Best Non-Fiction (non biography)
Share your picks for the best non-fiction books you've read - DO NOT INCLUDE BIOGRAPHIES
501
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3.86 of 5 stars 3.86 avg rating — 1,070 ratings
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501
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4.35 of 5 stars 4.35 avg rating — 4,879 ratings
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503
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4.15 of 5 stars 4.15 avg rating — 715 ratings
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503
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4.16 of 5 stars 4.16 avg rating — 1,448 ratings
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503
by
4.07 of 5 stars 4.07 avg rating — 692 ratings
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506
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3.66 of 5 stars 3.66 avg rating — 2,035 ratings
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506
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4.16 of 5 stars 4.16 avg rating — 261,168 ratings
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508
by
4.03 of 5 stars 4.03 avg rating — 1,222 ratings
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508
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3.47 of 5 stars 3.47 avg rating — 99,785 ratings
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508
by
4.04 of 5 stars 4.04 avg rating — 1,763 ratings
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511
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3.85 of 5 stars 3.85 avg rating — 14,341 ratings
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511
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4.3 of 5 stars 4.30 avg rating — 790 ratings
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511
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3.87 of 5 stars 3.87 avg rating — 6,853 ratings
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514
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3.57 of 5 stars 3.57 avg rating — 999 ratings
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514
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3.43 of 5 stars 3.43 avg rating — 7 ratings
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516
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3.71 of 5 stars 3.71 avg rating — 2,160 ratings
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517
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4.03 of 5 stars 4.03 avg rating — 678 ratings
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517
by
4.07 of 5 stars 4.07 avg rating — 214 ratings
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519
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4.18 of 5 stars 4.18 avg rating — 25,472 ratings
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519
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3.71 of 5 stars 3.71 avg rating — 16,812 ratings
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519
by
4.08 of 5 stars 4.08 avg rating — 2,621 ratings
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522
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3.95 of 5 stars 3.95 avg rating — 1,647 ratings
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522
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4.38 of 5 stars 4.38 avg rating — 516,132 ratings
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524
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3.62 of 5 stars 3.62 avg rating — 198 ratings
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525
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3.71 of 5 stars 3.71 avg rating — 938 ratings
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526
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3.71 of 5 stars 3.71 avg rating — 6,815 ratings
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526
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4.04 of 5 stars 4.04 avg rating — 797 ratings
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526
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3.77 of 5 stars 3.77 avg rating — 13,294 ratings
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529
by
4.19 of 5 stars 4.19 avg rating — 2,501 ratings
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529
by
4.13 of 5 stars 4.13 avg rating — 1,907 ratings
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529
by
4.18 of 5 stars 4.18 avg rating — 27,545 ratings
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529
by
3.91 of 5 stars 3.91 avg rating — 5,803 ratings
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533
by
4.01 of 5 stars 4.01 avg rating — 356 ratings
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533
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4.04 of 5 stars 4.04 avg rating — 4,277 ratings
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535
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4.13 of 5 stars 4.13 avg rating — 68 ratings
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536
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3.85 of 5 stars 3.85 avg rating — 1,354 ratings
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536
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3.81 of 5 stars 3.81 avg rating — 36,402 ratings
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538
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4.0 of 5 stars 4.00 avg rating — 2,386 ratings
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538
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3.91 of 5 stars 3.91 avg rating — 5,716 ratings
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540
by
3.73 of 5 stars 3.73 avg rating — 2,457 ratings
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540
by
3.73 of 5 stars 3.73 avg rating — 10,766 ratings
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540
by
3.96 of 5 stars 3.96 avg rating — 5,422 ratings
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543
by
4.03 of 5 stars 4.03 avg rating — 3,737 ratings
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544
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4.18 of 5 stars 4.18 avg rating — 3,765 ratings
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544
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3.67 of 5 stars 3.67 avg rating — 4,586 ratings
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546
