Archive Page - 08/16/13 40 years, 2,169 covers and 54,876 stories from PEOPLE magazine's history for you to enjoy
- VIDEO: Let Darlene Love Get You in the 'Christmas' Spirit on Letterman
- The Style Top 5: The Best Star Style From the PEOPLE Magazine Awards
- Police Searching for Parents of 3-Year-Old Girl Abandoned at Los Angeles Mall
- Muhammad Ali Hospitalized with Pneumonia
- He's on the Nice List: William & Kate Take George to See Santa
On Newsstands Now
- Matthew McConaughey: In His Own Words
- Jessa Duggar's Wedding Album
- Brittany Maynard's Final Days
Pick up your copy on newsstands
Click here for instant access to the Digital Magazine
People Top 5
LAST UPDATE: Sunday December 21, 2014 02:10PM EST
PEOPLE Top 5 are the most-viewed stories on the site over the past three days, updated every 60 minutes
- March 05, 2012
- Vol. 77
- No. 10
Author Jim Henry: I Learned to Read at 96
Illiterate for Nine Decades, the Retired Lobsterman Decided Enough Was Enough-and Now He's Written a Book
Sounds like a good way to get hand cramps, but as Jim Henry will tell you, he likes the practice. Just two years ago, the retired lobsterman made good on a lifelong goal: learning to read and write. He soon found he had a lot to say, and with help from a tutor, self-published In a Fisherman's Language last fall. The response in his tiny hometown has been electric. At Mystic's Bank Square Books, "in one month, he outsold Steve Jobs's book," marvels granddaughter Alicia Smith. Pulled out of school in third grade by his Portuguese immigrant father, Henry spent the rest of his youth helping his family make ends meet. As an adult, he made his way by faking it. "He'd pretend to read the newspaper," says his granddaughter Marlisa McLaughlin. In restaurants he'd listen to friends order and pick the same meals. "I pulled a lot of rabbits out of the hat," he chuckles. Inside, though, he felt "so ashamed," he remembers. "Sometimes I cried."
Told by McLaughlin about the memoir of a slave who beat illiteracy late in life, Henry decided that he could too. He started with the basics: his name and the ABCs. As he improved, with his tutor Mark Hogan, a retired English teacher, he set down episodes from his life-his youth in the Azores islands, his adventures on the sea-in longhand. "He said, 'This should be a book,'" recalls Hogan. The slim volume has sold more than 2,000 copies online (fishermanslanguage.com) and in bookstores, and Henry's fielding offers from agents. "They're making me a star!" he says. But the best part is finally being able to lose himself in the tales of others. "The Old Man and the Sea," he says, eyes twinkling. "Now that was quite a story."
Treat Yourself! 4 Preview Issues
The most buzzed about stars this minute!