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Non - Fiction Recommendations

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message 1: by Faye (last edited Mar 26, 2009 06:20PM) (new)

Faye | 668 comments Mod
Hey. I noticed that many of you, like me, have consumed a lot of fluffy fiction so far this year (Sookie Stackhouse, anyone?) which I don't feel one bit guilty about :) However, I lose interest in reading if it becomes too much of the same old, so I like to mix it up a bit.

Last year I read a ton of non-fiction for work (I'm an HR Manager,) which is why I think it's been such a trashy read year for me so far. Now that I'm ready to diversify back into some more non-fiction do you have any recommendations?

Here are my fave picks from the past:

Easy, fun, make you think different non-fiction:
The Tipping Point
Outliers
Freakonomics Rev Ed A Rogue Economist Explores the Hidden Side of Everything

Inspiring make you think about making yourself a better person non-fiction:
Now, Discover Your Strengths
First, Break All the Rules What the World's Greatest Managers Do Differently
Crucial Conversations Tools for Talking When Stakes are High
The SPEED of Trust The One Thing that Changes Everything

Really interesting, glad I read it, but tougher reading non-fiction:
What Is America? A Short History of the New World Order
The Sexual Paradox Extreme Men, Gifted Women and the Real Gender Gap

Non-fiction that's caught my eye, but I haven't read (have you?):
The Black Swan The Impact of the Highly Improbable
Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee An Indian History of the American West

I hope these recommendations bring you some brainy pleasure. Cheers.


Cecilia (cissygold) Here is a great non-fiction book. It is a crime mystery, which not too many people know about but it did inspire one of the greatest crime novel series.

The Monster of Florence
by Douglas Preston, Mario Spezi

If nothing else, it will make you appreciate our criminal justice system.


Brian (Banoo) Bayou Farewell The Rich Life and Tragic Death of Louisiana's Cajun Coast

surprised the hell out of me... i just didn't expect much from it and it gave me a lot.


Nancy (nancybartellsbcglobalnet) | 224 comments Very well-researched book:

Try "The Nine:Inside the Secret World of the Supreme Court" by Jeffrey Toobin.


message 6: by Kristie (last edited Mar 26, 2009 12:41PM) (new)

Kristie Fruitless Fall  The Collapse of the Honeybee and the Coming Agricultural Crisis by Rowan Jacobsen

Fruitless Fall: The Collapse of the Honeybee and the Coming Agricultural Crisis
by Rowan Jacobsen


Wendy Outliers was my favorite, but Blink is also great.

I just finished The Devil in the White City by Larsen. It was well-researched but a little dry.

I really like historical fiction like "On Becoming Madame Mao" or "Balzac and the Little Chinese Seamstress"


Molly | 330 comments Wendy wrote: "Outliers was my favorite, but Blink is also great.

I just finished The Devil in the White City by Larsen. It was well-researched but a little dry.

I really like historical fiction like "On B..."


I enjoyed Balzac as well - sweet little story about a not so sweet chapter in history. I prefer NF to Historical Fiction but sometimes the fictionalized version can be a more enjoyable read. My husband is reading Devil in the White City now - I hope to read it when he is done.


message 9: by Faye (last edited Mar 26, 2009 06:37PM) (new)

Faye | 668 comments Mod
Wow! Great suggestions. Thanks everyone.

I really enjoyed the historical aspects of The Devil in the White City Murder, Magic, and Madness at the Fair that Changed America; it's a interesting blend of fiction and fact.

If you also enjoyed it, you might like All Will Be Revealed - intricate fiction set in the same period.

I know... this post was supposed to be about non-fiction ;)


Nancy (nancybartellsbcglobalnet) | 224 comments I forgot to add "Moral Politics" by George Lakoff. I've read it three times.


Dini Into The Wild by Jon Krakauer

Riveting -- I couldn't put it down.


Molly | 330 comments Dini wrote: "Into The Wild by Jon Krakauer

Riveting -- I couldn't put it down."


I agree. Same with his Into Thin Air A Personal Account of the Mt. Everest Disaster. Along the adventure vein, Touching the Void The True Story of One Man's Miraculous Survival was incredible as well.

I forgot to mention in my original list above, but another favorite - this one regarding sports and mentoring - is The Assist Hoops, Hope, and the Game of Their Lives.


message 13: by Kristie (last edited Mar 27, 2009 08:15AM) (new)


Amy The Survivor's Club The Survivors Club  The Secrets and Science that Could Save Your Life by Ben Sherwood very interesting about who survives and why and then there is an online survey part you can do to see which qualities you possess.

