Feed your curiosity with the best non-fiction books to read right now

From the work of an iconic writer to the exploration of a seminal decade in a person’s life, these fascinating non-fiction books will have you turning pages long after the lights are supposed to be out.

Let Me Tell You What I Mean
By Joan Didion
A collection of mostly early works, penned between 1968 and 2000 and brought together for the first time, this new compilation offers up a number of moments of journalistic gold from the American who launched her career in the 60s after winning an essay contest sponsored by Vogue magazine. Her writing in the 60s and 70s engaged audiences in the counter-culture of the Hollywood lifestyle.

The essays in this new book exemplify Didion’s unique foresightedness, which has seen topics she discussed in the last century still feel as prescient to today’s reader. (Alicia and The Underground Press addresses the inherent biases in mainstream media — particularly poignant in today’s landscape.)

Addressing a range of topics, from her admiration of Ernest Hemingway, to her rejection from Stanford University, this fascinating book paints an early picture of what would become Joan Didion’s iconic oeuvre. 

But You’re Still So Young: How Thirtysomethings Are Redefining Adulthood
By Kayleen Schaefer
Questioning why we measure adulthood by markers established 50 years ago, Kayleen Schaefer explores what being in your thirties means today. Through the stories of a number of thirty-somethings, Schaefer discusses the challenges that many face in their third decade, and underlines why it’s never as bad as it seems. 

The Panic Years
By Nell Frizzell
Renowned journalist Nell Frizzell delves into the period of a woman’s life when every decision she makes seems coloured by the underlying question of whether or not to have a baby. Refreshingly honest and deemed ‘vital reading’ for any millennial woman, this book is as informative as it is reassuring. 

A Swim in a Pond in the Rain
By George Saunders
In the pages of this new work by The New York Times best-selling and Booker Prize-winning author awaits a literary masterclass. Examining what makes great stories work and what they can tell us about ourselves, Saunders looks deeply at four iconic Russian writers, whose work he uses to explain great writing, its effect on the mind and how creating and consuming stories lies at the heart of how we all connect. 

Chatter: The Voice in Our Head, Why it Matters and How to Harness it
By Ethan Kross
Forcing us to think about how we talk to ourselves (hint: it is usually not very nice) award-winning psychologist Ethan Kross explores the hidden power of our inner voices, and how they can be harnessed for good. Meticulously researched, this compelling read will have you completely rethinking everything you say, even if it is all in your head. 

 

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