Easy Non-Fiction reads for the fall
Published: Tuesday, October 8, 2013
Updated: Tuesday, October 8, 2013 22:10
Reading non-fiction is not only a wonderful way to relax during the semester, but also a way to stretch your brain and keep it active during down time.
According to a study conducted in September by BBC, pleasure reading significantly increased school performance of children. While college students are usually far from children, enjoying a pleasure read in free time is a great way to keep your faculties sharp and let yourself unwind.
Non-fiction books are an often overlooked candidate for pleasure reading. While “Game of Thrones” or a Danielle Steele novel might seem more appealing, a non-fiction read like Anna Funder’s “Stasiland” is rewarding and expands the reader’s horizons.
“Stasiland” is the story of journalist Anna Funder’s quest to represent the men and women of East Germany 10 years after the fall of the Berlin Wall. Like non-fiction, the lives of the East Germans behind the iron curtain are overlooked and lost in the quagmire of the Cold War. Funder changes that by seeking out people who were prosecuted and oppressed by the satellite state of the Soviet Union, as well as members of the Stasi, the East German Ministry of State Security who worked the repressive intelligence system focused on ordinary citizens. As Funder emphasizes continually, it is estimated that there was one Stasi informant or official for every 62 East German citizens. After the fall of the wall, the overwhelming majority of Stasi men and women were prosecuted for their crimes against humanity. Funder finds the victims of such crimes, as well as ordinary East Germans and even interviews a former head Stasi man, providing readers with a well-rounded account of life behind the Wall.
Another non-fiction favorite is New York Times bestseller “Under the Banner of Heaven.” Written by John Karauker of “Into the Wild” fame, this endeavor examines the situation of the Church of the Latter Day Saints, commonly known as Mormons. Examining the corruption within the church and the benefits that polygamists reap from the United States government, this work is an easy read that engrosses the reader. It sheds light on a sector of American society that is often misrepresented in the modern media and inherently misunderstood.
“I Am Malala, The Girl Who Stood Up for Education and Was Shot by the Taliban” is a necessary read. As the title reads, Malala Yousafzai was a young woman, who last year called for the education of Pakistani and was shot by the Taliban. She miraculously recovered from the attack after being transported to Great Britain for medical attention and asylum. Her memoir tells the story of her uprooted family and the global impact of educating women. Her writing proves to be as powerful as her actions and absorbs readers immediately.
With these fun, non-fiction suggestions, pick up a book in a free moment and enjoy learning about a topic you won’t cover in class anytime soon.