Top 20 Most Recommended Nonfiction Audiobooks of All Time

Here at, we don’t rely on impersonal algorithms to help you find your next favorite audiobook. We offer recommendations from real people: the dedicated indie booksellers working in our 1,800+ partner bookstores! 

Independent booksellers champion their favorite books—whether they’re bestsellers or releases that skated under the radar but are nonetheless excellent—and help get them into the hands (and ears!) of readers who will love them.

Below, find the nonfiction audiobooks in our catalog that have drawn the most frequent recommendations from our partner booksellers.

And remember: Every purchase supports independent bookstores!

Stamped: Racism, Antiracism, and You

By Jason Reynolds & Ibram X. Kendi • Narrated by Jason Reynolds

“This book was so informative and a joy to listen to. Jason Reynolds has such a way with words, and with him narrating the book as well, you’re swept up in the history being told. This is a perfect audiobook for high schoolers to listen to with their parents.”

Lizzy, Books & Company

Talking to Strangers

By Malcolm Gladwell • Narrated by the author

“Instead of reading this important book outright, Gladwell uses a podcast-style format to really engage the listener. Thoroughly engaging, interesting, and enlightening, audio is definitely an excellent way to read this book.”

Melissa, Watermark Books


By Stanley Tucci • Narrated by the author

“Hilarious and full of heart, this audiobook, read by the fabulous author Stanley Tucci, will make you laugh, make you hungry, and make you not want to stop listening until the very end. This book will be one I recommend to anyone and everyone.”

Olivia, Author’s Note

Broken (in the best possible way)

By Jenny Lawson • Narrated by the author

“Lawson speaks to all of us who are weird, wacky, and unafraid (but, really, often afraid) to share our quirks with the world. Some chapters of this book moved me deeply, where it felt as though she was narrating my own life. Other chapters made me ugly laugh, the type that turns strangers’ heads in public.”

Jasmin, Bookery Manchester


By Tara Westover • Narrated by Julia Whelan

“How a young woman, raised without modern medicine, any schooling, or even a birth certificate, in a remote Mormon, survivalist household in Idaho, made it to college and ended up receiving a PhD from Cambridge is the incredible story of this memoir. Outstanding! This true story is a beautifully written and narrated, soulful, hilarious, heartbreaking, even suspenseful page-turner (that you’ll want to listen on 1x speed to), and not to be missed!”

Josh, Underground Books

Shit, Actually

By Lindy West • Narrated by the author

“Lindy West makes true observations about movies in ways that will make you laugh at out, and cause you to re-think some of your 90s/00s favorite films! Her witty commentary is what we all NEED…even if you have not seen the films. It’s written by someone smart and hilarious who has strong opinions about things that don’t matter. The PERFECT road trip audiobook, listeners can come in and out without loosing place in the book.

*12/10 DVDs of The Fugitive*”

Emma, Content

In the Dream House

By Carmen Maria Machado • Narrated by the author

“A masterful look at the complexity of the queer experience. Machado employs a kaleidoscope approach to examine her relationship with an old partner, a woman who verbally, physically and emotionally assaulted her, her own personal experiences that led her to stay “in the dream house” of abuse, and society’s role in the oppression and devaluation of women, especially queer women and women of color. Through a mix of long and super short chapters, examples of old folk tales and pop culture, and more realistic narrative, Machado digs deep into the confusing, distorted and contradictory aspects of a toxic relationship, in which the victim begins to doubt her own reactions and motives. It’s a #fivestarreview for us, and #requiredreading! And the audiobook features Machado reading! Amazing amazing amazing.”

Jhoanna, Bel Canto Books


By Katherine May • Narrated by Rebecca Lee

“This was the perfect listen at the right time. Memoir, mythology, and meditations on an ever ignored fact that we must change our lifestyle in order to adapt to this sometimes brutal season. I will definitely come back to this one many times.”

Nichole, The Yankee Bookshop

Save Me the Plums

By Ruth Reichl • Narrated by the author

“You may be cleaning your house or walking your dog, but Ruth Reichl will take you away –to New York, Paris, and the world’s best restaurants in her own narration of her years with Gourmet Magazine. Ruth is a consummate storyteller, and if you’ve read her earlier memoirs you MUST experience this latest; she adds to her mother’s story (remember Tender At the Bone?) inserts recipes, and dishes on some prominent names in publishing and food. I’m so glad Ruth read her book to us; I felt like we’d spent the afternoon at a sidewalk cafe.”

