Biography & Memoir Book Reviews (page 5)

Versace’s Medusa: Andrew Cunanan by C. T. Patrick Diamond
Released: April 29, 2015

"A sometimes-entertaining but often overblown and under-imagined fictionalized treatment of an enigmatic crime."
The devil made Andrew Cunanan do it, according to this unfocused novel and meditation on the man who murdered fashion designer Gianni Versace. Read full book review >
Cycling the Mekong by Gerry Daly
Released: Sept. 30, 2015

"A useful, attractive travel guide and memoir recommended for anyone curious about Southeast Asia."
In this photo-rich debut memoir, an urban planner recalls bicycling through Southeast Asia, his camera in tow. Read full book review >

My Third Parents by Fernando Kuehnel
Released: July 3, 2013

"A brutal, frightening, but ultimately hopeful story of adoption."
Kuehnel's debut memoir tells of a young boy changing countries, changing families, and enduring nearly as much hardship as a life can hold. Read full book review >
A Most Incredible Witness by Emily L. Pittsford
Released: Aug. 19, 2015

"A book that will be most appreciated by loved ones affected by this tragedy and those open to a similar response to grief."
In this brief memoir, Pittsford recounts the trials of dealing with her son's premature death and addressing her own trust in God. Read full book review >
Searching for Barton Carter by Nancy Barton Carter Clough
Released: Aug. 2, 2015

"A congested but nevertheless in-depth investigation of an overlooked war and the types of people drawn to it."
From debut author Clough comes a historical biography of an American's involvement in the Spanish Civil War. Read full book review >

Released: Feb. 16, 2016

"The British author provides finely textured, subtle shading to a well-known American Founding Father."
A fleshed-out examination of Benjamin Franklin's affinity with England. Read full book review >
NATIVE by Sayed Kashua
Released: Feb. 2, 2016

"A wickedly ironic but humane collection."
A journalist and novelist's sharp-eyed take on his life as a Hebrew-speaking Palestinian in Jerusalem. Read full book review >
THE KING'S BED by Don Jordan
Released: March 15, 2016

"The authors' easy, readable style makes this a solid biography of Charles II, full of sturdy history and enough salacious information to keep it interesting."
Jordan and Walsh (White Cargo: The Forgotten History of Britain's White Slaves in America, 2007, etc.) look deeper into England's "Merry Monarch" and his character—or lack thereof.Read full book review >
SO AS I WAS SAYING... by Frank Mankiewicz
Released: Feb. 16, 2016

"A roughly chronological memoir of a life well-lived, full of specific portraits and vivid detail."
Off-the-cuff sketches from a rich, committed life. Read full book review >
The Dead Brother Club by Coren Beck

"Engaging proof of the need for an anchor in our lives, adolescent or otherwise."
A pastor's memoir chronicles his embrace of faith as a way of giving his life purpose in the wake of devastating tragedy. Read full book review >
Animals Don't Blush by David R. Gross
Released: Sept. 29, 2015

"Delightful vignettes about caring for animals large and small in the West make this book an enjoyable and satisfying read."
An entertaining memoir recalls the beginning of a veterinarian's career in the early 1960s in Montana. Read full book review >
WORLDS APART by David Plante
Released: Aug. 25, 2015

"An understated, observant, and earnest memoir from an acclaimed novelist."
The second installment of American novelist Plante's memoir (Becoming a Londoner, 2013, etc.) of his long love affair with Nikos Stangos (1936-2004), the Greek-born editor of the publishing house Thames and Hudson. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Jason Gay
November 17, 2015

In the 1990s, copies of Richard Carlson’s Don't Sweat the Small Stuff (and its many sequels) were seemingly everywhere, giving readers either the confidence to prioritize their stresses or despondence over the slender volume’s not addressing their particular set of problems. While not the first book of its kind, it kicked open the door for an industry of self-help, worry-reduction advice guides. In his first book, Little Victories, Wall Street Journal sports columnist Gay takes less of a guru approach, though he has drawn an audience of readers appreciative of reportage that balances insights with a droll, self-deprecating outlook. He occasionally focuses his columns on “the Rules” (of Thanksgiving family touch football, the gym, the office holiday party, etc.), which started as a genial poke in the eye at the proliferation of self-help books and, over time, came to explore actual advice “both practical and ridiculous” and “neither perfect nor universal.” The author admirably combines those elements in every piece in the book. View video >