DCPLive is a blog by library staff at the DeKalb County Public Library!
Jan 3 2019

Staff Picks: Favorite Nonfiction from 2018

by David R

Picking up where I left off yesterday, here are 10 of my favorite nonfiction reads from the last year. Click here for the entire list, or click on the individual covers and titles below to be taken to their records in our catalog.

Look Alive Out There by Sloane Crosley

Sloane Crosley is often referred to as the female David Sedaris, and all of these essays are top notch. The writing is a perfect mix of hilarious and heartfelt. Fans of Nora Ephron should absolutely read this collection.

She Caused a Riot: 100 Unknown Women Who Built Cities, Sparked Revolutions, and Massively Crushed It by Hannah Jewell

An empowering look into the epic adventures and dangerous exploits of 100 women. The entries are both funny and informational. You’ll learn something new on every page.

What If This Were Enough? by Heather Havrilesky

This essay collection from the writer of the popular “Ask Polly” advice column examines the contradictions of middle-class American life with insight, humor, and terrific prose.

Good and Mad: The Revolutionary Power of Women’s Anger by Rebecca Traister

An incisive exploration into the transformative power of female anger. Rebecca Traister does an incredible job taking this still unfolding history and turning it into a narrative.

Ghosts in the Schoolyard: Racism and School Closings in Chicago’s South Side by Eve Ewing

Eve Ewing knows Chicago schools. She was a student and teacher in them, and is now a scholar who studies them. This fascinating history of the Chicago Public School System is framed around the 2013 announcement of an unprecedented number of school closings.

Educated by Tara Westover

Tara Westover’s memoir of escape from her survivalist father is thrilling from start to finish. She didn’t set foot in a classroom until she was 17 and now holds several advanced degrees. This memoir is truly inspiring.

Tonight I’m Someone Else by Chelsea Hodson

From an American Apparel model to a NASA employee, Hodson takes us through her work experiences in essays that look at the ways people connect to their work and to each other.

I’ll Be Gone in the Dark: One Woman’s Obsessive Search for the Golden State Killer by Michelle McNamara

Published posthumously, this account of the author’s research into the Golden State Killer is riveting from start to finish. Since the publication of the book, the serial killer has been caught and confessed.

All You Can Ever Know by Nicole Chung

Nicole Chung looks back at her life as a transracial adoptee and wrestles with the fact that the prepackaged myth her adoptive parents told her may not be the whole truth. Chung’s writing is beautiful and the story of finding your identity is engaging from the first page to the last.

Dead Girls: Essays on Surviving an American Obsession by Alice Bolin

In these essays, Bolin shows how women’s bodies are used as props to boost the stories of men. She analyzes, novels, movies, stories, and television programs that are obsessed with disenfranchised women. She ends the stunning collection by examining the injustices that real women suffer because of the portrayal of women in media.

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