The Greatest French, Multiple "Nonfiction" Books Since 1990

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This list represents a comprehensive and trusted collection of the greatest books. Developed through a specialized algorithm, it brings together 305 'best of' book lists to form a definitive guide to the world's most acclaimed books. For those interested in how these books are chosen, additional details can be found on the rankings page.

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  1. 1. To The Friend Who Did Not Save My Life by Hervé Guibert

    The book is a candid and harrowing autobiographical novel that chronicles the life of a man grappling with the devastating impact of AIDS during the early years of the epidemic. Through a blend of fact and fiction, the narrative delves into the protagonist's personal experiences with illness, the medical establishment, and the emotional complexities of friendship and mortality. As he confronts his own declining health, the protagonist reflects on the relationships with those around him, including a close friend who is also facing the disease, and the betrayal he feels when a promised miracle cure fails to materialize. The novel is a raw and poignant exploration of the human condition in the face of an unforgiving illness.

    The 2356th Greatest Book of All Time
  2. 2. Essential Cuisine by Michel Bras

    "Essential Cuisine" is a comprehensive guide to gourmet cooking, written by a renowned French chef. The book provides readers with recipes that highlight the chef's innovative and unique approach to cooking, focusing on the use of fresh, local ingredients. The book also includes stunning photography of the dishes and the chef's home region, making it as much a visual feast as a culinary one. It is a must-have for anyone interested in haute cuisine and the art of fine dining.

    The 4823rd Greatest Book of All Time
  3. 3. The World Of Economics by John Eatwell, Murray Milgate, Peter Newman

    "The World of Economics" is a comprehensive reference book that serves as an essential guide to the field of economics, offering a wide-ranging compilation of entries penned by an international group of economists and scholars. The work covers key concepts, theories, and figures that have shaped economic thought, providing readers with a deep understanding of both historical and contemporary economic issues. Its encyclopedic format presents a wealth of information on various topics, including economic policy, market structures, and foundational principles, making it a valuable resource for students, professionals, and anyone interested in the complexities of how economies function and evolve.

    The 5008th Greatest Book of All Time
  4. 4. The Straight Mind by Monique Wittig

    The book is a collection of feminist essays that challenge the conventional understanding of gender and sexuality, positing that the concept of "woman" is a social construct created by a heterosexual society to uphold a binary gender system. The author argues that this system perpetuates the oppression of women and LGBTQ+ individuals by reinforcing the straight mind, a heteronormative way of thinking that marginalizes any form of difference. Through a radical rethinking of language, literature, and social structures, the essays advocate for a new feminist perspective that seeks to dismantle the straight mind and create a society where all forms of identity and expression are valued equally.

    The 5329th Greatest Book of All Time
  5. 5. Four Agreements : A Calendar For Wisdom And Personal Freedom by Don Miguel Ruiz

    The book presents a framework for personal growth and freedom based on four fundamental principles that encourage individuals to live with integrity, love, and happiness. These agreements are: to be impeccable with your word, to not take anything personally, to not make assumptions, and to always do your best. By adopting these agreements, the book suggests that one can break free from limiting beliefs that create suffering and instead, lead a life filled with peace, grace, and empowerment. The author draws upon ancient Toltec wisdom to offer a powerful code of conduct that can rapidly transform our lives to a new experience of freedom, true happiness, and love.

    The 6529th Greatest Book of All Time
  6. 6. Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty

    This book provides a comprehensive analysis of the dynamics of capital accumulation and distribution over the last few centuries. The author argues that the rate of capital return in developed countries is persistently greater than the rate of economic growth, leading to high levels of wealth inequality. The book further suggests that the level of income inequality is not primarily a result of differences in individual labor income but rather the result of differences in capital ownership and the income derived from it. The author proposes a global tax on wealth to prevent soaring inequality.

