Nonfiction November Week 1: My Year in Nonfiction


I found the lovely banner above at

Kim at Sophisticated Dorkiness is hosting week 1 of this years “Nonfiction November”  The topic this week is our “Year in Nonfiction,” where participants answer the following questions.  So here goes…

What was your favorite nonfiction read of the year?


Actually, my answer to this and the next question would be the same, so here I’ll mention that my 2nd most favorite nonfiction read of the year was. “Prisoner of Trebekistan” by Bob Harris, a chronicle of his time appearing on the show, Jeopardy!, returning for the tournament of champions and one other special tournament.  It was a really fun read, and written by someone who shows himself “warts and all” and doesn’t take himself that seriously.  If you watch the show but don’t remember that name, try googling Bob Harris Jeopardy.  I bet you’ll recognize him.  I read this book in Feb-Mar as I was “preparing” for an in-person audition for Jeopardy in Chicago.  I’m now in the contestant pool (which is probably 10 times larger than the number of people they need) but haven’t gotten a call so far.  One guy I auditioned with was on last week and actually won 3 games.

What nonfiction book have you recommended the most?


“Deep Down Dark” by Hector Tobar.  It’s the story of the 33 Chilean miners who were trapped underground for 69 days a few years ago.  Coincidentally, a film version of the book is coming out next week I think.  It’s called “The 33” if I’m not mistaken.  Anyway, the book was a great read.  Even though I knew the outcome, I was still on the edge of my seat for most of it.

What is one topic or type of nonfiction you haven’t read enough of yet?

I want to read more scientific books for some reason.  I have a fair background in science, but there are vast areas of it I haven’t yet explored.  Also on my to do list is reading more about the history of my state (Indiana).  2016 is our Bicentennial year so I want to “participate” by reading and learning more about it.  🙂

What are you hoping to get out of participating in Nonfiction November?

I’d hope to connect with some new book blogging colleagues that I end up following (and vise-versa of course!) as happened last year.  I always feel like I don’t pay enough attention to my nonfiction reading (is it just because it’s “easier” to read fiction and I’m lazy?  Maybe…)

Anyway, that’s it for the first round.  What are you doing for Nonfiction November??


  1. Brona said,

    November 4, 2015 at 7:49 pm

    I also like it when local events prompt you to read more about where you live.

    Good luck with your Jeopardy campaign!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. November 5, 2015 at 10:54 am

    I’m so impressed that you’re trying to get on Jeopardy; what fun!! I’d totally forgotten about the book on the Chilean mining tragedy until I recently saw a trailer for the new movie; the movie looks interesting, but I think I’d much rather read the book. I’m so glad to hear that you enjoyed it; I’m going to check my library for that one. As soon as you mentioned Indiana and Bicentennial, I immediately thought of the TV show Parks & Recreation; are you a fan? 😉 Looking forward to more Nonfiction November and thanks for the shout out!


    • Jay said,

      November 6, 2015 at 11:15 am

      Hi Tara,
      I enjoy Parks & Rec, but am only up to season three since I discovered it late. I wasn’t even aware they were doing a film version of Deep Down Dark until I saw a commercial for it. What a pleasant surprise! 🙂


  3. November 5, 2015 at 11:10 am

    Good luck with Jeopardy — very exciting! I need to pick up the Jeopardy book for my mother-in-law. She was on the show in the 1960s. And I loved Deep Down Dark.


    • Jay said,

      November 6, 2015 at 11:17 am

      Thanks, Ann! You mom would probably like the Bob Harris book – especially if she still follows the show today.

      This is my third time in the contestant pool. The first occurred during the time that Ken Jennings was champion for so long. I would’ve loved to have gotten a shot at hm. 🙂


  4. wolfshowl said,

    November 5, 2015 at 2:42 pm

    I’m also doing the Nonfiction November to meet like-minded bloggers. Hi!


    • Jay said,

      November 17, 2015 at 12:24 pm

      Hi wolfshowl! My apologies for not catching and approving this comment when you made it. Happy reading!


  5. November 5, 2015 at 10:33 pm

    Oh man, Deep Down Dark sounds really good. I didn’t realize that was the basis for the movie. And good luck with Jeopardy, sounds really fun!


    • Jay said,

      November 6, 2015 at 11:20 am

      Thanks, Kim. I think if I ever did get the call from Jeopardy! It would mean more to my friends and family than to me. I Just want a chance to play that game for $$….

      I am looking forward to the Deep Down Dark movie. (I still have to see The Martian first, though – another great book even if it isn’t nonfiction. 🙂


  6. Lu said,

    November 8, 2015 at 10:24 pm

    Have you read Parasite Rex? It’s my favorite scientific nonfiction book I’ve read! So good. Both of the books you talked about here sound great!


    • Jay said,

      November 17, 2015 at 10:55 am

      Hi Lu, Thanks for visiting! Parasite Rex sounds intriguing – I’m going to look it up and maybe add it to my list. 🙂


  7. JaneGS said,

    November 9, 2015 at 10:25 pm

    As a long-time fan of Jeapardy, I cannot believe I haven’t read Prisoner of Trebekistan yet–sounds like so much fun. Best wishes as you enter Jeopardy land!


    • Jay said,

      November 17, 2015 at 10:54 am

      Thanks, Jane. If you like Jeopardy! I’m pretty sure you’d enjoy Bob Harris’s book. I’ve really been enjoying the tournament of champions this week & last.


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