Since I talked about Victorian literature on my TBR for Victober, I figured I should do the same for Nonfiction November. I used a random number generator and picked six nonfiction books that were closest to those numbers.
Twice Upon a Time: Women Writers and the History of the Fairy Tale by Elizabeth Wanning Harries
As you may be able to guess based on my Fairy Tale Friday feature, I’m very much into fairy tales. And I’m particularly interested in women writers and fairy tales. I’m hoping to write my dissertation on how 18th- and 19th-century women writers incorporated fairy tale motifs into their novels. So Twice Upon a Time seems like it’s right up my alley. I haven’t had the chance to get a copy, but hopefully I will soon.
The Reading Cure: How Books Restored My Appetite by Laura Freeman
I came across The Reading Cure when I was researching topics for the final paper in my course on autobiography and memoir last semester. I was thinking about focusing on eating disorder memoirs. I ultimately decided not to, but as a booklover who has an eating disorder, I still want to read this. Unfortunately, I couldn’t find a copy anywhere (part of why I chose a different topic). That’s probably a good thing since I’m currently struggling with my disorder and it would likely be triggering. But I hope to find a copy and read it once I’m doing better.
House of Dreams: The Life of L. M. Montgomery by Liz Rosenberg, illustrated by Julie Morstad
Okay, look at that gorgeous cover and tell me how anyone could not want to read this book? As soon as I saw House of Dreams, I knew I wanted to read it. I adored Anne of Green Gables as a kid and enjoyed reading through the whole series for the first time in 2018. I don’t know much about L. M. Montgomery, and reading a beautifully illustrated MG biography seems like a good way to learn about it. If I ever happen across this in a bookstore, I will certainly be buying it.
The Witches: Salem, 1692 by Stacy Schiff
The main reason that I want to read The Witches is that I have very close ties to the Salem Witch Trials. I’m descended from Edmund Towne, who was the brother of Rebecca Nurse, Mary Esty, and Sarah Cloyce, all three of whom were accused of witchcraft and two of whom were executed. I grew up just down the road from Salem and Danvers (which used to be Salem Village). It’s kind of cool to have blood ties with such a famous historical event (even though it’s a tragic one), and I always enjoy learning more about it. I’ve also heard really great things about this book.
The Romanov Sisters: The Lost Lives of the Daughters of Nicholas and Alexandra by Helen Rappaport
During elementary school, I was absolutely obsessed with the Romanov family. It started with the animated movie Anastasia and was continued by the school librarian showing me the picture book Anastasia’s Album. Soon I was getting full-on histories on the family out of the library. I think the librarians thought I was kind of a weird kid…But anyway, I still find the Romanov story fascinating, so I’d love to pick up The Romanov Sisters at some point. It’s another one that I’ve heard excellent things about.
Romantic Outlaws: The Extraordinary Lives of Mary Wollstonecraft and Her Daughter Mary Shelley by Charlotte Gordon
Since I’m interested in 18th- and 19th-century women writers, it’s kind of natural that I would want to read a biography of Mary Wollstonecraft and Mary Shelley. I actually don’t know a whole lot about either of them and I’d love to learn more. Hence why I want to read Romantic Outlaws. I’ve had it on my Christmas and birthday list since it came out in 2015 and I still haven’t gotten it. Maybe this year…