Non-Fiction Book Club Retrospective

A List of Titles Discussed by the Non-Fiction Book Club

The Non-Fiction Book Club was founded in 2012.  Here are the books we've discussed in the past.  The links lead to the OCLN catalog.  


Jan. Last Call at Coogan's:  The Life and Death of a Neighborhood Bar by Jon Michaud
Feb. The Caning:  The Assault that Drove America to Civil War by Stephen Puleo
Mar. Vanderbilt: The Rise and Fall of an American Dynasty by Anderson Cooper
Apr. The Exceptions: Nancy Hopkins, MIT, and the Fight for Women in Science by Kate Zernike
May Rocket Men: The Daring Odyssey of Apollo and the Astronauts Who Made Man's First Journey to the Moon by Robert Kurson
Jun. Rough Sleepers:  Dr. Jim O'Connell's Urgent Mission to Bring Healing to Homeless People by Tracy Kidder
Jul. PT 109:  An American Epic of War, Survival and the Destiny of John F. Kennedy by William Doyle
Aug. The Last Resort:  A Chronicle of Paradise, Profit, and Peril at the Beach by Sarah Stodola


Jan.  The Girls of the Atomic City:  The Untold Story of the Women Who Helped Win World War II by Denise Kiernan
Feb. Yes, Chef by Marcus Samuelsson
Mar. The Library Book by Susan Orlean
Apr. Trial by Fire:  A Devastating Tragedy, a Hundred Lives Lost and a Fifteen-Year Search for the Truth by Scott James.
May The Crown in Crisis:  Countdown to the Abdication by Alexander Larman
Jun. Committed:  Dispatches from a Psychiatrist in Training by Adam Stern
Jul. Walden by Henry David Thoreau
Aug. Don't Make Me Pull Over!  An Informal History of the Family Road Trip by Richard Ratay
Sep. The Revolutionary:  Samuel Adams by Stacy Schiff
Oct. The Ghosts of Eden Park:  The Bootleg King, the Women who Pursued Him, and the Murder that Shocked Jazz Age America by Karen Abbott
Nov. One Day:  The Extraordinary Story of an Ordinary 24 Hours in America by Gene Weingarten



Jan. The Address Book:  What Street Addresses Reveal About Identity, Race, Wealth and Power by Deirdre Mask
Feb. The Forger's Spell:  A True Story of Vermeer, Nazis and the Greatest Art Hoax of the Twentiety Century by Edward Dolnick
Mar. Common Ground:  A Turbulent Decade in the Lives of Three American Families by J. Anthony Lukas
Apr. Long Mile Home:  Boston Under Attack, the City's Courageous Recovery and the Epic Hunt for Justice by Scott Helman and Jenna Russell
May The Daughter's of Yalta:  The Churchills, Roosevelts, and Harrimans - a Story of Love and War by Catherine Grace Kurtz
Jun. Empire of Pain:  The Secret History of the Sackler Dynasty by Patrick Radden Keefe
Jul. Silent Spring by Rachel Carson
Aug. It's Better to be Feared:  The New England Patriots Dynasty and the Pursuit of Greatness by Seth Wickersham
Sep. The Worst Hard Time:  The Untold Story of Those Who Survived the Great American Dust Bowl by Timothy Egan
Oct. Blood Will Out:  The True Story of a Murder, A Mystery and a Masquerade by Walter Kirn
Nov. Cultish:  The Language of Fanaticism by Amanda Montel
Dec. Rin Tin Tin:  The Life and the Legend by Susan Orlean



Jan. Nickel and Dimed:  On (Not) Getting By in America by Barbara Ehrenreich
Feb. In the Garden of Beasts: Love Terror and an American Family in Hitler's Berlin by Erik Larson
Mar. Say Nothing:  A True Story of Murder and Memory in Northern Ireland by Patrick Radden Keefe
Apr. Mill Town:  Reckoning with What Remains by Kerri Arsenault
May Furious Hours:  Murder, Fraud and the Last Trial of Harper Lee by Casey N. Cep
Jun. The Quiet Americans: Four CIA Spies at the Dawn of the Cold War -- a Tragedy in Three Acts by Scott Anderson
Jul. Twelve Years a Slave: a True Story of Betrayal, Kidnap and Slavery by Solomon Northrup
Aug. The Ground Breaking:  An American City and Its Search for Justice by Scott Ellsworth
Sep. The Day the World Came to Town:  9/11 in Gander Newfoundland by Jim DeFede
Oct. 18 Tiny Deaths: The Untold Story of Frances Glessner Lee and the Invention of Modern Forensics by Bruce Goldfarb
Nov. The Splendid and the Vile:  A Saga or Churchill, Family and Defiance During the Blitz by Erik Larson
Dec. Wait Till Next Year: a Memoir by Doris Kearns Goodwin



