Nonfiction that Reads Like Fiction

We just had a book discussion of Laura Hillenbrand’s Unbroken, a true story of a man’s and his comrades’ experience in the Pacific during WWII and afterwards. All of us were struck by how the book was a page-turner. Hillenbrand’s writing is descriptive without being flowery, her characterization and pacing keep you wondering what was going to happen next. And the plot was definitely an example of truth being stranger than fiction.

While not quite in the same category, books such as Shadow Divers, Flyboys, The Professor and the Madman, Galileo’s Daughter and Blind Side are also nonfiction books that pull you into the lives of the people involved.

Overbooked listed these nonfiction titles for their Nonfiction that Reads Like Fiction 2011 page:

Oath: The Remarkable Story of Surgeon’s Lfe Under in Chechnya by Khassan Baiev

Blue Blood by Edward Conlon

The Devil in the White City: Murder, Magic, and Madness at the Fair that Changed America by Erik Larson

Random Family: Love, Drugs, Trouble, and Coming of Age in the Bronx by Adrian Leblanc

Truth and Beauty: A Friendship by Ann Patchett

Stiff: The Curious Lives of Human Cadavers by Mary Roach

Name All the Animals: A Memoir by Alison Smith

Rats: Observations on the History and Habitat of the City’s Most Unwanted Inhabitants by Robert Sullivan

Love in the Driest Season: A Family Memoir by Neely Tucker

Blood Done Sign My Name: A Memoir by Timothy Tyson