While there are many courses and tutorials online, learning from a book is still one of the best ways to greatly improve your skills. Below I have selected top Nonfiction History books.
1. A Short History of Nearly Everything (2004)
In A Walk in the Woods, Bill Bryson trekked the Appalachian Trail well, most of it. In A Sunburned Country, he confronted some of the most lethal wildlife Australia has to offer. Now, in his biggest book, he confronts his greatest challenge: to understand and, if possible, answer the oldest, biggest questions we have posed about the universe and ourselves. Taking as territory everything from the Big Bang to the rise of civilization, Bryson seeks to understand how we got from there being nothing at all to there being us. To that end, he has attached himself to a host of the world’s most…
2. The Forgotten 500: The Untold Story of the Men Who Risked All for the Greatest Rescue Mission of World War II (2008)
During a bombing campaign over Romanian oil fields, hundreds of American airmen were shot down in Nazi-occupied Yugoslavia. Local Serbian farmers and peasants risked their own lives to give refuge to the soldiers while they waited for rescue, and in 1944, Operation Halyard was born. The risks were incredible. The starving Americans in Yugoslavia had to construct a landing strip large enough for C-47 cargo planes—without tools, without alerting the Germans, and without endangering the villagers. And the cargo planes had to make it through enemy airspace and…
The dust storms that terrorized the High Plains in the darkest years of the Depression were like nothing ever seen before or since.Timothy Egan’s critically acclaimed account rescues this iconic chapter of American history from the shadows in a tour de force of historical reportage. Following a dozen families and their communities through the rise and fall of the region, Egan tells of their desperate attempts to carry on through blinding black dust blizzards, crop failure, and the death of loved ones. Brilliantly capturing the terrifying drama of catastrophe, Egan does equal justice to the human…
Far more than a history of the Silk Roads, this book is truly a revelatory new history of the world, promising to destabilize notions of where we come from and where we are headed next. From the Middle East and its political instability to China and its economic rise, the vast region stretching eastward from the Balkans across the steppe and South Asia has been thrust into the global spotlight in recent years. Frankopan teaches us that to understand what is at stake for the cities and nations built on these intricate trade routes, we must first…
5. Salt: A World History (2003)
In his fifth work of nonfiction, Mark Kurlansky turns his attention to a common household item with a long and intriguing history: salt. The only rock we eat, salt has shaped civilization from the very beginning, and its story is a glittering, often surprising part of the history of humankind. A substance so valuable it served as currency, salt has influenced the establishment of trade routes and cities, provoked and financed wars, secured empires, and inspired revolutions. Populated by colorful characters and filled with an unending series of fascinating details, is a…
Now brought completely up to date, the new edition of this classic work on documentary films and filmmaking surveys the history of the genre from 1895 to the present day. With the myriad social upheavals over the past decade, documentaries have enjoyed an international renaissance; here Barnouw considers the medium in the light of an entirely new political and social climate. He examines as well the latest filmmaking technology, and the effects that video cassettes and cable television are having on the production of documentaries. And like the previous editions, Documentary is filled with photographs, many of them rare, collected during the…
Blind Man’s Bluff is an exciting, epic story of adventure, ingenuity, courage, and disaster beneath the sea. This New York Times bestseller reveals previously unknown dramas, such as: A magnificent achievement in investigative reporting, Blind Man’s Bluff reads like a spy thriller, but with one important difference-everything in it is true….