Jan. The Last Job:  "The Bad Grandpas" and the Hatton Garden Heist by Dan Bilefsky
Feb. "All the Real Indians Died Off" : and 20 other myths about Native Americans by Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz
Apr. Round Table Discussing on Zoom

Voyage of the Mercy: The USS Jamestown, the Irish Famine, and the Remarkable Story of America's first Humanitarian Mission by Stephen Puleo
Author Visit on Zoom

Jun. Shut Out: A Story of Race and Baseball in Boston by Howard Bryant
Jul. Born a Crime: Stories from a South African Childhood by Trevor Noah
Aug. The Feather Thief: Beauty, Obsession, and the Natural History Heist of the Century by Kirk W. Johnson
Sep. Something Must Be Done About Prince Edward County: A Family, A Virginia Town and a Civil Rights Battle by Kristin Green
Oct. Above & Beyond: John F. Kennedy and America's Most Dangerous Cold War Spy Mission by Casey Sherman and Mike Tougias
Nov. The Fence: A Police Cover Up Along Boston's Racial Divide by Dick Lehr
Dec. Travels with Charley: In Search of America by John Steinbeck



Jan. The Great Halifax Explosion:  A World War I Story of Treachery, Tragedy and Extraordinary Heroism by John U. Bacon
Feb. Into the Raging Sea: Thirty-Three Mariners. One Megastorm, and the Sinking of El Faro by Rachel Slade
Mar. A Chance in the World: An Orphan Boy, A Mysterious Past, and How He Found a Place Called Home by Steve Pemberton
Apr. The Radium Girls: The Dark Story of a America's Shing Woman by Kate Moore
May Double Cross: The True Story of the D-Day Spies by Ben Macintyre
Jun. Red Notice: A True Story of High Finance, Murder, and One Man's Fight for Justice by Bill Browder
Jul. Rawhide Down: The Near Assassination of Ronald Reagan by Del Quentin Wilber
Aug. The Lost City of the Monkey God: a True Story by Douglas J. Preston
Sep. A City in Terror: Calvin Coolidge and the 1919 Boston Police Strike by Russell Francis
Oct. The Game: Harvard, Yale and America in 1968 by George Howe Colt
Nov. Indianapolis: The True Story of the Worst Sea Disaster in US Naval History and the Fifty-year Fight to Exonerate an Innocent Man by Lynn Vincent



Jan. American Treasures : the Secret Efforts to Save the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution and the Gettysburg Address by Stephen Puleo
Feb. Killers of the Flower Moon: The Osage Murders and the Birth of the FBI by David Grann
Mar. Destiny of the Republic: A Tale of Madness, Medicine and the Murder of a President by Candice Millard
Apr. Hillbilly Elegy: A Memoir of a Family and Culture in Crisis by J.D. Vance
May Founding Mothers: The Women Who Raised Our Nation by Cokie Roberts
Jun. Stranger in the Woods: the Extraordinary Story of the Last True Hermit by Michael Finkel
Jul. The Autobiography of Malcolm X as told to Alex Haley by Malcolm X and ALex Haley
Aug. Liar, Temptress, Soldier, Spy: Four Women Undercover in the Civil War by Karen Abbott
Sep. Townie: a memoir by Andre Dubus III
Oct. I'll Be Gone in the Dark: One Woman's Obsessive Search for the Golden State Killer by Michelle McNamara

