Biography & Memoir Book Reviews (page 5)

THE MATHEWS MEN by William Geroux
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: April 19, 2016

"A deep, compassionate group biography of these 'unsung heroes' of the Merchant Marines."
An intricate look at the outsized role of a group of Chesapeake Bay, Virginia, families in the dangerous work of the Merchant Marines during World War II. Read full book review >
APPROVAL JUNKIE by Faith Salie
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: April 19, 2016

"Funny, touching essays on being a multifaceted woman with unique dreams, desires, and needs."
A TV and radio host acknowledges her need to be liked and tells how she's worked hard to overcome this. Read full book review >

BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: April 19, 2016

"For space aficionados especially but also a good choice for general readers seeking an introduction to an underappreciated, thrilling chapter in aerospace history."
An aviation historian revisits the conception, development, and inaugural flight of "the last American flying machine built to fly higher and faster than everything that had come before." Read full book review >
GREENPEACE CAPTAIN by Ronald B. Weiss
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: April 19, 2016

"Far from exemplary as a memoir, but Willcox raises important environmental awareness and celebrates Greenpeace exploits, which should inspire like-minded activists."
Capt. Willcox recounts his environmental adventures at sea in this folksy memoir. Read full book review >
SNATCHED by Bruce Porter
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: April 19, 2016

"An engaging, improbable true-crime tale that underscores the grandiose futility of the drug war."
Pulpy account of a glamorous narcotrafficker ensnared by her past. Read full book review >

FAR AND AWAY by Andrew Solomon
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: April 19, 2016

"Agile, informative, even revelatory pieces that, together, show us both the great variety of humanity and the interior of a gifted writer's heart."
A veteran journalist and travel writer collects pieces dating back to the late 1980s. Read full book review >
PETER ARNO by Michael Maslin
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: April 19, 2016

"A book that could have been funnier, though admittedly Maslin delivers more chuckles per page than Renata Adler. The book is also insightful about the workings of a magazine that is a critically important cultural institution."
The life of the once-influential cartoonist, a favorite of New Yorker readers for decades.Read full book review >
GAME OF CROWNS by Christopher Andersen
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: April 19, 2016

"With gaspworthy and laugh-out-loud moments revealing scandalous and sympathetic details of the royal family, Andersen humanizes this privileged yet embattled group."
A conjecture of what the future holds for the British monarchy, combining the scholarship of a dissertation with the dishyness of a tabloid. Read full book review >
CONGRESS, PRESIDENTS, AND AMERICAN POLITICS by Lee H. Hamilton
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: April 18, 2016

"The book—essentially an encapsulation of the author's philosophy of politics and politicians—is a good choice for those who want to believe in government again."
A U.S. Representative from Indiana for 34 years reviews the best of the commentaries he sent to his constituents during his years in office. Read full book review >
THE EMPRESS OF ART by Susan Jaques
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: April 15, 2016

"An intriguing biography of a ruler whose ruthlessness encompassed art."
The self-aggrandizing Catherine II (1729-1796) was an obsessive, voracious collector. Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: April 15, 2016

"An engaging travelogue that provides a good example of how one person tirelessly pursued his dream to fruition."
A parallel narrative of French explorer René-Robert Cavelier La Salle's 1680s trek to the mouth of the Mississippi River and an intrepid 1976 journey by a group of Midwestern youth. Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: April 13, 2016

"An elegant, astute study that is both readable and thematically rich."
A portrait of Thomas Jefferson's passionate belief in Enlightenment values and how it determined his personal character and that of the young nation. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Frances Stroh
author of BEER MONEY
May 6, 2016

Frances Stroh’s earliest memories are ones of great privilege: shopping trips to London and New York, lunches served by black-tied waiters at the Regency Hotel, and a house filled with precious antiques, which she was forbidden to touch. Established in Detroit in 1850, by 1984 the Stroh Brewing Company had become the largest private beer fortune in America and a brand emblematic of the American dream itself; while Stroh was coming of age, the Stroh family fortune was estimated to be worth $700 million. But behind the beautiful façade lay a crumbling foundation. As their fortune dissolved in little over a decade, the family was torn apart internally by divorce and one family member's drug bust; disagreements over the management of the business; and disputes over the remaining money they possessed. “The author’s family might have successfully burned through a massive fortune, but they squandered a lot more than that,” our reviewer writes about Stroh’s debut memoir, Beer Money. “A sorrowful, eye-opening examination of familial dysfunction.” View video >