by
4.22 of 5 stars 4.22 avg rating — 3,487 ratings
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547
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4.14 of 5 stars 4.14 avg rating — 28,033 ratings
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548
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4.02 of 5 stars 4.02 avg rating — 3,540 ratings
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548
by
3.94 of 5 stars 3.94 avg rating — 15,578 ratings
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550
by
4.16 of 5 stars 4.16 avg rating — 20,356 ratings
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550
by
3.71 of 5 stars 3.71 avg rating — 295 ratings
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552
by
3.9 of 5 stars 3.90 avg rating — 5,110 ratings
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552
by
3.92 of 5 stars 3.92 avg rating — 2,305 ratings
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552
by
3.69 of 5 stars 3.69 avg rating — 2,985 ratings
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552
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3.99 of 5 stars 3.99 avg rating — 20,561 ratings
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556
by
4.07 of 5 stars 4.07 avg rating — 2,870 ratings
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556
by
3.93 of 5 stars 3.93 avg rating — 11,394 ratings
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558
by
3.82 of 5 stars 3.82 avg rating — 1,264 ratings
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558
by
3.72 of 5 stars 3.72 avg rating — 23,727 ratings
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560
by
4.09 of 5 stars 4.09 avg rating — 1,477 ratings
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560
by
4.04 of 5 stars 4.04 avg rating — 17,704 ratings
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562
by
3.66 of 5 stars 3.66 avg rating — 3,058 ratings
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563
by
4.14 of 5 stars 4.14 avg rating — 5,035 ratings
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563
by
3.72 of 5 stars 3.72 avg rating — 20,723 ratings
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565
by
4.03 of 5 stars 4.03 avg rating — 1,890 ratings
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566
by
3.89 of 5 stars 3.89 avg rating — 6,813 ratings
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566
by
3.92 of 5 stars 3.92 avg rating — 98 ratings
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566
by
4.23 of 5 stars 4.23 avg rating — 4,209 ratings
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569
by
3.85 of 5 stars 3.85 avg rating — 2,573 ratings
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570
by
4.34 of 5 stars 4.34 avg rating — 3,069 ratings
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570
by
4.08 of 5 stars 4.08 avg rating — 27,343 ratings
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572
by
3.91 of 5 stars 3.91 avg rating — 1,004 ratings
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572
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3.9 of 5 stars 3.90 avg rating — 15,439 ratings
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574
by
4.22 of 5 stars 4.22 avg rating — 7,824 ratings
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574
by
3.78 of 5 stars 3.78 avg rating — 2,554 ratings
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576
by
4.21 of 5 stars 4.21 avg rating — 7,725 ratings
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577
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4.15 of 5 stars 4.15 avg rating — 6,646 ratings
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577
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4.38 of 5 stars 4.38 avg rating — 12,202 ratings
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579
by
4.05 of 5 stars 4.05 avg rating — 3,400 ratings
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580
by
3.9 of 5 stars 3.90 avg rating — 100 ratings
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580
by
4.01 of 5 stars 4.01 avg rating — 100 ratings
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582
by
4.26 of 5 stars 4.26 avg rating — 15,234 ratings
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583
by
3.93 of 5 stars 3.93 avg rating — 1,402 ratings
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583
by
4.1 of 5 stars 4.10 avg rating — 170 ratings
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585
by
3.29 of 5 stars 3.29 avg rating — 1,628 ratings
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586
by
4.5 of 5 stars 4.50 avg rating — 3,432 ratings
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586
by
3.93 of 5 stars 3.93 avg rating — 201,598 ratings
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588
by
4.24 of 5 stars 4.24 avg rating — 8,827 ratings
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588
by
4.07 of 5 stars 4.07 avg rating — 271,298 ratings
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588
by
3.93 of 5 stars 3.93 avg rating — 2,359 ratings
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591
by
4.17 of 5 stars 4.17 avg rating — 7,069 ratings
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592
by
3.82 of 5 stars 3.82 avg rating — 2,114 ratings
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592
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4.06 of 5 stars 4.06 avg rating — 18 ratings
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592
by
3.45 of 5 stars 3.45 avg rating — 95 ratings
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592
by
4.2 of 5 stars 4.20 avg rating — 44 ratings
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592
by
4.67 of 5 stars 4.67 avg rating — 6 ratings
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592
by
4.1 of 5 stars 4.10 avg rating — 31 ratings
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592
by
3.74 of 5 stars 3.74 avg rating — 227 ratings
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592
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4.33 of 5 stars 4.33 avg rating — 3 ratings
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592
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4.0 of 5 stars 4.00 avg rating — 3 ratings
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3,118 books · 5,069 voters · list created June 27th, 2008 by Susan (votes) .
818 likes · like
Lists are re-scored approximately every 5 minutes.


