10 Favorite New Nonfiction Releases of 2020, So Far

Not to sound like a cliched ancient person, but even given the surreal circumstances, this year is positively flying by, isn't it? I can't even fathom that we've already made it halfway. And yet we have! These are my favorite new releases of the nonfiction published between January and June 2020. What's been your favorite... Continue Reading →

Art History Detective Story Uncovers Snapshots from the Life of Dora Maar, the “Weeping Woman”

Finding Dora Maar, by Brigitte Benkemoun, translated from French by Jody Gladding (Amazon / Book Depository) Author Brigitte Benkemoun's husband lost his Hermes agenda so she bought him a vintage replacement on eBay. When it arrived, she noticed that its old pages were intact. They dated back to 1951, an address book filled with a... Continue Reading →

Two Narrative Nonfiction Mini-Reviews

I love narrative nonfiction, and in discussing this genre, two titles that inevitably come up as outstanding examples of nonfiction perfectly crafted into a narrative structure are Five Days at Memorial and In the Kingdom of Ice. Let's talk about them! Five Days at Memorial: Life and Death in a Storm-Ravaged Hospital by Sheri Fink  Physician and... Continue Reading →

Meditations and Musings on Walking

Walking: One Step at a Time, by Erling Kagge, translated from Norwegian by Becky L. Crook (Amazon/ Book Depository) I've been on short walks; I've been on long walks. I've walked from villages and to cities. I've walked through the day and through the night, from lovers and to friends. I have walked in deep forests and... Continue Reading →

Curzio Malaparte in Paris

Diary of a Foreigner in Paris, by Curzio Malaparte (Amazon / Book Depository) Italian war correspondent and author Curzio Malaparte is such an oddball figure. I really enjoyed his book Kaputt, about his experiences as a war correspondent in Eastern Europe during the Second World War, but I remember being unsure what was fiction and... Continue Reading →

In the Dictators’ Kitchens

How to Feed a Dictator, by Witold Szabłowski, translated by Antonia Lloyd-Jones (Amazon / Book Depository) Polish journalist Witold Szabłowski saw a movie about army cooks that featured Branko Trbovic, the personal cook to Marshal Josip Broz Tito, "the absolute ruler of Yugoslavia" and describes it as being a lightbulb moment: "I started wondering what... Continue Reading →

Looking Back and Ahead From the Age of Resistance

Biography of Resistance: The Epic Battle Between People and Pathogens, by Muhammad H. Zaman, PhD (Amazon / Book Depository) Muhammad H. Zaman is a researcher and professor of biomedical engineering and international health at Boston University. In Biography of Resistance he traces the evolution of superbugs, namely how strains of bacteria have become resistant to... Continue Reading →

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