Martin's Must-Reads

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 now 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. Tune in each Wednesday and visit for previous must-reads. 

In the spring of 1961, the newly appointed head of the Federal Communications Commission, Newton Minow, gave a speech in which he described television as “a procession of game shows, formula comedies about totally unbelievable families, blood and thunder, mayhem, violence, sadism, murder, Western bad men, Western good men, private eyes, gangsters, more violence and cartoons…Is there no room on television to teach, to inform, to uplift, to stretch, to enlarge the capacities of our children?”

“We have one thing in common. Each of us is desperate enough to take the risk. To turn our backs on who the world demands we be."

“On August 1, 1953, the United States Congress announced House Concurrent Resolution 108. The announcement called for the eventual termination of all tribes and the immediate termination of five tribes, including the Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa.”

“The young soldier was part of the “Baby Bottle Conscription,” the boys called up when there were no more men, young or old, to fight the war. Victor Dalmau received him with the other wounded taken from the supply truck and laid out like logs on mats.”

I’m Betty Martin with "Martin’s Must Reads" and those are lines from Isabel Allende’s newest novel A Long Petal of the Sea. The year is 1938 and the soldiers are fighting in Spain’s civil war when General Franco and his Fascists succeed in overthrowing the government.

Late in the afternoon of April 12, 1945, Vice President Harry Truman had just finished presiding over a session of the senate.  As was his custom, he was relaxing by having a drink with senators when he received an urgent message: come to the White House as quickly and quietly as possible. The next 116 days changed everyone involved, indeed the entire world.