I'm looking for essays, books, poetry, nonfiction, or whatever else about normal people's everyday lives and pasts, humorous if possible. I'm looking for stuff in the vein of the New York Press's old columns (like the ones Ned Vizzini wrote) or like Books of Adam. Writing that is casual, but well written.
What great short stories, short novellas, or even short nonfiction pieces can I legally download for free for my Kindle? Some details inside. [more inside]
I read the article linked to in the metafilter post "Who gets to graduate," which showed "Inception"-like evidence of the power of exposing someone to a simple idea in shifting their thought processing and hence life choices. This made me think that it would probably behoove me to use this trick to help myself move forward in my desired direction of being a trusting, compassionate person who can feel a bond with people I meet and not a disdainful, broken asshole who sees people as convenient resources rather than potential friends.So I would like to find a nonfiction, first person account of someone's recovery from domestic abuse (or other traumatic event, I suppose). Bonus: Writing which included wry, dark or acerbic humor would be completely awesome. Thanks, as always.
My friend is graduating next month with a degree in Museum Studies. I'd like to get her a book as a graduation present. Can you recommend any good memoirs or biographies or popular nonfiction books set in the museum world? I would rather it not be mainly about heists or looting or art crime.
I have a hard time finding books to read that can balance holding my attention with not being too difficult or a "hard" read. What non-fiction books are like the books after the cut? [more inside]
If you guys were my real friends, you would have told me about Heavy Metal Parking Lot before now. Back in the day, I used to hear about great documentary films through the grapevine. I guess the best example of this is the Evening with Kevin Smith series. But I never seem to hear about these any more. Heavy Metal Parking Lot looks awesome. What else am I missing? Parameter: nothing really sad. Hands on a Hard Body was kind of a bummer to me, but it's still the sort of thing I'm looking for. Anything about, say, the Holocaust, is out of this league. Thanks, MeFites!
Book suggestions for a gift exchange recipient that combine business, Haruki Murakami, David Foster Wallace, and/or music? (here's hoping my recipient isn't also a Mefite!) [more inside]
I need more good non-fiction. I'm particularly interested in food and history (and, obviously, food history) but I'm getting a bit desperate so I'm open to anything except politics and sports. I prefer more in-depth and non-fluffy books if I can get them, with extra points if they're available on Kindle. [more inside]
Bookclub filter: Nonfiction with beautiful prose? [more inside]
I'm interested in tea and its history, especially its role in global trade and conflict. Are there any great nonfiction books that cover the subject without focusing exclusively on a certain time period or location? [more inside]
Trying to find the perfect book to scratch a partner's literary itch for macrohistories related in some way to music. Details within. [more inside]
I really, really enjoyed Nicholas Schmidle's article "A Very Rare Book" (on a nearly-flawless contemporary forging of a unique copy of Galileo's "Sidereus Nuncius") in last week's New Yorker and I'd like to read more journalism/non-fiction like it. [more inside]
My dad loved the series Deadwood. He also loves biography and historical non-fiction books. I would like to give him an interesting history of Deadwood for Christmas but not necessarily one connected with the show (which seems to be most of them). Any recommendations?
I love reading nonfiction about pharmaceutical drugs, their development, use, methods of action, etc. What's out there lately that I should read? Recent books I've read inside. [more inside]
Back in the late 80s/early 90s, I read an excerpt of a book about a man's experience as a crab fisherman in the Bering Sea in The Reader's Digest. I was only around ten years old, so I wasn't exactly thinking about taking notes of the title and author. Help me now find this book, please! Details inside. [more inside]
You're teaching a massive survey course on the history of the 20th Century. What books are on the syllabus, in what order? [more inside]
What comes next after popular medical non-fiction? [more inside]
I read "The Fifties" by David Halberstam awhile back and loved the interconnecting of chapter-focused-vignettes with the decade as whole, coming together to provide some similar themes. Do you know and recommend any similar non-fiction books for other periods of time or even events?
I'm not-so-shamelessly enamored with true-crime specials like Dateline and 20/20. What can I listen to that has the same flavor? [more inside]
Please recommend fiction and nonfiction novels which depict folklore and mythology created by children who are free of adult supervision and authority. [more inside]
It's an especially slow time at work for me right now, and will be for a few more weeks at least. Please recommend some online time-killers. Specs within. [more inside]
What are some good nonfiction books that offer a window into an exciting but little-known industry or profession through the eyes/life of one person? [more inside]
I'm looking for high-quality, moving, compelling, interesting writing about having ADD; i.e. personal essays, creative nonfiction, that sort of thing. [more inside]
You know how a lot of non-fiction books get really tiresome after the first few chapters? Yeah, me too. Help me compile a list of non-fiction books that can keep my interest from the first to the last page. Challenge: no psych/neuro allowed. Other sciences okay. [more inside]
What are some stories (real/historical or fictional) about good mother-in-law/daughter-in-law relationships that I can read? [more inside]
Looking for recommendations for the best non-fiction books on the subject of running a large museum/art archive. From any POV, from the fund-raising presidents to the ticket takers, guards, and art history interns in the basements. I'm looking for more large, prestige institutions ("What is it like to work at the Met" for example) but smaller collections or niche museums are also good.
