illinois authors

courtesy of Henriette Agnes

Everyone has a story to tell. And one northern Illinois woman has found a way to tell hers, 77 years after Nazis dropped the Blitzkrieg on her doorstep.

World War II started for five-year-old Henriette Kraus on May 10th, 1940.

“I woke up. And there was a lot of noise, and my sisters in their nightgowns, looking out the window. So I went there, too,” she recalled. “And here is the tanks, the trucks, everything is coming down the street. The airplanes are flying over. I mean, I didn't know what was happening. You know, that's how the war started. For me.”

AC/DC was better with Bon Scott? For many AC/DC fans, those are fightin' words.

Amy Newman has published more than 200 poems. She is also a Presidential Research Professor at Northern Illinois University. Her alter ego, "Amy Newman," is less successful but clings to the hope that an editor will publish her work.

Robert Kopp wants you to know something:  Jesus loves you, and he would've ridden a motorcycle back in the day.  The Rev. Dr. Kopp's new book, I Just Wanna Ride (FTW), describes how the biker lifestyle leads to a more authentic faith.  It's the first installment of WNIJ's Summer Book Series.

Literature is alive and vital in DeKalb and the Rockford area.  I learned this after interviewing five authors for WNIJ's Summer Book Series, which airs every Friday in June. 

This is the first such series by WNIJ News since I started hosting Morning Edition in 1997 and, to be honest, none of us knew anything about the authors who lived here.  The only thing we knew was this:  The books we wanted for this series should be the kind you'd want to read while on vacation.