Have you wanted to try to your hand at a nonfiction book, but don’t know where to start? We’ve gathered an assortment of some top rated books of different varieties.
Whether you want something like a true story of someone’s life, some true crime information, or facts about mental health. We’re sure you’ll find something you’ll enjoy!
The Chicago Guide To Fact-Checking – Brooke Borel
Teenspace 001.42 BOR
“A column by Glenn Garvin on Dec. 20 stated that the National Science Foundation ‘funded a study on Jell-O wrestling at the South Pole.’ That is incorrect. The event took place during off-duty hours without NSF permission and did not involve taxpayer funds.”
Corrections such as this one from the Miami Herald have become a familiar sight for readers, especially as news cycles demand faster and faster publication. While some factual errors can be humorous, they nonetheless erode the credibility of the writer and the organization. And the pressure for accuracy and accountability is increasing at the same time as in-house resources for fact-checking are dwindling. Anyone who needs or wants to learn how to verify names, numbers, quotations, and facts is largely on their own.
Enter The Chicago Guide to Fact-Checking, an accessible, one-stop guide to the why, what, and how of contemporary fact-checking. Brooke Borel, an experienced fact-checker, draws on the expertise of more than 200 writers, editors, and fellow checkers representing the New Yorker, Popular Science, This American Life, Vogue, and many other outlets. She covers best practices for fact-checking in a variety of media—from magazine articles, both print and online, to books and documentaries—and from the perspective of both in-house and freelance checkers. She also offers advice on navigating relationships with writers, editors, and sources; considers the realities of fact-checking on a budget and checking one’s own work; and reflects on the place of fact-checking in today’s media landscape.
Ignite Your Spark: Discovering Who You Are From The Inside Out – Patricia Wooster
Teenspace 155.5 WOO
Forge your own path, engage your passions, and light thousands of sparks to become the person you want to be with this interactive guide filled with quizzes and activities to help you along the way.
It’s no secret that your teen years can be tumultuous, confusing, and even sucky, but that doesn’t mean you can’t light a fire in your life. Covering topics from relationships, self-image, and school to goals, failures, and willpower, Ignite Your Spark features thought-provoking quizzes, “Ignite Your Life” activities, and profiles of kids and adults alike who have ignited their own spark to accomplish extraordinary things.
Your teen years don’t have to be a struggle, and with this handbook for self-discovery and personal fulfillment, you will find that the ability to ignite your own spark has been within you all along.
I Will Always Write Back: How One Letter Changed Two Lives – Caitlin Alifirenka
Teenspace 305.235 ALI
It started as an assignment. Everyone in Caitlin’s class wrote to an unknown student somewhere in a distant place.
Martin was lucky to even receive a pen-pal letter. There were only ten letters, and fifty kids in his class. But he was the top student, so he got the first one.
That letter was the beginning of a correspondence that spanned six years and changed two lives.
In this compelling dual memoir, Caitlin and Martin recount how they became best friends –and better people–through their long-distance exchange. Their story will inspire you to look beyond your own life and wonder about the world at large and your place in it.
Boying Up: How To Be Brave, Bold, And Brilliant – Mayim Bialik
Teenspace 305.235 BIA [New]
Why does my voice crack like that? What should I eat to build muscle? How do I talk to someone I have a crush on? What do I do if someone calls me names or bullies me?
Growing from a boy to a man is no easy task. Bodies are changing, social circles are evolving, hair is appearing in places it never was before — and on top of it all, there’s the ever-present pressure to conform to the typical idea of what it means to be “manly” and masculine. But it’s easier to do if you’re armed with facts.
Using personal anecdotes as an overly observant mother of two boys and plenty of scientific information from her life as a neuroscientist, Mayim Bialik, PhD, star of The Big Bang Theory, talks directly to teen boys about what it means to grow from a boy to a man biologically, psychologically, and sociologically. Using the same cool, fun, and friendly tone that she took in Girling Up, Mayim takes boys–and their parents!–through the challenges and triumphs of Boying Up today.
