their Eyes Were Watching God, as she had started reading it for the second time. Ellen has always been drawn to books on abolishing slavery and institutional racism and felt that it was important to not fall under false political memory.

Each book submitted includes a favorite quote that sums up the relevancy of the book in our current climate.

KKRN Summer Reading List

La Lacuna
Barbara Kingsolver

Historical fiction novel. A young man, Harrison Shepard, with  a Mexican mother and America father finds himself as a cook living in the home of artists Frida Kahlo and Diego Riviera in Mexico City in the 1930’s. The book goes into the many fascinating aspects of their lives including a stay at their home of Leon Trotsky and his wife. As time passes, Shepard, now a gay novelist, eventually moves to America and lives through the trials of WWII. He eventually finds himself being investigated by the Committee of UnAmerican Activities due to his connection of his lifelong friend, Frida Kahlo.  

Just a postage stamp of this richly woven tapestry of words and fascinating experiences…I had a hard time putting this book down.


Extinction Dialogs: How to Live With Death In Mind
Carolyn Baker, Guy R. McPherson

Collapse and abrupt climate change are presenting humans with the opportunity to discover and grieve the losses inflicted on the entire Earth community.


You Are the Placebo: Making Your Mind Matter
Joe Dispenza

In other words, if you can imagine a particular future event that you want to experience in your life, that reality already exists as a possibility somewhere in the quantum field—beyond this space and time—just waiting for you to observe it.


Brain Maker: The Power of Gut Microbes to Heal and Protect Your Brain–for Life
David Perlmutter, Kristin Loberg

One of the most insidious villains with respect to our gut’s microbiome…is processed fructose.


Who Really Feeds the World?: The Failures of Agribusiness and the Promise of Agroecology
Vandana Shiva

The industrial paradigm of agriculture is causing climate change. . . As the McDonaldization of food spreads processed junk food across the globe, even those who do get enough to eat are rarely getting the nutrients they need.


Still Life with Woodpecker
Tom Robbins

Our lives are not as limited as we think they are; the world is a wonderfully weird place; consensual reality is significantly flawed; no institution can be trusted, but love does work; all things are possible; and we all could be happy and fulfilled if we only had the guts to be truly free and the wisdom to shrink our egos and quit taking ourselves so damn seriously.


Into the Wild
Jon Krakauer

Happiness [is] only real when shared.


The Sunlight Dialogues
John Gardner, Charles R. Johnson

Yes! Clumly had thought. There it was. Whatever it meant, spiritualistic trash for old ladies or the roaring secret of life and death, for a minute there Clumly had believed he wanted to know.


On the Road
Jack Kerouac

… the only people for me are the mad ones, the ones who are mad to live, mad to talk, mad to be saved, desirous of everything at the same time, the ones who never yawn or say a commonplace thing, but burn, burn, burn like fabulous yellow roman candles exploding like spiders across the stars and in the middle you see the blue centerlight pop and everybody goes “Awww!”


The Invention of Wings
Sue Monk Kidd

I struggled to pry the words from my mouth before she exited.

“Mother, please let me, let me give Hetty back to you.”

Give Hetty back, as if she was mine after all, as if owning people was as natural as breathing. For all my resistance to slavery, I breathed that foul air too.


Their Eyes Were Watching God
Zora Neale Hurston

Janie saw her life like a great tree in leaf with the things suffered, things enjoyed, things done and undone. Dawn and doom was in the branches.

There are years that ask questions and years that answer.

If you’re a station that wants to submit a reading list, please email Rebekka Reuter at

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