May 31, 2013

Nonfiction Love ~ Armchair BEA


Welcome Armchair BEA'ers! The topic of the day: Nonfiction books!

Do I read nonfiction? I love nonfiction. 


LOVE I tell you!


Why do I like reading nonfiction books so much? Because I'm very fond of learning. When I come across a new fact or an interesting tidbit I get all excited. Seriously. Annoyingly so.

Nonfiction books teach me. That is the only reason I need for all the love I feel for them.

Nerd: 
an unstylish, unattractive, or socially inept person; especially : one slavishly devoted to intellectual or academic pursuits
See also: this


You and me both fella

I've recently started putting together a monthly wrap-up post and realized that I read 7 nonfiction books in May! Even I was surprised by that. 

These are my two most recent nonfiction reads (both were fantastic):


Frozen in Time by Mitchell Zuckoff

The Professor and the Madman by Simon Winchester


Do you read nonfiction? Do you love it? Want to marry it? Want to make babies with all of the glorious nonfiction books out there? Tell me one of your favorites!

My introductory and giveaway posts. (In case you missed them and are dying to go back and read more!)

Thanks for visiting me, I hope to see you around again!


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77 comments:

  1. Love it! Don't read as much of it as I should, but the non-fiction books I pick in any given year usually turn out to be highlights.

    I LOVED The Professor and the Madman. It's such a quick read but so full of KNOWLEDGE and WEIRDNESS. I had to read it for a class in grad school and thoroughly enjoyed Winchester's writing. Need to read more of his stuff.

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    1. It's awesome how many nonfiction books turn out to be great reads! You'd almost expect them to be too dry to enjoy. NOPE! :)

      I just finished The Professor and the Madman yesterday :) Yes! Knowledge and weirdness! Those are perfect words to describe it, lol. Simon Winchester, his name is so familiar to me for some reason but I looked up his books and I think this is the only one of his that I've read. I need to fix that!

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    2. I really want to finish that book. Well, start it over and finish it. I had just started it when I landed in the hospital with pre-eclampsia. Soooo it kind of fell through the cracks!

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    3. Oh wow, yea that will happen! I hope you're able to get to it again!

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  2. I love learning new things from non-fiction books, and then telling EVERYONE ALL ABOUT IT. It's almost as if I feel like I'm doing them a service, and thankfully they politely let me do this to them. I really want to read Zuckoff's new book - I really liked Lost in Shangri-La.

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    1. Haha! I do the very same thing. My poor family has to hear all the interesting facts I learn. I know that they are rolling their eyes at me but I CAN'T STOP!

      I haven't read any of his previous books but if they're anything like his newest I sure want to!

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  3. Wow, Professor and the Madman sounds disturbing and intriguing. One of those my curiousity might get the better of me. I've really enjoyed non-fiction lately, there's a vast array of things to learn and people who write about such diverse topics. Sounds like we might need a support group for our families who hear incessant comments about things we learn, but really they could care less about. My oldest son, a bookworm also, will humor me, but I can tell my hubby glazes over sometimes at my weak and ineloquent verbal recollection of the facts (which is why I need to see it, highlight it and write it down)!

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    1. Everyone in my "real" life goes into zombie mode when I talk books. Thank goodness for this community!

      The Professor and the Madman was a great read. Very informative, full of wordy goodness and completely bizarre as well :)

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  4. Ooooh, looks like you read some GREAT non fiction - I'm subscribing to your blog so I can get even more titles on my TBR list LOL! Thanks for stopping by earlier!

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    1. Thanks so much Wendy, I appreciate it!! Just what you need, more books for your tbr pile, ha ha.

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  5. I love nonfiction too. It's so inspiring. The young adult fiction category is also great.

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  6. I love it for the same reason as you do - I am a big nerd and always will be!

    I must read Frozen in Time, as I loved Escape from Shangri-La by the same author.

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    1. Nerds are awesome Sam. AWESOME!

      I really want to read Escape from Shangri-La now! I'm glad to have discovered another great nonfiction author :)

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  7. As you know, I love love love non-fiction too! Although looking through my 2013 reads so far, I'm about half-and-half with ficion & non-fic. My favorite non-fics are anything to do with the mafia, survival against the elements and/or travel, memoirs, food related, and music related. YAY!

    "Frozen in Time" has been on my list for a while... and I just added "Professor and the Madman"! I always appreciate your reviews. :)

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    1. I know you do, hooray! I haven't read a good mafia nonfiction in a long time, if ever. If you have any good suggestions send them my way!

      Thanks Kristin!

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  8. Yay, I've been waiting to see your post, you've given me so many great non-fiction recs already! I picked up a copy of Frozen in Time at the event I went to last night, so I'm excited to get to it. And I've been wanting to read The Professor and the Madman for SO long.

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    1. I should have recommended some good ones from the past darn it. As I was reading through a bunch of the ABEA nonfiction posts I kept thinking of other great reads. Mao's Great Famine for one..whew.

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  9. I remember for a long long time that I thought everyone enjoyed reading non fiction books from time to time... Who doesn't like to learn? Well, plenty of people apparently. Haha.

