Biography & Memoir Book Reviews

ORDINARY LIGHT by Tracy K. Smith
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: April 2, 2015

"Guilt and regret pervade Smith's recollection of her mother's illness and death, darkening the edges of this light-filled memoir."
A daughter's journey to claim her identity. Read full book review >
FORTUNE'S FOOL by Terry Alford
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: April 2, 2015

"Alford paints some intriguing shades of gray in this elucidating portrait."
The "first full-length biography" of Abraham Lincoln's assassin offers much nuance and complexity to the killer, bordering on the downright sympathetic. Read full book review >

BETWEEN YOU & ME by Mary Norris
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: April 6, 2015

"A funny book for any serious reader."
A New Yorker editor since 1978, Norris provides an educational, entertaining narrative about grammar, spelling and punctuation.Read full book review >
WORDS WITHOUT MUSIC by Philip Glass
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: April 6, 2015

"Writing with warmth and candor, Glass portrays himself as driven, self-confident and tenaciously determined to invent his own, radically new musical language."
An engaging memoir of an adventuresome, iconoclastic career. Read full book review >
MOTORCYCLES I'VE LOVED by Lily Brooks-Dalton
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: April 7, 2015

"Despite the interesting details of her back story, Brooks-Dalton's journey of reinvention is disappointingly mundane and uneventful."
A travel-hungry young woman's memoir of her unexpected love affair with motorcycles. Read full book review >

BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: April 7, 2015

"A rewarding book with much to offer, including the likely spark of new interest in how singular choices made by both men and nations can reverberate for generations."
The carnage of war, the rise of a dictator and one North Korean defector's life story all come together in this combination of biography, military history and exposé. Read full book review >
THE SKELETON CUPBOARD by Tanya Byron
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: April 7, 2015

"A lucid and compassionate memoir."
A British mental health practitioner and media personality's absorbing account of the years she spent as a clinical psychologist-in-training. Read full book review >
EPIC MEASURES by Jeremy N. Smith
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: April 7, 2015

"A fascinating account of a charismatic visionary who successfully battles the convoluted politics of international health bureaucracies."
Smith (Growing a Garden City, 2010) a freelance journalist who covers health and environmental issues for Discover, the Chicago Tribune and other leading publications, chronicles an ambitious project to collect comparative data on global health issues.Read full book review >
IF THE OCEANS WERE INK by Carla Power
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: April 7, 2015

"Intelligent and exceptionally informative."
An award-winning journalist's account of the year she spent probing the meaning of the Quran with a conservative Muslim religious scholar. Read full book review >
VISITING HOURS by Amy Butcher
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: April 7, 2015

"A gripping and poignant memoir."
A writer and professor's account of the trauma she suffered in the wake of a murder committed by a close friend. Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: April 7, 2015

"A scrumptious pairing of nourishment and familial devotion."
A mother and her two adult daughters explore their unified histories through themes of food, hard work and love. Read full book review >
A FINE ROMANCE by Candice Bergen
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: April 7, 2015

"A glamorously bittersweet showbiz memoir."
Award-winning actress Bergen continues the story begun in the best-selling memoir, Knock Wood (1984).Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Frank Bruni
March 31, 2015

Over the last few decades, Americans have turned college admissions into a terrifying and occasionally devastating process, preceded by test prep, tutors, all sorts of stratagems, all kinds of rankings, and a conviction among too many young people that their futures will be determined and their worth established by which schools say yes and which say no. In Where You Go Is Not Who You’ll Be, New York Times columnist Frank Bruni explains why, giving students and their parents a new perspective on this brutal, deeply flawed competition and a path out of the anxiety that it provokes. “Written in a lively style but carrying a wallop, this is a book that family and educators cannot afford to overlook as they try to navigate the treacherous waters of college admissions,” our reviewer writes. View video >