Thankful for Books with Tony

Updated: Nov 19, 2020

There are a lot of books I am forever grateful to have in my life. Here’s just three that I wouldn’t be the same without.

1. The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton

I had a sixth grade English teacher who read some of this out loud to my class, and it sucked me in faster than anything I’d ever experienced.

It's fully realized characters had thoughts and emotions that I immediately recognized. I checked a copy out of my library that weekend, and I’ve probably read it once a year every year since then.

It makes me think about the stories that everyone has and how absolutely fascinating we all are.

2. Dandelion Wine by Ray Bradbury

Normally, this book is only to be read during the summer, but 2020 is the exception to all things.

A loosely connected set of stories set in a fictional town in Illinois that describes a world as fantastic as the farthest reaches of time and space. Stories about the magic of youth and the beauty of the unseen.

It’s about taking deep breaths. Breathing is important right now.

3. Hawkeye, Vol 1-4 by Matt Fraction and David Aja and others

It’s about the things that superheroes do on a Thursday when they don’t have to save the world from aliens or something. A comic about human connections with others and with yourself.

These comics were coming out just as my wife and I had our first child, and it was so good for me to read about someone who also makes mistakes, has anxiety and depression, self sabotages, and just can’t seem to get things right sometimes.

Matt Fraction and his outstanding collaborators took a b-level character, a dude with bow and arrow, and created maybe the most interesting comic book series of the last twenty-five years.

Bonus for storytelling and writing nerds: the tricks that this book pulls off will have you stealing from them for the rest of your life.


Tony Gruenwald

Writer | Co-host of Unlocking Matlock | Stay-at-Home Dad

You can read Tony's personal blog at

Stay-at-home dad life is nothing like you think it is. Join Tony and his kids for just a regular day at the playground. Nothing weird happens at all! FullTimeTony and the World Song is available for preorder on Kindle and Kindle app.

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