Nonfiction Friday badge from doing dewey decimal dot com

Nonfiction To Win Over Book Club Readers @MassBook

Looking to add some nonfiction to your book club’s reading list? Try one of these Massachusetts Book Award honorees – narrative nonfiction titles selected for their literary quality and discussablity in libraries and book groups.

They’re all either written by Massachusetts authors and/or have a connection to Massachusetts, but take a look and you’ll see that the subjects of these books are wide-ranging and of broad interest. The first-place winner, The Sixth Extinction, also won the Pulitzer Prize.

In other words, you don’t have to be from the Bay State to enjoy reading these award-winning nonfiction titles with your book club!

Massachusetts Book Award 2015 Nonfiction
2015_winnerThe Sixth Extinction by Elizabeth Kolbert  (Holt)cover image of The Sixth Extinction

Over the last half-billion years, there have been five mass extinctions, when the diversity of life on earth suddenly and dramatically contracted. Scientists around the world are currently monitoring the sixth extinction, predicted to be the most devastating extinction event since the asteroid impact that wiped out the dinosaurs. This time around, the cataclysm is us. In prose that is at once frank, entertaining, and deeply informed, New Yorker writer Elizabeth Kolbert tells us why and how human beings have altered life on the planet in a way no species has before.  – from the publisher

The Court-Martial of Paul Revere by Michael M. Greenburg (ForeEdge)

cover imageThe single event defining [Paul] Revere to this day is his ride from Charlestown to Lexington on the night of April 18, 1775, made famous by Longfellow’s poem of 1860. Greenburg’s is the first book to give a full account of Revere’s conduct before, during, and after the disastrous Penobscot Expedition, and of his questionable reputation at the time, which only Longfellow’s poem eighty years later could rehabilitate. Thanks to extensive research and a riveting narrative that brings the battles and courtroom drama to life, The Court-Martial of Paul Revere strips away the myths that surround the Sons of Liberty and reveals the humanity beneath. – from the publisher

John Quincy Adams by Fred Kaplan (Harper)

cover imageIn this fresh and lively biography rich in literary analysis and new historical detail, Fred Kaplan brings into focus the dramatic life of John Quincy Adams — the little known and much misunderstood sixth president of the United States and the first son of John and Abigail Adams — and persuasively demonstrates how Adams’s inspiring, progressive vision guided his life and helped shape the course of America. – from the publisher

The Map Thief by Michael Blanding  (Gotham Books)

Once considered a respectable cover imageantiquarian map dealer, E. Forbes Smiley spent years doubling as a map thief — until he was finally arrested slipping maps out of books in the Yale University library. The Map Thief delves into the untold history of this fascinating high-stakes criminal and the inside story of the industry that consumed him. – from the publisher

Other People’s Houses by Jennifer Taub  (Yale)

cover image of Other Peoples HousesIn the wake of the financial meltdown in 2008, many claimed that it had been inevitable, that no one saw it coming, and that subprime borrowers were to blame. This accessible, thoroughly researched book is Jennifer Taub’s response to such unfounded claims…. Taub chronicles how government officials helped bankers inflate the toxic-mortgage-backed housing bubble, then after the bubble burst ignored the plight of millions of homeowners suddenly facing foreclosure. – from the publisher

The Race Underground by Doug Most (St Martin’s)

cover image of The Race UndergroundDoug Most chronicles the science of the subway, looks at the centuries of fears people overcame about traveling underground and tells a story as exciting as any ever ripped from the pages of U.S. history. The Race Underground is a great American saga of two rival American cities, their rich, powerful and sometimes corrupt interests, and an invention that changed the lives of millions. – from the publisher

Bringing writers and readers together in libraries for meaningful conversation about books that matter to our shared lives in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.

Massachusetts Center for the Book

Massachusetts Book Awards


The Massachusetts Book Awards is a program of Massachusetts Libraries administered by the Massachusetts Center for the Book. Find out more about your state’s Center for the Book here (USA).


Nonfiction Friday badge from doing dewey decimal dot comThis post is linked up to Doing Dewey’s Nonfiction Friday post. Check out other nonfiction-related content from Katie and other book bloggers there.

 

10 thoughts on “Nonfiction To Win Over Book Club Readers @MassBook”

  1. I’ve had my eye on The Map Thief for quite some time – I find maps, and their evolution, fascinating. I live in a small town in Scotland and can’t get a book group together, but I like the idea of an occasional post, “Non-Fiction Friday” – it’d only be occasional as it takes so long to read them! I did a post on my Top Ten Favourite Non-Fiction Books (https://crimeworm.WordPress.com/2015/03/12/top-ten/ ) in case you’d like to see some of my favourites ever – in fact, it’s probably time for another Top Ten!

    1. I’m not into maps at all; it’s the library theft that intrigues me more in The Map Thief. I don’t read a lot of nonfiction either, but always think I should read more. I’ll check out your Top Ten list!

  2. Thanks for stopping by my blog Laurie. I have been reading some of your posts. Your blog is very impressive.

    These books also look to be worthy reads.

    I have been wanting to read The Sixth Extinction. However it might be a little too disturbing.

    1. Thanks! I agree that The Sixth Extinction would be disturbing! That’s the same reason I never read Salt Sugar Fat: How the Food Giants Hooked Us by Michael Moss!

    1. I used to think nonfiction was harder to discuss than fiction, but since then, I’ve also had some great book club discussions on nonfiction. I haven’t read Stiff yet, but it’s been on my list for a while now!

Would love to have you comment!