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Book Club, Narrative Nonfiction

Consider this your invitation to read and discuss Narrative Nonfiction. We will not be reading cookbooks (though there may be a recipe or two.) No self-improvement books, (though you may find yourself changed for the better.) We will be reading across the genres of nonfiction, from history to adventure, memoir/biography and beyond. Please join us. We meet on the first Thursday of the month at 10:00AM in the Hermann Foundation Meeting Room. Pick up a copy of the next book at the reference desk.

October 2, 2014
Trapped Under the Sea: one engineering marvel, five men, and a disaster ten miles into the darkness By Neil Swidey
“The harrowing story of five men who were sent into a dark, airless, miles-long tunnel hundreds of feet below the ocean to do a nearly impossible job -- with deadly results. Neil Swidey takes us deep into the lives of the divers, engineers, politicians, lawyers and investigators involved in the tragedy and its aftermath, creating a taut, action-packed narrative.” Set in Boston in the 1990s.

November 6, 2014
Hungry Ocean: a swordboat captain's journey by Linda Greenlaw
"Greenlaw’s account of a monthlong swordfishing trip over 1,000 nautical miles out to sea, tells the story of what happens when things go right – proving, in the process, that every successful voyage is a study in narrowly averted disaster.”

December 4, 2014
Sacco and Vanzetti: the men, the murders, and the judgement of mankind by Bruce Watson
"Opening with an explosion that rocks a quiet Washington, D.C. neighborhood and concluding with worldwide outrage as two men are executed despite widespread doubts about their guilt, Sacco & Vanzetti is the definitive history of an infamous case that still haunts the American imagination."

January 8, 2015
The Professor and the Madman: a tale of murder, insanity and the making of the Oxford English Dictionary by Simon Winchester
"The Professor and the Madman, masterfully researched and eloquently written, is an extraordinary tale of madness, genius and the incredible obsessions of two remarkable men that lead to the making of the Oxford English Dictionary – and literary history."

February 5, 2015
For All the Tea in China: how England stole the world's favorite drink and changed history by Sarah Rose
"In 1848 the British East India Company, having lost its monopoly on the tea trade, engaged Robert Fortune, a Scottish gardener, botanist, and plant hunter, to make a clandestine trip to the interior of China -- territory forbidden to foreigners – to steal the closely guarded secrets of tea horticulture and manufacturing."

March 5, 2015
Full Body Burden: growing up in the nuclear shadow of Rocky Flats by Kristen Iversen
As this memoir unfolds, it reveals itself as a brilliant work of investigative journalism – a detailed and shocking account of the government’s sustained attempt to conceal the effects of the toxic and radioactive waste released by Rocky Flats and of local residents vain attempts to seek justice."

Past titles read with the Narrative Non-Fiction Book Group. Updated 3/8/2104