Saturday, December 24, 2016

The Black Friday Haul: Nonfiction Edition

Stacking the Shelves is hosted by Tynga’s Reviews. I get to show off all the books I’ve gotten recently. I went a little nuts on Black Friday. Here are the nonfiction books I got:

Let’s Pretend This Never Happened: (A Mostly True Memoir) – Jenny Lawson

Jenny Lawson realized that the most mortifying moments of our lives—the ones we’d like to pretend never happened—are in fact the ones that define us. In the #1 New York Times bestseller, Let’s Pretend This Never Happened, Lawson takes readers on a hilarious journey recalling her bizarre upbringing in rural Texas, her devastatingly awkward high school years, and her relationship with her long-suffering husband, Victor.

Most Dangerous: Daniel Ellsberg and the Secret History of the Vietnam War – Steve Sheinkin

From Steve Sheinkin comes a tense, exciting exploration of what the Times deemed "the greatest story of the century": how Daniel Ellsberg transformed from obscure government analyst into "the most dangerous man in America," and risked everything to expose the government's deceit. On June 13, 1971, the front page of the New York Times announced the existence of a 7,000-page collection of documents containing a secret history of the Vietnam War. Known as The Pentagon Papers, these documents had been commissioned by Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara. Chronicling every action the government had taken in the Vietnam War, they revealed a pattern of deception spanning over twenty years and four presidencies, and forever changed the relationship between American citizens and the politicians claiming to represent their interests.

Persepolis: The Story of a Childhood – Marjane Satrapi

Wise, funny, and heartbreaking, Persepolis is Marjane Satrapi’s memoir of growing up in Iran during the Islamic Revolution. In powerful black-and-white comic strip images, Satrapi tells the story of her life in Tehran from ages six to fourteen, years that saw the overthrow of the Shah’s regime, the triumph of the Islamic Revolution, and the devastating effects of war with Iraq. The intelligent and outspoken only child of committed Marxists and the great-granddaughter of one of Iran’s last emperors, Marjane bears witness to a childhood uniquely entwined with the history of her country.

The Middle Ages: Everyday Life in Medieval Europe – Jeffrey L. Singman

We consider the Middle Ages barbaric, yet the period furnished some of our most enduring icons, including King Arthur's Round Table, knights in shining armor, and the idealized noblewoman. In this vivid history of the time, the medieval world comes to life in all its rich daily experience. Find out what people's beds were like, how often they washed, what they wore, what they cooked, how they worked, how they entertained themselves, how they wed, and what life was like in a medieval village, castle, or monastery. Contemporary artworks and documents further illuminate this fascinating historical era.

The Sound of Gravel: A Memoir – Ruth Wariner

Ruth Wariner was the thirty-ninth of her father’s forty-two children. Growing up on a farm in rural Mexico, where authorities turned a blind eye to the practices of her community, Ruth lives in a ramshackle house without indoor plumbing or electricity. At church, preachers teach that God will punish the wicked by destroying the world and that women can only ascend to Heaven by entering into polygamous marriages and giving birth to as many children as possible. After Ruth's father—the man who had been the founding prophet of the colony—is brutally murdered by his brother in a bid for church power, her mother remarries, becoming the second wife of another faithful congregant. 
In need of government assistance and supplemental income, Ruth and her siblings are carted back and forth between Mexico and the United States, where her mother collects welfare and her step-father works a variety of odd jobs. Ruth comes to love the time she spends in the States, realizing that perhaps the community into which she was born is not the right one for her. As Ruth begins to doubt her family’s beliefs and question her mother’s choices, she struggles to balance her fierce love for her siblings with her determination to forge a better life for herself.

The V-Word: True Stories about First-Time Sex – Amber J. Keyser (editor)

The V-Word pulls back the sheets on sex. Queer and straight. Relished and regretted. Funny and exhilarating. The seventeen women in this book write about first-time sex—hot, meaningful, cringe-worthy, gross, forgettable, magnificent, empowering, and transformative.

Have you read any of these? What did you think?


  1. I didn't buy any non fiction this year and I only read a handful of the ones I own so it was more of a fiction year for me. Cute mouse! I hope Santa brings you books!

  2. YES on Let's Preten This Never Happened! Love Jenny Lawson - enjoy!

  3. I haven't read any of these but am curious about the Jenny Lawson book. I have been meaning to read her work. Enjoy!

  4. Wow! These all look very good, from Most Dangerous to The Sound of Gravel. That latter title gave me the chills a little bit.

    Thanks for sharing...and here are MY WEEKLY UPDATES

  5. Let's Pretend This Never Happened sounded really good. I hope you enjoy your books!
    Krystianna @ Downright Dystopian

  6. These are all new to me but the mouse on the cover is amazing and now I want to read that book no matter what it is! XD I hope you love all of these!

    Tracy @ Cornerfolds

  7. These are a very different genre than I read. They look interesting. I hope you love all of your new books.

    Grace @ Books of Love

  8. Oooo, Black Friday in December! I'm still waiting for the books I ordered during Black Friday to come in - granted, all of them are preorders. :D I hope you enjoy all of your new books!

    Happy holidays. =)

    Check out my STS post!

  9. Oooh! I just got Persepolis from the library! I hope we both enjoy it!

    Here’s my Stacking the Shelves!

    Ronyell @ Rabbit Ears Book Blog

  10. I got Persepolis a couple of months ago. I will be sure to read in the next few months. It's definitely time.
    Nice haul! You had quite a successful Black Friday haul. #goals

  11. Persepolis is a fantastic book. I found it especially interesting because Marjane Satrapi is an exact contemporary of mine -- I was hearing about the Iranian Revolution when I was her age in school and it all seemed so baffling and distant, but to see it from the perspective of a girl just like me brings it vividly to life. I hope you enjoy all your acquisitions!

  12. Super interesting choices. The only one I've read is Persepolis, which I love. The Sound of Gravel sounds right up your alley, what with the weird religion and all. Enjoy!

  13. Ooh, I've read Persepolis last year and I really enjoyed it. It was such a good read and it gave a lot of insight to the Iranian Revolution and also culture. So I hope you enjoy reading it too!