Suggested Non-Fiction

Here’s the reading list from a small book club Marie belongs to.  The only requirement for the group is that a book be non-fiction, so there’s a great mix of topics.  This will be updated on a monthly basis, so be sure to check back often!

Non-Fiction Book Club Reading List

Witchfinders: A Seventeenth-Century English Tragedy by Malcolm Gaskill

*The Rise and Fall of Alexandria: Birthplace of the Modern Mind by Justin Pollard and Howard Reid

Island of Vice: Theodore Roosevelt’s Doomed Quest to Clean Up Sin-Loving New York by Richard Zacks

The Plantagenets: The Warrior Kings and Queens Who Made England by Dan Jones

The Abacus and the Cross: The Story of the Pope Who Brought the Light of Science to the Dark Ages by Nancy Marie Brown

Shakespeare: The Invention of the Human by Harold Bloom

The Lady and Her Monsters: A Tale of Dissections, Real-Life Dr. Frankensteins, and the Creation of Mary Shelley’s Masterpiece by Roseanne Montillo

*The Norman Conquest: The Battle of Hastings and the Fall of Anglo-Saxon England by Marc Morris

Practicing History: Selected Essays by Barbara Tuchman

1913: The Year Before the Storm  by Florian Illies

*The Boilerplate Rhino: Nature in the Eye of the Beholder by David Quammen

*So We Read On: How ‘The Great Gatsby’ Came to Be and Why it Endures by Maureen Corrigan

*Albion: The Origins of the English Imagination by Peter Ackroyd

Michelangelo: A Life in Six Masterpieces by Miles J. Unger

*Liberty Men and Great Proprietors: The Revolutionary Settlement on the Maine Frontier, 1760-1820 by Alan Taylor

The Wars of the Roses: The Fall of the Plantagenets and the Rise of the Tudors by Dan Jones

*Dr. Mutter’s Marvels: A True Tale of Intrigue and Innovation at the Dawn of Modern Medicine by Cristin O’Keefe Aptowicz

The Hemlock Cup: Socrates, Athens, and the Search for the Good Life by Betty Hughes

Dancing in the Dark: A Cultural History of the Great Depression by Morris Dickstein

Lafayette in the Somewhat United States by Sarah Vowell

The Cambridge Companion to the Modern Gothic edited by Jerrold E. Hogle (no local holdings)

The Rape of Europa: The Fate of Europe’s Treasures in the Third Reich and the Second World War by Lynn H. Nicholas

The Age of Homespun: Objects and Stories in the Creation of the American Myth by Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

The End of Night: Searching for Natural Darkness in an Age of Artificial Light by Paul Bogard

Darjeeling: The Colorful History and Precarious Fate of the World’s Greatest Tea by Jeff Koehler

*The Great Detective: The Amazing Rise and Immortal Life of Sherlock Holmes by Zach Dundas

A History of God: The 4000-Year Quest of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam by Karen Armstrong

King John: Treachery and Tyranny in Medieval England: The Road to Magna Carta by Marc Morris

*Song of the Vikings: Snorri and the Making of Norse Myths by Nancy Marie Brown

*Genghis Khan and the Making of the Modern World by Jack Weatherford

Falling Upwards: How We Took to the Air by Richard Holmes

The Girls of Atomic City: The Untold Story of the Women Who Helped Win World War II by Denise Kiernan

The Monsters and the Critics: and other essays by J.R.R. Tolkien

*Tell My Horse: Voodoo and Life in Haiti and Jamaica by Zora Neale Hurston

*Song of the Dodo: Island Biogeography in an Age of Extinctions by David Quammen

The Romanov Sisters: The Lost Lives of the Daughters of Nicholas and Alexandra by Helen Rappaport

The Colony :[The Harrowing True Story of the Exiles of Molokai] by John Tayman

A Day in the Life of Ancient Rome by Alberto Angela

*Wild Things: The Joy of Reading Children’s Literature as an Adult by Bruce Handy

The Templars: The Rise and Spectacular Fall of God’s Holy Warriors by Dan Jones

The Cambridge Companion to American Science Fiction edited by Eric Carl Link

Jungle of Stone: The True Story of Two Men, Their Extraordinary Journey, and the Discovery of the Lost Civilization of the Maya by William Carlsen

Craeft: An Inquiry into the Origins and True Meaning of Traditional Crafts by Alexander Langlands

Blue Mind: The Surprising Science That Shows How Being Near, In, On, or Under Water Can Make You Happier, Healthier, More Connected, and Better At What You Do by Wallace J. Nichols

Hannibal’s Oath: The Life and Wars of Rome’s Greatest Enemy by John Prevas

High Noon: The Hollywood Blacklist and the Making of an American Classic by Glenn Frankel

Perfection Salad: Women and Cooking at the Turn of the 20th Century by Laura Shapiro

Tides: The Science and Spirit of the Ocean by Jonathan White

Batavia’s Graveyard: The True Story of the Mad Heretic Who Led History’s Bloodiest Mutiny by Mike Dash

Theater of War: What Ancient Greek Tragedies Can Teach Us Today by Bryan Doerries

Puritans at Play: Leisure and Recreation in Colonial New England by Bruce C. Daniels

Christmas: A Biography by Judith Flanders

The Novel of the Century: The Extraordinary Adventure of Les Miserables by David Bellos

1861: The Civil War Awakening by Adam Goodheart

The Tangled Tree: A Radical New History of Life by David Quammen

The Great Influenza: The Epic Story of the Deadliest Plague in History by John M. Barry

Wyoming Range War: The Infamous Invasion of Johnson County by John W. Davis

The Great Wave: Gilded Age Misfits, Japanese Eccentrics, and the Opening of Old Japan by Christopher Benfey

Haunted: On Ghosts, Witches, Vampires, Zombies, and Other Monsters of the Natural and Supernatural Worlds by Leo Braudy

Stonewall: The Definitive Story of the LGBTQ Rights Uprising that Changed America by Martin Duberman

Underland: A Deep Time Journey by Robert Macfarlane

Burning Down the Haus: Punk Rock, Revolution, and the Fall of the Berlin Wall by Tim Mohr

Playing to the Gods: Sarah Bernhardt, Eleonora Duse, and the Rivalry that Changed Acting Forever by Peter Rader

Crusaders: The Epic History of the Wars for the Holy Lands by Dan Jones

The Golden Thread: How Fabric Changed History by Kassia St. Clair

The Best Land Under Heaven: The Donner Party in the Age of Manifest Destiny by Michael Wallis

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