    The 6638th Greatest Book of All Time
  7. 7. Capitalism, Socialism, Ecology by Andre Gorz

    In "Capitalism, Socialism, Ecology," the author explores the complex relationships and conflicts between economic systems and environmental sustainability. He critically examines the failures of both capitalism and real-existing socialism in addressing ecological crises, arguing that neither system is adequately equipped to tackle the environmental challenges of our time. The book advocates for a new ecological order that transcends traditional economic paradigms, proposing a radical restructuring of societal values and economic practices to prioritize sustainability, social justice, and human well-being over profit and growth. Through this analysis, the author contributes to the broader discourse on environmental politics and the search for viable alternatives to unsustainable economic models.

    The 6687th Greatest Book of All Time
  8. 8. Écrits: The First Complete Edition in English by Jacques Lacan

    This book is a comprehensive collection of essays by a renowned psychoanalyst, offering readers an in-depth understanding of his theories on human psychology. The author delves into complex topics such as the unconscious, the mirror stage, and the concept of the Other, while also exploring the intersection of psychoanalysis with philosophy, linguistics, and anthropology. The book challenges conventional understanding of subjectivity and identity, making it a seminal work in the field of psychoanalysis.

    The 6712th Greatest Book of All Time
  9. 9. La Charte Du Mandé Et Autres Traditions Du Mali by Aboubakar Fofana, Jean-Louis Sagot

    "La Charte Du Mandé Et Autres Traditions Du Mali" is a comprehensive exploration of the rich historical and cultural heritage of Mali, focusing on the ancient Mandé Charter, also known as the Manden Charter. This seminal text delves into the origins and implications of this 13th-century document, which is one of the earliest forms of human rights charters. The book not only examines the charter's principles of social justice, equality, and political ethics but also contextualizes it within a broader spectrum of Malian traditions, shedding light on the country's profound historical narratives and the enduring cultural practices that continue to shape its identity.

    The 6945th Greatest Book of All Time
  10. 10. Shadows Of Tender Fury by Subcomandante Marcos

    "Shadows of Tender Fury" is a compilation of letters and communiqués written by Subcomandante Marcos, the spokesperson for the Zapatista Army of National Liberation (EZLN) in Chiapas, Mexico. The book documents the period following the 1994 Zapatista uprising, providing insights into the ideological motivations, social justice issues, and the demands for indigenous rights that define the movement. Through these writings, Marcos articulates the struggles and philosophies of the Zapatistas, blending political analysis with poetic eloquence, and offers a compelling voice in the fight against global economic inequality and for the empowerment of marginalized communities.

    The 6998th Greatest Book of All Time
  11. 11. America Right Or Wrong by Anatol Lieven

    "America Right or Wrong" offers a critical examination of American nationalism and its impact on both domestic and foreign policy. The book delves into the historical roots of American national identity, exploring how deeply ingrained beliefs and myths have shaped the nation's political landscape. The author argues that these nationalistic sentiments have led to a polarized society and have influenced the United States' approach to international relations, often resulting in unilateral and militaristic actions. The book provides a nuanced analysis of the tensions between America's self-perception as a global force for good and the often contradictory realities of its actions on the world stage.

    The 7049th Greatest Book of All Time
  12. 12. The Diaries by Alma Mahler

    "The Diaries" is a personal and introspective account that offers a glimpse into the life of Alma Mahler, a prominent socialite and composer in early 20th-century Vienna. Through her diaries, Alma provides a vivid portrayal of her complex relationships, her struggles and triumphs in the artistic community, and her interactions with some of the most influential artists and intellectuals of her time. The entries reveal her inner thoughts, passions, and the challenges she faced as a woman navigating her identity and desires in a male-dominated society.

    The 7120th Greatest Book of All Time
  13. 13. Passagère Du Silence by Fabienne Verdier

    "Passagère du Silence" is a memoir that chronicles the transformative journey of a young Western woman who immerses herself in the ancient traditions of Chinese art and philosophy. Seeking to understand the depths of Chinese painting, she endures years of rigorous training under the tutelage of venerable Chinese masters, navigating cultural barriers and personal challenges. Her narrative weaves together her artistic growth with introspective reflections, revealing how the disciplined practice of calligraphy and painting leads to profound insights into the nature of silence, creativity, and the human spirit. Through her experiences, the memoir explores the fusion of Eastern and Western perspectives, ultimately portraying a quest for universal truths within the realm of art.

