Bolinas Reads: December 2023


A monthly interview with Bolinas Library readers.

Zoë Kruk is an eighth grader at the Bolinas-Stinson School, opens a new window. Zoë moved to Bolinas at the age of three from Amsterdam and has lived here ever since. She speaks both Polish and English and has made numerous trips to Poland to visit family there. When she's not in school, Zoë enjoys reading, walking her dog, Hazel, and hanging out with friends. She is currently a volunteer in the Bolinas Library helping with shelving and organization.

What are you reading now? What’s in your pile of books?  Do you read one book at a time or several? What’s the best book you’ve read this year?

Right now, I'm reading Wuthering Heights, opens a new window, by Emily Brontë, A Yellow Raft in Blue Water, opens a new window, by Michael Dorris, and Any Way the Wind Blows, , opens a new windowby Rainbow Rowell for the fourth time. The best books I've read this year were probably the Twilight, opens a new window books by Stephanie Meyer.

How did you come to read Wuthering Heights?

Twilight has a similar story arc to Wuthering Heights and the author was inspired by the book and Emily Bronte, opens a new window's characters.  There are many quotes from Wuthering Heights in the Twilight books. Bella, the main character, reads Wuthering Heights and all of Jane Austen’, opens a new windows books as well. I’m about two thirds of the way through. It’s heavy and dense.

What do you plan to read next?

I am looking forward to reading Turtles All the Way Down, by John Green. Green is one of my favorite authors.  I love all of his books, especially Paper Towns, opens a new window and The Fault in Our Stars, opens a new window.  That book is one of my favorites and I actually found it at the Free Box, opens a new window in Bolinas along with two other good books.

In addition to that, I’m also planning to read In the Lives of Puppets, opens a new window, by TJ Klune.

Do you and your friends recommend books to each other?  What’s the last book you recommended to a friend?  Was there a book that you liked that a friend told you about?

The last book I read that was recommended to me by a friend was Fangirl, opens a new window, by Rainbow Rowell. The last book I recommended to a friend was The Selection, opens a new window, by Kiera Cass.

Do you like to read paper or ebooks? Audio books? Dvds?

I have a Kindle, and I love reading on it because it's easy to get books to read from the library, and you can have a lot of books on it at once. I don't like audio books because I find them hard to focus on.

Are you a browser in the library or do you know in advance what you are looking for?  Do you browse the library catalog or pick specific books? If so, how do you find out about them?

I usually read books by the same authors, or books that are similar to them, but I also like to browse for books in bookstores or libraries. Mainly I browse for books online. I have the Libby, opens a new window app and browse online that way. I also have a San Francisco Public, opens a new window library card and browse on that, too. There is so much available.

Are there any books you read in school this year that you liked?

Right now, in school we are reading Howard Zinn's A Young Peoples History of the United States, opens a new window, which is cool because it’s like a history book, but not as boring as one. It’s very Bolinas.

 Do you have a favorite genre? Any genres that you never read?

Graphic novels are one of my favorite genres. I like romance books, as well as realistic fiction, and some fantasy. Non-Fiction is probably my least favorite genre.

Any favorite authors? Characters?

I love John Green, opens a new window’s books. The dialog is hilarious, and the characters are the same in each book; really good characters and each time he writes them they get more and more interesting with each book.   I read his books for the writing style not for the genre.

What was your reading experience as a young child? Did you grow up with a lot of books?  A favorite book?

I was read to every night when I was little, both in English and in Polish. My favorite book was The Lorax, opens a new window, by Dr Seuss.

Did you use the library as a young child? What do you like about the library?

I have always had a library card, and I loved being able to pick out my own books. I used to love to come and browse in the kid’s section, being here with my friends and hanging out in the kids rooms. I would take home a stack of books.

Is there a famous author that you ever wanted to meet?  Maybe back in time?

I have always wanted to meet Raina Telgemeier, opens a new window, a Graphic novelist, because all of her books are the reason I started to read. She's the same age as my mom, and also grew up in San Francisco. I liked Guts, opens a new window and Smile , opens a new windowand many of her other books. Graphic novels got me into reading. It didn’t really click for me until 2nd or3rd grade. I learned how to read on sheer will. The reading system I was taught with in school did not work for me.

Is there a book that you always meant to read but still haven’t. Any highly rated books that you thought were over rated?

I want to read Pride and Prejudice, opens a new window, by Jane Austen, but I haven't yet. I've read about Jane Austen. I want to watch the movie too but have to read the book first. One of my favorite movies is Emma, opens a new window.  I have all of the Austen books on my kindle.

What books do you return to? Are there any books you like to re-read?

I re-read any book that I have read that I liked and re-read books more often than I start new books. I always have at least one book that I am in the process of re-reading. Right now, that book is Any Way the Wind Blows, opens a new window, by Rainbow Rowell. She is one of my favorite authors. She also wrote Fangirl , opens a new windowabout a girl in college who writes fan fiction. Her fan fiction is for a fictional book series that the author made up. Then she wrote the fan fiction from Fangirl, and I liked that even more.  Her last books are the best, a trilogy, featuring the character Simon Snow, opens a new window.

What kind of characters draw you in as a reader?

I like characters who are funny, witty, or sardonic. I enjoy books with lots of dialog, and characters that make me laugh.

Do you have a collection of books at home?  If so, where do you keep them and do you re-read?

My bookcase is always full, and I keep books on my Kindle, too.

When and where do you like to read? Describe your ideal reading experience.

I like to read at home on my couch. I love the feeling of being in the middle of a book, and how nothing else matters.

Why read?

I love reading because it transports you to a new world, and the feeling that you know the characters of your story so well that they are practically real people.