Biography and Memoir
Read true stories about fascinating lives in these biographies and memoirs.
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Books To Read
Add these new biographies and memoirs to your bookshelves. Pick up these nonfiction books about famous figures and celebrities like Brandie Carlile, Billie Jean King, Michelle Obama, Priyanka Chopra Jonas, Juliana Margulies, Seth Rogen, and Sharon Stone and discover inspiring memoirs like Crying in H Mart; My Broken Language; and Dusk, Night, Dawn by renowned writer, Anne Lamott.
Read an excerpt from the dual memoir Black, White, and The Grey by Mashama Bailey and John O. Morisano. In this book, the authors tell their story about the trials and triumphs of a Black chef from Queens, New York, and a White media entrepreneur from Staten Island who built a relationship and a restaurant in the Deep South, hoping to bridge biases and get people talking about race, gender, class, and culture.
In the acclaimed memoir, The Beauty in Breaking, an ER doctor explores how a life of service to others taught her how to heal herself. Michele Harper is a female, African American emergency room physician in a profession that is overwhelmingly male and white. The Beauty in Breaking is the poignant true story of Harper’s journey toward self-healing. In this hopeful and moving book, she passes along the precious, necessary lessons that she has learned as a daughter, a woman, and a physician.
Read an excerpt from Akwaeke Emezi's powerful memoir in letters, Dear Senthuran: A Black Spirit Memoir. Their story weaves through transformative decisions about their gender and body, their precipitous path to success as a writer, and the turmoil of relationships on an emotional, romantic, and spiritual plane, culminating in a book that is as tender as it is brutal. Electrifying and inspiring, Dear Senthuran is a revelatory account of storytelling, self, and survival. #DeepDive
Dear Senthuran is the extraordinary memoir by Awaeke Emezi, author of The Death of Vivek Oji. Through candid, intimate correspondence with friends, lovers, and family, Emezi traces the unfolding of a self and the unforgettable journey of a creative spirit stepping into power in the human world. Dear Senthuran is a revelatory account of storytelling, self, and survival.
Danielle Henderson's new book, The Ugly Cry, is a hilarious, moving memoir about a grandmother’s ferocious love and redefining what it means to be family. With humor, wit, and deep insight, Danielle shares how she grew up and grew wise—and the lessons she’s carried from those days to these. In the process, she upends readers conventional understanding of family and redefines its boundaries to include the millions of people who share her story.
In the compact format of her books We Should All Be Feminists and Dear Ijeawele, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie delivers a gem of a book–a book that fundamentally connects us to one another as it probes one of the most universal human experiences: grief. Notes on Grief is a book for this moment—a work readers will treasure and share now more than ever–and yet will prove durable and timeless, an indispensable addition to Adichie’s canon.
Read an excerpt from Maxine Hong Kingston’s classic memoir, The Woman Warrior, in which she explores her family’s past and her own present. In this groundbreaking book, Hong Kingston examines multiple and intersecting identities—immigrant, female, Chinese, American. #DeepDive #ReadAsianAuthors
Brandi Carlile, acclaimed singer-songwriter, producer, and six-time Grammy winner opens up about a life shaped by music in Broken Horses, a candid, heartfelt, and intimate memoir. Evocative and piercingly honest, Broken Horses is at once an examination of faith through the eyes of a person rejected by the church’s basic tenets and a meditation on the moments and lyrics that have shaped the life of a creative mind, a brilliant artist, and a genuine empath on a mission to give back.
In her new memoir, The Soul of a Woman, award-winning author Isabel Allende undertakes “a bold exploration of womanhood, feminism, parenting, aging, love and more (Associated Press).” Allende hopes that this book will “light the torches of our daughters and granddaughters with mine. They will have to live for us, as we lived for our mothers, and carry on with the work still left to be finished.”
Michelle Obama's intimate, powerful, and inspiring memoir, Becoming is now available in paperback featuring a new introduction by Michelle Obama, a letter from the author to her younger self, and a book club guide with 20 discussion questions and a 5-question Q&A.
Priyanka Chopra Jonas shares her challenges and triumphs in her memoir, Unfinished. Throughout this thoughtful and revealing memoir, readers will accompany one of the world’s most recognizable women on her journey of self-discovery. Her memoir is philosophical, sassy, inspiring, bold, and rebellious ― just like Priyanka.
Speak, Okinawa is a searing memoir about a young woman’s journey to understanding her complicated parents–her mother an Okinawan war bride, her father a Vietnam veteran–and her own, fraught cultural heritage. Clear-eyed and profoundly humane, Speak, Okinawa is a heartfelt exploration of identity, inheritance, forgiveness, and what it means to be an American.
Find memoirs and stories to read for Holocaust Remembrance Day. These stories of resilience and strength include a stunning graphic adaptation of Anne Frank's Diary; an illustrated edition of the poem The Tale of a Niggun by Elie Wiesel; Moments of Reprieve by Primo Levi; The Sunflower by Simon Wiesenthal; and the Pulitzer Prize winning graphic novel, The Complete Maus by Art Spiegelman. These books ensure that we will never forget.
This book list highlights inspirational women in politics in the United States and around the world. Read these biographies and memoirs about a range of inspiring women from local activists to Supreme Court justices who fought for change at every level of politics.