    The 7783rd Greatest Book of All Time
  14. 14. Acts Of Resistance by Pierre Bourdieu

    "Acts of Resistance" is a critical examination of the negative impacts of neoliberal policies on various aspects of society, including culture, education, and the economy. The book argues that these policies, which prioritize market values and corporate interests, undermine the foundations of democratic life and social justice. The author, a prominent sociologist, calls for intellectuals and citizens to resist these trends by defending the values of public welfare and social solidarity. Through a series of essays, the book explores the ways in which power and media manipulate public opinion and emphasizes the importance of critical thinking and collective action in the face of growing inequality and social fragmentation.

    The 7784th Greatest Book of All Time
  15. 15. A Month And A Day by Ken Saro-Wiwa

    "A Month and a Day" is a poignant memoir that recounts the personal and political struggles of an environmental and human rights activist in the Niger Delta region of Nigeria. The author details his non-violent fight against the ecological destruction and economic exploitation wrought by multinational oil companies and the Nigerian government. His narrative provides an intimate glimpse into his dedicated activism, the resulting political imprisonment, and the broader socio-political issues facing his community. Through his eyes, readers gain insight into the complex interplay between environmental degradation, ethnic and economic tensions, and the relentless pursuit of justice and sustainability.

    The 7821st Greatest Book of All Time
  16. 16. The Years by Annie Ernaux

    "The Years" is a compelling narrative that blends autobiography and collective history to depict the evolution of French society from the 1940s to the early 2000s. Through a blend of personal memories, shared experiences, and common artifacts, the book captures the passage of time and the changes it brings to individual lives and collective identity. The author uses an innovative form of writing, eschewing a traditional linear narrative and personal pronouns, to create a reflective and powerful exploration of memory, aging, and the continuous transformation of societal norms and personal aspirations.

    The 7915th Greatest Book of All Time
  17. 17. Lives Other Than My Own by Emmanuel Carrère

    "Lives Other Than My Own" is an emotionally charged narrative that explores the lives of two women who have experienced immense loss, one from a tsunami and the other from cancer. The author, through his personal encounters, delves into the raw emotions, resilience, and the profound bonds of family and friendship that emerge from these tragic circumstances. The book is a thoughtful exploration of empathy, offering a poignant look at the strength of human spirit in the face of adversity.

    The 8296th Greatest Book of All Time
  18. 18. Just The Arguments by Michael Bruce, Steven Barbone

    "Just The Arguments" provides a concise exploration of 100 of the most significant and influential philosophical arguments throughout history. Each argument is distilled into a brief and accessible summary, offering readers insights into complex philosophical ideas ranging from ancient to contemporary thought. The book is designed to serve as an introductory guide for students and enthusiasts of philosophy, presenting clear and straightforward explanations and analyses of key philosophical debates, making it an essential resource for anyone looking to understand the foundational arguments that have shaped philosophical discourse.

    The 8413th Greatest Book of All Time
  19. 19. Japanese Philosophy by John C. Maraldo, Thomas P. Kasulis, James W. Heisig

    This book provides a comprehensive overview of Japanese philosophy, exploring its unique characteristics and its evolution through history. It delves into the diverse intellectual traditions of Japan, including both well-known philosophical schools and lesser-known but equally significant ideas. The text examines how Japanese philosophy has been influenced by and has interacted with other philosophical traditions, particularly Western philosophy, while also highlighting its distinct approach to fundamental philosophical issues such as ethics, aesthetics, and the nature of reality. Through a detailed analysis, the book offers insights into how Japanese philosophical thought has contributed to broader philosophical discourse and how it reflects the cultural and historical context of Japan.

