Howard Stern fell in love with reading books. And all this thanks to his Kindle

BACK: I wasn’t a big book reader, but what happened to me was that when the Kindle was invented, I started loving reading. I can take it with me, and I think it has to do with the font size.

BOOKS: What did you start reading?

BACK: I started thinking about all the books I had never read in school because honestly I hadn’t had the best education. I bought Howard Zinn’s book, “A People’s History of the United States”. It’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 more about WWII. There’s a book called “With the Old Breed” by EB Sledge, who was a Marine. I didn’t understand the full impact of what those guys did in Okinawa fighting the Japanese. It had a big impact on me.

BOOKS: What else have you read lately?

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

BOOKS: What other kind of books do you read?

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

BOOKS: What other books have changed the game for you?

BACK: “The Divided Mind” by Dr. John Sarno saved my life. There was a time when I couldn’t get on a radio show without lying on my back. I had so much pain in my shoulders and back. I was about to have surgery, then I heard about him. I carry this book and its previous “Healing Back Pain” with me.

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

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

BOOKS: What other kind of books do you read?

BACK: I read a lot of chess books. Dan Heisman writes these interesting books about amateur games and player mistakes. I find his analysis fascinating. I bought an awful lot of hardcover art books because I started painting four years ago. I treasure these books. Ali Wentworth and George Stephanopoulos bought me [the exhibit catalogue] “Andrew Wyeth: Looking Back.”

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

BACK: Curious. The problem is, there’s so much I want to learn that it can paralyze me. I had such a poor understanding of what reading books was like when I was young. Now I play catch-up. I have so many regrets, especially when it comes to books.

BOOKS: Wasn’t reading a big deal in your household growing up?

BACK: Never. People tell me that when they were children, a parent read to them. I really say, “Is it true?” 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 class accelerated. But no one ever told me you could get anything out of books or that I was too stupid to understand.

BOOKS: Has becoming a book reader changed you?

BACK: Yes, I had the impression that the world had just awakened in me. I fell in love with reading.

The Boston Globe may earn a portion of the sales of products purchased on our site through our affiliate partnerships with retailers.

Follow us on Facebook or Twitter @GlobeBiblio. Amy Sutherland is the most recent author of “Rescuing Penny Jane” and can be contacted at

About Marcia G. Hussain

Check Also

Exclusive! “At the moment when nobody reads books, Reha wrote one and it was a big surprise” Romiit Raaj on her 10-year-old daughter who became a writer

Mumbai: Romiit is well known for his performances in shows like Ghar Ki Lakshmi Betiyaan, …