Michael’s Summer Non-Fiction Reads!

AstronautThe Astronaut Wives Club: A True Story, by Lili Koppel

Summer beach reading is all about distraction. But don’t write off non-fiction this summer – there’s lots to choose from and it’s not all uber-challenging. This book, for example, relates the story of the 50 year friendship between the wives of the NASA Mercury Seven astronauts. Romance, celebrity, tragedy – what’s not to like?

TopsyTopsy: The Startling Story of the Crooked Tailed Elephant, P. T. Barnum, and the American Wizard, Thomas Edison, by Michael Daly

A tale too unlikely to be fiction, journalist Michael Daly relates the story of how a circus elephant named Topsy came to be deliberately electrocuted in 1903. And just how did circus culture come to be a battleground between those pushing the adoption of direct current over alternating current?

MotherMother Daughter Me: A Memoir, by Katie Hafner

Generating buzz is always a good sign, and this memoir of the time the author spent living with her mother is getting lots of attention. Reportedly funny, poignant and honest, the intergenerational collision creates sparks and turbulence. Fasten your seat belt.

HatI Wear the Black Hat: Grappling with Villains (Real and Imagined), by Chuck Klosterman

Chuck Klosterman takes on our modern ideas of villainy in this accessible, incisive and funny cultural analysis. He blends self-interrogation with hypothetical situations, asking perceptive questions about the complexity of antiheros. And just what is so Machiavellian about Machiavelli?

CopUndercover Cop: How I Brought Down the Real-Life Sopranos, by Mike Russell

After being left for dead in an alley, a real-life cop goes to extreme lengths to infiltrate and bring down the Genovese crime family in New Jersey. The personal toll, and the bumbling of his handlers who repeatedly put him at risk, flesh out this extraordinary story. A gripping, true beach read! Don’t forget the sunscreen.

–Michael

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