Do You Recommend Any of These Nonfiction Books? #NonFicReads18

This year, I’m participating in the Nonfiction Reading Challenge hosted by Katie at Doing Dewey. For Katie’s introductory post with links to the other participants click HERE.

The flexibility of this challenge—that I set my own goals—makes it easier for me to commit to it.

My goal is to read at least one nonfiction book each month. I’m pretty sure I can manage that, despite already knowing my reading time is limited this year.

These are the nonfiction books at the top of my TBR list right now. Have you read any of them?

  • Radium Girls: The Dark Story of America’s Shining Women by Kate Moore
  • My Beloved World by Sonia Sotomayor
  • She’s Not There: A Life in Two Genders by Jennifer Finney Boylan
  • The Social Life of Books by Abigail Williams
  • Janesville: An American Story by Amy Goldstein
  • I Contain Multitudes: The Microbes Within Us & a Grander View of Life by Ed Yong
  • Stamped from the Beginning: The Definitive History of Racist Ideas in America by Ibram X. Kendi
  • Negroland: A Memoir by Margo Jefferson
  • Bunk: The Rise of Hoaxes, Humbug, Plagiarists, Phones, Post-Facts, and Fake News by Kevin Young
  • The Invisible History of the Human Race: How DNA and History Shape Our Identities and Our Futures by Christine Kenneally
  • The Gene: An Intimate History by Siddhartha Mukherjee
  • The Only Woman in the Room: Why Science is Still a Boys’ Club by Ellen Pollack
  • Darwin’s Ghosts: The Secret History of Evolution by Rebecca Stott
  • My Life with Bob: Flawed Heroine Keeps Book of Books, Plot Ensues by Pamela Paul
  • Code Girls: The Untold Story of the American Women Code Breakers of World War II by Liza Mundy



  1. I’ve only read Code Girls from your list but I thought it was excellent. One of my favorites from last year. Janesville, Negroland, My Life with Bob, Radium Girls and Bunk are all on my reading list too. Hope you’ve read some good ones so far this year!

  2. I’ve read I Contain Multitudes and really liked it. I’ve heard Bunk is pretty good. I’ve got Radium Girls on my to-read list. I heard a review of it on public radio and it sounds super interesting!

  3. The only one I’ve read is I Contain Multitudes, which I listened to and loved.
    The Gene is one I am keeping an eye on to listen to as well.
    And I know you have this list made up, but I have to recommend Lab Girl, which fits in your theme of science and women.
    Last year I made a concerted effort to read nonfiction, and I had a great year of reading NF.

  4. This is a great list! I wish you the best with your goal. I would like to read Radium Girls and Code Girls –maybe this year. We’ll see. I hope you have a great reading year!

  5. As I have told other, I’ve seen a play version of Radium Girls that was great. I was also interested in Negroland after I heard an interview with the author in NPR. I never picked the book up, though, because I’m familiar with the concepts she describes and aim to read more about aspects of culture I don’t know, which is why I read the autobiography of a female member of the Black Panther Party last fall.

    1. I had no idea there was a play version of Radium Girls. I would love to see that. Radium Girls is next on my reading list (when I finally take a break from all the level 1 and 2 chapter books I’m reading to my 1st grader at the moment).

      *Just edited it because I wrote “Radio Girls”! Ha!

  6. I have not read any of these yet! That said, I Contain Multitudes and The Gene are very high up on my list, and I received The Social Life of DNA for Christmas (not on your list but similar topic). After reading The History of White People last year (which I recommend), I want to read more about how our modern understanding of DNA fits into all this.

    However all the new books will be waiting a bit as I’m still trying to power through some of my backlist books left unread last year, and of course library books that are due (or overdue).

  7. Oh, I wish I could recommend one of these, but I haven’t read any of them. I do have I Contain Multitudes and Stamped from the Beginning on my list. I know about the Radium Girls from The Poisoner’s Handbook, and it is quite a fascinating story, and with all the good reviews the book has received, I’m sure you can’t go wrong with it.

    1. Thanks for your input! I’m looking forward to reading all three of those books. I think Radium Girls will be my next read (I’ve started My Beloved World).

    1. Radium Girls sounds fascinating. I’m glad you recommend it. I think it will be the second nonfiction book of the year for me (I’ve started Sotomayor’s My Beloved World).

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