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"I need a non-fiction book"
Fascinating Books About Things You Didn't Know Were Fascinating
Would you willingly read a whole book about corn? Probably not, but have you heard of Michael Pollan's The Omnivores Dilemma? Probably. These books give you an in-depth look at topics you never thought to glance at.
Garbage Land by
Call Number: 363.7285 ROYTE 2006
Science writer Royte leads us on the wild adventure that begins once our trash hits the bottom of the can. Along the way, we meet an odor chemist who explains why trash smells so bad; garbage fairies and recycling gurus; neighbors of massive waste dumps; CEOs making fortunes by encouraging waste or encouraging recycling--often both at the same time; scientists trying to revive our most polluted places; fertilizer fanatics and adventurers who kayak amid sewage; and even a guy who swears by recycling human waste.
A Planet of Viruses by
Call Number: 362.1969 ZIMMER 2011
Did you know that jackalopes are real, and their horns are caused by viruses? Read on and be amazed.
Uncommon Grounds: the history of coffee and how it transformed our world by
Call Number: 338.1737 PENDERG 2010
"The definitive history of coffee - from its discovery on an Ethiopian mountainside to the age of Starbucks and the coffee crisis of the twenty-first century. Replete with a cast of eccentric characters-all of them suffused with a passion for the golden bean-Uncommon Grounds is nothing less than a coffee-flavored history of the world"
Being Wrong by
Call Number: 121.6 SCHULZ 2010
To err is human. Yet most of us go through life assuming (and sometimes insisting) that we are right about nearly everything, from the origins of the universe to how to load the dishwasher. If being wrong is so natural, why are we all so bad at imagining that our beliefs could be mistaken? Journalist Kathryn Schulz explores why we find it so gratifying to be right and so maddening to be wrong.
1 page essays
Short attention span? Like TED talks? These collections feature short conversational essays. Read one in 15 minutes or less.
Everyday Greatness by
Call Number: 170.44 COVEY 2006
A collection of stories originally published in Reader's Digest, about individuals overcoming adversity.
This I Believe by
Call Number: 170.44 THIS I 2006
Based on the National Public Radio series, This I Believe features eighty essays from well known figures such as Bill Gates, as well as from ordinary people with stories to tell.
You Did What? : mad plans and great historical disasters by
Call Number: 904 YOU DID 2004
Publication Date: 2004
Each short chapter covers a horrifically bad decision made by the rich and powerful and dim-witted. Learn such lessons as:
1. Never trust Greeks bearing gifts of large wooden horses.
2. Avoid building elementary schools on toxic waste dumps.
3. Even if you use brightly colored paint on the boats, it's quite easy to misplace an entire country's navy.
You never knew history was this humorous!
Short or easy to read books on topics of general interest.
Call Number: 326.0973 KROMER
A story exciting enough to be a movie, told in short 3 page chapters. 98 pages
The Conundrum by
Call Number: 628 OWEN 2012
A pocket sized book with short chapters (some only 3 pages long) describing how the steps we take to "live green" can sometimes have unintended consequences.
Living Alone and Loving It by
Call Number: 646.7008 FELDON 2003
A short guide to making your time between relationships the best time of your life.
Who Moved My Cheese? by
Call Number: 155.24 JOHNSON 2002
An easy to read parable about dealing with change in the workplace. 94 pages.
The Glass Ceiling by
Call Number: 331.4133 Weiss 1999
A conversational look at the difficulties women face in the workplace and how to overcome them.
5 Survivors by
Call Number: 616.8521 STECKER 2011
Three veterans, a Hurricane Katrina survivor, and a survivor of childhood sexual abuse tell their stories of recovery in their own words. Gripping and easy to read.
My Inventions by
Call Number: 621.3092 TESLA 1982
The autobiography of Nikola Telsa, who immigrated to the US to work for Thomas Edison, and then earned fame on his own as a pioneer of electricity. Conversational and short.
Eat That Frog! by
Call Number: 640.43 TRACY 2007
A quick, readable book on time management.