Susan 1269 books
56 friends
Jessica 2171 books
102 friends
Jennifer 1595 books
50 friends
Cindi 2663 books
53 friends
Lisa 511 books
33 friends
Ben 576 books
57 friends
Brooke 722 books
39 friends
Rebecca 281 books
91 friends

More voters…


Comments (showing 47-96)





message 96: by jeff (new)

jeff Anyone else feel a little troubled by this list?


message 95: by jeff (new)

jeff From about #63 on maybe?


message 94: by Chanel (new)

Chanel Earl What happened to no biography?


message 93: by Angel (new)

Angel I am not sure why some folks seem to find this list troubling. Maybe I missed something? For me at least, there are a few titles I would not mind reading, like Salt. But I did wonder, I thought no biographies. What gives? Bourdain's book is (arguably at least) biographical as are a few others. Anyhow, this list this give me an idea or two to pursue later.


message 92: by Rachel (new)

Rachel Schindler's List is a novel. Pet peeve.


message 91: by brian (new)

brian thunder Im very concerned by this list too.
George Lincoln Rockwell?
I'm all for freedom of expression, but it seems odd to find him on a list with a Jewish Cookbook.


Susanna - Censored by GoodReads Caddie Woodlawn? Novel.

The Joy Luck Club? Novel.

I have my doubts about the appropriateness of 84, Charing Cross Road for this list, as well.


message 89: by Michelle (new)

Michelle Me too. I have read dozens of great non-fiction that do not appear on this list!


Susanna - Censored by GoodReads It's easy to add books at the right of the screen.


message 87: by Jo (new)

Jo There is some real drivel here...and some good stuff, too. I think we need to pay more attention in putting Marley and Me on the same list as Shockwave. Yes?




message 86: by e. (new)

e. Seems like this list is ALL over the place!


message 85: by Susanna - Censored by GoodReads (last edited Jun 02, 2010 10:19AM) (new)

Susanna - Censored by GoodReads I question the presence of The Odyssey and The Iliad on a non-fiction list.


message 84: by Foxontherun (new)

Foxontherun God I loved CandyFreak (I've met the author several times)...and Mary Roach is a GENIUS.


message 83: by [deleted user] (new)

Foxontherun wrote: "God I loved CandyFreak (I've met the author several times)...and Mary Roach is a GENIUS."

It was so entertaining. My friend Mary was able to read her book Stiff but I don't think I am up to that one. Have you read it?


message 81: by A. Steven (new)

A. Steven jeff wrote: "From about #63 on maybe?"

Yeah your right ... #92 really doesn't fit at all.


message 80: by Xenophon (last edited Jun 21, 2010 05:58PM) (new)

Xenophon Hendrix I've deleted The Autobiography of Malcolm X: As Told to Alex Haley because the list clearly calls for non-biography, and I've deleted The Jungle because it is a novel.


message 79: by Susanna - Censored by GoodReads (last edited Jun 22, 2010 10:56AM) (new)

Susanna - Censored by GoodReads What about The Diary of Anne Frank? Or, for that matter, The Iliad and The Odyssey?


message 78: by Xenophon (new)

Xenophon Hendrix I've not read The Diary of Anne Frank, so I have no idea how much is biography and how much is observations of the current scene, etc. The librarians here are enjoined from removing items from lists unless the items are clearly wrong, so I'm not willing to stick my neck out.

Similarly, The Iliad and The Odyssey might be considered religious texts. The classical Greeks tended to think of them that way. I'm not about to open the can of worms of calling someone's religious text "fiction."


Susanna - Censored by GoodReads The two categories that I could slot Anne Frank into are auto-biography and novelized diary.


message 76: by Marla (new)

Marla Alice wrote: "Foxontherun wrote: "God I loved CandyFreak (I've met the author several times)...and Mary Roach is a GENIUS."

It was so entertaining. My friend Mary was able to read her book Stiff but I don't ..."


my dad gave me stiff for christmas one year--freakin' amazing. but gruesome. be warned. the one book i will not loan out.


message 75: by Shad (new)

Shad Marla wrote: "Alice wrote: "Foxontherun wrote: "God I loved CandyFreak (I've met the author several times)...and Mary Roach is a GENIUS."

It was so entertaining. My friend Mary was able to read her book Stiff ..."


Sorry to butt in...I loved Stiff. I'm not usually one for such topics but I found it fascinating. Gruesome is a good word. At times I thought I'd have to put it down forever. It's not all that way, though. Now I want to read CandyFreak!


message 74: by Hannah (new)

Hannah Vote "The Old Way: story of the first people" by elizabeth marshall thomas


message 73: by [deleted user] (new)

Please remove Water for Elephants on the first page near the bottom.


message 72: by [deleted user] (new)

Angel wrote: "I am not sure why some folks seem to find this list troubling. Maybe I missed something? For me at least, there are a few titles I would not mind reading, like Salt. But I did wonder, I thought no ..."

