Biography & Memoir Book Reviews (page 7)

DISCONTENT AND ITS CIVILIZATIONS by Mohsin Hamid
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Feb. 24, 2015

"Passion and hope infuse Hamid's most incisive dispatches."
An acclaimed novelist reports on peril, war and peace. Read full book review >
ELEANOR MARX by Rachel Holmes
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Feb. 24, 2015

"A full-fleshed, thrilling portrait, troubling and full of family secrets."
The extraordinary life of Karl Marx's feisty feminist youngest daughter told with passionate sympathy and conviction. Read full book review >

IRRITABLE HEARTS by Mac McClelland
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Feb. 24, 2015

"McClelland's candor and empathy are admirable, but this would have benefited from more editorial shaping."
Sprawling memoir of an adventurous journalist's experiences with PTSD. Read full book review >
GIRL IN A BAND by Kim Gordon
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Feb. 24, 2015

"Written with the same cool passion she brings to her lyrics, Gordon delivers a generous look at life inside the punk whirlwind."
The blonde enigma from the band that spoke softly and carried a big noise tells her story, from art-chick beginnings to success to marital and musical catastrophe. Read full book review >
I LEFT IT ON THE MOUNTAIN by Kevin Sessums
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Feb. 24, 2015

"The author's journey is not without its wisdom but too often relies on anecdotes and cameos to keep it afloat."
Longtime doyen of celebrity media, Sessums (Mississippi Sissy, 2007) reflects on how his wild years of partying while working as a journalist left him spiritually vacant. Read full book review >

MOURNING LINCOLN by Martha Hodes
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Feb. 24, 2015

"A layered, nuanced work demonstrating the mingling of 'the cataclysmic with the routine.'"
Universal responses to the assassination of President Abraham Lincoln—black and white, North and South, incredulous, gleeful or vengeful—make for grim yet engrossing reading. Read full book review >
GOING INTO THE CITY by Robert Christgau
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Feb. 24, 2015

"Christgau indicates from the start that he is 'hardly self-effacing in print,' but anyone who borrows his subtitle from James Joyce would never be accused of false humility."
A veteran rock critic takes readers deeper into the recesses of his thought processes than many might wish to venture. Read full book review >
CREATURES OF A DAY by Irvin D. Yalom
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Feb. 24, 2015

"A humane, highly knowledgeable glimpse of the therapist's couch."
The doctor is in, and he's ready to listen—and allow us the chance to eavesdrop as he does. Read full book review >
IN WALT WE TRUST by John Marsh
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Feb. 22, 2015

"Marsh confesses his love for the legendary poet, and by the end of this insightful homage, readers are likely to feel the same."
Marsh (English/Pennsylvania State Univ.; Hog Butchers, Beggars, and Busboys: Poverty, Labor, and the Making of Modern American Poetry, 2011, etc.) shares his affection for Walt Whitman in this gentle, thoughtful consideration of the poet's relevance to 21st-century America.Read full book review >
Straight from the Gut by Vivek Sardana
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Feb. 21, 2015

"A satisfying, informative memoir of the perseverance and bravery necessary to survive a painful illness."
A harrowing journey into and out of colonic disease. Read full book review >
EYE ON THE STRUGGLE by James McGrath Morris
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Feb. 17, 2015

"A deeply researched, skillfully written biography about a previously underappreciated individual."
Biographer Morris (Pulitzer: A Life in Politics, Print, and Power, 2010, etc.) resurrects the career of Ethel Payne (1911-1991), journalist, labor union and civil rights advocate, traveler on the African continent, journalism professor and pioneer in the American race wars.Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Feb. 17, 2015

"For Mimi Baird, the book serves as closure; for general readers, it's a sobering account of how little we knew and how much we still have to learn about mental illness—especially how not to treat it."
The author was 6 in 1944 when her father, Perry Baird, was remanded to Westborough State Hospital in Massachusetts, diagnosed with manic-depressive psychosis and disappearing from her life. Here, she reconstructs the past in a moving, melancholy memoir. 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 >