Staff Nonfiction Favorites

A rotating selection of some of our staff's favorite titles. New reviews added quarterly.

Author Billee Sharp shares her freecycling, budget-savvy, barter-better wisdom in this step-by-step handbook for revolutionizing spending habits and reclaiming quality in life. This book is loaded with fab recipes and environmentally friendly tips for people seeking a greener and more sustainable lifestyle. It's so useful!
Reviewed by: 
Tracy
Lemons and Lavender: The Eco Guide to Better Homekeeping Cover Image
By Billee Sharp, Anneli Rufus (Foreword by)
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ISBN: 9781936740109
Availability: Hard to Find
Published: Viva Editions - March 13th, 2012

Some people might look at Murakami's running habits and think of him as insane. Most writers (or ordinary people) don't run sixty-two miles in one day or run the original marathon course in Greece for fun. In this book, Murakami provides insight into his training along with its interaction with his other passion, writing.

Reviewed by: 
Cesar
What I Talk about When I Talk about Running: A Memoir (Vintage International) Cover Image
$15.00
ISBN: 9780307389831
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Vintage - August 11th, 2009

If you enjoy hiking, camping, trees, bears, granola bars, backpacking, lakes, or noodles you need to read this book. Bryson makes me want to call in sick for the next year, spending the time wandering the forest without having to worry about a schedule. Plus the writing is intelligent and hilarious. Anyone want to walk the John Muir Trail with me next month?

Reviewed by: 
Nate
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A Walk in the Woods: Rediscovering America on the Appalachian Trail (Official Guides to the Appalachian Trail) Cover Image
$15.99
ISBN: 9780767902526
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Broadway Books - May 4th, 1999

After being diagnosed with Asperger's Syndrom at age 30, Finch realizes that his social and personal difficulties are tied to the particular way his brain functions. He creates a list on instructions to himself--his "Journal of Best Practices"--as a way to become the husband, father, and person he wants to be. This compulsivly honest memoir shows the difficulties he faced, his family's frustrations, and the strengths his approach provided. His insights on his illness and on life in general are presented in a quirky, often hilarious narration.

Reviewed by: 
Nici
The Journal of Best Practices: A Memoir of Marriage, Asperger Syndrome, and One Man's Quest to Be a Better Husband Cover Image
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ISBN: 9781439189719
Availability: Hard to Find
Published: Scribner Book Company - January 3rd, 2012

I'm not usually a fan of "self-empowerment" books, but this one certainly has the strength of science behind it. Duhigg presents a fascinating break down of just how habits are formed and what you can do to change them. With lots of supporting materials, interesting annecdotal evidence, and a "Reader's Guide to Using These Ideas" this book can help you overcome a habit, or better understand yourself.

Reviewed by: 
Nici
The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business Cover Image
$28.00
ISBN: 9781400069286
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Random House - February 28th, 2012

Self-proclaimed "whore to hear his own voice" Kevin Smith (known formerly as Silent Bob) reads aloud his newest memoir Tough Sh*t. Not only does Smith give a riotous outline of his own life but he also gradually gives advice based on his own successful experiences. Smith has a particularly funny and poignant perspective on life. I've loved listening to this!

Reviewed by: 
Tracy
Tough Sh*t: Life Advice from a Fat, Lazy Slob Who Did Good Cover Image
By Kevin Smith, Kevin Smith (Read by)
$29.95
ISBN: 9781611760613
Availability: Special Order - Subject to Availability
Published: Penguin Audiobooks - March 1st, 2012

As someone who shares the same love, I fell easily into this all too common tale of the high-functioning alcoholic. The honesty with which Knapp writes is refreshingly undramatic. There are a lot of gritty rock-bottom memoirs out there, but Drinking manages to have the soul baring quality of a best friend’s confidence without the gut wrenching cringe factor.

Reviewed by: 
Kimberly
Drinking: A Love Story Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9780385315548
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Dial Press - August 30th, 2005

There are so many reasons to start running, but saying that it’s easy really isn’t one of them. Sure, all you need is a good pair of shoes and a solid surface…but if you are just starting out—stepping out the door can be the hardest part. The basis of this book is a generous 13-week plan, which is a fabulous way to physically ease your body to running. The rest is pure mental motivation.

Reviewed by: 
Kimberly
The Beginning Runner's Handbook: The Proven 13-Week Runwalk Program Cover Image
$18.95
ISBN: 9781553658603
Availability: Backordered
Published: Greystone Books - March 27th, 2012

Susie Bright has the kind of life that memoirs were invented for—and finally she has written one! Chock full of “did-that-really-happen” moments and the fiercely intelligent and empathetic insight that she is known for, Big Sex Little Death is not to be skipped. Perfect for book group or class discussions

Reviewed by: 
Kat
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Big Sex Little Death Cover Image
$17.00
ISBN: 9781580053938
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Seal Press (CA) - April 24th, 2012

Even though some of these rules are largely ignored in modern American English, this is a valuable guide to avoiding common mistakes. It covers the basics - "your tool" / "you're a tool!" - before moving on to more general refinements of style. My favorite bit of advice: "Do not dress words up by adding -ly to them, as though putting a hat on a horse."

Reviewed by: 
Andrea
The Elements of Style Cover Image
$18.00
ISBN: 9780143112723
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Penguin Books - September 1st, 2007

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