Jun 11

But I Thought Everyone Read this Stuff…

Booking Through ThursdayThere are certain types of books that I more or less assume all readers read. (Novels, for example.)
But then there are books that only YOU read. Instructional manuals for fly-fishing. How-to books for spinning yarn. How to cook the perfect souffle. Rebuilding car engines in three easy steps. Dog training for dummies. Rewiring your house without electrocuting yourself. Tips on how to build a NASCAR course in your backyard. Stuff like that.
What niche books do YOU read?

Sew What! Skirts by Denhartog + CampI am currently wading through quite a number of sewing books as I refresh my sewing skills and attempt to sew (rather than buy) clothing for my children. I’m planning to stick to items like skirts for my daughter and pyjama pants for the boys. I have strong memories of home-sewn clothing as a child and would never want to inflict that kind of psychological damage on my own children (thanks for the chocolate brown and gold pin-striped pants and vest Mum).

I also love to browse through cookbooks. My kids regularly look through three birthday cake decorating books that I have, picking out which cakes they want. At last count they have enough chosen to cover the next 20 years. As for me, reading Monica Pradhan’s The Hindi Bindi Club last year sent me on a mission to find some beginner Indian cookbooks like Ramola Parbhoo’s Traditional Indian Cooking.

I’m always happy to flick through family meal cookbooks and in the past six months have managed to add the following to my collection:The Basics - Anthony Telford

I’ve also been on a bit of an Australian history kick in the past 18 months and seem to have gravitated towards both fiction and non-fiction accounts of early settlers/explorers and Australian military history. I have Peter Fitzsimons’ Charles Kingsford Smith and Those Magnificent Men near the top of my TBR pile. Other titles include:



  • 1788 – David Hill (Arrival and early years of the First Fleet)
  • The Forgotten Children – David Hill (Fairbridge Farm children)
  • War Behind the Wire – Michael Caulfield (ed) (Australian prisoners of war)
  • Cruel Conflict – Kathryn Spurling (HMAS Perth)
  • Sacred Places – K S Inglis (Australian war memorials and tributes)

Thanks to my younger son’s obsession with steam engines, I also read a ridiculous number of books about steam engines and railway history (he’s only five and stubbornly refuses to learn to read well enough to read them to himself). My favourites are Robert and Bruce Wheatley’s Railway Portraits, Jim Powe’s Trains and Railways of Australia and Jim Turner’s Early Australian Steam Locomotives (1855-1895) and Australian Steam Locomotives (1896-1958). I also share an interest in art books with my daughter.

I have been known to flick through a mathematics text book for pleasure as well. Is that niche or just weird?

Do you have any favourite niche reading pleasures? Quirky genres or favourite non-fiction topics? Share your favourite niche topics/books in the comments below or add a link to your own Booking Through Thursday post.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather


Skip to comment form

  1. Violet

    wow…this is a great resource to refer to later. I never knew books on Steam engines could be interesting.

  2. Susan

    When you have no choice but to read books about steam engines, it’s amazing how finding interesting ones becomes a high priority.

    My five-year old is obsessed with trains and loves to read non-fiction books about steam engines, not just Thomas the Tank Engine books. Some of them are quite interesting from a history point of view in general.

  3. Shari

    I had to laugh when I read that your son makes you read books about steam engines to him! That is so sweet. My youngest brother was a Thomas the Tank Engine nut, and after school I used to read them to him. I actually loved them too! What is it about trains that get kids so obsessed I wonder?

  4. Dzoi

    Sacred places sounds interesting. I will definitely find the Lost Buildings that you recommended on my blog. I learn great books through word of mouth so your suggestion was very much appreciated.

  5. Ladybug

    I though this weeks BTT was great, it’s nice to see what kind of interest my fellow bloggers have!

    Here’s my BTT post.

    Happy BTT!

    I forgot to mention cookbooks in my own list.

  6. Melody

    I love reading your list!

    One thing I like about BTT is it’s always interesting to find out what fellow bookbloggers’ interests are. 😉

  7. gautami tripathy

    Wonderful post. I loved your list. And I will check out some of those!

    Booking through niche

  8. BooksPlease

    I have a book on Sacred Places, but mine are in Britain. Interesting lists.

  9. Jacqueline C.

    Great list! Here are mine: (1) and (2)

  10. karen

    I’m so enjoying looking at all the responses to this question.

    I love your long, detailed answer.

  11. Jeane

    I’ve never read a sewing book. And I’m a terrible sewer (seamstress?) maybe that’s why. I use my cookbooks as reference- usually don’t read anything but the recipe I want right then. But I have a new one that looks like a cooking bible- The Joy of Cooking, so I might actually read that cover to cover.

  12. kerri

    I’ve also been trying to re-orientate myself with a sewing machine in the last year. I’ve only sewn simple things, but I’m convinced if I could really get the hang of it I could sew myself all those amazing trendy clothes that don’t seem to be available in anything larger than a size 2.

    I’ve got a great ‘childhood memory’ of home-sewn JEANS from my Granny. (My 2 sisters and 3 cousins were all given matching ones as well).

  13. Belle

    It’s too bad your son and my son can’t get together. Mine just turned six, and has been obsessed with trains since he was two. We have every kind of railway book you can imagine. When we go out for a drive, a major highlight is stopping at a level crossing and seeing a train go by!

    I also enjoy mathematics and physics books 🙂

  14. Robin of My Two Blessings

    I have to laugh because when James was around 4 or 5, we began amassing a great number of train books because he was so interested in them. It all started with Thomas the Tank Engine and progressed from there.

  15. Susan

    What is it about boys and trains? We have a local model train society that runs a miniature track once a month where kids can go and ride the trains. It’s phenomenally popular.

    I guess there are worse things that they could be obsessed with…

  16. Novroz

    hehehe usually parents influence children…You sounds like a great mother.

    I don’t remember all my niche books

  17. Tina Kubala

    I loved the skirts my mom made for me when I was a kid. I always liked feeling girly and knowing no one else had the same outfit.

    1. Wilma

      entrega de La Saga CrceoºspulÃ, ha tenido muchos posibles directores. En un primer momento se habló, para asombro de todos, de autores como Gus van Sant o Sofia Coppola. Luego salieron a la palestra

  18. sian

    You go girl! I admire that you sew as I had a hard time getting brownie badges on! Thanks for the post and your site!

  19. Liyana

    I love cookbooks! Especially those with the pretty, clear, vivid pictures. Oh, cupcake cookbooks. Pretttyyyyyy.