Besides the few science-y picture books I received as gifts as a child, I’ve always leaned more toward fiction than non-fiction. Everything that exists in non-fiction already exists in the world, so why not read about dragons and space-elevators, right? That’s how I used to justify preferring fiction.
Despite my long-standing and ever-lasting love of fiction, I’ve recently delved into the world of non-fiction. This is largely due to buzz over some popular titles and book recommendations from others, but I have come across a few on my own.
Anyway, I thought I’d share a few titles that have made me broaden my horizons.
1. Bossypants by Tina Fey: This one is not that original, I know, but who doesn’t like Tina Fey. I set out to read this (and the next to on this list) while I was on a trip to Europe. I guess since I knew I’d be exploring a lot of new territory geographically, I wanted something different and less focussed on world-building to take with me. Anyway, this was a fun read that I enjoyed for its depiction of working in comedy and being creative. Oh, and of course for Tina Fey’s commentary on being a woman in said field. It’s always good to be reassured that bossy isn’t necessarily bad.
2. Yes Please by Amy Poehler: I fell in love with Amy Poehler’s writing just reading the foreword. She isn’t afraid to admit that writing is hard, and I appreciate that as both a reader and a writer myself. Again, Poehler’s book discusses comedy, creativity, relationships, and girl-power, so if fit well after reading Bossypants.
3. Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me and Other Concerns by Mindy Kaling: The title is what got me with this one. As a long-sufferer of FoMO, I was drawn to this book as soon as I heard what it was called. This one was a bit different from Bossypants or Yes Please in tone and subject matter, but just as fun to read. My favourite parts were Kaling’s recollections about her early career and discussions about writing.
4. Creativity, Inc. by Ed Catmull and Amy Wallace: This one I picked up on a whim. I’m a big fan of Pixar movies, so I thought I’d give it a go. While a lot of it leans towards advice for managing a company, there are a lot of good stories about what went on behind the scenes at Pixar during film production that I found fascinating. Also, he provided a lot of insight into what makes a good story that I think is worthwhile for any writer to consider.
5. Home is Burning by Dan Marshall: I had to chance to read this because Macmillan gave out advanced reader copies at Book Expo America. It’s about a family’s struggle with ALS and Cancer. The subject matter is pretty bleak, yet Dan Marshall manages to retell everything in a funny manner. If you need more info than this, check out my full review.
6. A Girl in the Woods by Apen Matis: again, I received an ARC for this one and man, am I glad I did. It is the story of a young woman who hikes the Pacific Crest Trail trail after having been raped. It’s a great transformation story that speaks volumes about family dynamics, overcoming trauma, and becoming independent. Definitely well written and relatable. (Again, I’ve already written a review on this one, check it out.)