Biography & Memoir Book Reviews

LION SONGS by Banning Eyre
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: May 22, 2015

"An essential book for those who love the artist's music and want to know more, but it won't likely win converts as an introduction."
A deep, detailed biography of a complex African musician and the homeland that has shaped his artistry. Read full book review >
JOAN OF ARC by Helen Castor
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: May 19, 2015

"An unorthodox yet erudite and elegant biography of this 'massive star.'"
A fresh attempt to put young, willful Joan the Maid squarely back at the center of the French-English drama of early- to mid-15th-century France. Read full book review >

LOST DESTINY by Alan Axelrod
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: May 19, 2015

"Within the frame of this sad family drama, the author delivers deeply technical details of aviation and bomb-making."
A probing, technical exploration of the competition between the two eldest Kennedy brothers that probably drove Joe Jr. to volunteer for his last fatal flying mission. Read full book review >
THE ODD WOMAN AND THE CITY by Vivian Gornick
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: May 19, 2015

"A gentle, rueful, thoughtful memoir."
Life inspired by the buzzing humanity of a great city. Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: May 19, 2015

"A highly readable, entertaining story offering a solid education for anyone lacking scruples and wanting to make money. Surely Bernie Madoff studied Koretz's methods."
The granddaddy of all con men, Leo Koretz (1881-1925), gives Jobb (Journalism/Univ. of King's Coll., Halifax; The Cajuns: A People's Story of Exile and Triumph, 2005) the opportunity to exhibit his impressive research and storytelling skills.Read full book review >

HEAD CASE by Cole Cohen
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: May 19, 2015

"A beautifully wrenching memoir as piercing as smelling salts."
The story of a woman with a hole in her brain the size of a lemon. Read full book review >
GOEBBELS by Peter Longerich
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: May 19, 2015

"Longerich's book is overly long and even plodding, but it is essential: it paints a definitive portrait of a man whose name has become a byword for complicit evil, and deservedly so."
Thoroughly researched, massive biography of one of the chief powers behind Hitler's throne. Read full book review >
VIRGINIA WOOLF by Viviane Forrester
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: May 19, 2015

"An engrossing, intimate, and deeply empathetic portrayal of a brilliant and enigmatic woman. The book won the 2009 Prix Goncourt in France."
Exploring the palimpsest of a literary life. Read full book review >
LEAVING ORBIT by Margaret Lazarus Dean
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: May 19, 2015

"One of those books you can't put down, don't want to finish, and won't soon forget."
Beguiled at an early age by the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum, Dean (English/Univ. of Tennessee; The Time It Takes to Fall, 2007) deftly chronicles the history of American spaceflight and what the end of the space program means for American culture.Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: May 19, 2015

"Well-researched, -organized, and -presented, this is a sober, balanced examination of the origins of one of the more regrettable chapters in American history."
NPR's Morning Edition co-host Inskeep (Instant City: Life and Death in Karachi, 2011) returns with a review of the forces and events leading to the expulsion of the Cherokees from their ancestral homelands. Read full book review >
YOUR BAND SUCKS by Jon Fine
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: May 19, 2015

"'I don't regret a thing,' writes Fine, and neither will readers who live vicariously through the author's eyes and memory."
The short shelf of great books on indie rock adds another—an unlikely memoir about an obscure band that somehow found demand for its reunion in the Internet age. Read full book review >
BAD KID by David Crabb
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: May 19, 2015

"A vivid and dramatic slice of adolescence."
Reflections on growing up goth and gay in Texas at the dawn of the 1990s—based on the author's one-man show. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Jodi Picoult and Samantha van Leer
authors of OFF THE PAGE
May 19, 2015

Meet Oliver, a prince literally taken from the pages of a fairy tale and transported into the real world. Meet Delilah, the girl who wished Oliver into being. In bestseller Jodi Picoult and her daughter Samantha van Leer’s new young adult novel, Off the Page, it’s a miracle that seems perfect at first—but there are complications. To exist in Delilah’s world, Oliver must take the place of a regular boy. Enter Edgar, who agrees to play Oliver’s role in the pages of Delilah’s favorite book. But just when it seems that the plan will work, everything gets turned upside down. We talk to the mother-daughter team on Kirkus TV. View video >