Nonfiction Books For Summer

If you love nonfiction we have a great list of nonfiction books for summer for you.

Nonfiction Books for Summer

We love nonfiction all year long, but during the summer we usually enjoy lighter easier to read nonfiction.

We thought it was would be fun to share a list of some of the lighter nonfiction reads that we have enjoyed.

The majority of these books are backlist books, so they should be easy to find at our local library.

Biography and Memoirs for Summer

The Boys book

The Boys by Ron Howard and Clint Howard. This is a great summer read for anyone that loves Hollywood and T.V. memoirs. It is also a perfect read for fans of The Andy Griffith Show and Happy Days. I read this earlier this year and loved it. Ron and Clint Howard give a fun and interesting look into their life in Hollywood.

Gone to the Woods book

Gone To Woods by Gary Paulsen made this list of nonfiction books for summer because my son and I listened to this on a summer road trip last year. If you are a fan of Gary Paulsen books this is a must read. It was a fascinating looking at Gary Paulsen’s life and what inspired his writing. I will say that this book was marketed to 8-12 year olds, and I feel like because of the heavy topics, it is more for teens and adults.

84, Charing Cross Road

84, Charing Cross Road by Helene Hanff. This book was published in 1970, so it is a backlist book. If you love books about books or books about bookstores and have not read this, you need to. I have heard about this book for years, but did not read it until a couple of years ago. I can’t believe it took me so long to read this one. It makes a great summer read. And it is short so it is a quick read.

You Learn By Living Book

You Learn by Living by Eleanor Roosevelt. This book was published in 1960, but the wisdom and advice still work today.

Girl Sleuth

Girl Sleuth by Melanie Rehak. This is a must read for fans of Nancy Drew or for those that grew up reading Nancy Drew. This book shares about the life of Nancy Drew and the people who authored the Nancy Drew books. Yes, people, Nancy Drew had several authors over the years.

This book shares information about the publishing world that most people do not know about. It is a fun read for anytime of year, but since it is a lighter read it makes for a good summer read.

Food Memoirs for Summer

I love reading food memoirs during the summer because they tend to be a little lighter than many memoirs.

My American Dream

My American Dream by Lidia Matticchio Bastianich is part food memoir and memoir about Lidia’s journey to America. This is a great memoir for those that love food memoirs, but also for those that love history type memoirs.

Taste My Life Through Food Book

Taste by Stanley Tucci. I listened to this on audio and loved it because it was narrated by Stanley Tucci. But I think the print version would also be good because it includes the recipes. His descriptions of food and life and Hollywood are so much fun. I liked this because it was different than most celebrity memoirs. Food was the center of this book, not Hollywood. Life about movies and celebrities are there, but they usually include stories about food.

Be sure to read my full review on this one though because it is PG-13 in some parts and has some language in it. I would not listen to this one with little kids around.

My Life In France

My Life In France by Julia Child. This book has had a lot of attention since it was published back in 2007. I almost didn’t include this on the list because it seems like so many people have read this one. However, I know that not everyone has read it, so I included it. This is one of my favorite food memoirs. If you love books about food or if you remember watching Julia Child on TV this is a great read.

Nonfiction History For Summer

I could have included so many books on this list, but a lot of nonfiction is heavy reading. When I think of summer reading, I think of lighter reads, so I tried to include some lighter reads on this list. That doesn’t mean they aren’t great books. These are nonfiction books that I loved.

Aloha Rodeo

Aloha Rodeo by David Wolman and Julian Smith. I read Aloha Rodeo as part of my nonfiction books for every state challenge. This book is a fascinating read about a time and place I knew nothing about. Did you know that Hawaii had cowboys? I didn’t. I have recommended this book to so many people because it is such a unique part of American history.

The Feather Thief book

The Feather Thief by Kirk Wallace Johnson. The Feather Thief is true crime, but it is a lighter read so it makes a great summer nonfiction book. I read this recently and loved it. I gifted it to my dad and he loved it too. I told my husband that he needs to take it on vacation because it is a little different than what he normally reads, but I think he will love it.

Isaac's Storm book

Isaac’s Storm by Erik Larson. Hurricane season begins in June so a storm about a hurricane seems perfect for this time of year. In August of 1900, one of the worst hurricanes in history hit Galveston, Texas. Isaac’s Storm is about the town of Galveston, the events the lead up to the hurricane, and the tragedy of the storm.

The Last Castle

The Last Castle by Denise Kiernan. The Last Castle is about Biltmore and the Vanderbilt family. If you have visited Biltmore or want to visit Biltmore this is a well written interesting read. If you don’t have a vacation planned this summer this book would take you to a place that you can’t get to right now.

Nonfiction Books About Animals

Flash the Donkey

Flash by Rachel Anne Ridge. Gracelyn read this and described it as an adorable story about a donkey. If you love animal stories you might enjoy this one.

The Eighty Dollar Champion

The Eighty Dollar Champion by Elizabeth Letts. Grace loved this tale because it is about a poorer immigrant who was able to purchase a cheap horse that eventually became a champion jumper.

Dewey A Small Town Library Cat Who Touched the World

Dewey by Vicki Myron. A true story about a cat and a small town library is a great read for animal lovers and book lovers.

All Creatures Great and Small

All Creatures Great and Small by James Herriot. If you love animals or books about animals and have not read this classic book it would be a great summer read. All Creatures Great and Small is the memoir of a veterinarian in the British countryside during the 1930s.

What nonfiction books are you planning to read this summer?

1 thought on “Nonfiction Books For Summer”

  1. I’ve read about half of those. Great recommendations! Among my summer reading list are several books about people going places:

    1. The Wright Brothers by David McCullough
    2. Eighty Days by Matthew Goodman
    3. The Vagabonds by Jeff Guinn


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