Also a few years ago I read Everything Bad is Good for You Everything Bad is Good for You by Steven Johnson an interesting look at pop culture


Kathy  (readr4ever) | 312 comments For those of us who love books, both fiction and non-fiction about the Black Death/the Plague, Norman Cantor's In the Wake of the Plague is a great non-fiction book, very informative while being very readable.

Another favorite non-fiction is Azar Nafisi's Reading Lolita in Tehran.


Dorothy (Plantwoman) | 160 comments I recently read "The Post-American World" by Fareed Zakaria and found it interesting and useful in understanding today's world. Prior to that I had read "The God Delusion," Richard Dawkins' book and found it a well-reasoned argument for atheism. I read "Blink," a very interesting book, and plan to read "Outliers" in the near future.

It helps to mix a little substance in with the fluff. Otherwise, you are likely to suffer from mental indigestion.


Wendy Molly wrote: "Wendy wrote: "Outliers was my favorite, but Blink is also great.

I just finished The Devil in the White City by Larsen. It was well-researched but a little dry.

I really like historical fict..."


Molly If you get a chance to read Becoming Madame Mao, it is as complex as non-fiction but it is so well written. Let me know what you think.

I also really enjoyed the three McCullough bios that I have read so far. Adams, Truman and 1776. All were exceptionally readable.


Kate (KateKSH) | 497 comments I read A LOT of nonfiction --

Three Little Words (about a girl who grew up in foster care -- most recent non-fiction read)
When Rabbit Howls (about a child abuse victim with multiple personality disorder -- also FLOCK and FIRST PERSON PLURAL are the same topic)
The Mole People (people who reside in NY subways)
Fingernail Moon (about a women who concealed her daughter from an abusive ex via an underground system)
Street Soldier (about a mobster's recruit)




message 19: by Tori (last edited May 14, 2009 06:15AM) (new)

Tori | 208 comments I read almost all non-fiction with a few novels thrown in. Here are a few I like.

Don't Eat This Book Fast Food and the Supersizing of America by Morgan Spurlock

Bachelor Girl The Secret History of Single Women in the Twentieth Century

Anything by Bill Bryson. He's a travel writer who is hilarious and has books for almost every area of the world except Asia.
Also try:
The Year of Living Biblically One Man's Humble Quest to Follow the Bible As Literally As Possible

and Loose Girl A Memoir of Promiscuity

Monkey Girl Evolution, Education, Religion, and the Battle for America's Soul

I also read a lot of memoirs/biographies. One I'm working on next is Moose: A Memoir of Fat Camp and I've heard great things about Wishful Drinking by Carrie Fisher.


Deborah | 4 comments I have been paying more attention to non-fiction since I am responsible for ordering some of the non-fiction bestsellers and others for the academic library I work at. Some of the ones I have enjoyed are:

Beautiful Boy - David Sheff
Tweak - Nick Sheff
Hope's Boy - Andrew Bridge
Born on a Blue Day - David Tammet
Comeback - Claire & Mia Fontaine
Kidnapped Mind - Pamela Richardson
Dewey The Small Town Cat who Touched the World - Vicki Myron
Dove - Robin Lee Graham
Marley & Me - John Grogan


Kate (KateKSH) | 497 comments Tori, I SAW Carrie Fisher perform Wishful Drinking in Boston and it was wonderful!!!!!!!! I hope the book is good, too -- must get myself a copy!!


message 22: by Maphead (last edited May 18, 2009 11:11AM) (new)

Maphead | 294 comments Faye wrote: "Hey. I noticed that many of you, like me, have consumed a lot of fluffy fiction so far this year (Sookie Stackhouse, anyone?) which I don't feel one bit guilty about :) However, I lose interest in..."

