This tag was created by Wendy @ Falconer’s Library. I’m embarrassed to say that I don’t read much nonfiction (is it too early for 2017 reading resolutions?), but I thought I’d give this tag a try.
You guys are about to get a small glimpse at my bizarre interests. I’m terrible at math (maybe I should buy a math book), but I’d guess that 85% of the nonfiction on my shelves is about religious extremism, 10% is writing reference books, 4% somehow involves dogs, and 1% is other random stuff. Basically, I read a lot about cults, dogs, and grammar.
1. A book well outside your base of knowledge?
I have 2 philosophy books on my shelf, but I’ve never been interested in philosophy. One is Being and Time by Martin Heidegger. The other is The Portable Nietzsche. I read both of them and remember pretty much nothing about them.
2. A book that you refer to often?
I refer to my literature and editing books all the time. The ones that come off my shelf most often are The Chicago Manual of Style, The MLA Handbook for Writers of Research Papers, and A Handbook to Literature. Don’t those all sound amazing? I’m sure you’re adding them to your TBR lists right now . . .
3. A book you were assigned to read and found fascinating?
In Cold Blood by Truman Capote. It was assigned reading for 9th grade English, and I loved it. I need to track down a copy and reread it. Brutal murders are pretty fascinating. (Unless you’re the one being murdered, I guess.)
4. A book that would start a great book club discussion?
I haven’t been in a book club since I was 12, and our book discussions weren’t exactly deep. Maybe Under the Banner of Heaven by Jon Krakauer would make a good book club pick? It’s about the history of the Mormon religion and modern-day Mormon Fundamentalism. Actually, that might not be a good book club pick. Is anyone interested in Mormons besides me? My book club might be a bit odd.
5. A book you could (or do) reread annually?
This might be cheating because I only read this book for the first time a few weeks ago, but I’m going to say Furiously Happy: A Funny Book about Horrible Things by Jenny Lawson. It’s hilarious and made me feel better about the horrible things in my life. Also, raccoons.
6. An essay or poetry collection?
Turn Me Loose: The Unghosting of Medgar Evers by Frank X Walker is a book of poetry about the assassination of Medgar Evers. If you’re new to poetry, this is a great place to start. The poems are easy to understand and educational.
7. Graphic novel (or other unusual format)?
I don’t read enough sequential art books, but one of my favorites is Blankets by Craig Thompson. It’s a graphic memoir about religion, abuse, and angsty teenage love.
8. A book someone recommended to you?
The Power of Myth by Joseph Campbell. This book has been recommended to me by so many people. But, I haven’t read it. It’s been sitting on my TBR shelf for months. Supposedly, it’ll help deepen my understanding of literature. Unfortunately, reading YA books is much more appealing than deepening my understanding of anything. I swear I’ll read The Power of Myth someday.
9. A book about books, writing, or writers?
My favorite book about writing is Stephen King’s On Writing. If you want to write anything, you need to read this first. It should be required reading for all wannabe writers. King teaches you the basics of writing in a way that doesn’t make you want to jump off the nearest skyscraper. I’ve read a lot of writing reference books, and almost all of them are so boring you’ll want to gouge out your eyes so you'll have an excuse to stop reading.
10. A book that made you laugh out loud or cry actual tears?
Can I use Furiously Happy again? That book made me laugh out loud. A book has never made me cry, but I got really sad while reading My Life in Orange by Tim Guest. The author grew up in various communes around the world. Reading about child neglect is like being kicked in the crotch and then set on fire. It’s not the most pleasant thing in the world.
What’s your favorite nonfiction book?