Biography & Memoir Book Reviews

SCHLESINGER by Richard Aldous
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Oct. 10, 2017

"A solid, well-researched life of one of America's 'finest narrative historians.'"
An admiring portrait of a historian who made history. Read full book review >
THE GOURMANDS' WAY by Justin Spring
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Oct. 10, 2017

"A literary meal both luscious and lively—and essential to understanding our vacillating love affair with the French."
A thoroughly researched account of how Americans fell in and out of love with French cuisine and cooking. Read full book review >

HIRSCHFELD by Ellen Stern
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Oct. 10, 2017

"As the first substantive biography of Hirschfeld, this will be welcomed by art and Broadway lovers alike."
An in-depth biography of America's "line king" caricaturist. Read full book review >
CLEOPATRA by Harold Bloom
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Oct. 10, 2017

"A masterfully perceptive reading of this seductive play's 'endless wonders.'"
A wise inquiry into an "erotic and yet transcendent" play. Read full book review >
CODE GIRLS by Liza Mundy
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Oct. 10, 2017

"A well-researched, compellingly written, crucial addition to the literature of American involvement in World War II."
A previously untold history of the American women who served as codebreakers during World War II. Read full book review >

GRANT by Ron Chernow
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Oct. 10, 2017

"At nearly 1,000 pages, Chernow delivers a deeply researched, everything-you-ever-wanted-to-know biography, but few readers will regret the experience. For those seeking a shorter treatment, turn to Josiah Bunting's Ulysses S. Grant (2004)."
A massive biography of the Civil War general and president, who "was the single most important figure behind Reconstruction." Read full book review >
HOOVER by Kenneth Whyte
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Oct. 10, 2017

"A thoughtful resurrection of a brilliant man who, aside from the Founding Fathers, did more good before taking office than any other president in American history."
A biography of Herbert Hoover (1874-1964) meant "to spring [him] from the Depression and present him in another context, that of his full life." Read full book review >
HEATING & COOLING by Beth Ann Fennelly
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Oct. 10, 2017

"A sleek, delightful collection."
A poet and fiction writer delivers 52 "micro-memoirs"—some just one sentence, some a couple of pages—that offer insight into her life, the lives of loved ones, and the overall human condition. Read full book review >
BIRDING WITHOUT BORDERS by Noah Strycker
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Oct. 10, 2017

"Colorful but unassuming—and unexpected—lessons for living life fully, presented from a birder's-eye view."
Discovering the universal nature of humanity's kindness while pursuing a birding world record. Read full book review >
RED FAMINE by Anne Applebaum
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Oct. 10, 2017

"An authoritative history of national strife from a highly knowledgeable guide."
A new history of Stalin's oppressive regime, which led to the death by starvation of nearly 4 million Ukrainians between 1931 and 1934. Read full book review >
NINE CONTINENTS by Xiaolu Guo
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Oct. 10, 2017

"A rich and insightful coming-of-age story of not only a woman, but an artist and the country in which she was born."
A gripping memoir about growing up in—and leaving—China, from one of Britain's most acclaimed young novelists. Read full book review >
LIONESS by Francine Klagsbrun
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Oct. 10, 2017

"A terrific chronicle of a unique world leader."
An evenhanded new biography of one the larger-than-life Israeli leader. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Katey Sagal
author of GRACE NOTES
April 10, 2017

In her memoir Grace Notes, actress and singer/songwriter Katey Sagal takes you through the highs and lows of her life, from the tragic deaths of her parents to her long years in the Los Angeles rock scene, from being diagnosed with cancer at the age of twenty-eight to getting her big break on the fledgling FOX network as the wise-cracking Peggy Bundy on the beloved sitcom Married…with Children. Sparse and poetic, Grace Notes is an emotionally riveting tale of struggle and success, both professional and personal: Sagal’s path to sobriety; the stillbirth of her first daughter, Ruby; motherhood; the experience of having her third daughter at age 52 with the help of a surrogate; and her lifelong passion for music. “While this book is sure to please the author’s many fans, its thoughtful, no-regrets honesty will no doubt also appeal to readers of Hollywood memoirs seeking substance that goes beyond gossip and name-dropping,” our critic writes. “A candid, reflective memoir.” View video >