NonFiction November Week Three: The Expert

Week 3: (November 16-20) – Be The Expert/Ask the Expert/Become the Expert is hosted by Rennie @ What’s Nonfiction : Three ways to join in this week! You can either share 3 or more books on a single topic that you have read and can recommend (be the expert), you can put the call out for good nonfiction on a specific topic that you have been dying to read (ask the expert), or you can create your own list of books on a topic that you’d like to read (become the expert). 

Every year this prompt that brings me to my knees in awe of other nonfiction readers. In past years it was clear to me that participants in Nonfiction November were far more organized than I was with their reading. I just read a nonfiction book based on availability and mood. I envied those organized bloggers both the depth and breath of their reading and vowed to do better. But, every year I am stymied! I start with an idea (Sherlock Holmes, Palm Reading) and fizzle.

Finally, this year I think I found one. In March, I saw a quote that made me wonder. Everyone was bemoaning the loneliness of quarantine. Someone said something like, “At least during WWII they were all in it together, everyone knew the struggles and worked together.” I was curious – I mean, that couldn’t possibly be true. There are innumerable things we don’t know about the services people performed during the war. I had watched The Bletchley Circle and knew that code makers and breakers were sworn to secrecy for years after their service. Their own husbands didn’t even know what they had done! I was determined to learn more about women in WWII, especially related to codes and spying. Their stories have inspired me during this pandemic and their courage and fortitude stand as a lesson to everyone of the power of an individual person.



I am actually in the middle of D-Day Girls and A Woman of No Importance right now. I started to read Code Name: Lise as an audiobook but struggled to keep the names, aliases, and code names separate and found I needed to switch to a physical copy.


This certainly looks like a lot of books on the subject but I know I will want to read more. I want to hit that point of research where there is nothing new out there. I would, especially, like more books about diverse women. If you know of any books that I haven’t already included I would appreciate your help!

Tell me, please! What nonfiction subject is your area of expertise?


21 thoughts on “NonFiction November Week Three: The Expert

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  1. Wow! You’ve unearthed a lot of books about female spies. I don’t think I’ve read any nonfiction books on the topic but Behind Enemy Lines by Marthe Cohn is on my to-read list. My WWII reading seems to center more on stories of survival in concentration camps. Your list definitely interests me!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. That is impressive! I don’t think I am a specialist in a very specific topic, which you see a lot in Nonfiction November. Maybe next year? 😉 I have always been fascinated by code breaking and the way the brain of a code breaker works. The first two on your list definitely appeal. If you are based in the UK, you may enjoy this BBC podcast.


    1. I am in America but I will still check out the podcast – thank you for including it! I agree – the code breakers and makers are my favorite parts. I wish my brain worked that way but I really hope to get Bletchley Park Brain teasers book for Christmas so I can practice.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. OMG, this is quite a list, sounds so fascinating too. I don’t think I have read any as nonfiction.
    If you do read fiction on the topic, you absolutely need to read Three Hours in Paris by Cara Black


  4. What a great list! I share your fascination with the work that women did in World War II. I loved Code Girls and a couple of years ago I was able to visit Bletchley Park. One of my favorite books this year was Code Name Helene, it’s fiction but very well researched, about Nancy Wake, who was just amazing.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I have to get my hands on a copy of that book. I am so jealous that you were able to visit Bletchley Park! Here in Chicago they have a U 505 that was captured and, while I don’t care much about the sub, I love going to visit the Enigma machine that they found on board. Thanks for visiting!


    1. Thank you! I feel like these women were so brave and they are speaking to me through time telling me that this pandemic is my own opportunity to be strong. I hope to continue reading more in the next year!


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