Category Archives: Non-Fiction

Horrible Histories: Vicious Vikings by Terry Deary

Horrible Histories: Vicious Vikings is a fun to read history of Vikings aimed at kids. It is light on facts and heavy on entertainment, but gets the basic information across. The Kindle version is a bit annoying since it just looks almost like scans of the pages of the book. Some of the writing is underneath pictures making it hard to read and the quizzes are difficult because you have to go back and forth between the pages to see the answers. It’s good enough for a kid interested in Vikings, but I’d recommend getting the paper version rather than buying it for the Kindle.

3 (out of 5) Stars

Books Read in 2017: 91(this book is not counted toward annual total)
Pages Read in 2017: 25,493
Read 52 Books in 52 Weeks (more book reviews!)
Reason I Chose It: Pre-reading for Fritz for Next School Year

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Princess by Jean Sasson

Princess is the true story of one of the many Saudi Arabian princesses growing up in the 50s, 60s, and 70s. It is a collection of stories, many of which illustrate the problems with being female in a male dominated society. It’s an interesting glimpse into a few years in the life of mostly wealthy Saudis. I recommend reading it.

4 (out of 5) Stars

Books Read in 2017: 91
Pages Read in 2017: 25,254
Read 52 Books in 52 Weeks (more book reviews!)
Reason I Chose It: Pre-reading for Cameron for Next School Year

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The Story of Western Science by Susan Wise Bauer

The Story of Western Science covers major science advancements and the people behind them in topical and then chronological order. Each is explained to make it easy for the layperson to understand. The chapters end with links to pertinent writings and books (sometimes down to the edition) to read for more information about the topic. It would be very easy to turn into a science course for a high school student or for personal enrichment. I highly recommend this book!

5 (out of 5) Stars

Books Read in 2017: 69
Pages Read in 2017: 20,355
Read 52 Books in 52 Weeks (more book reviews!)
Reason I Chose It: BAW Readalong

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Don’t Make Me Come Up There! by Kristen Welch

Don’t Make Me Come Up There! is a collection of 52 very, very short stories/devotionals for busy moms. Each ends with a (at least somewhat) related scripture and prayer. Written by popular mommy blogger Kristen Welch of We Are THAT Family, most of the stories are cute and relatable. The first couple dozen are much better than the rest. They got a little repetitive and sometimes the religious lesson was a bit of a stretch. It was good enough, but probably not worth paying full price for.

3 (out of 5) Stars

Books Read in 2017: 61
Pages Read in 2017: 17,962
Read 52 Books in 52 Weeks (more book reviews!)
Reason I Chose It: Birthstone Bookology (D in EMERALD)

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Filed under Humor, Non-Fiction

Economics Through Everyday Life by Anthony Clark

Economics Through Everyday Life presents a brief education in economics to regular people using terms and examples that are easy to understand. It strives to be non-partisan and there are certainly chapters that will annoy conservatives and other chapters that will annoy liberals. It covers topics such as the 2007-08 collapse (and the many things that contributed), Social Security, marijuana, and healthcare (and why the answers to solve those problems aren’t so easy and all options have pluses and minuses). You wouldn’t think a book on this topic could be fascinating, but it most definitely is. It took me a lot longer to read than it should have because I kept stopping to read bits to my husband and to discuss what the book said with him. Economics Through Everyday Life is a must-read for everyone.

5 (out of 5) Stars

Books Read in 2017: 59
Pages Read in 2017: 17,584
Read 52 Books in 52 Weeks (more book reviews!)
Reason I Chose It: Birthstone Bookology (E in EMERALD)

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Death in Yellowstone by Lee H. Whittlesey

Covering over 300 deaths since the 1800s, Death in Yellowstone ranges from drownings to bear maulings to burns in hot springs to murders to Native American attacks to poisonous plants to carbon monoxide to runaway coaches. Sometimes it’ll jump 100 years and then go back. Sometimes the information about what happened is sparse and sometimes it’s well documented. All of it adds up to one simple warning: Follow the rules and you will probably stay safe in that particular National Park. Climb over a barrier or try to take a picture with a bear and you may not come out alive.

3 (out of 5) Stars

Books Read in 2017: 55
Pages Read in 2017: 16,715
Read 52 Books in 52 Weeks (more book reviews!)
Reason I Chose It: Birthstone Bookology (D in DIAMOND)

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Upstairs at the White House by JB West

JB West worked as an assistant usher and then, later, as chief usher at the White House from 1941 until 1969. In Upstairs at the White House, he tells many amusing and interesting anecdotes about his time managing the residence and working closely with the first ladies. The book is split into sections about the Roosevelts, Trumans, Eisenhowers, Kennedys, Johnsons, and Nixons (though he only worked with Pat Nixon for about 6 weeks before he retired so that is a very short section). It’s well-written and told in a laid back, storytelling way. I highly recommend it to anyone interested in presidents.

5 (out of 5) Stars

Books Read in 2017: 33
Pages Read in 2017: 9600
Read 52 Books in 52 Weeks (more book reviews!)
Reason I Chose It: Birthstone Bookology (U in AQUAMARINE)

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