Books

bibliophiles

Howard Stern has fallen in love with reading books. And it’s all thanks to his Kindle

Howard Stern, whose show still airs on SiriusXM, started his radio career at his alma mater Boston University.
Michael Zorn/Invision/Associated Press/File 2018
Howard Stern, whose show still airs on SiriusXM, started his radio career at his alma mater Boston University.

Of the thousands of celebrity interviews Howard Stern has done over his long and sometimes controversial career some stand out, such as when comedian Tracy Morgan discussed his near-fatal car accident or Lady Gaga divulged her history with cocaine. In his new book “Howard Stern Comes Again” readers not only find the transcripts of the shock jock’s favorite interviews, but the back stories, such as his unsuccessful quest to land Hillary Clinton on his show in 2016, as well as details of Stern’s own life and career. Stern, whose show still airs on SiriusXM, started his radio career at his alma mater Boston University. This is his third book.

BOOKS: What are you reading?

STERN: I’m wasn’t a huge book reader but what happened for me is when the Kindle was invented I started to enjoy reading. I can carry it around with me, and I think it has to do with the size of the font.

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BOOKS: What did you start reading?

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STERN: I started to think about all the books I never read in school because I didn’t get the greatest education honestly. I bought Howard Zinn’s book, “A People’s History of the United States.” That’s something I should have read in college because while I was at Boston University he was a professor there. Then I decided I wanted to learn about World War II. There’s a book called “With the Old Breed” by E.B. Sledge, who was a Marine. I didn’t understand the full impact of what these guys did at Okinawa fighting the Japanese. That had a big impact on me.

BOOKS: What else have you read recently?

STERN: I recently bought Danny Zucker’s book, “He Started It!: My Twitter War With Trump.” It literally takes you 15 minutes to read. It’s his tweets back and forth with Trump. Danny is a very funny guy.

BOOKS: What other kind of books do you read?

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STERN: A lot of self-help books. A couple of years ago I got into David Allen’s “Getting Things Done.” One of the things I learned in psychotherapy is that I was rather infantilized. I was letting a lot of people take care of me. I decided I wanted the right calendar and to-do list. His book was a game changer. I’ve read it maybe 20 times.

BOOKS: What other books have been game-changers for you?

STERN: Dr. John Sarno’s “The Divided Mind” saved my life. There was a time I couldn’t get through a radio show without laying on my back. I was in such shoulder and back pain. I was about to have surgery, and then I heard about him. I carry that book and his earlier one “Healing Back Pain” around with me.

BOOKS: How would you describe your taste as a reader?

STERN: I love any kind of true story. I loved Bruce Springsteen’s memoir. I also read Katy Tur’s “Unbelievable.” I enjoyed that and loved Al Franken’s “Giant of the Senate.”

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BOOKS: What other kind of books do you read?

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STERN: I read a lot of chess books. Dan Heisman writes these interesting books about amateur games and the mistakes players make. I find his analysis fascinating. I’ve been buying a tremendous amount of hardcover art books because I started painting four years ago. I cherish these books. Ali Wentworth and George Stephanopoulos bought me [the exhibit catalogue] “Andrew Wyeth: In Retrospect.”

BOOKS: How would you describe yourself as a reader so far?

STERN: Curious. The problem is there’s so many things I want to learn about it can paralyze me. I had such a poor understanding of what book reading could be when I was young. Now I’m playing catch up. I have so many regrets, especially when it comes to books.

BOOKS: Was reading not a big deal in your house growing up?

STERN: Never. People tell me that when they were kids a parent read them to. I say really, “Is that right?” I never experienced that, and I never understood the joy of reading, which is weird because around second grade I tested high in reading comprehension, and they put me in a fast-track class. But nobody ever said to me you can get something from books or I was too dumb to catch on.

BOOKS: Has becoming a book reader changed you?

STERN: Yes, I have felt like the world had just awakened in me. I have fallen in love with reading.

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Follow us on Facebook or Twitter @GlobeBiblio. Amy Sutherland is the author, most recently, of “Rescuing Penny Jane’’ and she can be reached at amysutherland@mac.com.