For the 25th edition of our unending People of Peoria series, I traveled to Kenny's Westside Pub and had lunch with Ken Zurski. A lot of you know him from listening to him broadcast traffic reports and updates on WMBD, but he's also an author and you can read more about him and his brand new book by scrolling on down!
People of Peoria: Person Number 25 - Ken Zurski
Ken Zurski is a veteran broadcaster at WMBD radio and in the last six years he’s also become known as an author and a prolific one as well. His first book, Wreck of the Columbia was published by Amika Press in 2012, his second book, Peoria Stories was the follow-up book that came out in 2014. Ken and Amika press are in the process of rolling out book number three this month. This book has the distinctive title of, Unremembered. The subtitle, “Tales of the Nearly Famous & the Not Quite Forgotten” is the hook that reels you in.
Unremembered - The Skimmed Review
Okay, I just got the book last week and between starting this blog back up and working on the upcoming Marty Monologues (take note Ken, see how I just plugged my own stuff within your review!) I haven’t had a chance to read the book yet. But I have read Ken’s first two books, The Wreck of the Columbia and Peoria Stories and those were fascinating and entertaining reads.
Ken has an impressive writing style that is equal parts factual reporting and conversational story-telling. When you mix those two styles and weave them into tales with eccentric and unique people involved in unusual slices of life, it feels like someone is telling them to you around a campfire, even though you’re reading the words in a book. That’s a real gift and Ken Zurski has it.
I have skimmed through Unremembered and I’ve already enjoyed the historical photos and while it’s said that you can’t judge a book by the cover, I love the design and the collage of characters on it. They look like interesting people and I’m anxious to read the stories behind those curious faces.
Here’s what I have read, the title, the back cover and the table of contents. First off, I love the title and the word, “Unremembered.” The subtitle hammers the title home perfectly: “Tales of the Nearly Famous and the Not Quite Forgotten.” Ten words that are so intriguing and inviting.
The chapter titles in the table of contents also make you want to start turning pages, check some of these out: A genius and an ass; The equivalent of a million bathtubs; One day I’m going to fly; I may pursue other routes; i saw the upper deck on fire and the ending chapter makes me want to start at the back of the book, that chapter title is: I have some terrible news.
Once I get caught up with my projects I’m going to crack this book open. I’m afraid to now, because I’m sure like with Ken’s first two books, once I start reading, I won’t be able to stop.
Ken will be signing books tomorrow at the First Friday Studios On Sheridan at The Sunbeam Building from 7pm to 9pm. And he’ll be giving a talk about Unremembered at the Peoria Public Library North Branch on September 19th at 6pm.
Ken was interviewed on Good Day Central Illinois this morning and you can see the interview by clicking here.
Okay, now it’s on to the Peoria Favorite Five List!
The Peoria Favorite Five List
What’s your favorite font? I'll pick Walbaum, that’s the font used in all three of my books.
Who’s your favorite Peoria author? I have to go with Norm Kelly. He’s the quintessential Peoria Historian!
Who’s your favorite Peoria person? My wife, Connie. She’s the one that brought me here from Chicago! She’s originally from Tremont and we now live in Morton.
What’s your favorite curse word? It has to be crap. I have an 11 and a 13-year-old, so I have to watch it in the curse word area!
Who would you like to give a shout-out to? I’d love to give one to the publisher of all three of my books, Amika Press.
The Official People Of Peoria Shout-Out: Here’s to you Amika Press, someone out there loves you!
The People of Peoria Curse Word Count List
Eight shits, three fucks, two shitballs, two craps, one stinkin’, one dang-a-lang, one good lousy, one fuck-all, one dadgummit, one son of a bitch, one godammit, one poonsnatch, one shucks and one mierda.