© 2023 KRCU Public Radio
90.9 Cape Girardeau | 88.9-HD Ste. Genevieve | 88.7 Poplar Bluff
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations
There are one million new books published each year. With so many books and so little time, where do you begin to find your next must-read? There’s the New York Times Bestseller list, the Goodreads app, the Cape Library’s Staff picks shelf and now Martin’s Must-Reads.Every Wednesday at 6:42 and 8:42 a.m., and Sunday at 8:18 a.m., Betty Martin recommends a must read based on her own personal biases for historical fiction, quirky characters and overall well-turned phrases. Her list includes WWII novels, biographies of trailblazers, novels with truly unique individuals and lots more. Reading close to 100 titles a year, Betty has plenty of titles to share.Local support for "Martin's Must Reads" comes from the Cape Girardeau Public Library and the Poplar Bluff Municipal Library.

Martin's Must Reads: 'Iona Iverson's Rules for Commuting'

“Iona Iverson’s Rules for Commuting:
1. You must have a job to go to
2. Never talk to strangers on the train
3. Don’t consume hot food
4. Never give up a seat once occupied
5. Always pack for any eventuality.

Life is hard. Sometimes we just need to read a book that has a happy ending, renews our faith in humankind and reminds us that we should care about strangers."

I’m Betty Martin with "Martin’s Must Reads" and those are the commuting rules of the main character Iona in Clare Pooley’s novel Iona Iverson’s Rules for Commuting. Fifty seven year old Iona and her dog Lulu commute by London train every day to her job as an advice columnist for a woman’s magazine. A job from which she is being encouraged to retire.

When the story opens another commuter, Piers, an officious self-important investment banker, is choking on a grape. Iona notices and calls out for medical help to which Sanjay, an oncologist nurse responds and saves Piers’ life with the Heimlich maneuver. Emmie, a young digital marketer witnesses the near death. These are several of the main characters in the story along with Martha, a high school student and outcast.

The choking incident causes Iona to break her second rule of commuting and she starts talking to these strangers on the train all of whom become friends and involved in each other’s lives. This is a feel good story about strangers who meet, develop bonds of friendship and help each other to be their better selves.

If you’re looking for such a book, then you must read Iona Iverson’s Rules for Commuting by Clare Pooley.

Betty Martin was born in Boston, Massachusetts to a Lutheran pastor and his organist wife. Betty’s love of books was inspired by her father who read to all four children each night.