Non-fiction books are often perceived as being more intimidating than novels – and somehow less romantic. But the truth can be equally as fascinating as fiction, and it's just as easy to lose yourself in a cracking work of non-fiction as it is in a flight of fancy.
Some excellent memoirs and historical biographies hit the shelves this May. The Last Act of Love, by Stylist books contributor Cathy Rentzenbrink, is a poignant story of familial loss, while self-proclaimed strident feminist Lindy West explores what it means to be a loud (and very funny) woman in Shrill.
Paula Byrne’s Kick uncovers the mysterious and glamorous life of John F. Kennedy’s forgotten sister, and The Private Lives of the Tudors by Tracy Borman reveals astonishing behind-the-scenes details from the 16th century.
We’ve also found some engrossing works of social science. Banish all thoughts of boredom: You May Also Like, by American journalist Tom Vanderbilt, is a lively exploration of the concept of “taste”. Laurence Scott examines what it really means to live in a digital world in The Four-Dimensional Human, and Rebecca Asher makes the case for a reconsideration of modern masculinity in Man Up. In The Power Paradox, meanwhile, psychologist Dacher Keltner unravels what it means to be truly influential.
Persia Lawson and Joey Bradford’s The Inner Fix is a useful handbook for any so-called “millennial” who’s feeling a bit wobbly on their feet. And finally, never feel nervous before a presentation again after reading TED Talks: The Official TED Guide to Public Speaking.
Go on – get stuck in.