This week’s theme is a lot of fun – top ten book club picks! One of my favourite genres, and one that I think is woefully under-appreciated, is nonfiction. And so, here are ten nonfiction titles to try out with your book club. I’ve tried to pick titles with broad appeal that will encourage discussion and conversation.
The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks – Science, race, family, ethics, economics and politics collide in the fascinating story of Henrietta Lacks and her incredible cells.
The Devil in the White City – The stories of two men, one a sinister murderer and the other the architect behind the 1893 World’s Fair in Chicago, collide in this gripping true tale of crime and commerce.
Into Thin Air – A thrilling account of the disastrous 1996 Everest season, in which 11 climbers lost their lives.
The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat – Neurologist Oliver Sacks beautifully and sympathetically recounts some of the strangest and most fascinating cases he encountered during his long career.
In a Sunburned Country – Pretty much any books by Brill Bryson is a good choice for a book club, but this exploration of Australia is one of Bryson’s laugh out loud funniest.
Packing for Mars: The Curious Science of Life in the Void – Mary Roach always manages to make hard science accessible and often hilarious. This look at space exploration is fascinating, cheeky and highly informative.
Working in the Shadows – A journalist spends a year undercover working the jobs “most Americans won’t do”, revealing the plight of undocumented migrants and poor Americans in this fascinating, at times heartbreaking account of life in the shadows.
52 Loaves – This hilarious account follows one man’s obsession to bake the perfect loaf of bread.
The Omnivore’s Dilemma – Explore the natural history of cooking and food and take a hard look at the modern Western diet and what it means for the future of our society as a whole.
Orange is the New Black – When a successful young woman is sent to prison for a crime she committed years before, she discovers an entirely new world behind bars. An eye-opening, compassionate look at prison life.