Non-fiction Nominees

Over the past few years, I’ve participated in a challenge to read the books that won or were nominated for ALA book awards. Think of it as the book nerd’s version of seeing all of the movies that were nominated for the Oscars. Some of the best books I’ve read through this challenge have been the books nominated for best non-fiction.


First Flight Around the World by Tim Grove looks at the race to be the first to circumnavigate the globe by air. It was the 1920s and the US, Great Britain, France, Portugal, Italy and Argentina were all trying to claim those bragging rights.

In an effort to claim those rights, the US Army sent out four planes and eight young men. This books looks at the things they accomplished and the challenges they faced. I find it really interesting that much of the book is based on a journal kept by one of the crew members (that’s what’s called a primary source, right?).

I haven’t read the book yet, but it sounds fascinating and there are some wonderful photos and maps to accompany the text. And it may be interesting to pair this with one of 2014’s nominees, Courage Has No Color which is the story of America’s first Black paratroopers (which I also have in audio).



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