Girling Up: How To Be Strong, Smart, And Spectacular – Mayim Bialik
Teenspace 305.235 BIA
Growing up as a girl in today’s world is no easy task. Juggling family, friends, romantic relationships, social interests and school…sometimes it feels like you might need to be a superhero to get through it all! But really, all you need is little information.
Want to know why your stomach does a flip-flop when you run into your crush in the hallway? Or how the food you put in your body now will affect you in the future? What about the best ways to stop freaking out about your next math test?
Using scientific facts, personal anecdotes, and wisdom gained from the world around us, Mayim Bialik, the star of The Big Bang Theory, shares what she has learned from her life and her many years studying neuroscience to tell you how you grow from a girl to a woman biologically, psychologically and sociologically.
We Should All Be Feminists – Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
Teenspace 305.42 ADI
In this personal, eloquently-argued essay—adapted from the much-admired TEDx talk of the same name—Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie offers readers a unique definition of feminism for the twenty-first century, one rooted in inclusion and awareness. Drawing extensively on her own experiences and her deep understanding of the often masked realities of sexual politics, here is one remarkable author’s exploration of what it means to be a woman now—and an of-the-moment rallying cry for why we should all be feminists.
A Few Red Drops: The Chicago Race Riot of 1919 – Claire Hartfield
Teenspace 305.896 HAR [Awards]
On a hot day in July 1919, five black youths went swimming in Lake Michigan, unintentionally floating close to the “white” beach. An angry white man began throwing stones at the boys, striking and killing one. Racial conflict on the beach erupted into days of urban violence that shook the city of Chicago to its foundations. This mesmerizing narrative draws on contemporary accounts as it traces the roots of the explosion that had been building for decades in race relations, politics, business, and clashes of culture.
We Are Displaced: My Journey And Stories From Refugee Girls Around The World – Malala Yousafzai
Teenspace 305.906914 YOU [New]
In her powerful new book, Nobel Peace Prize winner and New York Times-bestselling author Malala Yousafzai introduces some of the people behind the statistics and news stories about the millions of people displaced worldwide.
Malala’s experiences visiting refugee camps caused her to reconsider her own displacement — first as an Internally Displaced Person when she was a young child in Pakistan, and then as an international activist who could travel anywhere in the world except to the home she loved. In We Are Displaced, which is part memoir, part communal storytelling, Malala not only explores her own story, but she also shares the personal stories of some of the incredible girls she has met on her journeys — girls who have lost their community, relatives, and often the only world they’ve ever known.
In a time of immigration crises, war, and border conflicts, We Are Displaced is an important reminder from one of the world’s most prominent young activists that every single one of the 68.5 million currently displaced is a person — often a young person — with hopes and dreams.
Being Jazz: My Life As A (Transgender) Teen – Jazz Jennings
Teenspace 306.768 JEN
Jazz Jennings is one of the youngest and most prominent voices in the national discussion about gender identity. At the age of five, Jazz transitioned to life as a girl, with the support of her parents. A year later, her parents allowed her to share her incredible journey in her first Barbara Walters interview, aired at a time when the public was much less knowledgeable or accepting of the transgender community. This groundbreaking interview was followed over the years by other high-profile interviews, a documentary, the launch of her YouTube channel, a picture book, and her own reality TV series–I Am Jazz–making her one of the most recognizable activists for transgender teens, children, and adults.
In her remarkable memoir, Jazz reflects on these very public experiences and how they have helped shape the mainstream attitude toward the transgender community. But it hasn’t all been easy. Jazz has faced many challenges, bullying, discrimination, and rejection, yet she perseveres as she educates others about her life as a transgender teen. Through it all, her family has been beside her on this journey, standing together against those who don’t understand the true meaning of tolerance and unconditional love. Now Jazz must learn to navigate the physical, social, and emotional upheavals of adolescence–particularly high school–complicated by the unique challenges of being a transgender teen. Making the journey from girl to woman is never easy–especially when you began your life in a boy’s body. See Jazz’s story come to life with two inserts featuring personal photos.
