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  • Writer's pictureMaggie Meahl

Do you like non-fiction? My winter picks!

*Originally posted January 18th 2019*

I gravitate toward non-fiction, but I love a good novel!

Where did I get these books? One was a gift, one was meant to be given as a gift, two were purchased on-line via Amazon, one was purchased at the quaint “Book Shop” in Beverly Farms, MA, and finally, one was purchased, used, from a TAUNY Folkstore in Canton, NY.

A Frenchwomen for All Seasons touts the lifestyle of the worldly Mirielle Giuliano and her recipes for healthy living.

They don’t make ’em like this anymore…6th edition, published in 1900. Found at TAUNY shop in Canton, NY.

Eben Holdenby Irving Bacheller, a graduate of St. Lawrence University, was a national bestseller in 1900. It chronicles the life of a Vermont boy who loses his parents and is taken to his new family, in northern New York, by a wise old backwoodsman named Eben Holden. Holden is like a fairygrandfather to Bill and flits in and out of it as Bill comes of age during the Civil War. It gives one some sense of 19th century New York State “North Country” life but not as much as I was looking for. There is a corny love story involved and also some descriptive scenes from the Battle of Bull Run that Bill experiences. I love anything to do with northern New York history and culture, including the bookFarmer Boy by Laura Ingalls Wilder.

Jay and Lyerly’s important source for teachers. Purchased via

Bethany Jay is a popular History professor at Salem State University in Salem, MA. She is the co-editor of Understanding and Teaching American Slavery which explores challenges and ideas for teaching the history of American slavery in the classroom. I believe there are 19 essays on content, sources, and strategies for teaching this defining part of American history.

Victoria’s Daughter’s appears to be a gossipy account of Queen Victoria’s lame parenting skills, which, surprise, produced dysfunctional children. Reminds me of another famous British queen.

These Truths, by Jill Lepore, is this prolific author’s latest endeavor. Here she tries her hand at a rehash of all of American History starting with Columbus’ claim of the Americas on behalf of Spain. She is simply an amazing researcher, writer, historian and professor. I wish I could meet her–unlike some historians, she does not seem snobby or elitist. I picked this book up at the lovely Book Shop in Beverly Farms, MA.

Finally, I picked up The Lowells of Massachusetts because I too am researching another famous American family, the Huntington’s of Norwich, CT. I am in the beginning stages of a book on them–or at least one branch of their huge family. Thus, although I have no compelling interest in the Lowells, I do have an interest in Sankovich’s writing style and note taking skills.

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