The 000s in nonfiction cover a real hodge-podge of topics. In this section of “generalities,” guides for setting up computer networks cozy up to tomes about Bigfoot and UFOs. Every middle schooler’s favorite compilation of fascinating feats–the “Guinness Book of World Records“–also calls the 000s home, as do encyclopedias, almanacs, books on journalism and books about books and reading (dear to my librarian’s heart). Here are three books worth a look I found lurking on the bottom shelves.
- “Blur: How to Know What’s True in the Age of Information Overload” by Bill Kovach and Tom Rosenstiel. The authors argue convincingly that Americans must develop skills for wading through the onslaught of information labeled as “news” and distinguishing fact from fiction.
- “The Black Swan” by Nassim Nicholas Taleb. No, this has nothing to do with ballet or actress Natalie Portman. The swan of the title refers to occurrences that are extremely rare and unpredictable, yet have massive impacts on the way we live and think. In this fascinating, witty and highly readable work, Taleb points out the futility of our current models of forecasting and prediction, particularly in the realms of business and economics.
- “The Grace of Silence” by Michele Norris. This co-host of NPR’s All Things Considered uses the story of learning previously unspoken events in her own family’s history–including her grandmother briefly working as a traveling Aunt Jemima and her father being shot by a white policeman–to explore changing American attitudes towards race. A moving memoir from a woman whose writing displays both her great skills as a journalist and her talent for storytelling.
Have you found any treasures while browsing the bottom shelves? Let us know in the comments!