Four books were named finalists for the 2019 BookLife Prize Nonfiction Contest. Each book was selected by a noteworthy author who served as a guest judge in one of four genres. The finalists are:


Fierce: Essays by and About Dauntless Women edited by Karyn Kloumann

"The 13 essays in this collection are as bold and unique as the women that inspired them. The book is more than a celebration of a diverse group of activists, agitators, and iconoclasts whose lives and accomplishments have largely been ignored by history—it’s an examination of the systematic oppression that led to this erasure and continues to exclude women to this day." — Anya Yurchyshyn


Your Living Legacy: How Your Parenting Style Shapes the Future for You and Your Child by Shelli Chosak

Note: At press time, the judge's assessment for Your Living Legacy was not yet available. The article will be updated once it is provided to the editors.

Business/Personal Finance

What is Water? How Young Leaders Can Thrive in an Uncertain World by Kayvan Kian

"This book contains exactly zero new ideas." It's a bold statement for Kayvan Kian to make in the introduction to his book. Admittedly, I liked the honesty. So many works in writing and art are just repackaged and recycled ideas. Heck, I'm a personal finance writer and there's really nothing new you can say about money--just slightly nuanced ways to present the information. That's exactly what Kian is doing in this book. He's packaged and blended many strategies for you to use in order to progress in your own life--professionally or personally. At first blush, a lot of the content here may strike readers as far too self-help focused. A genre so often dismissed. Spending time deep thinking and challenging the way you'd normally perceive situations, even if it does tie into the self, is time well spent." — Erin Lowry


Finding Hildegard by Gregg Koskela

"I found Finding Hidegard to be engaging, informative, and inspiring. It's a beautifully written memoir that would appeal to everyone from the faith skeptic to the devoutly faithful. Koskela masterfully weaves his story of finding his own life uprooted with that of a medieval female saint and the result is an insightful, vulnerable, and honest look at spirituality and God. Most of us have felt disillusionment with the church and will find Koskela's honesty refreshing and inspiring as it leads us to dig deeper into our own faith and relationship with God. — Melanie Shankle