On January 28, 1945, 121 hand-selected U.S. troops slipped behind enemy lines in the Philippines. Their mission: March thirty rugged miles to rescue 513 POWs languishing in a hellish camp, among them the last survivors of the infamous Bataan Death March. A recent prison massacre by Japanese soldiers elsewhere in the Philippines made the stakes impossibly high and left little time to plan the complex operation. In Hampton Sides vividly re-creates this daring raid, offering a minute-by-minute narration that unfolds alongside intimate portraits of the prisoners and their lives in the camp. Sides shows how the POWs banded together to survive,…
If you disliked learning about history in school, it’s because you didn’t have a teacher like this. Intelligent, brutally honest, and crude — learning about history doesn’t suck when you’re learning from The Captain. Each of his 52 lessons bridges the gap between history and everyday life with relatable topics and an outlook that can only be described as “slightly f’d up.” #21,134 in Books (See Top 100 in Books) #92 in Dating (Books) #114 in Love, Sex & Marriage Humor #1724 in Parenting & Relationships (Books) Would you like to ?If you are a seller for this product, would…
Trinity, the debut graphic book by Jonathan Fetter-Vorm, depicts the dramatic history of the race to build and the decision to drop the first atomic bomb in World War Two. This sweeping historical narrative traces the spark of invention from the laboratories of nineteenth-century Europe to the massive industrial and scientific efforts of the Manhattan Project, and even transports the reader into a nuclear reaction―into the splitting atoms themselves. The power of the atom was harnessed in a top-secret government compound in Los Alamos, New Mexico, by a group of brilliant scientists led…
Best Nonfiction History Books That Will Hook You
We highly recommend you to buy all paper or e-books in a legal way, for example, on Amazon. But sometimes it might be a need to dig deeper beyond the shiny book cover. Before making a purchase, you can visit resources like Genesis and download some nonfiction history books mentioned below at your own risk. Once again, we do not host any illegal or copyrighted files, but simply give our visitors a choice and hope they will make a wise decision.
For the Love of Texas. Tell Me about the Revolution!
Author(s): Betsy Christian,George Christian,Chris A. Gruszka, et al.The History Press, INC|The History Press||Young Adult NonfictionHistoryLanguage(s): EnglishOn sale date: 05.08.2013Street date: 09.07.2013
Publisher: The History Press, INC;The History Press, Year: 2013, Size: 885 Kb, Download: epub
For the Love of Texas. Tell Me about the Colonists!
Author(s): Betsy Christian,George Christian,Chris A. Gruszka, et al.The History Press, INC|The History Press||Young Adult NonfictionHistoryLanguage(s): EnglishOn sale date: 25.07.2013Street date: 09.07.2013
Publisher: The History Press, INC;The History Press, Year: 2013, Size: 1 Mb, Download: epub
Unsolved! History's Mysteries
Author(s): Dona Herweck Rice
Publisher: Shell Education;Teacher Created Materials, Year: 2012, Size: 6 Mb, Download: pdf
Account of the Fables and Rites of the Incas
Author(s): Cristóbal de Molina,Brian S. Bauer,Vania Smith-Oka, et al.University of Texas Press|University of Texas Press||Adult NonfictionNew Age, SociologyLanguage(s): EnglishOn sale date: 28.08.2012Street date: 28.08.2012
Publisher: University of Texas Press, Year: 2011, Size: 1 Mb, Download: epub
Voice and Vision: A Guide to Writing History and Other Serious Nonfiction
Author(s): Stephen J. Pyne
Publisher: Harvard University Press, Year: 2009, Size: 676 Kb, Download: pdf
Nonfictional Romantic Prose: Expanding Borders (Comparative History of Literature in European Languages)
Author(s): Steven P. Sondrup
Publisher: , Year: 2004, Size: 2 Mb, Download: pdf
Projecting History: German Nonfiction Cinema, 1967-2000 (Social History, Popular Culture, and Politics in Germany)
Author(s): Nora M. Alter
Publisher: University of Michigan Press, Year: 2002, Size: 1014 Kb, Download: pdf
A Study Guide for Arnold Toynbee’s "A Study of History"
Author(s): Elizabeth Thomason
Publisher: Gale, Year: 2001, Size: 478 Kb, Download: epub
Please note that this booklist is not final. Some books are truly record-breakers according to The Wall Street Journal, others are drafted by unknown authors. On top of that, you can always find additional tutorials and courses on Coursera, Udemy or edX, for example. Are there any other relevant books you could recommend? Drop a comment if you have any feedback on the list.