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Colette Bancroft lists best nonfiction books of 2013

A couple of weeks ago I named my favorite fiction of 2013. Now here's my list of the best books among the nonfiction I read this year, including biographies, histories, personal essays and general nonfiction. (They're listed alphabetically by author.)

It's tough to pick a favorite, since there are many outstanding books on my list. (George Packer's The Unwinding has already won the National Book Award.) But if pressed, I'd choose David Finkel's stunning Thank You for Your Service, about the experiences of veterans of the Iraq war after they return home.

• Wrapped in the Flag: A Personal History of America's Radical Right by Claire Conner

• Kansas City Lightning: The Rise and Times of Charlie Parker by Stanley Crouch

• Skyway: The True Story of Tampa Bay's Signature Bridge and the Man Who Brought It Down by Bill DeYoung

• Thank You for Your Service by David Finkel

• The Tender Soldier: A True Story of War and Sacrifice by Vanessa Gezari

• Furious Cool: Richard Pryor and the World That Made Him by David Henry and Joe Henry

• Alligators in B-Flat: Improbable Tales From the Files of Real Florida by Jeff Klinkenberg

• The Unwinding: An Inner History of the New America by George Packer

• This Is the Story of a Happy Marriage by Ann Patchett

• Command and Control: Nuclear Weapons, the Damascus Incident, and the Illusion of Safety by Eric Schlosser

• Let's Explore Diabetes With Owls by David Sedaris

• Duke: A Life of Duke Ellington by Terry Teachout

• Fringe Florida: Travels Among Mud Boggers, Furries, Ufologists, Nudists, and Other Lovers of Unconventional Lifestyles by Lynn Waddell

• Going Clear: Scientology, Hollywood, and the Prison of Belief by Lawrence Wright

• Among the Janeites: A Journey Through the World of Jane Austen Fandom by Deborah Yaffe

Colette Bancroft can be reached at or (727) 893-8435.

Colette Bancroft lists best nonfiction books of 2013 12/24/13 [Last modified: Tuesday, December 24, 2013 1:42pm]
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