Becky Ann Baker: TOP TEN BOOKS

Becky Ann Baker (1)

Not many of us can brag they’ve been murdered on screen by both Sir Ben Kingsley and Bill Paxton; Becky Ann Baker can, in the respective thrillers The Confession and A Simple Plan.  “I always say we got into this business to die, because it’s the most fun you can have,” she once said. Her  long list of movie, TV, and theater credits also includes iconic shows such as Freaks & Geeks and the HBO’s millennial-skewering comedy, Girls, for which she was nominated for an Emmy. Although she has built a reputation as one of our most accomplished character actors in shows as varied as Big Little Lies, The Good Wife, and Blacklist, Baker began her career primarily in musicals, as a singer who could dance. It took ten years of open casting calls and auditions before she was able to sign with an agent. “I wasn’t your thin little blonde,” she has said. “I was a second banana character person. I don’t think anybody knew what to do with me, so it took a while.” 

Below are Becky Ann Baker’s favorite books, available to purchase individually or as a set.


Lucy Gayheart

Willa Cather
Willa Cather is my all time favorite writer. My only child, a daughter, is named Willa. Her writing is spare and beautiful. I love so many of her books, One of Ours, Alexander’s Bridge, but Lucy Gayheart is my favorite. It is a heartbreaking romance. The story is delicate and the characters are so well defined.
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The Blessing

Nancy Mitford
All of Nancy Mitford’s books, about the exploits of a fictionalized family that closely resembles her own, are fabulous. They are hilarious and revealing. The Blessing is another example of parenting gone sour. Anyone that has a child should read it!!
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Redhead by the Side of the Road

Anne Tyler
Anne Tyler’s most recent book is beautiful. Her writing reminds me of a modern Willa Cather. Spare and perfect. You care so much about her characters and invest yourself in the story. It’s always a gentle read.
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W. Somerset Maugham
There are so many great Maugham books, Cakes and Ale!!, but Theatre is wickedly smart and tells the story of being badly parented by a mother who is an actress! It hits home.
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Leave it to PSmith

P. G. Wodehouse helped my husband and me through the Pandemic. I’m not sure we would have survived sheltering without his books. They are so brilliantly crafted and laugh out loud funny. We would read passages to each other and howl! This one is particularly brilliant.
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The Daughter of Time

Josephine Tey
It was hard to pick my favorite Tey mystery. They are all terrific. Daughter of Time is especially fun for theatre lovers because it deals with the mystery of Richard III. Was he evil or misrepresented through history? This book is a lot of fun.
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Me Talk Pretty One Day

David Sedaris
I have laughed out loud on a NYC bus reading a Sedaris short story. He is a writer that tells all of his secrets, warts and all. You recoil, you cringe and then you fall completely in love with him. And, now, I pick trash up on the side of the road because of him.
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Neither Here nor There

Bill Bryson
Not only does Bryson travel through Europe, he time travels back and forth to a prior, youthful European trip he took. This is a very funny read and also wonderfully insightful. His other books are terrific too and he covers an amazing range of topics.
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Franny and Zooey

J.D. Salinger
Salinger is another author that made a huge impression on me when I was young. Every time you turn the page you find out that each family member is more screwed up than the last. I keep hoping that there are some more Salinger books coming when his estate is settled???
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Kurt Vonnegut
When I reread Vonnegut recently I realized how much he had influenced my youth. His imaginative way of writing forces you to think outside the box. Time travel is just the beginning. Slaughterhouse Five is thrilling.
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