So I clearly missed the boat slightly on yesterday’s #TopTenTuesday topic but I still wanted to put up this post… I decided to include the Top Ten Tuesday hashtag anyways to make sure that I’m giving credit where credit is due 🙂
It was pretty hard to go through all my five stars reviews for the year and pick the 10 books that were the best – like picking favorite children. I tried to put the titles I ended up going with in approximate order of how much I loved them – most to least. And YES Eleanor Oliphant is at the top of the list, so for everyone who didn’t like it, you can just deal with it 😉 It’s my #1 for the year.
These are not all titles released in 2017, but rather just ones I read throughout the year. I hope you find some good options for your TBR, and if you want to know more about any of them, make sure to check out the full reviews I’ve linked to.
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The topic for Week 4 of Nonfiction November is Nonfiction Favorites, and the hosting blog is Doing Dewey. Instead of answering the provided questions, I decided to put together a list of my Top Ten Favorite Nonfiction Books to date.
The ten titles I selected easily fit into four overarching categories or types of nonfiction: Sweeping Histories, Atypical Memoirs, Memorable Royal Women and Medical Investigations. I reflected further on why I was drawn to each category and title below. In doing so, I realized that the elements I always look for in nonfiction are:
- Either a book that effectively summarizes a really long span of time, or one that focuses on a really weird and unique experience
- Highly personal writing in either case that always ties back the narrative to individual experience
- Conciseness in the writing – no droning on aimlessly
- To feel that I am learning something new.
Today is also the first official day of the #ThanksgivingReadathon ! If you haven’t published a Sign-Up post yet or posted your reading intentions on social media, make sure to do so today!
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It’s Week 3 of Nonfiction November, and so far it’s been so much fun to see everyone’s themed posts. My love of nonfiction is being reconfirmed by all the time I’m spending reading about it, thinking about it and reviewing it this month!
For Week 3, the topic was Be The Expert/Ask The Expert/Become The Expert and was hosted by Sophisticated Dorkiness. I’d been reading towards a World War II nonfiction book list for a while, so I thought this was the perfect opportunity to be the expert and post it!
World War II is definitely one of the most popular historical time periods for both fiction and nonfiction. There are so many different aspects of the war that can be explored in either genre, and I tried to focus on nonfiction titles that spanned a range of topics, countries and historical figures. Hope you find plenty of inspiration for your TBR lists below!
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It may sound weird but Scientology is one of my favorite topics to read about. You may have noticed a trend in my reading that has to do with cults and escape stories, and it’s true, I’m a sucker for reading about people who find themselves in incredible and disturbing circumstance and are able to make their way out of them. It also doesn’t hurt that Scientology is essentially bat-shit crazy, and therefore makes for endlessly engrossing reading. It’s hard to believe that a ‘religion’ that abuses its adherents to the degree to which Scientology does could continue to survive, but the brain washing perpetrated by the ‘church’ on its believers is so complete it’s hard to understand.
My very first post on this blog was a Scientology book list, and it has proven to be a very popular post. I thought I would dust it off with extended versions of the 3 original reviews plus new reviews of 3 more books that were in the original book list, but that I hadn’t read or reviewed yet at the time. These are Inside Scientology by Janet Reitman, Ruthless by Ron Miscavige and Blown For Good by Marc Headley, and they’re included at the top of the post. At the end I’ve also listed four more books I’m thinking of tackling next once I feel the need for a little more Scientology madness. You can be sure they’ll also deliver.
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The True Crime genre is definitely having a bit of a moment not just in print, but also on television and in other forms of media. This recent increase in interest in the genre was initially accelerated by the sudden popularity of podcast Serial, which covered the story of the murder conviction of Muslim teenager Adnan Syed in its first season of episodes released in 2014. After that came Netflix’s original documentary series Making A Murder, which followed the apparent wrongful conviction of Steven Avery, and later the production of broadcast television series American Crime Story, which reenacted perhaps the most famous trial in U.S. history – that of O.J. Simpson.
Though these recent productions definitely incited further interest in True Crime, the reality is that human’s have always had a more or less morbid interest in real stories of crimes – and often the more gruesome or complex the better. There is something voyeuristic about people’s interest in the genre of course – most people (luckily) will never be involved in serious crimes like those which the genre encompasses, and it’s these extremes in human experience that typically draw a lot of attention from average citizens leading average lives. I’m among those interested in True Crime partly for the thrill of reading about events that are so far from my personal life experience, but I also have an intellectual interest in the criminal proceedings that are often discussed in True Crime titles. I like to put myself in the place of the detectives investigating the crimes, or the attorneys prosecuting a case or defending a suspect.
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Nonfiction November is being hosted by Doing Dewey, Emerald City Book Review, Sarah’s Book Shelves, Hibernator’s Library and Julz Reads this year. Make sure to check out the home page for the event this week and each of the host’s blogs for the themed linkups they are running. It’s a great way to discover new book blogs and get great nonfiction book recommendations.
The theme for Week 4 is Be The Expert/Ask The Expert/Become The Expert – and I decided to recommend books about North Korea since it’s a topic on which I’ve read pretty widely. I’m no ‘expert’ on it, but I think I’ve probably delved into the topic more than the average reader, and all the memoirs and historical nonfiction titles I’ve read about North Korea have been harrowing but also incredibly unforgettable reads that I would recommend to anyone.
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