I think I’ve somewhat rather unintentionally fallen into a rabbit hole. An interesting rabbit hole, but a rabbit hole all the same. See, I’ve been participating in a few more online book clubs and discussions lately. It’s lovely to have another group of people with whom I can chat about books and characters and ideas and pester for recommendations. And wow are there a lot of recommendations! When you read between 15-20 books a month, all of these recommendations and books of the month and read-alongs come in handy.

This month, one of my friends mentioned that she was participating in #NonFicNov, which is pretty much just as it sounds: for the month of November, participants are focusing their reading on non-fiction. My non-resolution every year (for I don’t exactly believe in resolutions) is to read more non-fiction. So my ears perked up.

First, I made sure I could use a rather elastic definition: I could include memoirs, right? And essays? We were defining “non-fiction” as “everything not entirely made-up”, right? Right. That was the first hook. Then I noticed that the only book I’d finished this month was a memoir titled I’ll See You Again, written by a women whose three daughters, ages 4-10, were all killed in a tragic car accident. (I do not recommend reading it if you have children that age. Whoops.) So I’d been playing by the rules… Why not join in?

Which is how I ended up in the rabbit hole.

Then I dug the hole deeper: I ordered a few non-fic selections online to shore up my at-home selections. I already had Eats Shoots & Leaves, about punctuation run amok in the wild; and Aleksandar Hemon’s The Book of my Lives, about growing up in Sarajevo, and then living as an adult in Chicago, unable to help his family back home when the war in Sarajevo unfolds. (Memoirs about living in central/eastern Europe? Yes, please!) I ordered Amy Poehler’s Yes, Please (it was on sale, shoosh); Michele Elam’s The Souls of Mixed-Folk: Race, Politics, and Aesthetics in the New Millennium, because it’s been on my to-read list forever; Jon Krakauer’s Into the Wild, because can you believe I haven’t read it? and because I love me some survival stories; and Darcy Lockman’s Brooklyn Zoo: The Education of a Psychotherapist, because me and mental illness books go together like peanut butter and jelly. I thought about getting Liar, Temptress, Soldier, Spy, about four women who fought in the Civil War, but I put a hold on it at the library instead.

So there you go. It’s going to be a challenge reading only non-fic this month, especially when I scooped so many fantastic fiction books at the library last weekend. I decided my 24-in-48 can be a respite – though I’m only allowed to read Stephen King. (Hey, if you’re going to break the rules for fiction, go all out, I say.) The rest of the time, I’m going to be beefing up my non-fic section of my Books Read for this year.

So let me have it: what books should I add to my list for this month?


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3 Responses to “#NonFicNov”

  1. Agent Torklepants Says:

    Belfast Diary (if you like WWII, Vietnam, and Eastern Euro struggles, no reason this wouldn’t interest you as well. Plus theres a family connection), Hunting Eichmann (post WII story and it reads like a spy novel), Patriots: Remembering Vietnam from All Sides (its an anthology of stories from Vietnam oral history interviews. you wouldn’t need to read the WHOLE thing), Lies My Teacher Told Me (Almost like a text book. again you could pick the chapters that have subjects that interest you and just read that to break up other reading), Listen to the Squawking Chicken (its my gossip bloggers memoir of her mother. very sweet and hilarious.), The Romanovs: The Final Chapter by Robert K. Massie (this guy is theee historian on Russia right now. Hes a legitimate historian while also gaining popularity for writing well enough for the general, non historian public lol. It would be the best book on Anastasia).

  2. aj0819 Says:

    My thoughts are with you. I don’t even know that I could survive a month of non-fiction. Sounds like an awesome challenge though! Good luck!

  3. Kathy Says:

    I would just like to have time / make the time to read a book. Enjoy!

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