Category: non-fiction

What Are You Waiting For?

December 19, 2013 Memoir, non-fiction, Self-Help 5

17707883Title: What Are You Waiting For?
Author: Kristen Moeller
Source: from publisher for review
Rating: ★★★☆☆
Review Summary: I like the author’s story a lot and would have loved this as a memoir, but the attempt at being a self-help book really didn’t work for me.

I find this book difficult to describe because I disagree with the book cover description. Purportedly, this is a book about how to change your life instead of waiting for your life to change. In reality, it largely focuses on the author’s own challenges throughout her life, from early drug addiction and bulimia to her recent loss of her house in a wildfire. She reframes many of these challenges as ways in which she was waiting for something. She also includes thought-provoking questions that challenge the reader to apply the lessons she’s learned to their own life. Read more »

Divider

Non-fiction Friday

December 13, 2013 Blogger Events, non-fiction 12

books

Hello all and welcome to the first Non-Fiction Friday! During the discussion about memes it sounded as though other people also enjoy genre specific link-ups and I’ve been thinking for a while that non-fiction needs one of these. Although I’ve connected with some great non-fiction bloggers, I do think those of us who blog about non-fiction are in the minority. A link-up like this seems like a great way for us to find each other. I’ve also been inspired by Anya at On Starship and Dragon Wings similar feature for Fantasy and Sci-fi books which is getting lots of great links every week. Read more »

Divider

Goodwill Tour

December 11, 2013 Memoir, Narrative Non-Fiction, non-fiction 7

17294909Title: Goodwill Tour: Paying It Forward
Author: Keith Maginn
Source: from author for review
Rating: ★★★★☆
Review Summary: This book was a ton of fun with its well-written story of adventure and compassion. I found it both very moving and very relatable.

While many of us dream of taking an unscheduled road trip and many of us dream of making the world a better place, author Keith Maginn did both. With his friend Emily, he traveled through the Southeastern US with stops to volunteer and give away money to deserving strangers. In Goodwill Tour, Keith tells their story and the stories of those they helped. Read more »

Divider

Precarious Japan

December 5, 2013 History, Narrative Non-Fiction, non-fiction, Psychology 11

17264900Title: Precarious Japan
Author: Anne Allison
Source: from publisher for review
Fun Fact: Until the 1980’s when this was made illegal, many Japanese companies required that women leave work when they married or had children. 80% of women still follow this custom.
Rating: ★★★☆☆
Review Summary: Parts of this book read like narrative non-fiction and gave fascinating insight into the state of Japan, but other bits were full of sociology-speak and very hard to follow.

Currently in Japan regular employment is becoming scarcer, the population is aging, and recovery from the nuclear disaster of 3/11 is still underway. All of these factors have made life more uncertain in Japan. Many people feel a lack of belonging and connection to other people. The author, Anne Allison, addresses these issues both through social theories about Japan and her extensive interviews with Japanese citizens. Read more »

Divider

Orange Is the New Black

December 3, 2013 Memoir, non-fiction 21

6314763Title: Orange Is the New Black
Author: Piper Kerman
Source: bought on Amazon
Rating: ★★★☆☆
Review Summary: Although this book certainly satisfied my desire to learn about different aspects of the human experience, I felt less connected to the author than I have when reading my favorite memoirs.

When Piper Kerman was young and stupid, she let an older girlfriend talk her into delivering a case of drug money. Although she was smart enough to get out of that relationship and went on to build a good life with a husband and a job, her past eventually caught up to her. This memoir describes the year she spent in a women’s prison as a result. Read more »

Divider

The Sh!t No One Tells You

November 29, 2013 Humor, Memoir, non-fiction, Self-Help 12

16073050Title: The Sh!t No One Tells You: A Guide to Surviving Your Baby’s First Year
Author: Dawn Dais
Source: from publisher for review
Rating: ★★★☆☆
Review Summary: This was often funny but also had sections that contained really useful advice and heart-warming empathy for new mothers.

“There comes a time in every new mother’s life when she finds herself staring at her screaming, smelly “bundle of joy” and wishing someone had told her that her house would reek of vomit, or that she shouldn’t buy the cute onesies with a thousand impossible buttons, or that she might cry more than the baby….Eschewing the adorableness that oozes out of other parenting books, Dais offers real advice from real moms—along with hilarious anecdotes, clever tips, and the genuine encouragement every mom needs in order to survive the first year of parenthood.” (Source) Read more »

Divider

Non-Fiction November: New to My TBR

November 29, 2013 Blogger Events, non-fiction 2

final-version-3-300x300

This is the final discussion post for Non-Fiction November, an exciting event celebrating non-fiction hosted by Kim at Sophisticated Dorkiness and Leslie at Regular Ruminations. Every Monday this month, a discussion question will be posted. Then each Friday there will be a link-up for discussion posts and non-fiction reviews, with each linky entry entered in a prize drawing at the end of the month! Today’s topic is… Read more »

Divider

My Beloved World

November 14, 2013 Memoir, non-fiction 1

13642929Title: My Beloved World
Author: Sonia Sotomayor
Source: library
Rating: ★★★☆☆
Review Summary: It was fascinating to learn so much about the background of such a famous woman, but I didn’t feel the sense of connection I love about so many other memoirs.

This autobiography describes Sonia Sotomayor’s life from her earliest memories to the time when she became a judge. It carefully avoids touching on her political opinions, focusing instead on personally formative experiences. These include her close relationship with her grandmother and her only recently repaired relationship with her mother. It includes a ton of inspiring sentences that I could see underlined in my kindle version, each of which lets you see a little part of Sonia Sotomayor’s personality that must have been crucial in making her dreams a reality. Read more »

Divider

Non-fiction November: Become the Expert

November 12, 2013 Blogger Events, non-fiction, Science 27

final-version-3-300x300

This is my second discussion post for Non-Fiction November, an exciting event celebrating non-fiction hosted by Kim at Sophisticated Dorkiness and Leslie at Regular Ruminations. Every Monday this month, a discussion question will be posted. Then each Friday there will be a link-up for discussion posts and non-fiction reviews, with each linky entry entered in a prize drawing at the end of the month! Today’s topic is…

Read more »

Divider

Five Days At Memorial

November 6, 2013 Narrative Non-Fiction, non-fiction 9

17704902Title: Five Days At Memorial
Author: Sheri Fink
Source: from publisher for review
Rating: ★★★★☆
Review Summary: The author did a great job sharing enough information about each person to convey that these are real people, a talent that increased the tension of this harrowing story.

Five Days At Memorial is a reconstruction of the time following Hurricane Katrina that survivors spent at the hospital, largely without electricity and with decreasing supplies of food and water. Horrific mismanagement led to a situation so desperate and chaotic that later some doctors and nurses were accused of having euthanized some of their patients. The second half of the book deals with the investigation and trials following that accusation. Read more »

Divider