    I don't read a lot of non fiction books, especially not as much as I used to, but that isn't because I don't enjoy more so because I like to recall the stuff I learn and my memory is like a sieve so defeats the purpose, y'know. But occasionally I will pick up a non fiction book, I usually find that to be in the library though. My usual picks? Anything and I mean ANYTHING, crime related, or to do with food and rarely but sometimes travelling.

    My Book Bubble

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    1. I'm surprised (but probably shouldn't be) by the number of readers who don't read nonfiction. Don't they know how fantastic they are??? ;) I shouldn't be snobby abou it because there are plenty of genres that I wouldn't touch with a ten foot pole, ha ha.

      Have you read In Cold Blood by Truman Capote? That is one of the finest true crime nonfiction books I've ever read.

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    2. We all have those books and genres that we'd rather steer clear of eh.

      Actually, on more than one occasion I've found myself in the book shop with In Cold Blood in my clutches, I just never seem to make it to the till point with it in my hands for some unknown reason. Next time, I'll part with cash, on your recommendation.

      :-)

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    3. Great! That book was a game changer for nonfiction!

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  10. I enjoy nonfiction books for the same reason - I love to learn! And as a memoir writer,I find myself surrounded by lots of nonfiction in that genre. Among the nonfiction that I've read lately, I really enjoyed The Man Who Loved Books Too Much by Allison Hoover Bartlett. This is one I came across while helping my brother-in-law downsize his extensive library. I was drawn to it because of the words "loved books too much!"

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    1. I read that too! I wanted to like it a lot more than I did :( The topic was fantastic. I think I was put off by the author inserting herself into the tale too much, if that makes sense?

      I do love book themed nonfiction. One recent book that I fell for was The World's Strongest Librarian. SO good!

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  11. That first gif made me laugh so hard! I'm not a big nonfiction fan, but I do read a lot of it. Mostly gluten free diet and writing books. Seven nonfiction in one month is a lot! You rock.

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  12. Oh ya! Professor and the Madman is another really great one--definitely for those folks who love Erik Larssen. and we just crossed commenting paths--I listened to In the Garden of Beasts last year (sadly no review). The only one I haven't read by him is Isaac's Storm but I need to! And YESSSSSSSSSSSS I need to read The World's Strongest Librarian!!

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    1. I haven't read Isaac's Storm either! Adding another book to the list! ;) The nonfiction posts are killing me today, lol.

      Yes please read Strongest Librarian! It's great :)

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  13. Ha ha, as soon as I saw The Dude rockin' it in his car, I just HAD to get up and put the soundtrack on! AHHH love that movie! (The guy in the second clip, he looks so familiar, it's really bugging me that I can't put a name to him)

    Seriously?? A book on the making of the Oxford English Dictionary?? That's a big YES!!! from me! I'll have to add that one to my collection. ;)

    oh and I heard just the other day - hope I heard this right - that Dr Seuss invented the word "nerd"? Sounds like one of his!

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    1. The Big Lebowski is cinematic GENIUS :) That 2nd guy...I know him from a bunch of things but I don't know his name. :/

      You would love The Professor and the Madman, bookish kookiness at it's finest!

      I had to go look up the Dr. Seuss thing. Yup! From the 1950 book titled If I Ran the Zoo:
      And then, just to show them, I'll sail to Ka-Troo
      And bring back an It-Kutch a Preep and a Proo
      A Nerkle a Nerd and a Seersucker, too!

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    2. How funny! Thanks for looking that up.

      I went ahead and ordered a copy of The Professor and the Madman. You do EVIL things to my book buying resolution!

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    3. Muahahahahaha!I hope you really like it Shannon! It's not very long so it won't be a big investment if you hate it, lol.

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  14. Love it, as you know! I've read 11 non-fiction books so far this year, which is about 20% of all the books I've read so far. In past years I didn't even manage 10 in one whole year, so 11 in 5 months is pretty unusual for me. I'm loving the non-fic kick I'm on!

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    1. And don't you just feel like the biggest smarty after you read one? Jeopardy! Here I come! Ha :)

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  15. Love your gifs! I'm not a big fan of non-fiction but my Armchair buddies are opening my eyes!

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    1. Thanks! There are some fantastic ones out there Liss :)

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  16. I tend to shy away from non-fiction...not sure why. I've read some in the past and have a collection of books on the Kennedy's - all non-fiction - that I hope to one day read. Need to challenge myself to read more.

    Impressed that you read 7 this month...will have to check them all out!

    My Non-Fiction Post

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    1. Perhaps a nonfiction challenge is in your future Kristin! I'll be posting a May wrap-up post as soon as ABEA winds down :)

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  17. The subtitle to The Professor and the Madman is FANTASTIC. Also, a book about making a dictionary? Sounds just dorky enough to be perfect for me! I may have to stray into nonfiction territory more often...

