Whilst many people love reading fiction books, in this months discussion post I want to find out if you read non-fiction and if so what kinds of non-fiction do you read?
In most of my reading, especially growing up, I usually stuck to fiction books unless I had to read them as part of my school or college work although these were mainly text books and how to manuals when I started out in IT.
When I first started reading non-fiction I remember my motivation was coming across an article interviewing successful people such as Warren Buffet, Bill Gates and Elon Musk who state reading is a big part of their day and reading educational books though most of the early books I did read that were non-fiction I struggled with, probably due to how they were presented or they had a lot of dense information which made it hard to follow.
For example I have always been interested in Stonehenge so picked up a book in the library about it but honestly it was terrible, going on about changes to the A303 and road layout next to Stonehenge which was just plain boring.
I also have read some autobiographies such as Testament of Youth by Vera Brittain which I reviewed here which though I enjoyed it due to when it was written I found some parts quite hard to follow.
Another thing which put me off autobiographies is there were so many from “celebrities” in the UK who have written autobiographies such as Gemma Collins, Cheryl Cole and Joey Essex, Katie Price which just made a bit of a mockery of the genre for me. I mean, Katie Price is only 43 years old but has written six, yes six autobiographies, with a seventh apparently in the works – I mean she already sells her life daily to the tabloids and had at one stage a fly-on-the-wall documentary so I really don’t know what’s left for her to write about really.
I would say however 2021 was a turning point as I read two autobiographies which I loved and has hopefully opened the door into me reading some more.
The first was Tomorrow Will Be A Good Day by Sir Captain Tom Moore. I read it shortly after the news broke he had passed away last year and of course his fundraising in the first lockdown was a real shining light during that terrible time. I do plan to read it again and write a proper review but it was a fantastic read and I remember crying tears of joy and happiness throughout the book and feeling incredibly sad when I reached the end of the book.
The second autobiography I read was In Order To Live by Yeonmi Park. This books was in some ways a big contrast to Sir Captain Tom Moore’s – most notably Captain Tom was 100 years old and his book covered a century of history whereas Yeonmi is only two years older than myself being born in 1993. However her book told an incredible story as she defected from North Korea, lived as an illegal immigrant in China at the time of the Beijing Olympics in 2008, when China was sending North Korean migrants back home and how she trekked across the Gobi Desert to get to Mongolia before explaining how she made it to South Korea and how she adjusted to life there. The book is incredibly hopeful and inspiring whilst also raising an important issue about a part of the world which is sadly often forgotten about.
I guess from reading these two books it has reignited my interest in reading non-fiction books but maybe being more selective when it comes to autobiographies and maybe trying the odd educational book as well. Since restarting my book blog I have also learned a good technique for me is having more than one book on the go so I can dive and swap between them as I see fit.
Anyway I guess my short answer is yes I do read non-fiction and would like to read more so I would love to know if you do and what your favourite non-fiction books are? Let me know in the comments down below.