The Trans Generation: How Trans Kids (And Their Parents) Are Creating A Gender Revolution – Ann Travers
Teenspace 306.768 TRA [New]
Some “boys” will only wear dresses; some “girls” refuse to wear dresses; in both cases, as Ann Travers shows in this fascinating account of the lives of transgender kids, these are often more than just wardrobe choices. Travers shows that from very early ages, some at two and three years old, these kids find themselves to be different from the sex category that was assigned to them at birth. How they make their voices heard—to their parents and friends, in schools, in public spaces, and through the courts—is the focus of this remarkable and groundbreaking book.
Based on interviews with transgender kids, ranging in age from 4 to 20, and their parents, and over five years of research in the US and Canada, The Trans Generation offers a rare look into what it is like to grow up as a trans child. From daycare to birthday parties and from the playground to the school bathroom, Travers takes the reader inside the day-to-day realities of trans kids who regularly experience crisis as a result of the restrictive ways in which sex categories regulate their lives and put pressure on them to deny their internal sense of who they are in gendered terms.
As a transgender activist and as an advocate for trans kids, Travers is able to document from first-hand experience the difficulties of growing up trans and the challenges that parents can face. The book shows the incredible time, energy, and love that these parents give to their children, even in the face of, at times, unsupportive communities, schools, courts, health systems, and government laws. Keeping in mind that all trans kids are among the most vulnerable to bullying, violent attacks, self-harm, and suicide, and that those who struggle with poverty, racism, lack of parental support, learning differences, etc, are extremely at risk, Travers offers ways to support all trans kids through policy recommendations and activist interventions. Ultimately, the book is meant to open up options for kids’ own gender self-determination, to question the need for the sex binary, and to highlight ways that cultural and material resources can be redistributed more equitably. The Trans Generation offers an essential and important new understanding of childhood.
Google It: A History Of Google – Anna Crowley Redding
Teenspace 338.761 RED [New]
Larry Page and Sergey Brin started out as two Stanford college students with a wild idea: They were going to organize the world’s information. From that one deceptively simple goal, they created one of the most influential and innovative companies in the world. The word “google” has even entered our vocabulary as a verb. Now, find out the true history of Google―from its humble beginnings as a thesis project made out of “borrowed” hardware and discount toys through its revolution of the world’s relationship with technology to a brief glimpse of where they might take us next.
In Google It, award-winning investigative reporter Anna Crowley Redding shares an inspiring story of innovation, personal and intellectual bravery, and most importantly, of shooting for the moon in order to change the world.
Notorious RBG: The Life And Times Of Ruth Bader Ginsburg – Irin Carmon
Teenspace 347.73264 GIN
Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg never asked for fame―she has only tried to make the world a little better and a little freer.
But nearly a half-century into her career, something funny happened to the octogenarian: she won the internet. Across America, people who weren’t even born when Ginsburg first made her name as a feminist pioneer are tattooing themselves with her face, setting her famously searing dissents to music, and making viral videos in tribute.
Notorious RBG, inspired by the Tumblr that amused the Justice herself and brought to you by its founder and an award-winning feminist journalist, is more than just a love letter. It draws on intimate access to Ginsburg’s family members, close friends, colleagues, and clerks, as well an interview with the Justice herself. An original hybrid of reported narrative, annotated dissents, rare archival photos and documents, and illustrations, the book tells a never-before-told story of an unusual and transformative woman who transcends generational divides. As the country struggles with the unfinished business of gender equality and civil rights, Ginsburg stands as a testament to how far we can come with a little chutzpah.
Project Semicolon: Your Story Isn’t Over – Amy Bleuel
Teenspace 362.28 BLE
Project Semicolon began in 2013 to spread a message of hope: No one struggling with a mental illness is alone; you, too, can survive and live a life filled with joy and love. In support of the project and its message, thousands of people all over the world have gotten semicolon tattoos and shared photos of them, often alongside stories of hardship, growth, and rebirth.
