Wednesday Weekly Blogging Challenge: Favorite Nonfiction Authors

Hosted by Long and Short Reviews.

There’s something about summer that makes me want to read nonfiction. I still read science fiction, fantasy, and similar genres, but I really enjoy learning about things that really happened.

Here are several of my favourite nonfiction authors. How many of them have you all read?

Barack Obama.

Example: Dreams From My Father.

Why I liked it: President Obama had an interesting childhood for more reasons than I should put into a single blog post. To mention just one of them, I would have been hurt if my father had played such a small role in my daily life when I was growing up. I was impressed by how understanding he was about the role his father did play in his life.

Stephen Hawking.

Example: A Brief History of Time.

Why I liked it: Physics is one of those topics I have a hard time wrapping my mind around but still enjoy reading about quite a bit. Please don’t ask me to give you a full explanation of why time doesn’t always move consistently (especially when those pesky black holes get involved), but I did always enjoy hearing his thoughts on this topic when he was still alive.

Barbara Ehrenreich

Example: Nickle and Dimed: on (Not) Getting By in America

Why I liked it: Ms. Ehrenreich has a conversational writing style that works well for her investigative approach to nonfiction, social justice, and social class. I’m also impressed by the fact that she’s spent so much time literally walking in other people’s shoes while researching her books.

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

Example: We Should All Be Feminists

Why I liked it: The older I get, the stronger my preferences becomes for writers who know how to get to the point as succinctly as possible. Not only does Ms. Adichie do this, she manages to pack a lot of important information into the things she writes without simplifying it too much. I also appreciate her inclusive approach to social justice. It’s so much more effective to call people in to caring about injustice than it is to call them out for not using exactly the right term(s) while trying to make the world a better place.

Stephen Colbert

Photo credit: Montclair Film.

Example: I Am America (and so Can You!) 

Why I liked it: Satire is such an underrated form of comedy, especially when it’s done well. I adore Mr. Colbert’s tongue-in-cheek approach to everything, especially once I learned that he apparently teaches Sunday School in real life and allegedly has been banned from acting like the persona he plays on television when he’s at home relaxing with his wife. Seriously, how funny is that? She must be such a patient woman.

Michael Pollan

Example: In Defence of Food: An Eater’s Manifesto

Why I liked it: I always appreciate Mr. Polland’s simple and intuitive approach to eating. No food or food group is forbidden. Instead, we’re all encouraged as much as is possible to eat the sorts of unpackaged ingredients that our ancestors would have recognized.

That is, roast a whole potato instead of eating french fries. Pack an apple instead of an apple-flavoured fruit rollup.  The closer something is to the way it was when it was still growing in the field, swimming in a pool of water, or running around in a pen, the better it is for you in the majority of cases.

This is the sort of healthy eating that really speaks to me. I’m always excited to see what he’s written next.

Click here to read everyone else’s replies to this week’s question. The image below is the list of upcoming prompts for this blog hop.

18 Responses to Wednesday Weekly Blogging Challenge: Favorite Nonfiction Authors

  1. Trust you to pick an unexpected genre! I don’t read a lot of non-fiction myself, and when I do it’s mostly history (or instruction manuals for one sort of software or another, but I’m not sure that counts). These all look like really interesting choices, though.

    My list is here.

  2. I have Dreams From My Father and I Am America (And So Can You) on my TBR, and am looking forward to reading them. (I have the audiobook of Obama’s book, with him as the narrator. I just haven’t been in the right mindset to listen to it yet.) I enjoyed Hawking’s Brief History of Time, and found it really fascinating. I also love Neil de Grasse Tyson’s books on astrophysics, and loved listening to Michelle Obama’s Becoming.

  3. The only one’s work I’ve read is Adichie, but I really enjoyed her style. I likely will read something by Hawkins at some point, but I haven’t yet. I’m in the process of reviewing it, but I would recommend reading Amber Tamblyn’s Era of Ignition. She can be rather wordy, but it was a really impactful book.

  4. I don’t know why I keep putting off reading Barack Obama’s book. I will read it, eventually. I won’t understand Hawking’s book, unfortunately.

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