Adult Non-Fiction

Improv nation : how we made a great American art

Improv nation : how we made a great American art Book Cover

This is a must read for any improv lover! This comprehensive history of improv is an eye opening perspective in the true American art form.

The Old Patagonian express : by train through the Americas

The Old Patagonian express : by train through the Americas Book Cover

On break from teaching duties, Paul Theroux decides to travel from his home in Boston to Patagonia. Along the way he paints a vivid picture of not only the scenery passing by, but of all the people he meets along the way. It will make you want to hop on the next train to see how far you can go!

Lessons on expulsion : poems

Lessons on expulsion : poems Book Cover

This collection of poetry is fierce, eye opening, and beautifully expressive. It tugged at my heart, opened my mind, and will stay with me for quite some time.

The sun does shine : how I found life and freedom on death row

The sun does shine : how I found life and freedom on death row Book Cover

The Sun Does Shine is a mind blowing memoir that reads like a novel. Anthony Ray Hinton was wrongly accused and convicted of murder at age 29 and spent the next 29 years of his life on death row. Not an easy read but a powerful story of hope and resilience.

The Big Burn

The Big Burn Book Cover

A superb read about the creation of the Forest Service and wildfires in the West.

I’ll Be Gone in the Dark

I’ll Be Gone in the Dark Book Cover

This book is perfect for the true crime nerd who also loves good writing! McNamara’s prose will keep you flipping through the pages. Reading this book is like bundling up in your favorite blanket on a cool day.

Mastering the art of Japanese home cooking

Mastering the art of Japanese home cooking Book Cover

If you have ever visited Japan, or plan to, this cookbook will give you a glimpse into the culinary tastes of Japanese cooking. The recipes and techniques are paired with pictures of the delicious foods. My personal favorite is Yaki Onigiri. Yaki Onigiri is simply grilled rice balls. They are delicious!

The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up

The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up Book Cover

"A tidy house is a tidy mind" - I couldn't agree with this more! As a mother of two young children, my life is often chaotic and messy, leaving me feeling out of control and mentally unorganized. Thanks to this book, I have a sustainable lifestyle free of excess clutter. I try my best to only keep items that spark joy or are useful, including kitchen items, my wardrobe, books, art supplies...everything! This book has taught me to be a more conscious consumer and allows me to come home at the end of a long day to a peaceful and inviting home. I truly believe living by the principles in this book can change your life!

The bright hour : a memoir of living and dying

The bright hour : a memoir of living and dying Book Cover

Although this memoir was heart wrenchingly sad in parts, there were as many beautiful day to day moments included that made it very enjoyable at the same time. I was so impressed with the author’s ability to show humor and gratitude for life while going through treatment for terminal cancer. For me it was a thought provoking book that helped me gain even more appreciation for the importance of family, friends and ordinary moments.

Lemongrass, ginger and mint Vietnamese cookbook : classic Vietnamese restaurant favorites at home

Lemongrass, ginger and mint Vietnamese cookbook : classic Vietnamese restaurant favorites at home Book Cover

I have hunted for a long time for a recipe that does justice to my favorite Vietnamese restaurant in Illinois. The Grilled Pork Banh Mi (page 92) and Carrot and Daikon Pickles (page 91) recipes have come the closest! Plus, they are fairly easy and quick. As our tradition, before dinner, you must have a Vietnamese Coffee (page 176).