Project Semicolon: Your Story Isn’t Over reveals dozens of new portraits and stories from people of all ages talking about what they have endured and what they want for their futures. This represents a new step in the movement and a new awareness around those who struggle with mental illness and those who support them. At once heartfelt, unflinchingly honest, and eternally hopeful, this collection tells a story of choice: every day you choose to live and let your story continue on.
Learn more about the project at www.projectsemicolon.com.
Glimmer Of Hope: How Tragedy Sparked A Movement – by the founders of March For Our Lives
Teenspace 371.782 MAR [New]
Glimmer of Hope tells the story of how a group of teenagers raced to channel their rage and sorrow into action, and went on to create one of the largest youth-led movements in global history.
March For Our Lives Action Fund is a nonprofit 501c4 organization dedicated to furthering the work of March For Our Lives students to end gun violence across the country.
The full list of contributors, in alphabetical order, are: Adam Alhanti, Dylan Baierlein, John Barnitt, Alfonso Calderon, Sarah Chadwick, Jaclyn Corin, Matt Deitsch, Ryan Deitsch, Sam Deitsch, Brendan Duff, Emma González, Chris Grady, David Hogg, Lauren Hogg, Cameron Kasky, Jammal Lemy, Charlie Mirsky, Kyrah Simon, Delaney Tarr, Bradley Thornton, Kevin Trejos, Naomi Wadler, Sofie Whitney, Daniel Williams, and Alex Wind.
Depression: A Teen’s Guide To Survive And Thrive – Jacqueline Toner
Teenspace 616.8527 TON
Teens get a great deal of information and guidance on many things from study skills to college admissions to test taking…and the list goes on. But many teens get no direct instruction about how to manage difficult emotions. This lack of direction can be hard because teens are at an age vulnerable to depression. While people often use the word “depression” to describe a momentary mood, the same term is also used to label a more serious and long-lasting problem that can interfere with many aspects of a person’s life. It’s that second definition that is the focus of this book.
Depression: A Teen’s Guide to Survive and Thrive is a guidebook for teenagers who are depressed or at risk for depression. This guide discusses depression and provides guidance on cognitive—behavioral therapy principles to help teens take a problem-solving, strategy-based approach to deal with depressed moods, thoughts, and behavior. Intended to serve as an adjunct to therapy, this is a very practical and easy-to-read book that is not overwhelming for teens.
It’s Not A Perfect World, But I’ll Take It: 50 Life Lessons For Teens Like Me Who Are Kind Of (You Know) Autistic – Jennifer Rose
Teenspace 616.85882 ROS
Jennifer Rose is autistic. She’s also a college student who loves reading, writes fan fiction, and wants to be on TV someday. She sees the world a little differently than most people around her. She’s had trouble coping with school, has struggled with bullies and mean girls, but she has also achieved much in the face of adversity. And through it all, with the help of her parents, Jennifer’s learned a few lessons:
#5: Use your dreams to make a difference.
#8: You won’t be perfect at everything, not even the things you do best.
#18: Learn to take jokes, even your dad’s.
#26: Down times will be bouncing up soon . . .
#27: . . . meanwhile, enjoy what you have.
#47: Talk about your feelings, even when it’s hard.
It’s Not a Perfect World, but I’ll Take It is an uplifting guide to life. It explains how you can be different and still connect with others, how to deal with tough realities, and how to celebrate happy times. Told with irresistible honesty and humor, Jennifer’s fifty bite-sized stories will have teens and adults nodding in recognition and gaining new insights about themselves.
We Should Hang Out Sometime: Embarrassingly A True Story – Josh Sundquist
Teenspace 618.92994 SUN
When I was twenty-five years old, it came to my attention that I had never had a girlfriend. At the time, I was actually under the impression that I was in a relationship, so this bit of news came as something of a shock.
