Meet a Nantucket Bookworm – Dick Burns



Name: Dick Burns

Mitchell’s, Bookworks, or Book Festival?  Mostly Bookworks and Book Festival, but some guest appearances at Mitchell’s.

Brant Point, Sankaty or Great Point Lighthouse? Sankaty Light

Favorite Nantucket Books:  Nantucket: The Other Season by Stan Grossfeld, In The Heart Of The Sea by Nat Philbrick, Wildflower’s of Nantucket by, Peter W. Dunwiddie and The Other Islanders by Frances Ruley Karttunen.

Favorite book as a child: Robert Louis Stevenson’s A Child’s Garden of Verses.

Favorite Literary Quote:  His soul swooned slowly as he heard the snow falling faintly through the universe and faintly falling, like the descent of their last end, upon all the living and all the dead. – James Joyce

Favorite Author to read at the beach: This summer it was Yasmina Reza

Last Book that made you cry: Let The Great World Spin

Last Book that made you laugh: Leaving Before the Rains Comes

Last Book that scared you:  Long ago, probably The Stand by Stephen King

You only get one book for the rest of your life to read over and over. What would you pick?  Shakespeare’s  Plays or Ulysses.

What kinds of books do you enjoy reading?  Many kinds, but I would say especially literary fiction, travel, poetry, science (astronomy and natural history, most of all), Irish culture, memoirs or biographies of writers or other artists…

Favorite Books:  The Sun Also Rises, Gravity’s Rainbow, Collected Poems of W.B.Yeats, Notes from the Century Before, Pride and Prejudice

Best Book into Movie: Nowhere in Africa by Stefanie Zweig

Literary Guilty Pleasure:  There are none – only the occasional great disappointment.

What book (s) are you looking forward to reading this year? ­­­­We Are Not Ourselves by, Matthew Thomas (Mitchell’s September Book of the Month)

If you could have a dinner with three authors who would they be?  If I had to decide this week, it would be Samuel Beckett, Zadie Smith & Mary Gordon

If you could have lunch with three fictional literary characters who would they be?  Sebastien Dangerfield, Tom Jones and Moll Flanders.  “It will be a bawdy lunch…”

Favorite Place to read a book on island:  This summer – on the patio of Starlight in the afternoon sun or in the chair in front of Bartlett’s on Old South Wharf.  In the winter months, in my great chair in the sitting room.

What are you reading right now? ­­­­­­­The Faraway Nearby by Rebecca Solnit, Nora Webster by Colm Toibin, issue #10 of Pank Magazine, Young Skins by Colin Barrett, A Girl is a Half Formed Thing by Eimear McBride, and The Poems of Paul Muldoon (for an introduction I’ll give in a couple weeks.)

Thanks Dick for being a Nantucket Bookworm!

Visit Dick at Nantucket Bookworks this Fall season!


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