Monday, August 25, 2008

Book Club: Big Russ and Me

My sister and I are on our third book club book with our dad. Since we are reading Tim Russerts book about his father in our book club, here are a few questions:

Thinking about the whole book:

1. Big Russ and Me can be considered a collection of anecdotes. Did you have a favorite story? Why? Did it remind you of personal stories about your father or your upbringing?

2. It is implied throughout this book that the values of the 1950's and 1960's should be incorporated in our contemporary culture. Do you agree? Do you think this is happening?

3. Big Russ represents good values and common sense. Do you think these are unique traits of his personality or are they a reflection of his generation?

4. Russert takes pride in his city of origin: Buffalo, New York. Do you think his stories would be as interesting if they were set in another city?

5. Russert speaks with pride about his Irish-Catholic heritage. Do you think the values that he refers to in the book are heritage specific?

6. What is the appeal of Big Russ and Me? Is it a rags-to-riches story? Is it the reminiscence of simpler times? Or, is it just entertainment?

7. Have you watched Tim Russert on NBC News or Meet The Press? If so, did you notice anything in his reporting style that reflects his upbringing?

8. Tim Russert died unexpectedly on June 13,2008. There was a sizable public response of tribute, mourning and loss. Which do you think most contributed to his popularity, his books or his TV personality?

9. Big Russ and Me inspired many readers to send their own stories to Tim Russert. Consequently, he published another book with those stories titled Wisdom of Our Fathers: Lessons and Letters From Daughters and Sons.

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