Why was Josh still single? To find out, he tracked down each of the girls he had tried to date since middle school and asked them straight up: What went wrong?
The results of Josh’s semiscientific investigation are in your hands. From a disastrous Putt-Putt date involving a backward prosthetic foot, to his introduction to CFD (Close Fast Dancing), and a misguided “grand gesture” at a Miss America pageant, this story is about looking for love–or at least a girlfriend–in all the wrong places.
Poignant, relatable, and totally hilarious, this memoir is for anyone who has ever wondered, “Is there something wrong with me?”
(Spoiler Alert: the answer is no.)
Teen Cuisine – Matthew Locricchio
Teenspace 641.5083 LOC
Presents more than fifty recipes for teenagers who want to cook, with detailed instructions and advice on ingredients, kitchen equipment, and cooking techniques.
Almost Adulting: All You Need To Know To Get It Together (Sort Of) – Arden Rose
Teenspace 646.7008 ROS
In Almost Adulting—perfect for budding adults, failing adults, and eaters of microwave mug brownies—Arden tells you how to survive your future adulthood. Topics include:
- Making internet friends who are cool and not murderers
- Flirting with someone in a way to make them think you are cool and not a murderer
- Being in an actual relationship where you talk about your feelings in a healthy manner??? To the other person???????
- Eating enough protein
- Assembling a somewhat acceptable adult wardrobe when you have zero dollars
- Going on adventures without starting to smell
- How sex is supposed to feel, but, like, actually though
By the end of the book—a mash-up of essays, lists, and artwork—you’ll have learned not only how to dress yourself, how to travel alone, how to talk to strangers online, and how to date strangers (in PERSON!), but also how to pass as a real, functioning, appropriately socialized adult.
Take Me With You – Andrea Gibson
Teenspace 811.6 GIB
Andrea Gibson explores themes of love, gender, politics, sexuality, family, and forgiveness with stunning imagery and a fierce willingness to delve into the exploration of what it means to heal and to be different in this strange age. Take Me With You, illustrated throughout with evocative line drawings by Sarah J. Coleman, is small enough to fit in your bag, with messages that are big enough to wake even the sleepiest heart. Divided into three sections (love, the world, and becoming) of one liners, couplets, greatest hits phrases, and longer form poems, it has something for everyone, and will be placed in stockings, lockers, and the hands of anyone who could use its wisdom.
The Little Book Of Shakespeare
Teenspace 822.33 LIT [New]
Take the Bard to the beach! This compact guide brings Shakespeare’s plays and poems to life with infographics and plot explanations. From his most famous plays, such as Romeo and Juliet and Julius Caesar, to less frequently performed works such as King John and Henry VIII, every play of the Shakespearean canon is collected here, along with his major poems and best-loved sonnets.
In The Little Shakespeare Book, each play includes an at-a-glance guide to story chronology, so you can easily get back on track if you get lost in Shakespeare’s language. Character guides provide a handy reference for casual readers and an invaluable resource for playgoers and students writing reports on Shakespeare. An introduction to Shakespeare’s life and times provides context.
Alexander Hamilton: The Making Of America – Teri Kanefield
Teenspace 973.4092 HAM
The America that Alexander Hamilton knew was largely agricultural and built on slave labor. He envisioned something else: a multi-racial, urbanized, capitalistic America with a strong central government. He believed that such an America would be a land of opportunity for the poor and the newcomers. But Hamilton’s vision put him at odds with his archrivals who envisioned a pastoral America of small towns, where governments were local, states would control their own destiny, and the federal government would remain small and weak.
The disputes that arose during America’s first decades continued through American history to our present day. Over time, because of the systems Hamilton set up and the ideas he left, his vision won out. Here is the story that epitomizes the American dream—a poor immigrant who made good in America. In the end, Hamilton rose from poverty through his intelligence and ability, and did more to shape our country than any of his contemporaries.