Tuesday, October 30, 2018
Nonfiction November: My year (so far) in Nonfiction
While it's still October by my calendar...but it's the first week of Nonfiction in November, and I've decided to almost, but not quite, belatedly join in. Each week has a different host, and this week's host is Sophisticated Dorkiness (what an awesome title for a book blog) who offers the following prompt questions:
1.) Take a look back at your year of nonfiction:
Well, I find I've read 20 books of nonfiction, eight of which got a post. They can be found here. It feels like a somewhat slighter year for nonfiction for me, and comparing to this time in 2017 that seems true.
2.) What was your favorite nonfiction read of the year?
Has to be Frederick Douglass' first version of his autobiography, Narrative of the Life. The other really great book of nonfiction I read was Brian Dillon's Essayism, which I didn't write a post for. Maybe I'll revisit that.
3.) Do you have a particular topic you've been attracted to this year?
The last couple of years I've been interested in the origins of World War I. Why (in heck) did they do it? Why did they seem so enthused? That lead to my reading Romain Rolland, one of the great opponents of the war. That meant his novel Jean-Christophe, but I also read his book of essays about the war that came out in 1915 (and made him persona non grata in France) and Stefan Zweig's biography of Rolland. I'm still contemplating a post about those books. Earlier books I read on the theme were Barbara Tuchman's The Guns of August and Christopher Clark's Sleepwalkers.
4.) What nonfiction book have you recommended the most?
I've mostly touted Brian Dillon's Essayism, which is brand new and not as well known as it should be.
5.) What are you hoping to get out of participating in Nonfiction November?
More books to read! Not that I need more books to read...ah, who am I kidding...of course I want (though maybe not need) more books to read.
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Ooo, believe it or not I've heard great things about Essayism! My TBR always swells this month - everyone has such varied taste that I come across things I never even knew existed. Here's to a great November! :)ReplyDelete
I first read a selection in a magazine somewhere online & I thought I need to read that. And I was right!Delete
I loved your WWII reading story - that's how it happens isn't it. One book leads to the next and the next until your questions are answered or your need met :-)ReplyDelete
It's better if it's books. (That could be the theme of my life.) But it's also been known to happen with Wikipedia articles.Delete
I am participating in Nonfiction November as well. (Perhaps you've even already commented on it - I'm WAY, WAY, WAY behind on replying to comments right now!) I have Narrative of a Life on my Audible TBR list, so I'm glad you enjoyed it. Maybe I can fit it in next year.ReplyDelete
I was surprised how good a read the Frederick Douglass was. I half-expected him to feel dated, but it really wasn't.Delete
Duly noted: Narrative of the Life and Essayism. Glad you shared your top non-fiction with us!ReplyDelete
And thanks for your inspiring list as well! So many books...Delete
I'm toning back on my ficton reads...only reading the classics and classic plays (list 50 greatest American Plays). Goal 2019 - read as many Dickens's novels as I can.Delete
2019...I want to really concentrate on non-fiction *history, biography, memoir, backround info about some writers/poets and their works. Now is the time to make a TBR for 2019!
Without being systematic about it, my fiction reading seems to be going up. I'd like to get some more philosophy in though.Delete
Rereading Edwin Drood has got me thinking about other addicts in Dickens: Mr. Wickfield, RIchard Carstone, Sydney Carton, possibly Little Nell's grandfather. I kind of want to make some of those happen this coming year.
Good suggestion...philosophy. I rarely read any of the great thinkers. The trouble is finding books that explain what these great scholars want to say. I'm open to any book you find and can suggest on this subject!Delete
I've got Bertrand Russell's History of Western Philosophy on my Classics Club list, and I've got Raymond Guess' Philosophy from Socrates to Adorno from the library, which I heard good things about. I may try to get those in this month. The library book especially as its a new release & I won't be able to renew it.Delete
I need to read more of Romain Rolland. My post is here: https://wordsandpeace.com/2018/10/29/nonfiction-november-my-year-2018-in-nonfiction/ReplyDelete
I just looked at your list as well. The Conan Doyle book would be right up my alley.Delete
I'm definitely hoping to find more books to read this month, too! I want to read more nonfiction, but I need books on my TBR to do that!ReplyDelete
I have the (worried?) feeling that my TBR pile is going to grow completely out of control this monthDelete
You're not late at all -- as you pointed out, it's still technically October :)ReplyDelete
Your nonfiction reading this year looks really interesting. Amusing Ourselves To Death is one of those books I remember just kind of blowing my mind when I read it as a college student.
I suppose it would have been awkward to call it Nonfiction November plus a few days of October... :)Delete
It'll be my first time participating. It looks like it should be great. Thanks for hosting!
Nonfiction is great for answering questions, whilst also seeing others arise - I can see why you've been quite interesting in reading about WWI.ReplyDelete
Happy reading this November!
Reading on a theme, like you did with WWI, is such a great way to get in-depth knowledge and understanding of a subject!ReplyDelete
Nonfiction November is the best source for reading recommendations... I usually get enough to last the entire year. I like that you've been focusing on one topic for a couple of years. My reading seems to be more haphazard, but there are a handful of subjects I return to again and again.ReplyDelete
Don't believe what may look like organization above...it's pretty haphazard around here, too...ooh, shiny new book...Delete
I have to admit, I almost missed the start of Nonfiction November even though I'm hosting! I am excited we started early enough to get five full weeks out of it though, because I'm having a lot of fun already. I'd not heard of Essayism, so I'll definitely be checking it out.ReplyDelete
This is my first year participating and it is very cool. Thanks for hosting!Delete