What Stories Are You Thankful For?

Keeping with the spirit of the season, we asked our staff which stories they’re thankful for this year (and every year!):

“One book I’m tremendously thankful for and think about a lot is Where the Red Fern Grows by Wilson Rawls. It’s a simple story – about a boy in rural Missouri and his two hunting dogs. It’s a dog book and a very classic dog book, which means it always leaves me an emotional wreck. But I also have very fond memories of my third grade teacher, Mr. Walters, reading it to us aloud. I remember those 20 or 30 minutes every day feeling peaceful and content, sitting back and listening to this story in which I totally saw myself, even though I was a suburban non-hunter with two pugs, which are as far from hunting dogs as you can get. And once I was older and revisited the book, after one of my childhood dogs had passed away, I was even more thankful – for this simple story about people and the dogs who shape them, and for those memories of Mr. Walters’s classroom.”
Heather Job, Associate Publicist

“I say this without exaggeration: I did not read books until I read the Harry Potter series. I read them on repeat until my mother threatened to take them away unless I read something else. Luckily that worked and I turned into a reader of many books, though I still find myself returning to Hogwarts as often as possible. I listened to the series for the first time on audio this summer and thank Dumbledore for Jim Dale: he truly brings these beloved stories and characters to life.”
Megan Mills, Assistant Editor

“I have to credit my initial love of reading to Harry Potter. I know. Cliché. But it was a series that I grew up with and it’s still something I go back to comfort read. There was something just so plausible to 9-year-old me about getting a mysterious letter that said I belonged to a world full of magic and wonder and excitement. I also think it’s what started my wild imagination, which my friends hate me for (but I don’t see them complaining when I help brainstorm story ideas for their much-dreaded English classes).”
Gilcy Aquino, Marketing & Publicity Intern

“I have two stories I always feel particularly thankful for when I look back on my life as a reader—I can’t choose between them, and when it comes to books I’m always just a little extra. One is Bridge to Terabithia by Katherine Paterson. It was the first book I remember having a visceral reaction to while reading, and the first book to ever break my heart. The second is The Princess Diaries series by Meg Cabot (the audiobook is narrated by Anne Hathaway!) which I have reread more times than I can count. Simply put, Mia Thermopolis is my book best friend, and Meg Cabot spot-on captures what it feels like to be a 15-year-old girl who longs for nothing more than self-actualization (okay, and to pass Algebra).”
Erin Murphy, Creative Marketing Assistant

“The book I’m grateful for this Thanksgiving (and all throughout the year!) is Tiny Beautiful Things by Cheryl Strayed. For years, Cheryl wrote an anonymous online advice column on The Rumpus, where she gave the most astounding, radically empathetic advice to those seeking her help. Tiny Beautiful Things is a collection of those columns and is one of the most powerful, compassionate, ultimate advice books that you can turn to no matter what is going on in your life! And as a bonus, Cheryl narrates the audiobook herself, so you can have her speak her wise, soulful, remarkable words directly to you!”
Nicole Morano, Publicity Manager

“I’m thankful for so many stories, but one series that has a special place in my heart is Nancy Drew. My mom was a fan when she was growing up, and she passed along her copies of the first few books to me. Not only were the mysteries intriguing, but reading about an intelligent, curious, and independent young woman was inspiring. I still dream of buying a vintage VW bug car to drive around and channel Ms. Drew!”—Taraneh DJangi, Senior Manager, Creative Marketing

Listen to excerpts from our beloved audiobooks!

Author: Wilson Rawls
Read By: Anthony Heald
A beloved classic that captures the powerful bond between man and man’s best friend. Billy has long dreamt of owning not one, but two, dogs. So when he’s finally able to save up enough money for two pups to call his own—Old Dan...
Author: J.K. Rowling
Read By: Jim Dale
Harry Potter has no idea how famous he is. That's because he's being raised by his miserable aunt and uncle who are terrified Harry will learn that he's really a wizard, just as his parents were. But everything changes when Harry is summoned to atten...
Author: Meg Cabot
Read By: Anne Hathaway
She's just a New York City girl living with her artist mom…News flash: Dad is prince of Genovia. (So that's why a limo always meets her at the airport!)Downer: Dad can't have any more kids. (So no heir to the throne.)Shock of the century: Like ...
This bestselling book from the author of Wild collects the best of The Rumpus's Dear Sugar advice columns plus never-before-published pieces. Rich with humor, insight, compassion—and absolute honesty—this book is a balm for ever...