Cheryl, Book Passage


By David Sedaris • Narrated by the author

“David Sedaris’s storytelling capabilities are only strengthened through the audiobook, in which the author himself leads us through his gut-busting tale of his vacations in beach homes. You’ll laugh, you’ll cry, and then you’ll listen to the audiobook forty times over again.”

Ella, Parnassus Books

The Anthropocene Reviewed

By John Green • Narrated by the author

“A lovely lovely listen read by the author. This is the perfect book to take on a long walk or drive that will make you look at the world in a fresh way. Drawing on personal anecdotes, history, literature and science, Green embraces both small and big ideas and makes you grateful for things you might have once overlooked. 5/5 stars for this audiobook!”

Katie, Bank Square Books

Everybody Has a Podcast (Except You)

By Justin McElroy, Travis McElroy & Griffin McElroy • Narrated by the authors & full cast

“Even if you have never listened to My Brother, My Brother, and Me, you’ll love the wit, humor, and entertaining banter the McElroy brothers bring to this easy-to-use guide for podcasting. Whether you’re looking to start a podcast, or just interested in what goes on behind the scenes, this fun book will delight and entertain. Plus with 10 years of podcasting under their belts, who better than to help you with tips and tricks for making the best possible podcast.”

Kristin, Fables Books

On Animals

By Susan Orlean • Narrated by the author

“I really enjoy Susan Orleans’ writing, but I REALLY love listening to her. On Animals is a lovely collection of essays on animals. Ruminations on chickens (hers), mules, pandas, dogs and more get the wonderful “Orlean” treatment. At times funny, some sad, but always with a sense of wonder and surprise. ”

Liesl, Boulder Book Store

How to Be Perfect

By Michael Schur • Narrated by the author, Kristen Bell, Ted Danson, & full cast

“Accessible, funny, and fascinating, much like the author’s famed television show, The Good Place. This is a great primer on moral philosophy, targeted at the layperson. A quick read that will have you chuckling at times and grappling with the great questions of right and wrong at others. Highly recommended, even more so as an audio book since you get cameos by the cast of The Good Place sprinkled throughout!”

Murray, Trail’s End Bookstore

How We Fight For Our Lives

By Saeed Jones • Narrated by the author

“Saeed Jones does amazing transformative things with words. This stunning coming-of-age memoir is no exception. Prepare yourself for intense vulnerability as he fights to find and take up space as a Black gay man growing up in the American South.”

Zinna, A Great Good Place for Books


By Zadie Smith • Narrated by the author

“We are all living through this moment in history together, and yet somehow, Zadie Smith has captured it in a way I could never have expected. Stunning, thought-provoking, heart-wrenching, but oddly hopeful, Intimations is necessary reading—or listening, with searing narration by the author—the sort that had me pulling off the road as catharsis welled in my eyes.”

Britt, Second Star to the Right

Weird but Normal

By Mia Mercado • Narrated by the author

“Mia Mercado’s comedic timing is evident as she voices the alternations of her text. Shifting adeptly between dead honest coverage of micro-aggressions and lively portrayals of her pup; between depictions of vocational doldrums and a litany of relationship discoveries, between feminist self-love and self-deprecating humor, Mercado’s range is refreshing and impressive.”

Ashley, Leaves Book and Tea Shop

Wandering in Strange Lands

By Morgan Jerkins • Narrated by the author

“In Wandering in Strange Lands, Morgan Jerkins brings us along on her journey to learn about her ancestors and herself. This fascinating ethnography leads Jerkins down paths she anticipated and, perhaps most interestingly, down unexpected ones. As she learns more about where and whom she came from, she confronts her image of herself and grapples with some of the truths she finds. The history, the people, the insight, and the implications of the information in this book make it not only incredibly interesting, but also a significant contribution to our understanding of cultures and connections in the United States.”

Nancy, Raven Book Store

She Came to Slay

By Erica Armstrong Dunbar • Narrated by the author & Robin Miles

“Did you know Harriet Tubman knocked out her two front teeth with the end of her gun? Did you know she was devout and believed she saw visions from God? Or that she started multiple charity organizations? An engaging, accessible read—and especially fabulous on audiobook.”

Nicole, Oblong Books

House of Sticks

By Ly Tran • Published by the author

“This timely book follows the life of a young woman whose family immigrates to New York from Vietnam. It is a heartbreaking look at the challenges to overcoming PTSD, poverty, and mental illness. Ultimately, Ly Tran’s story is one of hope, one that is much-needed today.”

Alecia Diane, Sweet Home Books

Looking for more bookseller picks?

Browse our Top 20 Most Recommended Fiction Audiobooks of All Time, or all bookseller recommendations!

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