Week 4: (Nov. 18 to 22) –Nonfiction Favorites (Leann @ Shelf Aware): Let us know what qualities make you add a nonfiction book to your list of favorites.
I did not read much nonfiction this year! So, I’m posting long-time favorites.
What I Love
With rare exceptions, a nonfiction book must read like a novel. It must flow. It must tell the story. Yes, I do want documentation of sources, but I do not have to read a Ph.D. thesis. Enjoyable prose matters. Photographs or illustrations, depending on the time period, matter as well. If it is about a family, then a family tree is a must. I like glossaries of names or a Cast of Characters listing if there are many people to keep straight. I would truly love a timeline ala Genevieve Foster’s George Washington’s World (and the rest of her books), to put historical subjects into a context I can comprehend, but that seems to be asking too much. Now, do all of my favorites have each of these things? Of course not, but I love them when they are there. A final note–American Experience IS my favorite television show, but in every case, I’ve read the book before the show came out.
What I’ve Left Out
- I’m skipping all royal books–most of my favorites are in last week’s post. Click here to read it.
- I’ve limited myself to ONE David McCullough and ONE Candace Millard, ONE Doris Kearns Goodwin. Brutal.
- But what about Laura Ingalls Wilder’s Little House books? Love them! Not on here. And what about James Herriott’s All Creatures Great and Small books? Dear, dear, friends but not on here. Nor are Helene Hanff’s wonderful 84 Charing Cross Road and other books. Biographies and Memoirs are tough. I’ve included a few but tried to choose only those about a specific time or place in a life only. I made exceptions for two books. Madeline L’Engle Crosswick Journals I left out because her children regarded them as fiction. I loved them.
Favorite Nonfiction Book of 2019
Favorite Nonfiction Books–History
History is my favorite, so there were way, way too many favorites. If you think one is missing, I probably DID love it, but couldn’t include them all.
Favorite Nonfiction Books–Nature
Favorite Nonfiction Books–Science
Favorite Nonfiction Books–Crime
Favorite Nonfiction Books–Travel
These are different from expatriate or immigrant life memoirs or Peace Corps memoirs
Nonfiction November concludes next week with a discussion of the books we’ve added to our TBRs.