Biography & Memoir Book Reviews (page 4)

BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Nov. 4, 2014

"This remarkable memoir serves as a moving examination of the complex forces of ethnicity, nationality and history that shape one's sense of self and foster, threaten or fray the fragile tapestry of community."
A young Armenian-American journalist examines her identity and personal history. Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Nov. 4, 2014

"A powerful rendering of an enduring conflict."
A history of D.W. Griffith's The Birth of a Nation (1915), which triggered a substantial protest by African-Americans, who resented their vile portrayal in the film.Read full book review >

THE ART OF STILLNESS by Pico Iyer
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Nov. 4, 2014

"Rather than reading it quickly and filing it, readers will likely slow down to meet its pace and might continue carrying it around as a reminder."
A brief, spiritually minded book that offers practical wisdom on reducing stress through stillness. Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Nov. 1, 2014

"'The world is vicious and beautiful and, to some extent, unexplainable,' writes the author. 'But that doesn't stop us from wanting a story.' This is quite a story, masterfully rendered."
The transgender author delivers a unique, powerful rite-of-passage memoir. Read full book review >
PRESIDENTS AND THEIR GENERALS by Matthew Moten
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Nov. 1, 2014

"A brilliant, fascinating picture of how wars badly begun and poorly run can affect an entire country—usually at the hands of just a few men."
Military historian Moten (co-author: Between War and Peace: How America Ends Its Wars, 2011, etc.), former head of the history department at West Point, traces the long struggle of presidents to assert their power over recalcitrant generals.Read full book review >

ISABELLA by Kirstin Downey
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Oct. 28, 2014

"A strong, fascinating woman, Isabella helped to usher in the modern age, and this rich, clearly written biography is a worthy chronicle of her impressive yet controversial life."
Downey (The Woman Behind the New Deal: The Life of Frances Perkins, FDR'S Secretary of Labor and His Moral Conscience, 2009) brings her journalistic expertise to this excellent chronicle of the end of the Middle Ages and that time period's most significant female figures. Read full book review >
JERRY LEE LEWIS by Rick Bragg
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Oct. 28, 2014

"From a skilled storyteller comes this entertaining, sympathetic story of a life flaring with fire, shuddering with shakin'."
An iconic rocker receives a warm, admiring biography from a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and author. Read full book review >
DE NIRO by Shawn Levy
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Oct. 28, 2014

"An impressive biography that will surely stand as the definitive De Niro volume."
The life and work of the legendary actor. Read full book review >
THE UNSUBSTANTIAL AIR by Samuel Hynes
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Oct. 21, 2014

"Intimate and memorable portraits of these idealistic, daredevil young men are contained in a marvelously fluid narrative."
A deeply empathetic account of the first gentlemen pilots feeling their ways in uncharted territory. Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Oct. 21, 2014

"An overdue comprehensive biography of a giant of mid-20th-century American politics."
Presidential library director and C-SPAN in-house historian Smith (The Colonel: The Life and Legend of Robert R. McCormick, 1997, etc.) delivers a monumental biography of the charismatic vice president and four-term governor of New York. Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Oct. 15, 2014

"A gutsy, deeply revealing account that more than fulfills the promise of the subtitle."
Freelance journalist and author Stark (Leaving Mundania: Inside the Transformative World of Live Action Role-Playing Games, 2012) has both fully researched her subject and poured out her heart in this blend of history, science and memoir. Read full book review >
THE MARQUIS by Laura Auricchio
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Oct. 14, 2014

"In a sharp and moving biography, Auricchio captures the essence of the 'French hero of the American Revolution—the Hero of Two Worlds, the Apostle of Liberty.'"
A new biography of the Marquis, as well as a serious study of the differences between two of the most important revolutions of the millennium. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Bill Browder
author of RED NOTICE
March 24, 2015

Bill Browder’s Red Notice is a nonfiction political thriller about an American financier in the Wild East of Russia, the murder of his principled young tax attorney, and his mission to expose the Kremlin’s corruption. In 2007, a group of Russian law enforcement officers raided Browder’s offices in Moscow and stole $230 million of taxes that his fund’s companies had paid to the Russian government. Browder’s attorney Sergei Magnitsky investigated the incident and uncovered a sprawling criminal enterprise. A month after Sergei testified against the officials involved, he was arrested and thrown into pre-trial detention, where he was tortured for a year. On November 16, 2009, he was led to an isolation chamber, handcuffed to a bedrail, and beaten to death by eight guards in full riot gear. “It may be that ‘Russian stories never have happy endings,’ ” our reviewer writes about Red Notice, “but Browder’s account more than compensates by ferociously unmasking Putin’s thugocracy.” View video >