Hello my fellow bookworms, welcome to the second week of Nonfiction November 2020: a popular, yearly reading event, that celebrates and gets us discussing our non-fiction reading.🎉 The event is running across four weeks, with four topics and four hosts. For Week 2 (9th-13th November) we are being hosted by Julie @ Julz Reads and the topic is:
This week, pair up a nonfiction book with a fiction title. It can be a “If you loved this book, read this!” or just two titles that you think would go well together. Maybe it’s a historical novel and you’d like to get the real history by reading a nonfiction version of the story.
Here are three sets of book pairings I have made over my reading this year, where a fiction I have been reading has been enhanced by and/or brought alive the history I had read about in a earlier non-fiction read:
~ Fairies ~
📖 The Cottingley Secret by Hazel Gaynor – Over the summer, I read the delightful dual-narrative historical-fiction, The Cottingley Secret by new-to-me author, Hazel Gaynor. In which Gaynor takes us back, to reimagine the real life events that led up to two young girls, from Cottingley in Yorkshire, convincing the world that they had done the impossible and photographed fairies in 1917! Which put me in mind of…
📖 Believing In Fairies: A Manual for Grown Ups by Marcia Zina Mager – It has been many years since I read or even re-read this uniquely different non-fiction, which acts like a modern day instruction manual. Even after all this time though I still have vivid memories of this fun and thought-provoking book. Regardless of whether you want to believe or not, this can simply be enjoyed, like I did, as a celebration of the wondrous magic of nature.
~ Russian History ~
📖 The Firebird by Susanna Kearsley – Just last month, I read the supernatural historical-fiction, The Firebird, by one of my favourite authors, Susanna Kearsley. That swept me back into the past to discover a tale of love, courage, redemption and the Jacobite rebellion; and brought alive the fascinating city of St Petersburg, which I had first learnt about when reading…
📖 The Romanovs by Virginia Cowles – Four years ago, one of my top reads of the year was the epic historical non-fiction, The Romanovs from a new-to-me author, Virginia Cowles. Which chronicles the ups, downs, dreams, disasters and extreme personalities of the Romanov dynasty; from the unwilling Tsar Michael (1613-1645) to the doomed Tsar Nicholas II (1894-1917). A fascinating, colourful and educational read for me.
~ Pirates ~
📖 The Black Corsair by Emilio Salgari – In September, I finished reading the swashbuckling classic, The Black Corsair by the Italian author, Emilio Salgari, which tells the tale of the legendary Caribbean pirate, the ‘Black Corsair’, as he seeks revenge for his brothers deaths, As well as the adventure, battles, sword fights and daring escapes, I really liked how real characters and places were used that I had previously read about in…
📖 The Golden Antilles by Tim Severin – This time last year, I read the riveting non-fiction, The Golden Antilles by Tim Severin, that brilliantly illuminated the dangerous obsessive search for the fabled city-of-gold, El Dorado; the promises of easy riches in this new world; and the ensuing power struggle between Spain and England. A fascinating history which I found as descriptive and flowed as well as any historical adventure!
That’s all my book pairings for this year. If you have done your own book pairings, please share a link to your post in the comments below, so we can come see your choices. For now though, goodbye, take care and happy non-fiction reading. I look forward to seeing you in two weeks to share our Week 4 posts about all the new non-fiction goodies we’ve been adding, due to this event, to our ever-growing to-be-read piles. 👋📚😃
I’d love to hear from you: Have you read any of these? What do you make of my pairings? What books would you pair together?