Hello Faye,

I read a lot of nonfiction and each year I compile my own list of the best nonfiction books I read over the year. For what it is worth, here is "best" list from 2008:

1. The New Asian Hemisphere:The Irresistible Shift of Global Power to the East by Kishore Mahbubani
2. The World Without Us by Alan Weisman
3. Born to Kvetch: Yiddish Language and Culture in All of its Moods by Michael Wex
4. Survival of the Sickest: A Medical Maverick Discovers Why We Need Disease by Sharon Moalem
5. The Siege of Mecca: The Forgotten Uprising In Islam's Holiest Shrine and the Birth of al-Qaeda by Yaroslav Trofimov
6. Unauthorized Version: Truth and Fiction in the Bible by Robin Lane Fox
7. The God Delusion by Richard Dawkins
8. From Jesus to Christianity: How Four Generations of Visionaries and Storytellers Created the New Testament and Christian Faith by L. Michael White
9. The Birth of Satan: Tracing the Devil's Biblical Roots by T.J Wray
10. Wars of Blood and Faith: The Conflicts That Will Shape the 21st Century by Ralph Peters.

And if you are wondering, which was my favorite-it was a tie. The World Without Us and Siege of Mecca were the best.
Feel free to check out my book blog as well:
http://maphead.vox.com/


I Love Reading (httpswwwfacebookcomMyBookBlog) i read o lot of non fiction to, i have hundreds to get through, lol


Lisa (lbhick) Some of my favorite non-fiction and memoir:

The Glass Castle  A Memoir by Jeannette Walls The Glass Castle A Memoir by Jeanette Walls

Smashed  Story of a Drunken Girlhood by Koren Zailckas Smashed Story of a Drunken Girlhood by Koren Zailckas

The Overachievers  The Secret Lives of Driven Kids by Alexandra Robbins The Overachievers The Secret Lives of Driven Kids by Alexandra Robbins

A Long Way Gone  Memoirs of a Boy Soldier by Ishmael Beah A Long Way Gone Memoirs of a Boy Soldier by Ishmael Beah

90 Minutes in Heaven by Don Piper 90 Minutes in Heaven by Don Piper

In an Instant  A Family's Journey of Love and Healing by Lee Woodruff In an Instant A Family's Journey of Love and Healing by Lee Woodruff

Night by Elie Wiesel Night by Elie Wiesel

The Kid From Budapest by J.A. Somori The Kid From Budapest by J.A. Somori


Faye | 668 comments Mod
Cool suggestions. Thanks, everyone.


Michelle (michelleornat)

For the stomach:

Heat - Bill Buford
Garlic & Sapphires - Ruth Reichl
Kitchen Confidential - Anthony Bourdain
Julie & Julia - Julie Powell
The Art of Eating - MFK Fisher

For the soul :
The Cloister Walk - Kathleen Norris
Seeking God: The Way of St. Benedict - Esther de Waal
The Way to Freedom: Core Teachings of Tibetan Buddhism - Dalai Lama

Others:
The Warrior Elite: The Forging of SEAL Class 228 - Dick Couch
Fools Rush In: A True Story of Love, War, and Redemption - Bill Carter
The Naked Tourist: In Search of Adventure and Beauty in the Age of the Airport Mall - Lawrence Osborne


Kate (KateKSH) | 497 comments P.S. Has anyone read Mister Pip?


Faye | 668 comments Mod
Amy wrote: "The Survivor's Club The Survivors Club  The Secrets and Science that Could Save Your Life by Ben Sherwood very interesting about who survives and why and then there is an online survey part you..."


The Survivors Club The Secrets and Science that Could Save Your Life was great. Interesting facts and stories intertwined into a real page turner.

My "to-read" list grows ever longer. I can no longer keep up with my library notifications for new pick ups. I had to suspend my orders!


Jessi (infinite13) Faye wrote: "Hey. I noticed that many of you, like me, have consumed a lot of fluffy fiction so far this year (Sookie Stackhouse, anyone?) which I don't feel one bit guilty about :) However, I lose interest in..."

I am a political science major/nerd, so I can definitely recommend you all kinds of things when it comes to that, if you are interested in terrorism, globalization, specific issues, or just whatever.

The other two topics I have explored quite a bit as far as non-fiction goes are homosexuality and religion (not necessarily books that cover both, though).

Now, I won't bother listing all this stuff out in case you're not interested, but let me know if any of that sounds good and I will throw some book suggestions at you.


Amanda | 350 comments I quite enjoyed Robert Lacey's Great Tales from English History. Its a bit of a brief overview of England's timeline for those that need a reminder since school, plus it fills you in on all the little bits school left out.

Also, as a bit of a Japanophile, I really enjoyed Japanese Women Don't Get Old or Fat Secrets of My Mother's Tokyo Kitchen, a greeat insight into how the traditional Japanese diet works and how you can try it for yourself.