Home Town by Tracy Kidder



Jan. All Souls:  A Family Story from Southie by Michael Patrick MacDonald
Feb. Lost in Shangri-La : a True Story of Survival, Adventure, and the Most Incredible Rescue Mission of World War II by Mitchell Zuckoff
Mar. Sea of Thunder : Four Commanders and the Last Great Naval Campaign, 1941-1945 by Evan Thomas
Apr. Profiles in Courage by John F. Kennedy
May The Glass Universe: How the Ladies of the Harvard Observatory Took the Measure of the Stars by Dava Sobel
Jun. The Lobster Coast: Rebels, Rusticators and the Struggle for a Forgotten Father by Colin Woodward
Jul. The Man Who Would be King: The First American in Afghanistan by Ben Macintyre
Aug. Mrs. Sherlock Holmes: The True Story of New York City S Greatest Female Detective and the 1917 Missing Girl Case That Captivated a Nation by Brad Ricca
Sep. In Cold Blood: A True Account of a Multiple Murder and Its Consequences by Truman Capote
Oct. Rosemary: The Hidden Kennedy Daughter by Kate Clifford Larson
Nov. The Devil and the White City: Muder, Magic, and Madness at the Fair that Changed America by Erik Larson



Jan. Black Mass:  Whitey Bulger, The FBI, and a Devil's Deal by Dick Lehr
Feb. The Race Underground : Boston, New York, and the Incredible Rivalry that Built America's First Subway by Doug Most
Mar. Stealing Rembrandts : the Untold Stories of Notorious Art Heists by Anthony Amore
Apr. The Greatest Treasure Hunt in History: the Story of the Monuments Men by Robert Edsel
May We are Market Basket : the Story of the Unlikely Grassroots Movement that Saved a Beloved Business by Daniel Korschun and Grant Welker
Jun. The Boys in the Boat : Nine Americans and their Epic Quest for Gold at the 1936 Berlin Olympics by Daniel James Brown
Jul. The Other Wes Moore : the Story of One Name and Two Fates by Wes Moore
Aug. Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil by John Berendt
Sep. Thunderstruck by Erik Larson
Oct. Alexander Hamilton by Ron Chernow
Nov. The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot



Jan. Mayflower:  A Story of Courage, Community and War by Nathaniel Philbrick
Feb. The Finest Hours : the True Story of a Heroic Sea Rescue by Michael Tougias & Casey Sherman
Mar. 1776 by David McCullough
Apr. Ponzi's Scheme: The True Story of a Financial Legend by Mitchell Zuckoff
May The King's Best Highway: The Lost History of the Boston Post Road, the Route That Made America by Eric Jaffe
Sep. The Great Hurricane, 1938 by Cherie Burns
Oct. The Perfect Storm: A True Story of Men Against the Sea by Sebastian Junger
Nov. The Terrible Hours: The Greatest Submarine Rescue in History by Peter Maas 



Jan. The Fence:  A Police Cover-Up Along Boston's Racial Divide by Dick Lehr
Feb. The Ride : the Jeffrey Curley Murder and its Aftermath by Brian MacQuarrie
Mar. A Civil Action by Jonathan Harr
Apr. Gracefully Insane : the Rise and Fall of America's Premier Mental Hospital by Alex Beam
May The Path : a One-Mile Walk Through the Universe by Chet Raymo
Oct. Mountains Beyond Mountains by Tracy Kidder
Nov. The Map Thief : the Gripping Story of an Esteemed Rare-map Dealer Who Made Millions Stealing Priceless Maps by Michael Blanding



Jan. The Crime of the Century:  How the Brink's Robbers Stole Millions and the Hearts of Boston by Stephanie Schorow
Feb. Dark tide : the Great Boston Molasses Flood of 1919 by Stephen Puleo
Mar. A City in Terror : Calvin Coolidge and the 1919 Boston Police Strike by Francis Russell
Apr. Paul Revere's Ride by David Hackett Fischer
May Cod: a Biography of the Fish that Changed the World by Mark Kurlanksy
Oct. Judge Sewall's Apology : the Salem Witch Trials and the Forming of the American Conscience by Richard Francis
Nov. Fire in the Grove: the Cocoanut Grove Tragedy and its Aftermath byJohn Esposito



Feb. Fatal Forecast:  An Incredible True Tale of Disaster and Survival at Sea by Michael J. Tougias
Mar. The Gardner Heist: The True Story of the World's Largest Unsolved Art Theft by Ulrich Boser
Apr. American Bloomsbury : Louisa May Alcott, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Margaret Fuller, Nathaniel Hawthorne, and Henry David Thoreau : their lives, their loves, their work by Susan Cheever
May Sacco and Vanzetti : the men, the murders, and the judgment of mankind by Bruce Watson
Sep. The Big House : a Century in the Life of an American Summer Home by George Howe Colt
Oct. Samuel Adams : father of the American Revolution by Mark Puls
Nov A Death in Belmont by Sebastian Junger