Jeff Klinkenberg, a St. Petersburg Times journalist since 1977, has made a career of finding Florida's off-the-radar people and places for his column Real Florida. Klinkenberg has participated in the Florida Humanities Council Road Scholar program, presenting "Ten Books Every Floridian Should Read'' to audiences across the state. He will be a featured author at the Times Festival of Reading on Oct. 25.
What is on your nightstand?
I'm re-reading the Odyssey, the Robert Fagles translation. I love that kind of story, one about that person who has been gone, now making his way home. I'm also reading The Return of Ulysses: A Cultural History of Homer's Odyssey by Edith Hall.
Did people who came to hear your list of top 10 books for Floridians always agree with your picks?
I was always getting people to bring up one book that I never heard of. One interesting one was The Lion's Paw by Robb White. I tracked it down and read it. It came out in the 1940s, and it was about orphans living in Stuart, on the east coast.
Did you add it to your list?
I did. And, if I ever do a list again, I would add Shadow Country by Peter Matthiessen. It was just incredible to read.
Piper Castillo, Times staff writer