Biography & Memoir Book Reviews

BORN TO RUN by Bruce Springsteen
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Sept. 27, 2016

"A superb memoir by any standard, but one of the best to have been written by a rock star."
The Boss speaks—and he does so as both journeyman rocker and philosopher king. Read full book review >
ELEANOR AND HICK by Susan Quinn
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Sept. 27, 2016

"A relentlessly captivating study of two remarkable individuals who helped extend the roles of American women in the public policy realm."
A dual biography of the 30-year relationship between Eleanor Roosevelt (1884-1962) and Lorena Hickok (1893-1968). Read full book review >

JEAN COCTEAU by Claude Arnaud
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Sept. 27, 2016

"Arnaud's biography provides a useful corrective and will inspire renewed interest in Cocteau's work."
The first substantial life of the French surrealist writer and artist to appear in English since 1970. Read full book review >
SHIRLEY JACKSON by Ruth Franklin
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Sept. 27, 2016

"A consistently interesting biography that deftly captures the many selves and multiple struggles of a true American original."
An engaging, sympathetic portrait of the writer who found the witchery in huswifery. Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Sept. 20, 2016

"A fresh, captivating history of the enduringly colorful Churchill."
A history of the danger-seeking young Winston Churchill during the Boer War, which "had turned out to be far more difficult and more devastating than the amusing colonial war the British had expected." Read full book review >

EYES ON THE STREET by Robert Kanigel
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Sept. 20, 2016

"An outstanding chronicle of a provocative, influential, iconoclastic theorist of the American cityscape."
A significant, comprehensive biography of an irrepressible urbanist, author, and pioneering community activist. Read full book review >
MOSCOW NIGHTS by Nigel Cliff
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Sept. 20, 2016

"Sweeping history combines with a sensitive rendering of Cliburn's extraordinary passion."
The glorious career of the Texan pianist who captured Russian hearts during the Cold War era. Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Sept. 13, 2016

"An elaborately detailed, darkly surprising, definitive history of the LA gangsta rap era."
A provocative, multifaceted portrait of essential rap pioneers who ushered the hip-hop music scene to greatness. Read full book review >
GIRL by Alona Frankel
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Sept. 12, 2016

"A truly moving and bravely rendered memoir."
An impressionistic memoir of a Polish Jewish girl's survival hiding as a Gentile in Nazi-occupied Poland. Read full book review >
Such Mad Fun by Robin R. Cutler
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Sept. 8, 2016

"A valuable, absorbing contribution to the history of women, golden-age Hollywood, and America's magazine culture of the 1930s and '40s."
A biography of Jane Hall, a writer for magazines and movies, traces the complicated, warring pressures of talent and the feminine mystique. Read full book review >
THE ART OF WAITING by Belle Boggs
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Sept. 6, 2016

"In her reporting, researching, and sharing, Boggs has performed a public service for those in a similar position—and for anyone interested in the implications of parenthood or in a story well-told and deeply felt."
So much more than a memoir about trying to conceive. Read full book review >
FAMILY OF EARTH by Wilma Dykeman
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Sept. 6, 2016

"A captivating, poetic, difficult-to-categorize book that abundantly showcases the author's talent for making words dance. Anyone who has lived in the countryside, or wished they had, will enjoy Dykeman's celebration of nature."
The first publication of a long-lost work by revered Appalachian writer Dykeman (1920-2006). Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Melissa Sweet
author of SOME WRITER!
September 26, 2016

“SOME PIG,” Charlotte the spider’s praise for Wilbur, is just one fondly remembered snippet from E. B. White’s Charlotte’s Web. In Some Writer!, two-time Caldecott Honor winner and 2014 Kirkus Prize finalist Melissa Sweet mixes White’s personal letters, photos, and family ephemera with her own exquisite artwork to tell his story, from his birth in 1899 to his death in 1985. Budding young writers will be fascinated and inspired by the journalist, New Yorker contributor, and children’s book author who loved words his whole life. This authorized tribute is the first fully illustrated biography of E. B. White and includes an afterword by Martha White, E. B. White's granddaughter. “Like Charlotte, Sweet spins a terrific story,” our reviewer writes in a starred review. “A masterful biography that will enchant young readers.” View video >