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    1. Oh man, it's nerdy and fantastic! It's a quick read as well so you don't have to invest a ton of time in it :)

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  18. The Professor and the Madman looks so good- I will have to look for it!
    Thanks
    Kerri

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    1. I'm so glad I read it. I only recently learned of it. I requested it from my library as soon as I did :)

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  19. Yes, I usually read Christian nonfiction...so it's like Biblically based self-help books I guess? Ways to improve yourself, attitudes, and bad habits, etc. I do like some nonfiction, but it just really varies. I learn best from historical fiction though.

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    1. Improving oneself is fantastic if you ask me :) I really like historical fiction too!

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  20. The Professor and the Madman by Simon Winchester looks really interesting! Adding it to my TBR! I really like non-fiction but haven't read a lot lately. I liked The Psychopath Test by Jon Ronson, though!

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    1. It was super interesting! Chock full of the kind of tidbits that make me giddy ;) Jon Ronson is super isn't he??

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  21. Definitely want to read both of those books! I finally realized that I love non-fiction much more than I thought I did, just needed to realize what it was I loved.

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    1. I hope you do Lisa! I'm glad to hear you've found the love for nonfiction :D

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  22. I picked up the Madman and the Professor when Border's was going out of business a couple of years ago. I've been meaning to get to it! I need to do more non-fiction review posts. But they are so packed with information that I get a bit overwhelmed on how to compact it down to a decent blog post. But you have inspired me to get on it!

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    1. I understand! I have books floating around here that I've meant to get to as well ;) Nonfiction books are difficult for me to review as well!

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  23. Wow, you really do have a passion for non-fiction! Thanks for coming and visiting my blog :-)

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    1. I really do! You're welcome Michelle, right back at ya!

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  24. I love that gif of Jeff Bridges! Haha

    I'm definitely not as passionate about non-fiction as you, but you make some very valid arguments for it! I also love to learn, and it makes a lot of sense that non-fiction would be full of useful (or maybe not-so-useful) facts! I'll have to take a closer look at the ones you finished recently :)

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    1. Useful and not so useful, lol. That's very true. It's amazing how stuffed our brains can become with things that don't really help our daily lives. Good gravy I love that stuff though! ;)

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  25. Oooo Frozen in Time sounds amazing and right up my alley! Adding to my TBR!

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    1. Great to hear Danielle! I don't think you'll be disappointed :)

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  26. I enjoy nonfiction, but I don't read that (or classics) as often as I should! I need to work more of them into my repertoire.

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    1. I've seen a few nonfiction challenges floating around, you might want to look into something like that. That makes me think of the Classics Club. I do enjoy classics but that challenge gives me a kick in the pants ;)

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  27. Frozen in Time sounds especially nice right now--beautifully cold.

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    1. If you need a cool down that would probably do it! I like to read wintery books during the hot summer months too!

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  28. the professor and the madman is a fascinating read! hope you enjoy!

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  29. "A tale of murder, insanity, and the making of the Oxford English dictionary." How peculiar! You wouldn't exactly expect murder and making a dictionary to be in the same sentence. Did you enjoy it?! Sounds rather scandalous!

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    1. It's a peculiar tale! And yes, I enjoyed it very much. Scandalous and big words, it was GREAT! :)

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  30. I'm very fond of learning as well. That's one of the things I love about nonfiction. Now that I'm finished with school, it seems weird to me not to read to expand my knowledge of the world. I love, love, love fiction -- of course -- and I can learn interesting tidbits from it, but it's not the same as nonfiction.

    And yes, Mr. Cillian Murphy, intelligence is extremely sexy.

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    1. Cillian Murphy! That's who that is! :)

      That's the great thing about books, of any sort. The learning never ends! Good grief that makes me happy!

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  31. I rarely read non-fiction, but I have tons of non-fiction on my shelves waiting to be read (that counts, right?). The best work of non-fiction I've read is Into Thin Air by Jon Krakauer. That book blew me away. Other favourites include The Time Traveller's Guide to Medieval England by Ian Mortimer and A Great and Terrible King: Edward I and the Forging of Britain by Marc Morris.

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    1. For not being a big nonfiction reader you sure have a great list of favorites! I want to read ALL of those! The Mortimer sounds especially up my alley!

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  32. Hmmm....I consider myself a stylish, sexy nerd :)
    I do enjoy nonfiction, Frozen in Time sounds good. I read a memoir once called Shattered Dreams by Irene Spencer that was about her life as a polygamist wife. It was fascinating, inspiring and at times disturbing. Just what I want in a memoir. I also have one of Chelsea Handlers memoirs on Mt TBR.

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    1. You ARE a stylish, sexy nerd! :D Man I love book people! We are so darn modest! ;)

      Shattered Dreams sounds excellent! I'm going to go look that up right now. I know I've read something of Handler but I can't remember which one :/

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  33. i LOVE Winchester's books! thanks for sharing

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  34. The Professor and the Mad Man sounds really, really good!

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  35. I don't read much non-fiction, but I'm liking the sound of The Professor and the Madman; I'll have to check that one out. Thanks for the recommendation!

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    1. It's a very interesting book. I think it would be a good one for someone who doesn't regularly read nonfic :) Thanks for visiting Lee!

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  36. Definitely love nonfiction. One that captured my curiosity and that was really different: The Mummy Congress. :)

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