Best Non-Fiction (non biography)

Share your picks for the best non-fiction books you've read - DO NOT INCLUDE BIOGRAPHIES
500

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4.01 avg rating — 27,326 ratings
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502

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3.99 avg rating — 2,373 ratings
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503

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4.12 avg rating — 50,011 ratings
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504

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3.96 avg rating — 10,371 ratings
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505

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3.75 avg rating — 2,263 ratings
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505

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4.12 avg rating — 2,312 ratings
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505

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3.87 avg rating — 13,107 ratings
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508

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3.83 avg rating — 3,901 ratings
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509

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4.03 avg rating — 5,139 ratings
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510

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3.94 avg rating — 21,764 ratings
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511

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4.32 avg rating — 6,690 ratings
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512

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3.88 avg rating — 15,114 ratings
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513

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4.18 avg rating — 800 ratings
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514

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4.13 avg rating — 1,599 ratings
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515

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3.84 avg rating — 18,871 ratings
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515

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3.93 avg rating — 11,445 ratings
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517

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3.90 avg rating — 6,675 ratings
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517

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4.22 avg rating — 7,078 ratings
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519

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3.79 avg rating — 29,465 ratings
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519

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3.87 avg rating — 20,744 ratings
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521

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4.02 avg rating — 77,179 ratings
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522

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4.24 avg rating — 12,331 ratings
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522

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4.08 avg rating — 51,152 ratings
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524

by
4.04 avg rating — 967 ratings
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524

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4.27 avg rating — 6,438 ratings
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526

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3.88 avg rating — 2,053 ratings
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526

by
3.75 avg rating — 44,210 ratings
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528

by
4.05 avg rating — 99,453 ratings
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529

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4.03 avg rating — 7,784 ratings
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530

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4.18 avg rating — 40,044 ratings
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531

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4.08 avg rating — 3,637 ratings
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532

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4.04 avg rating — 481 ratings
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533

by
4.11 avg rating — 170 ratings
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533

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4.08 avg rating — 205,721 ratings
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533

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4.40 avg rating — 30 ratings
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533

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4.45 avg rating — 11 ratings
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533

by
4.27 avg rating — 15 ratings
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533

by
4.04 avg rating — 27 ratings
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533

by
4.24 avg rating — 286 ratings
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533

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4.50 avg rating — 10 ratings
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541

by
4.11 avg rating — 763 ratings
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541

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4.20 avg rating — 128 ratings
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543

by
3.83 avg rating — 2,910 ratings
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544

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4.35 avg rating — 10,545 ratings
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544

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4.17 avg rating — 7,285 ratings
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546

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3.87 avg rating — 3,284 ratings
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546

by
4.03 avg rating — 1,596 ratings
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546

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3.84 avg rating — 3,460 ratings
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546

by
3.73 avg rating — 173 ratings
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550

by
4.09 avg rating — 205,501 ratings
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550

by
3.66 avg rating — 2,375 ratings
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550

by
3.97 avg rating — 65,975 ratings
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553

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4.10 avg rating — 1,042 ratings
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553

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4.15 avg rating — 688 ratings
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553

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3.94 avg rating — 49 ratings
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556

by
4.01 avg rating — 311 ratings
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556

by
4.08 avg rating — 443 ratings
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556

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4.18 avg rating — 13,720 ratings
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559

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4.23 avg rating — 120,920 ratings
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559

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4.01 avg rating — 4,974 ratings
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559

by
3.85 avg rating — 13,020 ratings
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559

by
4.29 avg rating — 7 ratings
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563

by
4.11 avg rating — 7,883 ratings
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563

by
3.80 avg rating — 7,524 ratings
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563

by
4.09 avg rating — 27,672 ratings
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563

by
4.29 avg rating — 337 ratings
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567

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4.28 avg rating — 1,058 ratings
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567

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4.34 avg rating — 17,358 ratings
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569

by
3.82 avg rating — 45,924 ratings
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570

by
4.11 avg rating — 114,853 ratings
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570

by
4.29 avg rating — 20,819 ratings
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572

by
4.33 avg rating — 9 ratings
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573

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4.12 avg rating — 44,300 ratings
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574

by
3.70 avg rating — 479 ratings
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574

by
3.86 avg rating — 680 ratings
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574

by
4.14 avg rating — 561 ratings
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577

by
3.94 avg rating — 147 ratings
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577

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4.18 avg rating — 4,880 ratings
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579

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4.06 avg rating — 3,366 ratings
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580

by
4.14 avg rating — 3,657 ratings
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580

by
4.22 avg rating — 1,341 ratings
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580

by
3.86 avg rating — 8,963 ratings
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580

by
3.90 avg rating — 7,575 ratings
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580

by
3.84 avg rating — 595 ratings
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585

by
3.90 avg rating — 124,333 ratings
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586

by
3.84 avg rating — 16,193 ratings
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586

by
4.08 avg rating — 5,200 ratings
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588

by
4.01 avg rating — 7,479 ratings
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589

by
3.69 avg rating — 1,940 ratings
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590

by
4.36 avg rating — 11 ratings
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591

by
3.84 avg rating — 278 ratings
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592

by
4.27 avg rating — 71 ratings
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593

by
4.20 avg rating — 6,452 ratings
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593

by
3.53 avg rating — 528 ratings
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595

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3.59 avg rating — 1,380 ratings
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596

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4.30 avg rating — 1,001 ratings
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596

by
3.98 avg rating — 4,953 ratings
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598

by
3.88 avg rating — 1,373 ratings
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598

by
3.86 avg rating — 599 ratings
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598

by
4.37 avg rating — 7,469 ratings
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4,231 books · 6,199 voters · list created June 28th, 2008 by Susan (votes) .
1731 likes · 
Lists are re-scored approximately every 5 minutes.


Susan 1449 books
62 friends
Jessica 2648 books
108 friends
Jennifer 2142 books
51 friends
Cindi 2808 books
59 friends
bsc 576 books
55 friends
Brooke 759 books
46 friends
Rebecca 327 books
100 friends
Rob 1233 books
24 friends

More voters…


Comments (showing 54-103)





message 103: by jeff (new)

jeff Anyone else feel a little troubled by this list?


message 102: by jeff (new)

jeff From about #63 on maybe?


message 101: by Chanel (new)

Chanel Earl What happened to no biography?


message 100: 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 99: by Rachel (new)

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


message 98: 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 96: 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 94: 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 93: by e. (new)

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


message 92: 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 91: by Foxontherun (new)

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


message 90: 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 88: by A. Steven (new)

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

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


message 87: 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 86: 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 85: 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 83: 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 82: 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 81: by Hannah (new)

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


message 80: by [deleted user] (new)

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


message 79: 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 78: 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 77: 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 75: 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 71: by Angelica (new)

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


message 70: 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 68: 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 66: 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 64: 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 62: by Hayes (new)

Hayes And Seabiscuit? And Feynman?


message 61: 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 60: by Amara (last edited Feb 21, 2012 07:03PM) (new)

Amara Tanith 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 59: 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 57: 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 55: 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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