I want to read nonfiction about ritualistic/magical/occult/religious practices or events in a historical/cultural context that will learn me real good without sacrificing the fun factor. More interested in things like druid sacrifice or the Salem witch trials than modern-day ghostbusters or psychics, but all cultures are welcome.
My kids (currently 6 and 9) have become voracious readers. We have a large and varied collection of excellent fiction for them, but the non-fiction collection is more haphazard. They love learning new facts as they read (the type of thing that makes them look up from the book and say, "Did you know...?"). I want to make sure that the collection of books gives them a good introduction to fields where I myself may not have enough knowledge to judge the quality/accuracy of the book. So what's the kid's book in your field that makes you say, "If only every kid got to read this book, people would understand [topic] better."? [more inside]
I'm trying to learn more about contemporary Indonesia, and I'd love book & essay recommendations, especially of narrative non-fiction with a strong first person narrative voice! (But I'd also love suggestions of fiction, good travelogues, podcasts, blogs, zines, films, academic articles--really anything that doesn't demand prior in depth knowledge.) [more inside]
I'm looking for examples of informative nonfiction books that are heavily illustrated, but are not textbooks. [more inside]
More specifically I want to read books on the topic of "What you take for granted, someone else is praying for". [more inside]
I'm going to be a proud first-time papa in a couple months, and I'm gearing up for the madness and joy to come. I've really enjoyed reading non-fiction anecdotes about fathers and children, and I was wondering if you had any books you might recommend? Hopefully nothing 'Chicken Soup for the ____'-ish, but more along the New Yorker-y lines of Paris to the Moon by Adam Gopnik and Home Game by Michael Lewis. [more inside]
Erin Morgenstern's The Night Circus and Robin Sloan's Mr Penumbra's 24-Hour Bookstore describe immersive artistic experiences that echo Alternate Reality Games or events like the All Worlds Fair. What other books describe events and experiences like these? [more inside]
I read a nonfiction piece awhile back that I can't find via my google-fu. It concerns a guy visiting Cuba who meets with locomotive types in memory of (or for) his father, who was a train buff. The piece was nostalgic and colorful, and focused on the concept of Cuban train engineering effectively being frozen in time. Can anyone help?
I'm looking for the very best non-dry nonfiction about different mythologies, especially as they relate in a historical/societal context. Comparative mythology is awesome, but so is focusing on a specific mythology (like a book focusing solely on druids or fairies or what have you). I don't want a compilation of myths or retellings. I do want an examination of common themes within a culture or the structure of the culture's pantheon.
How do you decide what books to read? Recommendations? Reviews? Go to the bookstore and read a chapter? I often find myself overwhelmed with the zillions of choices. How do you narrow it down?
Writing fiction: is it the sort of thing where you either have "the gift," or you don't? [more inside]
I'm looking for recommendations for creepy and/or scary novels and nonfiction. [more inside]
I have an ~18 hour flight ahead of me and I am compiling a DIY ebook of longform journalism/non-fiction for my Kindle to get me through it. So, what is the best thing you read this year? [more inside]
I need to stop reading wikipedia at work, so please give me books instead [more inside]
Years ago Jack Hart, the esteemed editor and writing coach at The Oregonian, posted the rough drafts of Tom Hallman's Pulitzer winning story The Boy Behind the Mask somewhere online. Perhaps to a writers'/journalists' forum or mailing list. One editor's reaction to seeing the progression of the story through the drafts was to call it the most instructive lesson he'd ever had in newspaper writing. Help me track down those drafts!
My Nook is hungry- and I have silly tastes- recommendations? [more inside]
I am interested in writing a non-fiction book or two (possibly ebooks) in a proven popular style. Where can I find resources, reviews, interviews, commentaries about choosing book structures, layout, language, tone and content that appeal to an aspirational audience? [more inside]
Seeking the best stories, across all genres, about coming to terms with the world in the early adult years.
What are the best stories that feature young adults coming of age/coming to terms with life's imperfect realities? By "young adults" I mean "adults who are young," probably roughly 19-30, not "young people who are becoming adults." This maturing process can be central to the work or peripheral. One example: "The Great Gatsby." Short stories, novels, nonfiction, film, television and any other genre are all welcome.
I need suggestions of fictional or non-fictional books or films that deal with illness or dying in relation to humor/the absurd. [more inside]
Recommend to me biographies/histories of the Borgia Pope and family? [more inside]
I need help with a book suggestion! All my particulars found within, within, within.. [more inside]
Bookfilter: Recommend me thoughtful military memoirs / journalism [more inside]
I want to read about the dark side of the Internet, preferably in the form of a narrative. [more inside]
Can you help me expand my “popular epidemiology” book collection by recommending books that are similar to The Coming Plague by Laurie Garrett and the following titles? [more inside]