Salt is very good. I enjoyed it far more than I expected. Hope to vote for it when I find it.


message 71: by Rc (new)

Rc Stephens deleted user wrote: "Foxontherun wrote: "God I loved CandyFreak (I've met the author several times)...and Mary Roach is a GENIUS."

It was so entertaining. My friend Mary was able to read her book Stiff but I don't ..."


I'm reading Stiff right now. She treats cadavers with as much grace and respect and humor as any of her other subjects, so while there are gruesome moments, those moments aren't uncalled for. If you liked her other books, you'll like this one. I heartily recommend it - except during breakfast.


message 70: by Amy (new)

Amy The Kite Runner is fiction.


Susanna - Censored by GoodReads Amy wrote: "The Kite Runner is fiction."

Could you remember where it was when you saw it? Make it a lot easier for me to remove it.


message 68: by Amy (new)

Amy Susanna wrote: "Amy wrote: "The Kite Runner is fiction."

Could you remember where it was when you saw it? Make it a lot easier for me to remove it."

It's on the second page, #156. Also, The Help, number 266 on page 3 is fiction as well. Both are great books.



Susanna - Censored by GoodReads Thanks! I shall go remove them.


Susanna - Censored by GoodReads Removed for being fiction:

The Kite Runner
Anne of Green Gables
The Help
Cutting for Stone

Should I remove Boswell's Life of Samuel Johnson? And Walter Isaacson's bio of Benjamin Franklin doesn't look kosher, either. King of the World is apparently a bio of Mohammed Ali.

Frankly, I don't know what to make of Mein Kampf being here.


Susanna - Censored by GoodReads Also removed Water for Elephants (fiction).


message 64: by Angelica (new)

Angelica I would consider "A child called It" as a biography. At least the author claims that it is biographical.


message 63: by Denae (new)

Denae 277: The Little Prince
268: The Name of the Rose

both of the above are fiction


Susanna - Censored by GoodReads Thanks, Dena - I'll remove them.


message 61: by Eileen (new)

Eileen Conner 330 Of mice and men
340 Catcher in the Rye
346 The Lincoln Lawyer
395 The Handmaidens Tale

All are fiction


Susanna - Censored by GoodReads Will remove them - thanks for listing the location!


message 59: by Hayes (last edited Dec 17, 2011 11:30AM) (new)

Hayes 137 A Room of One's Own ... listed as non-fiction?
178 The Innocents Abroad


Susanna - Censored by GoodReads I believe Innocents Abroad is non-fiction (I'm reading it currently, and in the author's note, I believe he explains how most of it was his account for the American papers at the time); haven't read the Woolf.

The note on the Woolf looks complicated; it seems to be half-and-half?


message 57: by Hayes (last edited Dec 17, 2011 12:50PM) (new)

Hayes I couldn't remember about The Innocents (I read it long ago), if it was a fictionalized thing, or not. The Woolf looked complicated to me too. So I guess it's best to leave them, but there are a lot of biographies that should go.


Susanna - Censored by GoodReads Well, starting with biographies: what about The Diary of Anne Frank?


message 55: by Hayes (new)

Hayes And Seabiscuit? And Feynman?


message 54: by Susanna - Censored by GoodReads (last edited Dec 17, 2011 01:43PM) (new)

Susanna - Censored by GoodReads For that matter, A Child Called It?


message 53: by Amara (last edited Feb 21, 2012 07:03PM) (new)

Amara Fiction Removed:

Jack & Jill by James Patterson
Misery by Stephen King
Pop Goes the Weasel by James Patterson
The Girl Who Played With Fire by Stieg Larsson
The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald
The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest by Stieg Larsson
The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown
The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson
A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens


message 52: by Taryn (new)

Taryn Some of the books I would question because they simply are not the best non-fiction - on the contrary, they are horrible. But to each her own I guess.


Susanna - Censored by GoodReads I need at least 200 votes for this list. LOL


message 50: by Cricket (new)

Cricket I know this much is true by Wally Lamb is fiction as well


Susanna - Censored by GoodReads Where is it on the list?


message 48: by Cricket (new)

Cricket I know this much is True PG 4 #366.


Susanna - Censored by GoodReads Thanks!

Removed for being a novel:

I Know This Much is True


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