    The 8424th Greatest Book of All Time
  20. 20. Them: A Memoir Of Parents by Francine du Plessix Gray

    "Them: A Memoir of Parents" is a compelling exploration of the author's complex relationship with her glamorous and larger-than-life parents. The author delves into her mother's past as a Russian émigré and fashion icon, and her stepfather's career as a renowned magazine editor. The memoir is a study of the glittering world of mid-20th century New York, the impact of war and displacement, the power dynamics in her parents' marriage, and the author's struggle to carve out her own identity amidst these overwhelming personalities.

    The 8445th Greatest Book of All Time
  21. 21. The Philosophical Works Of Al Kindi by Peter E. Pormann, Peter Adamson

    This book is a comprehensive compilation and analysis of the works of Al-Kindi, often regarded as the first of the Muslim peripatetic philosophers. The text delves into Al-Kindi's extensive contributions to various fields of knowledge, including philosophy, mathematics, astronomy, and medicine, highlighting his role as a pivotal figure in the translation and transmission of ancient Greek philosophy to the Islamic world. Through translations of his works and insightful commentary, the book provides a critical exploration of Al-Kindi's synthesis of philosophical thought and his influence on subsequent Islamic and Western intellectual traditions.

    The 8518th Greatest Book of All Time
  22. 22. The Adversary by Emmanuel Carrère

    "The Adversary" is a gripping non-fiction narrative that delves into the chilling true story of Jean-Claude Romand, a man who deceived his family and friends for nearly two decades by pretending to be a successful medical professional. The deception culminates in a tragic and violent conclusion when Romand's lies begin to unravel, leading him to commit an unimaginable crime. The book explores the psychological depth of a pathological liar whose life is built on a complex web of fabrications, and it raises profound questions about truth and identity.

    The 8536th Greatest Book of All Time
  23. 23. The Periodic Table by Adrian Dingle, Simon Basher

    "The Periodic Table" is an educational book that presents the elements of the periodic table in a unique and engaging way. Aimed at younger readers, the book personifies each element, giving it a distinct voice and personality to make the scientific content accessible and entertaining. Through vivid illustrations and concise explanations, the book covers essential concepts about the structure and behavior of elements, their roles in the natural world, and their applications in various fields of science and industry. This approach not only helps demystify complex chemistry topics but also sparks curiosity and enthusiasm for science in its readers.

    The 9273rd Greatest Book of All Time
  24. 24. The Edge Of Physics by Anil Ananthaswamy

    "The Edge of Physics" is a captivating exploration into the most extreme and remote scientific observatories around the world, where physicists are pushing the boundaries of our understanding of the universe. The book delves into the challenges and adventures faced by scientists as they work in inhospitable and often dangerous environments—from deep underground mines to high mountaintops and the icy expanses of Antarctica—to conduct experiments that probe the mysteries of dark matter, cosmic rays, and the origins of the universe itself. Through vivid storytelling, the book not only sheds light on cutting-edge scientific research but also reflects on the profound human curiosity and relentless pursuit of knowledge that drive these extraordinary endeavors.

    The 9529th Greatest Book of All Time
  25. 25. La Grotte Chauvet À Vallon Pont D'arc by Jean-Marie Chauvet

    The book provides an in-depth exploration of the Chauvet Cave, discovered in 1994 in the Ardèche region of southern France, which houses some of the oldest known prehistoric cave paintings. It details the discovery and significance of the cave's artwork, which dates back approximately 32,000 years, offering insights into the lives and environments of early human societies. The author, a key figure in the cave's discovery, combines scientific analysis with vivid photographic documentation to present a comprehensive study of the cave's intricate depictions of ancient animals and human figures, emphasizing the artistic sophistication and cultural complexities of our Paleolithic ancestors.

    The 9775th Greatest Book of All Time

Reading Statistics

Click the button below to see how many of these books you've read!


If you're interested in downloading this list as a CSV file for use in a spreadsheet application, you can easily do so by clicking the button below. Please note that to ensure a manageable file size and faster download, the CSV will include details for only the first 500 books.