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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: 'Between Two Kingdoms'

“It began with an itch. Not a metaphorical itch to travel the world or some quarter-life crisis. But a literal, physical itch. A maddening, claw-at-your-skin, keep-you-up-at-night itch that surfaced during my senior year of college, first on the tops of my feet and then moving up my calves and thighs.”

Those are the opening lines to Suleika Jaouad’s memoir Between Two Kingdoms. After graduation, she moved to Paris to pursue her dream of becoming a war correspondent, but by the time she was twenty-three, with a diagnosis of leukemia and a 35 percent chance of survival, she moved back to New York to fight for her life.

Over the next four years, her body is ravaged with clinical trial treatments, a bone marrow transplant and multiple hospital stays with life threatening infections. The first half of the book chronicles her journey through the illness and, miraculously, to the other side. The second half of the book is about her journey to discover how to reenter the world. How do you redefine yourself when you are no longer a young woman with cancer? How do you re-learn to be independent and your own caregiver?

She decides to take a one-hundred-day road trip around the United States to visit some of the people who, after reading her New York Times articles about her illness, wrote to her. The people she visits range from a teenage cancer survivor in Florida to a death-row inmate in Texas. As the book jacket says this book “is a profound chronicle of survivorship and a fierce, tender, and inspiring exploration of what it means to begin again.”

If you know a cancer survivor, or are one yourself, then you must read Between Two Kingdoms by Suleika Jaouad.

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.