Connie Faull | 320 comments Infidel by Ayaan Hirsi Ali - reads like a novel
Generation Kill by Evan Wright
I Lost My Love in Baghdad (can't remember author)


Mary | 7 comments Connie wrote: "Infidel by Ayaan Hirsi Ali - reads like a novel
Generation Kill by Evan Wright
I Lost My Love in Baghdad (can't remember author)"


I just read Where Men Win Glory by Jon Krakauer. It was very good. I highly recomment it.


Connie Faull | 320 comments Mary wrote: I just read Where Men Win Glory by Jon Krakauer..."

It's on my TBR list. I saw Jon Krakauer on CSPAN's book t.v. when the book came out.

Have you read "Boots on the Ground by Dusk" by Pat Tillman's mother Mary? That is a very good book as well.


Nancy (nancybartellsbcglobalnet) | 224 comments I just started "The Black Swan". I've been wanting to read it and it is now out in Kindle. Has anyone an opinion of it? Is it in the genre of "Outliers" and "Tipping Point"?


Stephanie I read tons of nonfiction: My Nonfiction Bookshelf

Bill Bryson, David Sedaris, Jon Krakauer, and Sarah Vowell are some of my favorite authors.


alicia (amazingact21) | 72 comments I just finished reading the nonfiction book, A Journal for Jordan by Dana Canedy. It was definitely a tearjerker. I'm not one to cry a lot, but the author's sorrow and the son's innocence is so apparent. It's a little slow in the beginning, but by the end you won't want to put it down.


Mary | 7 comments Connie wrote: "Mary wrote: I just read Where Men Win Glory by Jon Krakauer..."

It's on my TBR list. I saw Jon Krakauer on CSPAN's book t.v. when the book came out.

Have you read "Boots on the Ground by D..."


Funny you should ask. That book was cited many times in WMWG. I just bought a copy at a clearance sale at the local community book store that is going out of business!




message 40: by Arati (last edited Nov 27, 2009 08:04PM) (new)

Arati | 1 comments Hi, I am new to good reads.. still figuring out how to navigate thru it... i clicked on the non fiction recommendation link & went thru the recommended books.. some of them seemed pretty interesting.. Now i know what is the first thing that i need to do in the morning.. rush to a book store.. :-)

well on the book front, i just finished the book "Good to Great" by Jim Collins.. & must say that i found it to be pretty interesting..

keep the recommendations coming thru..


Sheila (SheilaGlenn) | 300 comments I would highly recommend Devil and the White City as an inciteful non-fiction read.


message 42: by Anya (last edited Dec 25, 2009 08:59PM) (new)

Anya (AnutaCielo) | 157 comments This book is very well researched- it's about perfumes where ingridients come from, how they are made into perfume, it's very captivating travelogue
The Scent Trail


Ben Kfir | 5 comments Amanda wrote: "I quite enjoyed Robert Lacey's Great Tales from English History. Its a bit of a brief overview of England's timeline for those that need a reminder since school, plus it fills you in on all the li..."

Amanda, that's an excellent book any more like it you can recommend?


Ben Kfir | 5 comments Amanda wrote: "I quite enjoyed Robert Lacey's Great Tales from English History. Its a bit of a brief overview of England's timeline for those that need a reminder since school, plus it fills you in on all the li..."

Amanda, that's an excellent book any more like it you can recommend?


message 45: by [deleted user] (last edited Jun 23, 2013 12:04PM) (new)

I love non-fiction books about nutrition! My favorites are-


The Alternate-Day Diet by James B. Johnson (plan I used to lose 50lbs-my forever favorite book lol)
The Fast Diet  The Simple Secret of Intermittent Fasting  Lose Weight, Stay Healthy, Live Longer by Michael Mosley
Rethinking Thin  The New Science of Weight Loss--And the Myths and Realities of Dieting by Gina Kolata
The Primal Blueprint  Reprogram Your Genes for Effortless Weight Loss, Vibrant Health, and Boundless Energy by Mark Sisson
The Omnivore's Dilemma  A Natural History of Four Meals by Michael Pollan
Wheat Belly  Lose the Wheat, Lose the Weight, and Find Your Path Back to Health by William  Davis
Body by You  The You Are Your Own Gym Guide to Total Women's Fitness by Mark Lauren


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