Category Archives: Nonfiction

My Wars Are Laid Away In Books

This biography of Emily Dickinson, by Alfred Habegger, has been on my TBR for so many years that I’ve lost count — the oldest book on my list, in fact, having survived a number of TBR purges. I read it … Continue reading

Posted in Biography, Nonfiction | 7 Comments

The Innocents Abroad

Mark Twain’s story of a cruise on the USS Quaker City from the United States to Europe, down through the Mediterranean, to the Holy Land, and home again, is something I’ve read about all my life. Elnora has her mother … Continue reading

Posted in Classics, Nonfiction, Travel/ Exploration | 8 Comments

Shirley Jackson: A Rather Haunted Life

I didn’t think it was possible for me to shed tears over a biography, but by the time I got to the end of Ruth Franklin’s book about Shirley Jackson, I was so attached to Jackson that reading about her … Continue reading

Posted in Biography, Nonfiction | 5 Comments

Young Romantics: The Shelleys, Byron, and Other Tangled Lives

The story of how Mary Shelley came up with the idea for Frankenstein as part of a storytelling competition is fairly well known, but that’s far from the only instance of how the circle around the Shelleys influenced each other, both … Continue reading

Posted in History, Nonfiction | 2 Comments

Delusions of Gender

We’ve all heard the stereotypes. Men are like …. Women are like …. And it starts early, with the assumption that gender differences are inherent and immutable. In Delusions of Gender, psychologist Cordelia Fine methodically (and sometimes snarkily) picks apart studies … Continue reading

Posted in Nonfiction | 16 Comments

Super Black

I don’t know about you, but I was one of the people who saw Wonder Woman on the day it came out in the theater. I was ready — beyond ready — for a superheroine, and I wasn’t disappointed. For … Continue reading

Posted in Graphic Novels / Comics, Nonfiction | 2 Comments

The White Album

One of the best books I read last year was Joan Didion’s essay collection, Slouching Towards Bethlehem. I appreciated Didion’s keen observations and her blending of personal observation with commentary on the culture. It felt significant and hardly at all … Continue reading

Posted in Nonfiction, Short Stories/Essays | 7 Comments

We Were Eight Years in Power: An American Tragedy

Ta-Nehisi Coates rose to prominence as a writer largely through his articles for The Atlantic, and this collection includes nine of those articles, each drawn from a year of the Obama presidency and the year following. Through them, we can … Continue reading

Posted in Nonfiction, Short Stories/Essays | 8 Comments

The Color of Law: A Forgotten History of How Our Government Segregated America

It’s common knowledge in America that our communities are segregated, but what’s less common knowledge is how this segregation came to be and what role our government had in making it happen. In The Color of Law, Richard Rothstein of the … Continue reading

Posted in Nonfiction | 4 Comments

Brown Girl Dreaming

Brown Girl Dreaming is only the second book I’ve read by Jacqueline Woodson. (The first, her spectacular picture book Show Way, is about seven generations of the women of an African-American family, from slavery through civil rights, and the instructions … Continue reading

Posted in Children's / YA Lit, Memoir, Nonfiction, Poetry | 11 Comments