Archive for the ‘Non-fiction’ Category.
This past year has seen some great music books being published. Like grunge? Want to learn more about the history of rock? We have you covered!
Entertainment Weekly named Fire and Rain: The Beatles, Simon & Garfunkel, James Taylor, CSNY, and the Lost Story of 1970 by David Browne a “Best New Summer Read.” Browne, an editor at Rolling Stone, covers one of the most interesting times in modern rock history.
Everybody Loves our Town: An Oral History of Grunge was written by Mark Yarm, formerly an editor at Blender. He conducted over 250 interviews to compile this gossipy look at the birth of grunge. Kirkus reviews called it ”one of the most essential rock books of recent years.”
A book that covers a more wide-ranging slice of music history is Rock and Roll Always Forgets: A Quarter Century of Music Criticism by Chuck Eddy. Eddy was the music editor at Village Voice, and also wrote for Rolling Stone, Spin, and other influential music magazines. Publisher’s Weekly says “Eddy’s far-reaching insights into rock music push the boundaries of the rock criticism, showing why he remains one of our most important music critics.”
Have you read any of these? Have any of your own favorite music books to add to the list?
Isn’t it hard to find something good to read? I thought I’d share some new books that have been getting a lot of buzz for fall. I’ve got something for everyone: fiction, non-fiction, and even a graphic novel.
For non-fiction lovers, we’ve been hearing great things about the “exceptional” and “masterfully written” Rin Tin Tin: The Life and the Legend by Susan Orlean. When I first heard about it, I didn’t have much interest in reading yet another dog story. But it’s an amazing history—Rin Tin Tin was only five days old when Lee Duncan rescued him from war-torn France during WWI and changed both their lives. Orlean proved what a skilled writer she is with her last book, the New York Times-bestseller The Orchid Thief. Read more about it here.
The Art of Fielding is Chad Harbach’s first book, and it’s been getting rave reviews. It’s an old-fashioned coming of age novel that has been compared to works by John Irving, Mark Twain, and Chaim Potok. Set at a small college in Wisconsin, it centers around baseball, but is about much more than that. The Paris Review called it, “a book about baseball in the way that Moby-Dick is a book about whaling—it is and it isn’t.” Read more about it here.
Finally, there’s our graphic novel, Habibi by Craig Thompson. His last book, Blankets, also a graphic novel, won a lot of awards and got great reviews, but didn’t seem to be too widely read. This new book seems to have much broader appeal, and has been on a lot of top fall book lists. It is a love story, set in the Middle East, against the harsh background of human trafficking and child slavery. Library Journal said “exquisite beauty and deep magic of this Arabian Nights-style love story cannot be overstated. “ Read more about it here.
These are so new I actually haven’t had a chance to read them yet— if you try one out, please leave a comment and let us know what you think!
My Year with Eleanor
Noelle Hancock has just lost her job and her 30th birthday is looming. Unable to find another job, and at a loss as to what to do, she finds inspiration in an Eleanor Roosevelt quotation written on a coffee shop blackboard. “Do one thing every day that scares you.”
In this warm and funny memoir, Noelle Hancock recounts her yearlong attempt to do just that. Some of the things she chooses are huge in scale—skydiving, climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro, shark diving in a cage—and some are small (but big to her) going out without makeup and confronting old boyfriends about what went wrong. Interspersed throughout the book are passages from Eleanor Roosevelt’s writings recounting how she learned to overcome fear and adversity. Using Eleanor as her mentor, Noelle‘s yearlong efforts help her understand that facing her fears is about facing life.
Did you ever want to write your story? Every person has an individual, compelling story that’s unique to them and shaped them into who they are. Even lives that may seem commonplace to whoever lived them are interesting snapshots of a time and place that is foreign to many others. Many people want to save those stories for not only themselves but for their children and generations to come. But getting those moods, events, and times down on paper can be extremely challenging and intimidating.
Marion Roach Smith is a local author and teacher who specializes in memoir writing. She teaches classes, has a great blog, AND a wonderful new book out all about getting started and getting inspiration for writing your memoir. Continue reading ‘Memoir Writing’ »