Welcome to the first Non-Fiction Monday Round-up of 2011

Thanks for stopping by for this first Non-Fiction Monday of the year!

My own contribution is The Dark Game: True Spy Stories, by Paul S. Janeczko (YA, Candlewick, 256 pages).

I turn to the Cybils Non-fiction shortlists as a tried and true source of great books for my kids (and me). Happily, I had one of the shortlisted titles already on hand--I'd gotten Janeczko's book out of the library a few weeks ago on the strength of the many positive reviews I'd been seeing of it. And it did not disappoint!

With stories of spies ranging from the Revolutionary War to today's cyber spying, Janeczko offers in depth looks at particular men and women and their espionage careers. He's not aiming for a comprehensive history of spying--rather, his focus is on stories that exemplify particular historical periods. And so there was a very personal element to this book--it's full of strong characters (both men and women) who keep the attention of the reader fixed on their adventures.

Many of the stories, what with the concomitant risks of being a spy, and the high military and political stakes involved, were full of suspense and kept me at the edge of my seat! And I kept looking up from the book to share things I'd learned with my family. I didn't know, for instance, that one of the key spies of the Revolution was an unnamed woman from New York. I didn't know that there was a group of Choctaw code talkers in World War One, or that a tunnel was dug under East Berlin to allow the West to tap into the Soviet phone lines. In short, I was both educated and entertained. And my ten year old son likewise--I'm reading it out loud to him, and he is enjoying it lots too.

A fine shortlist choice!

Please leave your non-fiction links in the comments, and I'll post them as the day progresses!

Speaking of the Cybils, several of the Non-Fiction Panelists share their shortlists--you can find them at Simply Science, Check It Out, and Picture Book of the Day.

At Great Kid Books you can find You and Me Together--Moms, Dads, and Kids Around the World, by Barbara Kerley, and One World, One Day, also by Barbary Kerley.

At NC Teacher Stuff, there's Beco's Big Year: A Baby Elephant Turns One, by Linda Stanek.

Shelf-employed offers up two books in the Food is CATegorical series, books "featuring the main food groups and healthy living."

Wendie's Wanderings looks at What's in a ...Hole? by Tracy Nelson Maurer.

At AAKidsBooksTalks you will find Simeon's Story: An Eyewitness Account of the Kidnapping of Emmett Till, by Simeon Wright.

At Chicken Spaghetti there's Saving the Baghdad Zoo

Wild About Nature blog has a review of Arctic Lights Arctic Nights by Debbie S. Miller.

Abby the Librarian shares Come See the Earth Turn, by Lori Mortensen.

The Children's War features Remember D-Day: the Plan, the Invasion, Survivor Stories by Ronald J. Drez

The Cath in the Hat has I Can Sculpt, a how-to book on sculpting for young artists ages 4 to 7.

At Wrapped in Foil there's another Cybils shortlisted book--Kakapo Rescue: Saving the World's Strangest Parrot

A favorite of mine, A Seed is Sleepy, can be found over at Jean Little Library.

And Pink Me has one for us grown-ups (on paper at least)--Print Workshop: Hand-printing techniques + truly original projects by Christine Schmidt.

Stacy Loscalzo looks at Just One Bite: 11 Animals and Their Bites at Life Size.

At Bookish Blather there's The Girl in the Song (the women who inspired 50 rock songs)

Thank you all for all the lovely links! Now I go back to stripping paint off cupboards...but I'll be checking back in.

Two more have joined:

Lori Calabrese looks at Justin Bieber: First Step 2 Forever.

And at TheHappyNappyBookseller you can find Come See the Earth Turn- The Story of Leon Foucault.

And a third--Beowulf: a Tale of Blood, Heat, and Ashes, by Nicky Raven, illustrated by John Howe, at All About the Books with Janet Squires.

(I stripped the cupboard. While I was stripping that cupboard, however, a mouse became trapped in another cupboard, and ripped the fresh contact paper to shreds. Sigh. Our cat is the worst mouser ever. I have caught more mice than she has).

And one final contribution: At Rasco from RIF you can find The Native Trees of Canada.

Thank you all for joining in!!!


  1. Thank you for hosting today! I have posted a review of Beco's Big Year: A Baby Elephant Turns One:


  2. Happy New Year! Today I’m featuring a review of a series, Food is CATegorical.


  3. My first review of the year is What's in a ... Hole?

    (Can't wait to read the Baby Elephant book, Jeff)
    -wendie Old

  4. Charlotte, I am so glad to hear that you guys are liking The Dark Game; I found it fascinating, too.

    I am in with a short review of SAVING THE BAGHDAD ZOO

    Susan, Chicken Spaghetti

  5. Wild About Nature blog has a review of Arctic Lights Arctic Nights by Debbie S. Miller.


    Thanks for hosting this week!

  6. I have the Cybils nonfiction picture books finalists and their summaries today at SimplyScience. Thanks for hosting!

  7. Thanks for hosting today. I have an overview of the NFPB for the CYBILS, acknowledging my terrific panel and process.
    Here: http://maclibrary.wordpress.com/2011/01/03/nonfiction-monday-round-one-of-cybils-nfpb-completed/

  8. Hi Charlotte! Thanks for hosting!

    At Abby the Librarian, I have a review of COME SEE THE EARTH TURN by Lori Mortensen.


    Happy New Year!

  9. Hi Charlotte,
    Thanks for hosting Non-Fiction Monday today and Happy New Year!
    My first post of the new year is Remember D-Day: the Plan, the Invasion, Survivor Stories by Ronald J. Drez at


  10. Thanks for hosting and Happy New Year! My post for this week's Nonfiction Monday is a review of I Can Sculpt, a how-to book on sculpting for young artists ages 4 to 7. It's on my blog for beginning readers: The Cath in the Hat.


  11. Thanks for hosting, Charlotte! I also have a review of the Cybils Nonfiction Picture Book Finalists.


  12. Good morning and Happy New Year!

    I just got my hands on a copy of Kakapo Rescue: Saving the World's Strangest Parrot, which is on the Cybil awards shortlist for MG/YA nonfiction. See my review at http://blog.wrappedinfoil.com/2011/01/kakapo-rescue-saving-the-worlds-strangest-parrot/

  13. Nice collection! I'd like to add A Seed is Sleepy http://jeanlittlelibrary.blogspot.com/2011/01/nonfiction-monday-seed-is-sleepy-by.html

  14. Happy New Year! At Pink Me I've reviewed a (supposedly) grownup craft book, Print Workshop: Hand-printing techniques + truly original projects by Christine Schmidt.

    Great activities for winter weekends!

  15. Thanks for hosting! I have posted a review of Just One Bite.


  16. An excellent start to 2011! Today I review The Girl in the Song at Bookish Blather http://bookishblather.blogspot.com/2011/01/nonfiction-monday-review-girl-in-song.html

  17. What a great list of links! I know I'm a little late, but if there's still time, I review Justin Bieber's new book at Lori Calabrese Writes!

    Justin Beiber: First Step 2 Forever

  18. Hey Charlotte,

    I am in with an evening add. Thanks for hosting

    Come See the Earth Turn- The Story of Leon Foucault


  19. My selection is a retelling of an ancient Anglo Saxon epic - Beowulf: a tale of blood, heat and ashes, written by Nicky Raven and lavishly illustrated by John Howe.

  20. Hello and Happy New Year to all! I have posted a review of The Native Trees of Canada. http://www.rascofromrif.org/?p=14144

    Thank you for hosting, Charlotte, on this first Nonfiction Monday of 2011!


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