Having looked at all the non-fiction I’ve read this year, I’ve decided to split them up into science, politics and feminism, and biography and memoir, otherwise I would have a really long blog post summing it all up! I can’t quite believe I’ve managed to read 22 non-fiction books this year! and there’s still a few weeks left… what if I read another incredible book before January?
These are my favourite non-fiction biography and memoir reads for the year, out of the ones I have read this year, not that they were necessarily published this year. Click on the images to go to my longer reviews.
Anger is an Energy: My Life Uncensored – John Lydon
You will like it if you like John Lydon, or are just generally interested in the Sex Pistols. I am both of these things and I loved it!
Night – Elie Wiesel
I read this because it’s on the reading challenge list I was trying to read from this year. I honestly had never heard of it before, but it seems it’s very well known in the United States. I don’t know if it’s just generally not as well known in the UK or if its just me? but we certainly didn’t read it at school, or anything like it. I realise we
Night is Elie Wiesel’s incredible story of his experience of the holocaust in Nazi Germany. He spent time in Auschwitz and Buchenwald. He wrote it because there were hardly any people who survived who could tell the story, and it must not be forgotten.
Why Be Happy When You Could Be Normal? – Jeanette Winterson
A grim childhood in the grim north. My hometown is on the front cover. It’s like visiting an entirely different world. Combined with Jeanette Winterson’s extreme childhood, where the Apocalypse is just around the corner and books are not allowed, we get a fascinating portrait of life in 1960s working class Accrington.
Despite her childhood, Jeanette Winterson get a place at Oxford University and when she arrives she discovers the sexism and misogyny she now has to contend with. It’s a brilliant book that will make you want to reach for and achieve your own dreams.
Me Talk Pretty One Day – David Sedaris
I know this isn’t strictly non-fiction. I’d like to think enough of it is to just about get into here! I’ve put this as one of my top of the year because inside it has the line that has made me laugh out loud, in complete hysterics because it’s so funny. I still get a little giggle when I think of it now. We can talk about what it is when you’ve read it too. 😀
Believe Me: A Memoir of Love, Death, and Jazz Chickens – Eddie Izzard
Eddie Izzard didn’t have quite the grim upbringing Jeanette Winterson had, but he has his share of hard times to deal with. Particularly his transgender identity is a struggle during his younger years, and he spent ten years trying and failing to make it as a performer. He had an idyllic childhood until his mother dies when he is six, and he is then shipped off to boarding school – at six years old. His success, when it comes, is lovely.
I had the audiobook version and it must be twice the length of the paper one because Izzard fills it with additional information in the form of numerous extra footnotes.
Here are all the non-fiction books I read this year (click to go to my review):
- Between the World and Me – Ta-Nehisi Coates
- Me Talk Pretty One Day – David Sedaris (hmmmmm controversial… is it fiction or non-fiction? I just want it to be more non-fiction, so I’m included it :-D)
- Dancing With Myself – Billy Idol
- The Polysyllabic Spree – Nick Hornby
- Night – Elie Wiesel
- The Diet Myth: the Real Science Behind What We Eat – Tim Spector
- The Story of My Life – Helen Keller
- Welcome to Biscuit Land: a Year in the Life of Touretteshero – Jessica Thom
- The Good Immigrant – ed. by Nikesh Shukla
- Lion – Saroo Brierley
- Quiet: the Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking – Susan Cain
- Men Explain Things to Me – Rebecca Solnit
- Inferior: How Science Got Women Wrong – and the New Research That’s Rewriting the Story – Angela Saini
- Nasty Women – 404Ink
- Anger is an Energy: My Life Uncensored – John Lydon
- Hope In The Dark – Rebecca Solnit
- Believe Me: A Memoir of Love, Death, and Jazz Chickens – Eddie Izzard
- Why Be Happy When You Could Be Normal? – Jeanette Winterson
- What Happened – Hillary Rodham Clinton
- The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks – Rebecca Skloot
- Under My Thumb: The Songs That Hate Women and the Women That Love Them – ed by Rhian Jones and Eli Davies
- Ad Astra: An Illustrated Guide to Leaving the Planet – Dallas Campbell